I look down my body and see it has become conspiratorial, flowing out and hanging down, gravity bending me forward.
The images you see are of my avatar, my extended self, a lingering over the possibilities found in the reflection. It has also its limitations.
We the precocious, we the repressed of culture, our lovely mouths gagged with pollen, our wind knocked out of us, we the labyrinths, the ladder, the trampled space, the bevies –
this is how the female feminist Hélène Cixous writes in the text called “The laugh of Medusa”, a text about how women themselves must take control of their own writing, because it is to take control of their own body. It is a text from 1976, but that is still valid. Still, the body of the female is confiscated away from her, the body is alienated.
The Greek myth of Medusa is about a young woman, seduced by a man, who is turned into a monster and then killed by a man.
Forkys, the old one in the sea, had three daughters, three gorgons together with the sea monster and his sister Keto. Two of the Gorgons were ugly and immortal, but the youngest, Medusa was beautiful and mortal. Medusa means lady or queen. The Gorgons had been created by Gaia (earth) for the giants to receive help during the Great War. That is another story. They are described in the following way: hands of bronze, wings of gold and shells all over the body. They were immortal, except for the youngest who would turn out to be the most dangerous—Medusa. Poseidon, the Greek god of the sea had caught eye of the beautiful and young woman, seduced her, and slept with her twice, once as a horse and once as a man. It happened in the holy temple of Aphrodite. The goddess Aphrodite was furious and punished Medusa. She made her as ugly as her sisters, with snakes for hair, staring eyes and a huge tongue hanging out between huge fangs. Everything the eyes looked at turned to stone. Thus, she became the dangerous one.
The hero Perseus had to find Medusa and kill her without getting hurt. The gods were with him. He was given sandals with wings so that he could fly, a hat that made him invisible, a sword, a shield, a sack that always fed him.
When Perseus reached the cave where Medusa was, he did not look at her, but used the shiny shield and looked at the reflection before walking up to Medusa, killing her with his sword and cutting her head off with a sickle. In a hurry, he threw the head into the magic bag.
The moment Medusa had her last sigh, her children was born. First Pegasus and then the warrior Chrysaor with the sword of gold, both running out of her body.
Athena heard the death sounds from the snakes and thus invented the double flute to mimic the sound. But then she saw her face in the sea as she blew, her cheeks bulged out and she threw the whistle away. It was later found and the starting point for beautiful music.
It is also told that Medusa’s blood was given to Asklepois, the god of medicine.
Everything about Medusa was by time reprehensible, her hair, her eyes, as she is portrayed in the story. She is not one who creates, through giving birth to children, but a destroyer and therefore she must be destroyed, her body and presence are dangerous to the order of the society and who other than a young MALE hero is the right person to annihilate the dangerous mythical and female figure.
In other words, the story of a sacrifice to create a world of progress. A new year is also retrospective, old narratives should pave new paths, because the experiences they carry with them instruct an interpretation to stretch a little further.