Music And Sex In “Ghost World” By Daniel Clowes

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Good novels worth examine closely. Every single subtle detail contains great deals of informations. The graphic novel “Ghost World” by Daniel Clowes is no doubt a great novel that are worth to dig in to. There are many elements in this book hidden behind what it appeared, such as music and sex. Music appears couple times in “Ghost World” each time symbolized a change for Enid. Sex is always a main top for teenagers, Enid and Rebecca are no exceptions. Let us scrutinize and uncover the deep motion and meaning behind them.

Music plays a huge role in this novel. First time readers encounter music is when Enid singing while reading newspaper. She was singing “Carbona Not Glue”, by Ramones, which is a punk rock band in the 1900s. This song is published during 1977 in their second album Leave Home. The lyrics of this song is talking about sniffing to get high. Beside the song, the newspapers she was reading was titled “Fifty Reasons Why I Want To Kill You”. Combine with the age of Enid, readers can conclude that Enid is during her rebellion stage of her life. This explains why she was negative and arrogant, because she is a rebel against this world.

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Second time music shows up when Enid and Rebecca were eating in the Hubba Hubba restaurant. The background music played “You’ve Lost That Lovin Feeling” by the Righteous Brothers. This song published in 1964. The lyrics of this song talks about how his beloved girl lost loving feeling toward him, and he wishing and begging to bring back this loving feeling. It is a very calmly and lovely song, but Enid and Rebecca both dislike this song. It might be that the song hits the soft spot of these girls. They started to lost their loving feelings due to their self-centered world. However, they are still rebels. They have to act tough and show their disdain to these people who still are able to love. This is one interpretation of why they dislike the song. Similarly to the song, immediately after “You’ve Lost That Lovin Feeling”, “Big Girls Don’t Cry” by the Four Seasons were disproved by both of the girls. Since the time interval between two songs are so short, readers may assume the reason behind this disprovement are the same. Teenagers in rebellion still had a soft spot in their heart. Everyone has privilege to cry so why not big girls?Final song appears when Enid was feeling down and sad, her dad found the old music record “Smile and Ribbons” for her. This piece of music symbolize the childhood of Enid. In the book page 64, Enid saw old music record laid peacefully on her bed. She hugged that record tightly, afraid of losing it again. This music record is like the fading part of innocent in her. During the path of growth, somehow she lost herself. She became the girl full of negativity. The girl that no one likes. Although in the book she seems careless about others’ ideas, she wanted to be a fine girl deep inside.

In the lyric of the song “Smile and Ribbons”, it says “To be a girl they notice, Takes more than a fancy dress, So I'll be noticed because I'll dress with a smile and a ribbon in my tresses...” Maybe just like everyone else, under that rough cover, hides a sensitive and fragile heart. she wants the attention from other and desire to be a better girl. In addition, the time is interesting, too. Enid found the record immediately after she came back from Josh’s house. Josh and Enid tried to have sex, but interrupted by the explosion of emotion of Enid. Therefore, the music record might not only symbolize the innocent but also purity of a child. After a long trip from naiveness child to rebellion teenager.

Finally, Enid found herself back to the innocent, pure girl she always wanted to be.As I mentioned above, there are tons of informations hidden under small details. In the page 61, Enid clearly said “It’s nothing, it is just some hormonal thing” and when she about to get out “I have to go out for a while and get some tampon.” All these informations suggested that Enid was having period. However, we know that she is actually going to Josh’s house. When they are about to have sex, she even ask if Josh have any protection, but she knew she is having period at that time. This might confused many readers.

Meanwhile, in term of desire for sex, scientists actually suggest that some girls are extremely turned on right before or during their period. Though people assumed that girls are honrniest during the ovulation, which is the stage of the cycle between periods. Since at this stage, eggs are ready to be fertilized. According to Alisa Vitti, functional nutritionist, “Woman Code” author, and “MyFLO” founder, she explained that "In the menstrual phase, you're interested in sex because the uterus is expanding with blood and pressing up on nerve endings in the pelvic basin," This might suggest that during the period the running blood will press upon and massage pelvic basin, which will increase the desire of having sex. Also Dr. Kecia Gaither pointed out that during period women will feel relief from the worry of becoming pregnant. Addition to both physical and psychological reasons, during the period hormone became chaotic, which drive girls to be emotional. Those reasons might explain why Enid tried to had sex with Josh and emotion break out.

Some phenomenal seems lack of logic, but always had a deeper impulse that drives each action. That is what makes a great novel. It allows us dive into the book world and wander around to find more clues along the progress. After all, there isn’t any ghost inside this “Ghost World”, but a lost girl trying to find her way back.

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