Thursday, January 29, 2009


The Ventriloclysm took place on July 16, 1979; in Ljubljana, Slovenia. It was a mass protest against the corrupt communist government, which was itself a virtual puppet of the Soviet Union. It was the poet Milan Sljuc's, idea to protest using ventriloquist's dummies. He felt that the ventriloquist dummy was the perfect symbol for the Slovenien government, which was obviously under the thrall of the Soviet Union; while not a part of it, clearly the Slovenian government spoke not with its own voice, but with the voice of the Kremlin cast through it. And while one could not see Brezhnev speaking, everyone knew that it was his voice they were hearing, no matter who's mouth was moving as the words came out.
In the late afternoon, 25,000 Slovenians; many of whom were students, gathered in the city's central square. The lifted up their dummies and began to shout slogans and sing songs. Soon soldiers arrived to quash the protest, but their mere arrival did not halt the protest. Instead it caused the singing and chanting to intensify. The students waved their puppets, many of which were made in likenesses of various soviet officials, and gestured ludely with them. The military, under the command of Sergeij Pahor, began to fire into the crowd. By the time they ceased fire, 8,000 protesters were injured and 4,000 were killed; among them Milan Sljuc, who went on to become a folk hero. The 1999 Rage Against the Machine song Dummies in a Square is about the massacre.
Today, July 16th is a national holiday and day of remembrance. People gather in Ljubljana's central square with ventriloquist dummies to pay tribute to those who stood up against the communist government.

This post is an installment in a continuing series of content coordinated by theme or motif with posts from Enoch Allred of Chiltingham, John Allred of clol Town, Jon Fairbanks of Funkadelic Freestylings of Another Sort, Eli Z. McCormick and Miriam Allred of Modern Revelation!, John D. Moore of Whatnot Studios, Joseph Schlegel of Sour Mayonnaise, Sven Patrick Svensson of Sadness? Euphoria?, and William C. Stewart of Chide, Chode, Chidden. This week's theme: 'Ventriloquism'.


Blogger Zijjo said...

Rage of the Machine would make a song about this protest. And it would suck.

10:28 PM  
Blogger Eli McCormick said...

It totally would.

6:44 AM  

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