On October 28, 1891, the Weekly Missoulian caricaturized Hammond as the “Missoula Octopus, that is undertaking to reach its slimy arms over the county and strangle the life out of it.” The following year, Hammond purchased the newspaper. For more information: http://www.historycooperative.org/journals/ohq/10a9.4/gordon.html Once again, the “octo” part of octopus is optional. Arms labelled: South Missoula Land Co, Delinquent […]

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Cartoon by Pashtanika circa 1919. “Lavoratori! Diamo ancor forza al braccio!” (Arm reference to human arm, not any of the octopuses). Octopus is ‘Capitalism’, its arms are ‘poverty’, prostitution’, ‘war’, ‘child labor’ and ‘wage slavery’. Label on human arm refers to Industrial Workers of the World (I.W.W).  The note at the bottom says: “Il Proletario, an […]

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Of Maps and Octopuses: Revisited

Previously: “Of Maps and Octopuses”. Claude Marquet, ‘Fighting the Octopus’, Worker (Sydney), 12 November 1904. Reprinted p6.32 in ‘All the world over’, Dyrenfurth, Nick; Quartly, Marian, Drawing the Line 2009 1:1, 6.1-6.47 School of the Americas Watch (SOAW) have a poster featuring ‘the people’ cutting of the limbs of a skulltopus (Illustration by Haik Hoisington, 2006). The text roughly translates as: “The […]

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Cartoon by Geoff Pryor, published in the Canberra Times on 6 June 1979. The octopus has its limbs tattooed as “Narc[otics] Bureau”, “Police”, “Politicians”, “Traffickers”, and “Pushers”. The only players not part of the octopus (or complicit) are the dealer(?) and buyer. Relates to the Australian Federal Police Act of 1979. This later (October 1979) resulted in the […]

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Claude Marquet, ‘Fighting the Octopus’, Worker (Sydney), 12 November 1904. Reprinted p6.32 in ‘All the world over’, Dyrenfurth, Nick; Quartly, Marian, Drawing the Line 2009 1:1, 6.1-6.47 Octopus represents American Tobacco trusts with hat called ‘Greed’. It grasps a North American ‘Factory Hand’, ‘Consumer’, and ‘Retailer’ and South American ‘Planter’, and is reaching towards Australia. Sword held by Australian (farmer?) […]

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 “The End of the Circus Season” by  William Allen Rogers published November 3, 1900, in Harper’s Weekly p.1050 Democratic nominee William Jennings Bryan is pictured as a clown dejected by his impending defeat. He rides the exhausted Democratic Donkey through a driving rain storm, while carrying the symbols of his failed issues—free silver (bunco dollar), imperialism […]

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Last few minutes of “Victory Through Air Power” Disney made WWII propaganda film that shows Japanese octopus being attacked by American eagle. (Trying to get hold of a copy of this.)

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The Federal Octopus, 1933 Update: no one is to tell Mr. Rabbit – the mad monk – about the federal octopus of waste.

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Published in the Al-Watan (Qatar) on June 2, 2010 (via FightHatred.com). Like the Latuff cartoon this was a response to the Israel IDF boarding the Gaza flotilla. Unlike the Latuff cartoon, this is undisputedly an anti-semitic cartoon. “The cartoon depicts nearly all classic anti-Semitic caricatures of a Jew: religious, hook nosed, wearing glasses and ugly.” […]

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Further Reading

Books & Articles: Ellis, Richard. The Search for the Giant Squid. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, 1999. Ingemark, Camilla Asplund. “The Octopus in the Sewers: An Ancient Legend Analogue.” Journal of Folklore Research 45, no. 2 (2008): 145(26). MacDougall, Robert. “The Wire Devils: Pulp Thrillers, the Telephone, and Action at a Distance in the Wiring of a […]

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