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DEREK JARMAN, 1942–1994: A POLITICAL DEATH

THE DEATH OF DEREK JARMAN robs us not only of one of cinema’s most imaginative postwar independent directors but of one of Britain’s proudest and most indefatigably queer gay men. With the late Angela Carter, Jarman was the greatest poetic visionary of Britain’s Thatcher era. He captured with unerring accuracy the sense of inexorably developing corruption and cruelty that since the late ’70s has increasingly characterized everyday life here.

Derek was a cornucopia of gifts, talents, skills, enthusiasms, and mysteries. A man of the early 1960s, he was always (sometimes touchingly) committed to the idea of a grand transhistorical sequence of homosexuals, from Plato onward by way of Michelangelo, Wilde, and so on. At the same time, his life had been transformed by the punk movement of the mid ’70s, which he wholeheartedly embraced. He was also an erudite antiquarian, a wonderful companion for,

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