camera and the assemblyline silkscreen,nto cast the shadows of his plastic, repeatablenimages over the whole fagade ofnthe spineless art world. The icons thatnhe has produced, from “money” to “MarilynnMonroe,” have indeed proved to bensignificant commentaries on our presentnage, yet the direction toward which thesenicons point is a nihilistic, disposable lifestyle,none which undercuts any sense ofndeliberate control and discriminationnthat might be achieved through the creationnof the art object itself. In thisncomplete inversion of the traditionalnstruggles and patterns of art, the keynemotions are boredom and detachment,nnot involvement and commitment: “Inlike boring things . . . because the morenyou look at the same exact thing, thenmore the meaning goes away, and thenbetter and emptier you feel.” Chasingnafter the cheap and the mundane, suchnart (really an anti-art) promises liberation;ninstead, it further erodes the confidencenof the dominant culture in its ownnpurposes, in its ability to trust in thensocial fabric that holds us together. Pop’sndisdain for respectability ends by fosteringna simulated “mass” culture for thenmonied elite, not an elite culture for thenmasses.nJjut perhaps what is most disturbingnfinally about the canonizing of Warhol,nhis lifestyle and works, is that so fewnpeople in the know are genuinely offended.nIn one sense the vitality of thendominant culture can be judged by thenextent to which it entertains counterstatementsnto its ethos without forgettingnthat its identity is in fact separatenfrom that of the counterculture. In contemporaryntimes, however, the center itselfndoes not seem to be holding; indeed,nwe seem unable even to locate or recognizenthe center anymore because in itsnrush to set trends, rather than rendernjudgments, the dominant culture hasnbeen consumed by its own excesses.nAnyone nowadays is a candidate forncelebrity status—only talent appears tondisqualify one. And so Warhol’s boredomnbecomes a tenant of our reality,nnot a frantic call for setting our ownnhouse in order.nThe potentially useful function ofnWarhol’s art thus loses its sting, fornin swallowing him up, we have madenhis conventions our own. And nowherenis this more evident than in the actualntone of POPism itself. Warhol’s voicenwith its soothing cadences (until youn•’li’s irri-li’vant lo aaiisi- him ol hcinu tmprv or aiiKiral . ,nrealize the underlying pornographic intent)nis the self-assured voice of theninsider who already belongs, not thenshrill and shocking voice of those oldncounterculture outsiders such as JerrynRubin and Abbie Hoffman (though, ofncourse, Warhol has always tongue-incheeknclaimed to be a fixture of mainstreamnculture). Indeed, Warhol himselfnall-too-accurately expresses how all-pervasiventhe Pop stance toward modernnAmerican culture is when he characterizesnthe current generation in the con-nGothic FeminismnMarilyn French: The BleedingnHeart; Summit Books; New York.nby Becki KlutenIn her first novel, Ms. French presentedna woman who had been pushed tonthe very brink of insanity by the cruel,ninhumane male world. This time shengives us Dolores Durer, a rather successfulnacademician in spite of the cruel,ninhumane male world. Dolores, her successnand modest fame notwithstanding,nperceives that women are persecuted,nsuffocated, oppressed, repressed, used,nabused, subjugated, tyrannized by men.nShe sees evidence of this appalling conditionneverywhere she looks, both in thenUnited States and in England, wherenMrs, Klute is on the editorial staff ofnthe Chronicles.nnneluding lines of his book: “Pop wasn’tnan issue or an option for this new wave:nit was all they’d ever known.”nX here is, however, one way to defendnyourself against Warhol and his gang: bynfighting Pop with Pop. Since Warholnsays Pop is “doing the easiest thing,”nthe obvious honorable and frugal wayn-Sinout of having to read Warhol’s tedious,nnarcissistic sweet nothings (althoughnthose who earn their keep off of the culturalnanalysis business will need to keepnabreast of Warhol’s “insights” into thenevents and artifacts of the junkpile) isnto invest in Campbell’s soup. At currentnprices, for the cost of a copy of POPismnyou should be able to buy almost 36 cans,na much healthier investment for yourndollar—and steaming off and saving thenlabels might eventually lead to your ownnwork of art. Dnshe is on sabbatical.nHaving trudged through a disastrousnmarriage and a series of unsatisfactorynlovers, Dolores has been celibate fornsome years when she meets Victor on antrain from London to Oxford. He entersnthe compartment where she sits, andnshe is piqued that her “space” has beenninvaded. But their eyes lock; the chemistrynstarts working, some strange magnetismnis in the air. Neither speaks;nafter their arrival in Oxford he carriesnher luggage to her flat. Once inside,n”they pressed their bodies together untilnthey felt like a single unit melted togethernby the heat they generated.” (Ms.nFrench has an assured career writingngothic romances when she’s throughnwith feminist politics.) But Dolores isnangry with Victor by the time he leavesnher apartment that night: she feels thatnhe has “canceled” her. Thus, the patternnI^MMMMIOnJuly/August 1980n