The Journey to Sodom and Gomorrah and Beyond

Armando Maggi

in The Resurrection of the Body

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print April 2009 | ISBN: 9780226501345
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226501369 | DOI:
The Journey to Sodom and Gomorrah and Beyond

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This chapter presents a close reading of a scenario that Pasolini intended to film after Salò. Using a new form of analogical transposition, similar to what he also did in Saint Paul, Porn-Theo-Colossal is the story of a decent, elderly, Neapolitan man who, accompanied by a young Roman servant, leaves his city at Christmas time to follow a comet that incites him to travel toward the Savior's birth place. The Magus's journey passes through Sodom (Rome), Gomorrah (Milan), Numanzia (Paris), and finally Ur, the Middle Eastern city of a universal origin. This chapter brings to the fore the important differences between Totò, the original protagonist of the hypothetical film, and Eduardo de Filippo, whom Pasolini chose to play the role of the Magus after Totò's death. It shows how Eduardo, a major Italian actor and also a superb playwright, lends Pasolini some key concepts of his poetics. Porn-Theo-Colossal works as a summation of Pasolini's apocalypticism: the sexual conformity supported by capitalism and the resurrection of the body as alienation, a form of surviving as one of the living dead somewhere outside of this world. The analysis of the different conclusions is essential to an understanding of Pasolini's complex and contradictory view of the apocalypse.

Keywords: Pier Paolo Pasolini; Salò; apocalypse; Porn-Theo-Colossal; Totò; Eduardo de Filippo; apocalypticism; Sodom; Gomorrah

Chapter.  22725 words. 

Subjects: Literary Theory and Cultural Studies

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