Part of The Village Voice‘s recent redesign is the inclusion of a weekly cultural essay, creatively named The Essay. I’m all for this, since it might give me a chance to one day repurpose some of my old college papers (anyone out there wanna see yet another piece on Muhammad Ali and Norman Mailer?), but this week, The Essay goes over the deep end.
Using Gus Van Sant’s film Elephant and The White Stripes’ album, um, Elephant as a jumping off-point, the impressively-named Leland de la Durantaye treats us to a 1442-word essay on… elephants called “The Cleansing of the Elephants: Trumpeting, flapping, crying: a cultural history, from Ding Yunpeng to Gus Van Sant.”
I skipped it.
This is the sort of thing Entertainment Weekly could’ve done in a 200-word charticle.
Next week, we’ll be treated to 2,000-words on little people using The Station Agent, Elf, and Bad Santa.