"Dark Star: H.R. Giger's World" was a pretty good documentary on him, I enjoyed it. My favorite thing I learned bout him was the tiny train he used to ride in a miniature nightmarish theme park he had in his back yard.
And you just improved my day considerably since I’m now imagining Giger (with a black conductor’s hat on, of course) rolling around on a tiny train. :D Thanks. You know, I’ve had that doc suggested to me before…I think. Yeah, I believe I have. I also think I say that I don’t know anything about him and would probably enjoy learning more pretty often (every few months or so). I guess I should bump it up on my endless list of stuff to explore, hm? I appreciate the rec very much. Have a nice weekend.
What are some documentaries about geiko and maiko that you would recommend?
Oh jeez get ready for a list cause there are so many I thoroughly enjoy!
Geisha Girl is one of them. There are a few inconsistencies in the translation but it’s still very good. You can find it here. It follows Yukina (Geiko Kikuyuu-san) as she goes through her Shikomi, Minarai, and into her misedashi
Real Geisha, Real Women is a fairly recent one I found that is so IN DEPTH! It’s so great, it looks at the lives of Geiko who have been practicing for a long time, geiko who have become okaa-san, there’s one who talks about how she wanted to quit but her parent’s wouldn’t allow it and she went on to become the owner of an okiya, and peeks into the life of an ex-geiko who retired and started a family! It’s really great and doesn’t hold back or try to censor the women as they talk about their training and their life!
And finally Geisha Twilight of Flowers, even though the voice is weird (They sped it up for some reason?), and if you can ignore the adds that are scrambled all around the main video and the fact that the information is a little dated now, it’s still a pretty good documentary imo~
There’s also a short documentary on Tayuu which I found was quite interesting. It follows the journey of a young Hawaiian woman as she struggles with the idea of inheriting the title of the top dancer, there are similarities with her story and Kisaragi Tayuu-san’s story in which they feel happy preserving their culture. It’s broken up into a few pieces but you can find it in youtube under Life as Tayuu
i really want to know more about classics but i can't take any classes for it - where do i start?
hi anon! okay so first of all don’t worry; this is a super common problem which a lot of people face, but since the subject has been around for so long there’s a huge amount of material that you can look at outside of a classroom situation
so to begin with, i would think about what exactly you’d like to know more about! classics is a huge subject and i don’t think there’s anyone on earth who’d claim to know all about it; most people specialise in a subfield, like classical literature, classical art, greek history, roman history, near eastern history, greek language and so on. obviously you don’t have to limit yourself to just the one thing, but if you think about the sort of things that attracted to to classics in the first place, that might give you some more direction in terms of finding resources! for example, if what you’re interested in is classical literature, you could take a look at these lists (x and x) and have a look at some of the texts there to see what you like. you could also use that as a starting point for further reading; if you find yourself really enjoying, say, hesiod’s theogony, you could have a look to see if you can find anything discussing it in your local library, your school or university library if you have access to one, or on sites like theoi, which is incredibly useful. i actually put together a list of getting-to-know-greek-mythology books here, which you might also find useful.
another good thing about classics having been around for so long is that there is a vast number of pop history books on pretty much every imaginable period of classical history, so if you’re interested in the historical side of things then you can basically take your pick. (obviously some are better than others and there are strong disagreements about which specific ones are better, but you can spend a lifetime worrying about this and if you want to start learning, you may as well just dive straight in.) if you have a particular period you’re interested in then shoot me an ask and i can try and give you some pointers, but for general history texts then you could have a look at stuff like
the oxford companion to classical civilisation, simon hornblower (another big name - actually, most of these authors are fairly big names in classical scholarship, so maybe have a browse around on amazon to see if anything they’ve done strikes you as interesting)
art, myth and ritual in classical greece, judith barringer (my classical art lecturer! she’s bloody scary but very good. very expensive, though, so i would check if you can request this from a library or something)
a few other authors whose stuff you could take a look at, off the top of my head: mary beard (i know someone who met her once, it’s like knowing someone who’s personally met god), paul cartledge (dodgy on the spartans but then again practically everyone is), tom holland, sarah pomeroy (i know i linked her book up there but here’s her author page), robin lane fox (ditto), peter green (author of my fave alexander the great biography in existence), robin osborne, moses finley (out-of-date but hugely influential)
one last thing that might be helpful for you is documentaries! these take a bit more hunting for than books, but there’s been quite a few on the ancient world recently that are totally fab, although obviously quite sensationalised compared to the books up above. a few that i can dig up on youtube:
and so on. the bbc are pretty good for documentaries, especially bbc4 recently for some reason, so even if you can’t actually watch them on iplayer i’d have a dig around to see if there’s any there you’d like to watch then try to find them on youtube
anyway sorry this is such a random collection of things - honestly, it’s pretty difficult to give a comprehensive list of stuff to read about classics, so if you have a particular interest you’d like to know more about don’t hesitate to shoot me an ask! anyway, i hope there’s something there you’ll find helpful
One of my characters is a high ranking officer in her army who primarily uses melee weapons, and has one of her arms cut off. How would this affect her during battle and daily life?
