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Terror-Dot-Gov [Paperback]

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Item description for Terror-Dot-Gov by Harold Jaffe...

As in Harold Jaffe's two previous "docufiction" collections, False Positive and 15 Serial Killers, the author of Terror-Dot-Gov selects then "treats" his texts such that the reader is incapable of distinguishing between fact and fiction. That ambiguity permits Jaffe to cunningly tease out the contradictions and subtexts of official "news" or "information" and torque it into what it so often is fundamentally: jingoism, xenophobia and propaganda. Jaffe's subject in Terror-Dot-Gov is not the everywhere-represented "illicit" terrorism so much as "licit," institutionalized terrorism, and he assaults his subject from multiple angles: razor-sharp satire, precisely cadenced rhetoric, faux-reportage, and "unsituated" dialogues (Jaffe's term, referring to his trademark talking heads with perfect pitch). The result is virtuosic and paradoxical: a prodigious display of firepower---in the cause of peace. Blurbs As Terror-Dot-Gov vividly demonstrates: We are spiritually imperiled by illusions masked as 'news.' Omissions, slants, pallid editorials all testifying to servitude to a slavish, enslaving text. Harold Jaffe knows this by heart and has it right. He isolates the self-justifying words that demonize the enemy while cleansing the ongoing crime, the 'preventive strike.' He encourages organized terror (our very own) to emerge white as new-fallen snow. White as leprosy. Everywhere in Terror-Dot-Gov is exemplary skill, faultless tonality. And courage, don't forget courage. In order to be healed, our illness must worsen. Thank you, Harold Jaffe." ---Daniel Berrigan, SJ "Kill your TV. Terror-Dot-Gov will give you all the news that's unfit to print---reportage gone fictive (or is it vice versa?) Jaffe's brilliantly constructed docufictions blast holes through the mediadrome to unmask the terrifying institutionalized rhetoric that passes itself off as business as usual." ---Jan Ramjerdi "Terror-Dot-Gov is a full frontal assault on our duct-taped minds. High velocity words fired with unerring precision, dancing feverishly on the page before zapping their target, which is nothing less than "First World" war-mongering and the terror it invokes to validate itself." ---Faruk Ulay

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Item Specifications...

Pages   156
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.8" Width: 6" Height: 0.6"
Weight:   0.45 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jun 14, 2005
Publisher   Raw Dog Screaming Press
ISBN  1933293098  
ISBN13  9781933293097  

Availability  117 units.
Availability accurate as of May 23, 2017 05:08.
Usually ships within one to two business days from La Vergne, TN.
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More About Harold Jaffe

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Harold Jaffe is the author of 22 volumes of fiction, docufiction, and non-fiction, including Revolutionary Brain; OTHELLO BLUES (JEF Books, 2014); PARIS 60 (JEF Books, 2013); OD: DOCUFICTIONS (JEF Books, 2012); Induced Coma; Anti-Twitter: 150 50-Word Stories; Jesus Coyote; 15 Serial Killers; Beyond the Techno-Cave: A Guerrilla's Guide to Post-Millennial Culture; Terror-dot-Gov; Straight Razor; Sex for the Millennium; EROS ANTI-EROS (City Lights Publishers, 1990); False Positive; Beasts; Mourning Crazy Horse; Madonna & Other Spectacles; and Dos Indios. Jaffe's writing has been translated widely, most recently in Romania, Turkey, France, Japan, Italy, and Cuba. Jaffe is editor-in-chief of Fiction International.

Harold Jaffe currently resides in San Diego, in the state of California.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Contemporary
2Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Literary
3Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Genre Fiction > Political
4Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Short Stories > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Terror-Dot-Gov?

Another salvo of guerrilla writing from a master  Jun 8, 2006
If you've read any of Harold Jaffe's writing at all, you know he writes with tremendous heart and devotion to his cause. Certainly this heart manifests itself in angry textual roadside bombs and subversive attacks, but the underlying cause is a nobel and brave one. A devoted fan of Jaffe's work, I find myself impressed with his precision and relentless social critique. In "Mother Palestine," Jaffe tweaks a familiar formal innovation, an unsituated dialogue, by simply employing the device of motherhood. The effect is stunningly effective, it pulls us into the politics of this remote struggle through a minimalist suggestion of intimate human relationships that every reader will respond to, on one level or another. It is an example of Jaffe exploring the range of textual methods and structures he has been using now for well over a decade. "Revolt Wives" is another important inclusion here--it suggest a humanistic compassion for all who suffer at the hands of the oppressive ruling class, not just the muslims who suffer. In that regard, especially considering how the book can be received, Jaffe's work remains so very important as expression of what a growing portion of the US population is feeling--a contempt for our (our=corporate war machine whether US or Israeli or otherwise) punishment of innocents abroad and at home in the name of profit and sweet crude. Incidentally, and sadly, I think the populace's disagreement with the war machine would be much better contained if gas were still $1.50 a gallon, but that's another story. "Mustache" is also wonderful, and especially important as it seems whatever party is in power, the deference to Israel is reliable and unwavering. Hate to be a self-hating half-Jew, but man it is a bummer to witness the recurring atrocities that happen under the blind eye of US-Israeli relations. And the way the US is treating Hammas after they won the (clean) democratic election--what the heck is that? It is a despicable time, and Jaffe's recording of absurdities such as the orange alert, atrocities such as the corpse wagging of Hussein's sons, is another important accomplishment in his long and committed carreer.

In "Trader Joes" Jaffe introduces the notion of a forgotten, non-threatening and invisible young Arab woman--a victim of the violence--and then echoes that figure in later texts. Of all the texts here, I will reread "Sewage" first, as I love the neatness of the way the three threads work together. Unfortunately, the caustic patriotic violent interrogator is most familiar to me, but the alignment with the ineffective water treatment plant and the compassionate cop is direct, useful, and does what Jaffe does so well--recontextualizes reality in ways that reveal ugly truths.

One final comment: Jaffe resurrects "Things To Do in Time of War," a story he first published in Straight Razor, which came out during the first Gulf War. The first version of the story was located inside the home, and it had a particular delirium to it. This version of the story is located in the workplace, on the freeway with other commuters, and it has has much less delirium and far more ingrained horror. In the nearly ten years that have transpired between these two installments of the same story, Harold Jaffe has shown his readers how committed writing works, how the indefatiguable machinery of corporate-government policy and "morality" can be challenged with anger and precision. More than that, he keeps hope alilve for those of us who believe that culture is not merely a marketplace for the hegemony of the ruling class. His next book is expected to be a collection of his essays and docufictions directed at writers who wish to join him in the project of textual rebellion against the status quo. It could not be a more timely and appropriate move from a writer who has inspired so many devoted readers despite the marginalization that mainstream publishers and distributors may have imposed on him during his career. So long as Jaffe keeps publishing books, committed writers will know that that there is a future for the voice of outrage and indignation. Guerrilla writing is alive and well and you can find it in the pages of Terror-Dot-Gov.
America's Nostradamus  Feb 25, 2006
With Terror-Dot-Gov, Harold Jaffe demonstrates he has the eye of a prognosticator. In his fictions (called "docufictions" because they're so accurate) he dramatizes how -- and why -- America is destroying itself and how -- and why -- it's taking a sizeable portion of the world with it.

The signs and portents are all presented and interpreted: heads severed for justice and sport; attack dogs sinking their teeth into the flesh of innocents; Baghdad treatment plants for processing raw (feces) and cooked (prisoners) sewage; and players in the game of "who would you bomb?"

