Tag: Torture

Torture Works? Beccaria’s Forgotten Lesson

Power structures and governments will resort to euphemistic labelling in order to sanitize morally reprehensible or illegal behaviour — this is neither new nor surprising.  A textbook example is the G. W. Bush Jr. Administration who tried to immunize inter alia waterboarding against criticism by calling it an ‘enhanced interrogation technique’. The roots of this…

Pasolini’s Salò: Torture is Political

Pasolini’s controversial final film Salò (1975), based on Marquis de Sade’s The 120 Days of Sodom (1785), poses significant questions regarding the intersection between sadistic torture and sovereignty. The film is divided into four segments, heavily inspired by Dante’s Inferno: Ante-Inferno, Circle of Manias, Circle of Shit, and Circle of Blood. Salò focuses on four corrupt…