Michael Jackson is a figure of eternal adolescence, replaying a painful and inaccessible process of individuation. His metamorphoses echo the psychical and physical transformations of pubescent youngsters. His myth, shot through with genealogical ruptures, evokes a character in the throes of a powerful desire for self-engenderment. His polymorphism maximizes the possibilities for adolescent identification and his media-genic quality helps him to be appropriated as a social demand. His ability to incarnate omnipotence makes him a likely support for projection, as he echoes the narcissistic desires of young people.
Adolescence, 2013, T. 31, n°4, pp. 979-993.
By analyzing Michael Jackson’s « Thriller » video, we offer a discussion of adolescent metamorphosis. Through an extraordinary self-fiction linking cinematic reference to myth and science fiction, Jackson shows, with a radical and transgressive postmodern gesture, the ridiculousness of such oppositions as man-woman, angel-demon, human-animal, living-dead, reality-fiction – mere pairings whose structuring power he shatters. What can one say about a body primary function seems to be go from one transformation to another, to keep metamorphosizing into harrowing new extremes, in order to replay the metamorphosis of adolescence, which is here marked by a tragic negativity?
Adolescence, 2013, T. 31, n°4, pp. 965-977.