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Go to Google images and put in Halloween and the year you were born.



meme via anita_margarita.

The icon image came up with "1956 halloween" as the search.
It may or may not be from a real 1956 cookbook but it looks like it.

The picture I chose was reliably a 1956 image, from the movie Forbidden Planet which premiered in March of that year. I expect it was shown as a Halloween film in some places, since it had the scary monster from the Id (shown) and a super-intelligent robot AND a romance between then-hunk-star Leslie Nielsen and hottie Anne Francis.

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
archmage
Oct. 27th, 2008 07:23 pm (UTC)
Well, I know what I'm watching...again...this afternoon.
foomf
Oct. 27th, 2008 11:48 pm (UTC)
I have SUCH a stack of unwatched stuff...
demonslayer
Nov. 8th, 2008 09:59 am (UTC)
isn't Halloween a Pagan festival?
foomf
Nov. 8th, 2008 05:37 pm (UTC)
Not as such.

Samhain (see 1) is a pre-Christian Gaelic/Brythonic harvest festival/new-years-day which has survived through integration and dilution and neo-pagan interpretation. Other Celtic peoples had similarly timed celebrations. As it was the turning of the year, some traditions said that the dead for the year were let into the afterworld at this time, but most of them actually celebrated that in the spring sometime. (See 2)

All Hallows' Eve is the day before All Saint's Day, which is a church holiday that was created to deliberately integrate the cultural tradition (recognizing those who had died during the year) without actually importing the earlier stuff, and to tie it to a reasonable similar celebration. The move to November 1st was done somewhat later, and I confess to being baffled to why they chose to do that.

"Pagan" literally should only refer to the Roman (and incorporated Greek and Etruscan) religions, but cultural and religious arrogance meant that anything non-Christian and non-Jewish got the label attached. There isn't a graceful term that isn't also somewhat insulting, but it's important to note that the Pagans didn't really do Samhain at all, they did the Feast of the Lemures, which was a three-day celebration in the spring.

The ghosties and ghoulies and blackmail for candy and treats is less than a century old, and may be a deliberate revival of the medieval practice of beggars going around on major holy days and begging people for food in exchange for the beggars praying for the souls of their departed, which ties into the highly profitable pre-Reformation Roman Catholic practice of 'indulgences for the dead' which perverted the ancient practice of praying for the dead into a sort of extortion.
The common belief was that there is a temporal transitional state between death and entry to Heaven (which is a bizarre notion in and of itself) wherein various 'purgation' would cleanse the spirit of the deceased from things which would keep them from communion with God. The prayers (which the dutiful relative might not have time to perform) could be hired out, so that the beloved departed would not be snatched from heaven back into purgatory.

Sadly we no longer require the children who come to our doors to perform feats of entertainment, nor to pray for our departed.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )