that a novelist who tries to convince hisnreaders that fools die is a cheap pub raconteur.nHis place on the bestseller listnis thus assured by fools. And that’snabout everything that can and shouldnbe said about a piece of fiction whichnbrings things sexual to the status ofnpunctuation.nMr. Puzo produced The Godfather,nan honorable pulp, a poorly written epicnof urban folklore which described somenmoral and psychological attitudes, shallownand commonplace to be sure, butnnonetheless the substance for a simplisticnethos. Even a vulgar ethos is notnbanal, but worthy of attention, therefore,nas the author of that novel, Mr.nPuzo has a place in the contemporarynpop culture. His attempt to move elsewhere,nas Fools Die proves, seemsnludicrous. nnPoster’s Love ObjectsnMark Poster: Critical Theory of thenFamily; Seabury Press; New York.nProfessor Poster, a University ofnCalifornia professor of history, wadesnankle-deep into the psychoanalyticalnaspects of the family, using Freud’s researchnas his departure point. He examinesnthe findings of numerous othernauthorities, with his preferencesnrunning to Marx, Lenin and Erikson,nholds their conclusions up for examination,nand finally picks them to pieces.nFamilies, he asserts, do not follownconsistent, homogeneous history. Fournfamily types are examined: peasant,naristocratic, proletarian and bourgeois.nWhile the bourgeois family is subjectednto the most thorough delineation, thenprevious three modes are shown primarilynto prove that the nuclear modelnis not, either historically or at present,nthe only or the best one available tonsociety.nProfessor Poster, his political andnideological emotions shouting from thenpages, condemns the “hierarchies ofnage and sex” inherent in the bourgeoisnfamily. He regretfully admits that thenproletarian family has imitated and beennabsorbed into the bourgeois model.nCapitalism is the culprit in this unfortunatenchange.nHaving led his readers through anFreudian maze of oral, anal and genitalnstages which, for the bourgeoisie, resultsnin an Oedipal complex. ProfessornPoster puts forth his “utopian model,”nwhich will eliminate age and sex hier­nScreennarchies, parental authority over theirnchildren, and presumably, all our woes.nHe proposes a “democratic community”nin which the children are housed innseparate buildings so they can “findnlove objects throughout the community”nand parents can enjoy their children atntheir leisure. Women will be unshacklednfrom housework to join the work forcenin full equality. Just which love objectsnwill scrub floors and change diapersnis not mentioned. (BK) DnCon Artistry—and Felony as SufferingnA Wedding; Directed by Robert Altman;nWritten by John Considinenand Robert Altman; Twentieth CenturynFox.nMidnight Express; Directed by AlannParker; Written by Oliver Stone;nBased on the story by Billy Hayesnand William Hoffer; Columbia Pictures.nby Eric ShapearonThe metaphysics of literature, drama,nperforming arts, and art in toto, isnabysmally complex and at the same timensimple. One tells a story of love or adventurenand adds something untoldnabout it—and that’s literature, or drama.nOne paints an apple, or a bathing woman,nand shows something never shownnbefore—and that’s art. However, whatnevery writer, playwright and artist discovers,nand quite soon, is how difficultnit is to tell or show something new, tonadd something which hasn’t been relatednor made visible before. Thus, an artistnor writer who claims to have discoverednsomething we knew all along is a connartist. Unfortunately, the press, itsncritics and reviewers, often support connartists for reasons of ideologicalnaffinities.nRobert Altman, the director of AnWedding, has often clamored about hisnnndiscovery of America, or the truth aboutnher. He does not conform to the basicnrule that telling the truth about one’sncountry must contain a universal message.nFrom Homer to Chaucer tonDiderot to Gogol to Faulkner, the showdownnwith one’s own nation, her traditions,nabominations, tyrannies and hypocrisies,nmust comprise somethingncommon to all humanity—otherwise itnis invalid. Malignant petulance and successfulncriticism are of two differentnorigins, and this axiom escapes Altmannin whatever he tries to do. The accusationnof one’s own reality ought to bensubtle, lest it turn into propaganda, orncant, or a fishwife’s rant. Altman nevernobserves this rule: he holds Americanresponsible for every nymphomaniac,nevery doped killer, every female protozoan,nevery singing village idiot. HisnAmerica is a cesspool of vice and aberration,nan aquarium inhabited only bynpiranhas and amoebas. Some call itnheavy-handedness. I call it obsession.nIt’s difficult to sit through A Wedding:nthe relentless consistency of simple-mindednodiousness is stultifying.nChiaroscuro seems to be a notion ofnviewing life and the world which Altmannhas never heard. Only M*A*S*H*, hisnbest movie, contained some resignednambivalence, which made it humane andnironic. His Thieves Like Us glorifiedncrime by equating it with innocence;n^ H H I H M ^ ^ S lnChronicles of Cultttrcn