New Guinea, it's commonly feared that if one's name or image falls into
the hands of an enemy, he may use it mischievously. Sorcerers believe
they can render even the mightiest helpless by naming, or injure another
by introducing his likeness into an unpleasant situation. A sorcerer who
possesses any part of his victim, anything once him - hair clippings,
footprints, etc. - has him at his mercy.
concept of soul-stealing applies in modern life, as well. John Grierson,
the Scottish filmmaker, once warned, "You may take a man's soul away
by taking a picture of him. You may take part of his privacy away."
is a widespread saying among American Indians, "Traders stole our
furs, settlers our lands, now missionaries want our souls." I recently
heard an Indian say this on TV. He was on guard against the missionaries;
in the meantime he let the media capture & possess his spirit totally.
a spirit or image falls into the hands of another, he's free to do with
it as he likes.
1950, a Baltimore tabloid ran a photomontage of Earl Browder, the communist
leader, and Millard Tydings, the Maryland senator, though the two had
never met or been associated. Putting Tyding's image in this context helped
destroy him politically.
Oh, What a Blow That Phantom Gave Me! by Edmund Carpenter
Holt, Rinehart and Winston - New York, Chicago, San Francisco
Copyright 1972, 1973 by Edmund Carpenter
Translated to hypermedia and edited by Michael Wesch 2002