Astrological Angela Carter

Expect to see a lot of random posts about Angela Carter these days, because as part of my academic-year-end cool-down I’ve been indulging in a lot of re-reads of The Bloody Chamber, accompanied by munching of whatever academic essays I’ve been able to find for free through Jstor. wheee. (If you are not, like me, a babbling Carter fangirl, feel free to move along – when I get enthusiastic about things, I get very enthusiastic.)

So this has been one of my absolute favorite finds: the blogger at The Cantos of Mutabilitie has written, in great detail, an astrological analysis of Carter. I can’t pretend to understand any of the technical (?) aspects of it, but it’s both highly entertaining, and a wonderful tribute to Carter’s style and career. Some of my favorite bits:

“There’s a huge stellium (or planet cluster) in Taurus – Mercury, Saturn, Sun, Moon and Uranus all huddling together, with Jupiter just over in Aries – and then we find Neptune and Pluto swung out to one side. Accordingly, this is an extremely ‘earthy’ chart: the other elements are all relatively weak. This intense concentration on earth evokes the baroque celebration of the mundane in Carter’s writing, her heady ability to work mud and blood into her otherwise very mannered and super-sophisticated prose.”

“One senses that Carter’s taurean Mercury liked to hoard words like trinkets, cherishing dialect words and obsolete terms for the tackle and trim of various trades. … There’s almost a hunger to possess – a Taurus keyword – language, rubbing words as though they were pieces of smooth bottle-glass on the tideline, grubby and history-filled.”

and this particularly amusing part about Carter on Lovecraft:

“I find interesting that in a piece of criticism she derided H. P. Lovecraft for his horror writing, for two reasons. First, for his naivety; she saw that Lovecraft thought of evil as visible horror, and no one with a strong Pluto could fall for that one. Secondly, she wrinkled her nose at his sheer gloopiness, his childishly putrid slimes. She was a hard-edged writer; in contrast to Lovecraft, her kind of horror is the lurid glamour of the knife in the hand of the insane surgeon, always with the frisson of style – not deliquescence and gunk.”

(worth noting that the blogger is himself decidedly unfond of Lovecraft – he explains why at length in an equally ornate and amusing post here.)

– E

4 thoughts on “Astrological Angela Carter”

  1. Dude. Two of my favorite things combined! \o/ I’m not surprised Carter had a strong Pluto influence in her chart.

    Also, Jstor is oodles of fun.

  2. I wish I knew more about astrology! Although it’s also fun to watch it from the outside and be pleasurably mystified.

    Also, Jstor is oodles of fun.
    SO MUCH FUN. I’ve also been working on that classic Dracula paper that you mentioned in your blog a while ago, the one that’s all PENETRATION PENETRATION PENETRATION. hahaha.

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