I don't mean to imply that it's a grim book. On the contrary, it's humorous -- ironic and satirical without trivializing its subjects. And why not? As long as we're determined to act like neo-lemmings we might as well laugh as we plunge over the cliff!
Jaffe's pointing his fingers at the media and at us  Feb 20, 2006
To read Harold Jaffe's pieces as a commentary on or critique of the war on terrorism is to under-read him, as Beckett was misread as being "symbolic" or Swift as a fantasist. Just as Swift made an ostensible target of the Irish in his "Modest Proposal" while actually targeting the bigotry of the English, so too does Jaffe construct a triadic argument. The ostensible target this time may be the war on terror, but the true target hiding behind the straw man is the reader. Jaffe reveals imbedded assumptions in the language of these docufictions and in so doing betrays the lack of objectivity in news texts and reports as we receive them. He points his pen at us and shows us how complicitous we have been in committing the atrocities he describes. We may revile the media's displays of violence and feign shock, but we are always willing to stand in line to pay the price of admission. In "Behead," for example, the beheading of Brent Marshall is described as not going very smoothly "because of Marshall's exceptionally thick neck." Thus the brutality of the slaying is blamed on Marshall, a Virginia "thick-neck" of the type we have learned to feel less compassion for over the years because a thick neck represents a "dumb jock," "a red neck," "a hick." "Big as an ox" means "dumb as an ox," as we conflate clichés to get there. In "Pizza Cannibal," one character says, "I just couldn't believe this guy [Salt Brumley] could have done something to bring out the feds." Brumley is described as a "homely bachelor" with "stick-out ears, large flat feet, cleft palate, and low IQ," and the first three attributes are taken as personality issues: people with stick-out ears and large flat feet are routinely made fun of as being "stupid" in our society (see Li'l Abner), and are generally considered too "simple" to be harmful. In the same story, Jaffe challenges us liberals to look at our own smug intellectual superiority--would we who uphold that what goes on between consenting adults in the privacy of their bedrooms is perfectly acceptable include mutually agreed-upon murder and cannibalism? Or are we liberal only up to a point? What point? Why? Caveat Emptor? The dialogue in "Trader Joe's" contains pure consumer speak. Where would conversations go nowadays without consumerism? Would we have anything to say to one another if we lost our retail chains and baseball scores? Even references to Pinochet and suicide bombs are dropped into conversations because of their impact on Chilean wines and Home Depot. My favorite of these docufictions, the one that really got me involved, is "White Terror." This is presented as a game, with the key refrain being, "Who would you bomb in that one?" Scenarios are given to us, such as how one of Queen Elizabeth's corgis was bitten by a terrier belonging to the daughter. Who would you bomb? The respondent is told the dogs are named Raj and Dottie, but even after knowing which dog was which, the respondent still assumes that Raj was the terrier. He assumes the violent one has the Eastern name. Assumptions such as these are at the heart of the book. Jaffe challenges the reader with disquieting juxtapositions and multiple versions of the same story. "Which is true?" we might ask. Can we ever know, even if we are "told" by media or government that one version is true? Of course not--all we get is filtered versions whose points of view and choices of diction reveal deep-seated biases. Look, for example, at the different descriptions of a group of dogs in the six alternate versions of a canine attack in "Revolt Wives." The dogs are described as a "lumpen," a "Gestapo," a "kasbah," a "death row," a "Bentustan," a "Gaza" of frenzied dogs--each term, of course, associated with death and abuse but carrying with it so many different connotations that they alternate versions of the scenarios are immediatley colored by that word choice. This is Jaffe's brilliance: he shows us how language has been used against us as a weapon, and he challenges us to wake up to that fact.
If only all fiction were like this  Jan 30, 2006
An extraordinary network of vignettes dervied from newspapers and on-line "news" sources. Jaffe has coined the phrase "docufictions" to describe his cunning deconstructions of what passes for objective data.

The result is something like postmodern America re-seen, or--beter--seen for the first time with a distressing clarity.

Extreme Brainwash  Jan 22, 2006
"Harold Jaffe brainwashes a drug fetus to the guerrilla=sex in the 21st century." - Kenji Siratori, author Blood Electric

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