Wait, there’s a book?

September 27, 2007

It would seem that in order to comment on the book, I would just be repeating everything I had said after we watched the movie. 

There is one big difference between the film and novel.  The novel starts off like the film in that we are already in the building and the narrator has the gun in his mouth and all of what follows is a recounting of the events which got us to this point.  In the film, the main goal of Project Mayhem is to destroy all the credit card buildings.  In the novel however, it is revealed that the building they are in is going to be destroyed simply so that it will collapse and destroy the museum next to it, “The last shot, the tower, all one hundred and ninety-one floors, will slam down on the national museum which is Tyler’s real target.”  And from that same page, “This is our world, now, our world,” Tyler says, “and those ancient people are dead.”  It would seem that Tyler would agree with Baudrillard’s notion that we as a society need to create a visible past for ourselves, which is why museums are built.  And Tyler feels that in order for mankind to move on and move away from this, all relics of the past must be destroyed.  Thus leaving all focus on the present and future.

One thing that I’ve always wondered whenever I watch the movie, and something that came up again after reading it, when the narrator is at one of the support groups and they are instructed to go into their caves and see their power animal, why a penguin?  Nothing against penguins, but I always wondered if there was some meaning behind the narrator’s power animal being a penguin.



2 Responses to “Wait, there’s a book?”

  1. Tammy said

    I think from class that destroying the museum is more significant than the credit card buildings in that the buildings are made of history and you can’t replace history but you can replace debt. Also penguins are cute and little like the narrator and thats why he might relate to them.

  2. kimh23 said

    A problem with Tyler wanting to destroy our history through art and artifacts is that he wants to be made a “legend” (12). To become a legend, there needs to be a history…which thanks to Project Mayhem we no longer have. A new history will have to be written, but this one written by Tyler. You know what they say: winners write history. If he destroyed old history, he’d be free to write the new one. So how much change is he really making? (The penguin thing always made me laugh. It was so ironic that a “power animal” would be a penguin.)

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