Goodenough Gismo

  • Gismo39
    This is the classic children's book, Goodenough Gismo, by Richmond I. Kelsey, published in 1948. Nearly unavailable in libraries and the collector's market, it is posted here with love as an "orphan work" so that it may be seen and appreciated -- and perhaps even republished, as it deserves to be. After you read this book, it won't surprise you to learn that Richmond Irwin Kelsey (1905-1987) was an accomplished artist, or that as Dick Kelsey, he was one of the great Disney art directors, breaking your heart with "Pinocchio," "Dumbo," and "Bambi."

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Interesting thought. I'd noticed that myself, but hadn't spent any time on reflecting why. Perhaps it is part of the dehumanization of the soldiers too.

My reaction is much the same as yours: a mix of horror, amusement and contempt.


Just for a little perspective -- what about primitive warriors with painted faces, trying to look inhuman?

I think the fascist marching is a similar thing. I find it scary and fascinating, but I do not feel contempt for it. I think war is part of human nature, and of nature in general.

Living relatively safely under the protection of the most powerful military ever, we Westeners can afford to feel contempt for the ritual displays of warriors.

Other animals do the same kind of thing -- their hair or feathers stand on end, and they strut around looking scary.


But they don't try to look like machines.


Realpc, I don't feel contempt for the rituals of warriors per se. It's the goose-stepping... My father was an Air Force officer and undoubtedly learned parade ground drills at RMC, but those do not trouble me.

Watching live footage of Mussolini with his conscious swelled chest and pasted-on sneer affects me much the same way. So did watching the Rolling Stones when I was a child... ;o) Probably still would, if I was still watching.


I think the point is they are just trying to look scary. They probably feel very differently inside.

Trying to look like machines makes sense -- machines are the scariest, as well as the most useful, thing our civilization has created. Consider all the science fiction stories about evil machines.

I know it's creepy to watch them, but I am also amazed at the precision, the same as when I watch choreographed dancers.

Sissy Willis

I agree with you totally. Half horrific, half hilarious and totally obscene in this day and age.

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