Upfront I admit that this posting is kinda strange and something of a change of pace and tone. Lighten things up a bit…
I gotta say – quite unashamedly – that I am one of these people who loves to ponder on coincidences or synchronicities if you prefer to see them as meaningful and indicative of a hidden order, a law of attraction in the cosmos and underlying the seemingly chaotic currents of human affairs; meaningless chance coincidences if you are an atheist, a materialist and the like. Even if of the latter type, the coincidences I mention in this article are no less interesting for all that, and shouldn’t put you off this article. They can be appreciated on their own terms, without bringing in any kind of mysticism/quasi-mysticism or esotericism. I think there is a fair bit to gnaw on here, no matter what the reader’s personal philosophy…
I am also interested in symbolism, folkloric and mythological themes and motifs, hidden meanings, cultural resonance and patterns and this article touches on all that.
OK so without further ado…
An interesting coincidence that pertains to this blog is that the same day (December 2nd 2011) that I posted up the first article in my China Mieville series (documenting his rabid anti-Semitism), imaginative fiction writer Theodora Goss (who also teaches at Boston U) put up a blog article on Mieville entitled ‘The Real Mieville’! Her article is about her reading of a Mieville piece entitled ‘M R James and the Quantum Vampire’ and how she assumed it to be a parody, but couldn’t be sure.
She quotes Mieville writing:
The monsters of high Weird are indescribable and formless /as well as being/ and/or /although they are/ and/or /in so far as they are/ described with an excess of specificity, an accursed share of impossible somatic precision; and their constituent body parts are disproportionately insectile/cephalopodic, without mythic resonance. The spread of the tentacle – a limb-type with no Gothic or traditional precedents..
Of course ‘The Real Mieville’ would be an apt title for my series on him (that is Mieville is a vicious anti-Semite, heavily and proudly associated with left-wing fascist groups in the UK) and that first article I posted up on the same day Goss posted up hers. I hadn’t blogged for months beforehand, my last piece before my first Mieville article was posted up back in July 2011. Also I am talking about a many tentacled monster, perhaps with an excess of specificity. The spread of the tentacles of the monster that is the ‘new’ anti-Semitism that Mieville defines and even unintentionally parodies. Whether it has no Gothic or traditional precedents is perhaps up for debate.
It’s just an odd coincidence and I thought it worth mentioning.
Arguably a further coincidence is the resonance of the title ‘quantum vampire’. One of the thing about Quantum Mechanics that so spooks and remains controversial is the apparent non-locality to the phenomena therein (electrons, photons etc) This ‘twinning’ of separated photons (once in contact) and other atomic particles is paralleled and consistent with the ‘hidden connections’ behind the apparent chaos and disconnectedness of human affairs and events. Well if one is open to that kind of interpretation or possibility.
On the moniker for this blog: Red Wolf; I don’t know why I chose it, I just did. I’m not the only ‘red wolf’ out there of course, and yet it’s as if this animal totem impressed itself on my consciousness, nagging at me.
The thing is there is a symbolism to the red wolf that I was not consciously aware of at the time (although it may have been present at a subconscious level), but having researched on the animal out of curiosity since starting this blog, I find the symbolism and themes associated with the red wolf appropriate, even uncanny.
The red wolf has been tragically driven to near extinction in North America, circa 1980 there were none left in the wild. The only remaining red wolves in zoos and special conservation breeding programs. Thankfully since then, red wolves have been reintroduced in a few wilderness preserves. Interestingly many have been interbred with coyotes, and as a result many of the red wolves are not true wolves, but coyote-red wolf mixed breeds.
As with the Jew, driven to near extinction in Europe, after having lived on the edge of Christian civilization. Like the red wolf, the Diaspora Jew has made something of a modest comeback (at least in North America). Yet this revival has come with a price, that is the price of assimilation (and intermarriage with Gentiles inseparable from the former), in which many an individual’s Jewishness is watered down. As with the red wolf/coyote program. How much authentic Jewishness is there in our assimilated Jew? What is the ratio of wolf genes (and behaviour) in any red wolf/coyote hybrid? It depends on the Jew and the wolf respectively one supposes.
The red wolf gives birth to its pups in April and May, after a two month gestation. This blog went online in April last year (first post dated April 3rd) ie it was birthed in April. I did not know at the time the first thing about red wolves and their breeding season. My blog had been ‘gestating’ for just over two months offline prior, as I was making ready the articles and the blog itself.
The red wolf as I mention, is now being crossbred with coyotes. The Trickster symbol and theme is deeply reflected and embodied in Coyote. In other words the red wolf now has a strong trickster element in him, even if it’s been contrived there by man, although this was not originally the case (naturally I’m talking about symbolism here). There has been a strong Trickster undercurrent to the events, clashes and related that I have documented at this blog (and a lot that remains unsaid and undisclosed. In fact some of it is simply unbelievable and people would think I was making some of it up).
I myself have even been obsessed with the Trickster archetype over the years.