How would having their arms cut off affect their ability to fight? Yeah, you kind of need those. Without them, you really can’t. I’m sure there’s a few exceptions out there, like the one armed MMA fighter, who’s name is escaping me at the moment. But, cutting off her arms is going to be the end of her military career. She’ll be packed up and shipped home to a hospital, and her combat days will be over.
Obviously, if this is a science fiction setting, and we’re talking about cybernetic augmentation to replace the lost limbs, that’s not going to apply. The same is true if it’s a high magic fantasy setting where she can have living arms of wood grafted onto her, or whatever. But, any historical setting, and even modern day, that’s not an option.
In daily life? You can look at actual amputees, and see how they function. I know I’ve seen a couple pretty good documentaries on the subject over the years, but I can’t identify any off hand. If that’s not an option, just take a day and be very conscious of everything you do with your arms and hands. Then realize your character probably can’t do any of them without prosthetics. That means no opening doors, no feeding themselves, nothing.
Prosthetics make that a little easier, and there are some people out there who can do fantastic things with theirs. Which could, with time and practice, allow her to feed herself, open doors, and operate in civilian life to some extent. But, how does this affect her ability to fight? She can’t.
Also, you’re not going to have a military officer that uses melee weapons. That just doesn’t happen, for basically the same reason you won’t find a bayonet charge on a modern battlefield. People have guns, and it turns out, you can use guns to kill people at slightly longer than arm’s reach. Meaning your “high ranking” whatever won’t be wading into battle and belting out, “drive me closer, I want to hit them with my sword!”
Also, high ranking personnel don’t actually see combat, if they can help it. If you’ve proved yourself valuable enough to be promoted, there are far more expendable soldiers available to take your place in the fray.
Someone in a command position may be technically replaceable, but, their loss would be disproportionally disruptive to any ongoing conflict. There’s a lot of truth to the whole “cut off the head and the snake dies” cliche when it comes to crippling a large military force. Without someone to tell the grunts where to go or what to do, they’re just so many tons of meat. And, that’s what rank ultimately means. It’s an indication of how far up the chain of command your character is.
Unless they’re in something like the Imperium of Man’s Astra Militarum, you’re not going to see someone waving swords around on the battlefield, and you’re not going to see high ranking officers wading into combat. They have a job to do, and it doesn’t involve getting waxed by the first enemy sniper they can find.
@kalany, So, turns out, I did misread the question. Mea culpa, for what little that’s worth. Unfortunately, it doesn’t really change much about the answer. If their character is still engaged in front line combat, they’re going to need both arms to function. You can’t just lop one off and call it cool.
You need two functioning limbs (not counting legs) to fight something with two functioning limbs (again, not counting legs). You need two functioning limbs to operate a rifle. You can’t one hand them. You need two functioning limbs to reload any firearm. And, of course, saying, “but I wanted to hit them with a sword,” just isn’t a valid tactic in the 21st century.
Now, if their character was already a flag officer (an Admiral or General), who wasn’t involved in combat… just forget that whole melee thing, then wandering around with one arm isn’t unprecedented. There are examples like Lord Nelson, who continued belting out orders after he’d lost his arm, and I think his eye. But, as I said above, these are people telling others where to fight, not doing it personally. After all, the art of command is delegation, not demonstration.
Yesterday I was watching in Netflix the BBC program SHARK, I just watched the first episode so far and while they devote quite some time on shark feeding, it also show other interesting behaviors besides that, like makos super speed and epaulettes walking in land, the music and narration gets pretty cheesy on some parts, but overlay it’s pretty good.