French intellectual Antoine BuÉno, a novelist and senior lecturer at SciencePo University in Paris, is crafting a new field of study -- Smurfology: the analysis of the fictional blue-colored characters' society and ideology. Last week I linked to his report on how Smurfs are apparently "racist," but now, the craziness has reached a whole new level.
Not only are the Smurfs "racist," but according to BuÉno and his new book, "Le Petit Livre Bleu" (translated as "The Little Blue Book"), Smurf author Pierre Culliford (aka Peyo) originally endowed his little creatures with Stalinist and Nazi political leanings. Oh, and they're apparently anti-Semitic, too:
BuÉno first questioned the Smurfs' biological nature and sexuality: by the way, why is there only one Smurfette? Then, he tried to show that Smurf society is the archetype of a totalitarian utopia marked by Stalinism and Nazism. ...
Smurf lovers have been quick to challenge BuÉno's "Little Blue Book," saying his arguments are neither serious nor credible. "Generally speaking I've gotten two types of knee-jerk reactions: people saying that I'm either an idiot, or a crook," says BuÉno's.
"But my analysis isn't just coming out of nowhere," he goes on to say. "People from other institutions have been looking at [the Smurfs] before me. People in the United States at one point suspected Peyo's Smurf albums of being socialist propaganda, going so far as to say the word Smurf was actually an acronym for 'Small Men Under Red Forces.'"
While I, too, have wondered why there was only one "Smurfette," I never jumped to the conclusion that her blonde hair symbolized an underlying idolatry of the Aryan race. Nor would the casual observer assume that because Papa Smurf's favorite color is red, he's modeled after Joe Stalin himself.
But these are just some of the treasured insights of a French intellectual. What would we do without them?