Here is a further coincidence that is somewhat uncanny:
There was this blog posting entitled ‘Wolf at the Door’ from this blog http://jumpinmarsupials.blogspot.com/
The tagline of the blog is ‘Hardcore Will Never Die And Neither Will This Blog’. It was posted on March 28th 2011 and it was the last posting on that short-lived blog (only three posts in total). My blog Season of the Red Wolf would go online a mere six days after this ‘Wolf at the Door’ post went up.
The thing is not only is the content from the blog article ‘Wolf at the Door‘ about wolves and their symbolism in the popular imagination apposite to my blog, that blog’s prior content is harshly critical and condemnatory of a nemesis of mine, communist genre writer and editor Nick Mamatas. I have written no less than seven articles on Mamatas now (beginning here), the last and most pertinent one is here (and he features in plenty other articles too). In fact this ‘Hardcore Will Never Die…’ blog’s previous content content consists of only 2 other blog posts, both critical of Mamatas. Both articles pertain to his writing students’ college papers for money (something I have covered as well in my last article on Mamamtas). Then the ‘Wolf at the Door‘ was the third and final post at that blog. I would then come along (the red wolf) and pick off where this blogger left off re Mamatas. I only discovered this jumpinmarsupials blog long after my blog article series on Mamatas from May and June last year were already published online.
Jordan Bassior is a very knowledgeable SF fan, critic and budding writer, of a Jewish background. His one blog over here. Long before I came on the scene and started this blog – as in years ago – Bassior was exposing, in succinct and cutting commentary, the anti-Semitism and dishonest anti-Israelism from within the science fiction genre community. Notably the odious anti-Israelism/new anti-Semitism of British genre liberal writers Ken MacLeod (and Charles Stross by the by). I have clashed with Stross personally of course and have critiqued MacLeod’s anti-Semitism here (where I mention Bassior’s exposé). Bassior has also chosen a wolf as his totem so to speak. An arctic wolf, a subspecies of the gray wolf (as you can see if you go over to his blog). I had no idea about Bassior and his involvement in both science fiction and exposing anti-Semitism among ‘progressive’ liberal genre pros such as MacLeod, until this year. In other words, long after I started this blog last year in April.
Naturally the wolf is going to be heavily featured in fiction, genre or otherwise. It’s an animal that attracts for its beauty and its wildness, its predatory skill, so writers are gonna write about it. The fact that the wolf features heavily in folklore, fairy-tales, mythology and art, only makes its ubiquity in genre fiction inevitable. Think of the werewolf alone…
Talking about werewolves, liberal Scottish genre writer Hal Duncan had this short story published, ‘A boy and his werewolf’ tale (with a fair bit of vampirism added to the mix) the same day I definitely decided to write article/s on the harshly anti-Zionist Hal Duncan. I would only get around to writing the articles way later, yet the decision to actually write it was made the same day Duncan’s odd story was published online. The reader will just have to take my word for it of course. Also Duncan had earlier published another story with a wolf theme in it, this one namely. That same week Duncan’s story was posted online in December 2011, I was writing up the first Anna Tambour article (that would only be posted up much later at my blog, about seven months later). If you want to know what relevance the first Anna Tambour article has to Duncan (admittedly in a peripheral but telling and disturbing fashion), just read the first articles in both the Tambour and Duncan series.
Wolf is also a Jewish surname (albeit not always). And even as a boy’s first name it has been used among Jewry, especially in Israel (as Ze’ev or Zev which means wolf in Hebrew). Vladimir ‘Ze’ev’ Jabotinsky was a very famous Zionist, arguably second only to Theodore Hertzl in promoting the establishment of the state of Israel, to Jewry and the world at large. He faced – as did Herzl and other Zionists – much censure, dismissal and mockery, and I mean from his fellow Jews who preferred to ignore the menace of European Jew-hatred. Ze’ev Jabotinsky died in America in 1940 on the eve of the Holocaust.
As far as the red wolf in imaginative fiction is concerned – the only imaginative fiction novel that I know of that mentions the red wolf per se in its title, is a recent release The Red Wolf Conspiracy by Robert Redick. It has nothing to do with red wolves as animals as far as I know. I know nothing of the novel really nor its author. There has been a Red Wolf comic that had a little bit of a cult following. Red Wolf is originally a Native American and a really strange comic-book character, not a traditional hero by any means. His persona is adopted by several different men over the course of time. Violence, the supernatural and betrayal are recurring motifs in the Red Wolf comics. Wikipedia gives quite a lot of the details.
Red Wolf is also the title of a book in a series of best-selling political thrillers written by the Swedish author Liza Marklund (and her political thrillers are the most popular of any Swedish writer outside of Sweden after Stieg Larrson).
The novel revolves around the themes of murder, left-wing political activism, terrorism, our dumbed down culture and more.
I will end this article with a personal anecdote…
Months ago I had finished working on my computer, and in fact the last thing I did was write up and revise some article for my Season of the Red Wolf blog. I then went to get a quick bite to eat from some street vendor down the road. He was wearing a T-shirt with the imprint of a familiar ‘comic wolf’ astride a motor bike and written above the image was this, ‘the wolf was here’. The thing is his T-shirt was all in red. I thought it was kinda funny.