Prince, Michael J. "The magic of patriarchal oppression in Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell’s From Hell." In: Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics 8.3 (2017), S. 252–263.
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|Resource type: Journal Article
BibTeX citation key: Prince2017
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Keywords: "From Hell", Campbell. Eddie, Crime comics, Gender, Moore. Alan, Religion, Sexuality, United Kingdom, Violence
Collection: Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics
In From Hell, Alan Moore establishes systemic patriarchal sexual violence against the backdrop of Victorian London. While rape and other acts of physical repression are easily linked to the notion of sexual violence, Moore’s treatment is concentrated on the society as a whole. His anti-hero, physician Sir William Gull, justifies the serial murders and dissection rituals as a necessary continuation of Victorian inequality and as a symbolic manifestation of patriarchy’s counterattack. Linking ancient religion and mythology to a thousand years of British history, the sexual violence in From Hell is cast in the frame of a successful victory of patriarchy over matriarchy. Alan Moore’s particular emphasis on the erotic as a biological and cultural force creates some ambiguity in the work’s pro-matriarchal ideological values by naturalising much of the tale within a libidinal machine. This is expounded by the anti-hero, Sir William Gull, in a ‘psycho-geography’ of London that privileges the masculine side in this conflict, and Moore and Campbell employ visual cues that implicate the structures of organised religion. The insights of feminist theologian Mary Daly will be presented to complement Moore’s approach to women’s societal battle. The matriarchal focus is presented anecdotally in the short presentation of the victims of sexual violence.
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