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The Tale of Miley Cyrus in the Words of Allan Bloom…

"But rock music has one appeal only, a barbaric appeal, to sexual desire - not love, not eros, but sexual desire undeveloped and untutored."

by
Susan L.M. Goldberg

Bio

August 28, 2013 - 7:31 am
allanbloom

Oddly enough, Allan Bloom died the same year Miley was born.

Once there lived a professor by the name of Allan Bloom (1930-1992). He wrote a book called The Closing of the American Mind. In this book published in 1987 he studied various aspects of youth culture, including rock music, through the lens of the great philosophers. Gather round, dear readers, as I present to you the words of Allan Bloom as illustrated by the musical artist and former Disney child star Miley Cyrus.

MTVVMARedCarpet

“This is the age of music and the states of soul that accompany it. …Out of the music emerge the gods that suit it, and they educate men by their example and their commandments.”

MileyVMAAudience2

“Today, a very large proportion of young people between the ages of ten and twenty live for music. It is their passion; nothing else excites them as it does; they cannot take seriously anything alien to music.”

MileyVMAKiddie

“In alliance with some real art and a lot of pseudo-art, an enormous industry cultivates the taste for the orgiastic state of feeling connected with sex, providing a constant flood of fresh material for voracious appetites. Never was there an art form directed so exclusively to children.”

MileyVMARobin

“But rock music has one appeal only, a barbaric appeal, to sexual desire — not love, not eros, but sexual desire undeveloped and untutored.”

MileyVMACrowd

“Young people know that rock has the beat of sexual intercourse. …Rock gives children, on a silver platter, with all the public authority of the entertainment industry, everything their parents always used to tell them they had to wait for until they grew up and would understand later.”

MileyVMATaylor

“The words implicitly and explicitly describe bodily acts that satisfy sexual desire and treat them as its only natural and routine culmination for children who do not yet have the slightest imagination of love, marriage or family. This has a much more powerful effect than does pornography on youngsters, who have no need to watch others do grossly what they can so easily do themselves. Voyeurism is for old perverts; active sexual relations are for the young. All they need is encouragement.”

MileyVMA4

“In short, life is made into a nonstop, commercially prepackaged masturbational fantasy.”

UK film premiere of 'Hannah Montana The Movie' at the Odeon Leicester Square, London

“The inevitable corollary of such sexual interest is rebellion against the parental authority that represses it. Selfishness thus becomes indignation and then transforms itself into morality.  …Indignation is the soul’s defense against the wound of doubt about its own; it reorders the cosmos to support the justice of its cause.”

MileyVMAWillSmith

Honestly, it doesn’t matter who they were looking at. Their faces speak for us all.

“The result is nothing less than parents’ loss of control over their children’s moral education at a time when no one else is seriously concerned with it. …Yet if a student can — and this is most difficult and unusual — draw back, get a critical distance on what he clings to, come to doubt the ultimate value of what he loves, he has taken the first and most difficult step toward the philosophic conversion.”

GirlTShirt

“The issue here is [rock's] effect on education, and I believe it ruins the imagination of young people and makes it very difficult for them to have a passionate relationship to the art and thought that are the substance of a [classically] liberal education.”

 THE END

Susan L.M. Goldberg is a writer with a Master's in Radio, Television & Film and a PhD in Life who would be happy roaming the fields of Prince Edward Island with Anne of Green Gables, were it not for her strong belief in the axiom "all that is required for evil to prevail is for good women to do nothing." She prefers the career title "Renaissance Woman" and would happily be bar mates with Ann Coulter, Camille Paglia and Dorothy Parker. Her writing tends towards the intersection of culture, politics and faith with the interest in starting, not stopping the discussion. Follow her on Twitter @SLMGoldberg and @winegirlblog.

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
I will listen to Dark Side of the Moon over Pacific 231 any time no matter how many turdy professors tell me to do otherwise. I have been called an accomplished musician by some although I am not a professional. My taste in music is wide: from opera, classical, rhythm and blues, jazz, etc. One dislike: rap purely for musical and aesthetic reasons. I do not consider Madonna, Gaga, etc. music worthy of my ears. As for the kind of entertainment this little daughter of Gomorrah perpetrates it is not worthy of any attention in my opinion. Those who pay to see her are obviously people with some kind of mental dysfunction. Sadly we do not have public indecency laws anymore.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Bloom was a prescient man who had much to say about the decline of American culture and mores that was spot-on. He was also especially focused on the decline of intellectual rigor. And he was mostly wrong about rock music.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
I had to quit reading half way through. While I would never claim that rock music is high art, I would also never call it merely a barbaric expression of raw sexuality. Some of it is about sex, some of it isn't. I certainly don't feel my hormones surging when I listen to Pink Floyd's "Time" or Coldplay's "Viva la Vida."

Bloom sounds like one of those old geezers who were afraid of jazz and rock because they had something to do with "primitive jungle rhythms" - things they associated with black people and sex. He should have listened more and written less.

As for Cyrus, her antics reminded me of - well, pretty much what she is: an immature girl trying to get attention. The sad thing is, whether we like it or not, she succeeded.

