Wednesday, April 30, 2008

The Mermaid by Insu Fenkl


I didn't realize that the Starbuks logo had been changed a couple of times, here is a cool article on the mermaid...

"This simultaneous attraction to and fear of female sexuality as the underlying logic behind the mermaid is actually confirmed by other mythological half-humans. The male counterpart to the mermaid, the triton, lacks the mermaid's mystery and seductiveness; he is actually a sort of aquatic satyr (a kind of male nymphomaniac). Other prominent half-man and half-animal figures, including the Minotaur (with a bull's head) and the centaur (with a horse's body and so also its genitalia) all exaggerate masculine phallic power while the mermaid represents and amplifies what men fundamentally lack. It is only the holiest of masculine figures like Christ who are both born of the figurative mermaid and maintain a direct symbolic connection to their aquatic origins. (Even the Buddha shows such a connection, since he is the son of Maya, who is associated with the moon. Many representations of the Buddha include webbed fingers as one of his divine markings.)"

"The truth one learns from the mermaid/siren is that patriarchy, especially the Judeo-Christian variety, is a relative latecomer in human history. The new religions could not, and can not, ever overwrite the undercurrents of the more ancient traditions that preceded them, regardless of how concerted their efforts to do so.

And so the Starbucks logo is a brilliant piece of design, which, oddly enough, resonates with much of what I've discussed above. The original logo made quite explicit that Starbucks was using the lure of female sexuality to draw the customer to their coffee, but now you can see that the coffee is linked to the double lure of ultimate wisdom and the pleasures of the flesh. The name of the company, about which there is relatively little deep inquiry, actually makes the connection even more interesting."

9 comments:

mister anchovy said...

Hmmmm....I must have seen this logo a squillion times, and I never noticed there was a mermaid in it. No wonder I don't feel compelled to go shell out $5 for a cuppa....I missed the mermaid bait.

Uncle Steve said...

A Sheila-na-gig, huh? I'll be darned. In the immortal words of Walter Sobchak, I did not know that.

Gardenia said...

I knew my Starbucks addiction was a good thing - I'm really trying to identify with that Goddess personna - do you suppose? I would love to know why THEY chose that symbol.

(Tall Skinny Vanilla Latte) (only 90 calories)

I love Mermaids - and still have a goal to go to Weekie Wachee one day.

Gardenia said...

Sorry about the calorie count, i'm turning into one of those people I used to judge - - calorie counters.

Julia Smith said...

I love how the oldest one had real boobs, whereas the more modern one crops her sexuality out more and more. Good cafe mochas, though.

L.M. said...

Here's a hot merman for you.

* (asterisk) said...

Interesting stuff. But I've only been in Starbucks twice and vow never to again.

This sheela na gig is from near where I gre up.

Martha Elaine Belden said...

wow... i never noticed there was a mermaid in the logo, would you believe it?

fascinating article, to say the least.

LE GAY SAVOIR said...

starbucks : de la medre Juive ! Zionist jews !