At Home He's a Tourist

He fills his head with culture/ He gives himself an ulcer.

Thursday, June 24, 2004

A pleasant day spent going through bags of books donated by a Methodist minister who is retiring. Maybe the most interesting item is Krafft-Ebbing's Psychopathia Sexualis. It's full of charming case-studies like the following:

CASE 97. L., labourer, was arrested because he has cut a large piece of skin from his left forearm with a pair of scissors in a public park. He confessed that for a long time he had been craving to eat a piece of the fine white skin of a maiden, and that for this purpose he had been lying in wait for such a victim with a pair of scissors; but, as he had been unsuccessful, he desisted from his purpose and instead had cut his own skin...Imagining that it was a piece of the skin of the girl whom he had pursued, he would whilst masticating his own skin obtain orgasm and ejaculation.

Hmm, I wonder what sort of search engine hits I'm going to start getting now.

Among the donations there's also a fun coffee-table book from 1951 called Protestant Panorama: A Story in Text and Pictures of the Faith that Made America Free. The authors claim that "the American heritage is the Protestant heritage" and Protestantism is "inevitably cast for the role of chief adversary of communism."


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