Madonna, Gaga, Cyrus - attention whores. But attention = $$$.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (61)
All Comments   (61)
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There's another child star who is all grown up.

She was in movies like Dreamer, I am Sam, and she was the voice of Coraline.

Here name's Dakota Fanning and she's now 19-years-old.

Her new movie is Night Moves that debuted August 31 at the Venice Film Festival.

So far there are not paparazzi photos of Dakota tearing apart a hotel room or driving drunk.

The question is: Can she and will she keep up a clean and sober lifestyle to be a better role model than some of her thespian peers?

Let's hope so. Some of the most profitable customers for theaters are large families that buy lots of tickets, such as Catholics, Mormons, and Homeschooling families.

So even if just for business reasons, isn't it logical to live a wholesome lifestyle?

Besides, it would take too much time and energy to compete with, no less surpass the ongoing bad behavior of Lindsay Lohan and Miley Cyrus.

Article and video: http://888webtoday.com/articles/viewnews.cgi?id=EFZlplVAploZOPBKMa
50 weeks ago
50 weeks ago Link To Comment
Y'all a bunch of Blue Meanies as far as I can see,
an MTV dancer is something to be.
50 weeks ago
50 weeks ago Link To Comment
He's absolutely right, and very few Americans, including evangelical Christians, will admit it.

Rock music has been devastating for America, and every other culture that has embraced it. There is nothing good about it. It appeals to, and cultivates and feeds, the lowest part of human nature. It defiles, it degrades, and does so regardless of the lyrics.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Well said, Mark v.
50 weeks ago
50 weeks ago Link To Comment
"It defiles, it degrades, and does so regardless of the lyrics."

So if we take "Amazing Grace" or "Ave Maria" and set the lyrics to a good beat with an electric guitar they become degrading and defiling? What kind of insane superstition is that?
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Although it defies categorization, the work that Frank Zappa did was, indeed, high art in my opinion.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
The sketch had all the appeal of a Czech underage porn film. It wasn’t arty or dangerous or particularly good; a three-second Janet Jackson wardrobe malfunction beat it in all three categories by years.... Miley Cyrus’ performance was street-level lewd. Just tawdry. It was Eddie Murphy cruising Devine Brown on Santa Monica Blvd., except in primetime. It was 8 mm kiddy porn.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Indeed. There are now (as I guess there always have been) those sad souls unable to distinguish between "sexy" and "sleazy".
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
The music today is not the Rock I grew up with. Still listen to rock, and I am considered old.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Who's the guy on the runway with the kid?
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Bettlejuice ;)
50 weeks ago
50 weeks ago Link To Comment
The "closing of the American mind" came about through Modernism/Postmodenism and the effort to chase the shadows of God out of the caves of philosophy, as one wag put it. Allan knew this, but interestingly he was much more eager to lay it on the line when it came to things like rock & roll.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
Bloom was mostly right about rock music. Rock is one of today's Sacred Cows. Criticism of rock's value provokes all kinds of extreme, thoughtless, often vicious responses from people across the political spectrum. That's ironic, since rock is often presented as a music of rebellion. Instead of a music of rebellion, it is now in-your-face mainstream music, impossible to avoid while pumping gas, eating in restaurants, walking down sidewalks, etc.

Rock is worshipped--literally and almost literally--by countless people. Rock concerts and the latest Big Movie are a bit like worship services to many westerners now.

One of Bloom's important points, quoted above, was "Today, a very large proportion of young people between the ages of ten and twenty live for music. It is their passion; nothing else excites them as it does; they cannot take seriously anything alien to music." Today, I would change that quote to "a very large proportion of people, young, middle-aged, and old...." This situation doesn't say good things about our culture.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
oh, goodness....the poor girl has cellulite. that's what she showed to the world.

A 20 year old with cellulite. Tsk, tsk, tsk. A real 20 year old stripper wouldn't have legs like that.

It's about like all the grandmas who crochet who call themselves "happy hookers." Eww. Just Ewww.

51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
She is not an attractive female. Teeth too big, legs too skinny, ears like a DeLorean, no curves to speak of..."gawky" is the word that comes to mind. Like a fourteen year old who hasn't quite bloomed. The whole performance looked like a bad Youtube video, which may be the benchmark of quality for kids her age.
51 weeks ago
51 weeks ago Link To Comment
MftI: So this would've been o.k. if she WAS an "attractive female" who has already "bloomed"? wth?! WHY is this kind of crap on TV at all, directed straight at kids? (and mostly tweens, at that) If I wanna see this kind of disgusting act, I'll make a trip to the local sleazy stripper club. Oh, wait -- all strip clubs are sleazy ... and sad. Just sad.

Is it *really* thru R&R that we've arrived at the point that the biggest virtues one can ... um, flaunt in public are 1) exercise & health-conscious, and willing to brag about both at the drop of a hat, and 2) "just do it", "do your own thing", "be yourself", and the inimitable "let it all hang out"? I'd suggest R&R is just another sympton of the disease called Post-Modernism.
50 weeks ago
50 weeks ago Link To Comment
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