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 Post subject: History of Magic Essay (FINAL DRAFT) *long*
PostPosted: Fri May 11, 2007 2:03 pm 
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Joined: 06 Nov 2006
Posts: 444
Location: inside your belly!
here is my final draft, i know u guys said i should poost the finished product

I dedicate this report
To My awesome blossom
Mom, Dad, and the
dwarflings, Gracie, and Charlie.

When a common person hears the word “Magic,â€

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri May 11, 2007 2:40 pm 
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Joined: 10 Sep 2004
Posts: 8861
Location: Las Vegas
Not bad! There are some inaccuracies and omissions ( BTW, Penn's last name is Jillette) but for the most part you did pretty good.

You equated "sleight of hand" with "palming" when that isn't true at all. Some corrections in phrasing would fix that. "Misdirection" is poorly defined as well. I wouldn't say "You would show your hand empty and then walk away" is a common magic performance. I'd say it's a rather poor one.

Copperfield's name is one word, not two. Hecklers aren't "exposers" they're merely annoyances, whether they expose something or not. Your "Magicians Oath" section is disturbing. It's not okay to expose something to a non magician simply by making them promise not to tell. He's still a non-magician, so the oath means nothing to him.

Lose the "second oldest profession" line. That's a tired old adult joke that's inappropriate here. The Egyptian tomb paintings were interpreted wrong. There's no evidence that supports that they were performing magic. It's commonly believed now that those "cups" in the painting were bread loaves, and he was a baker not a magician.

Otherwise, you did quite well. Good work.

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PostPosted: Fri May 11, 2007 3:19 pm 
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Joined: 24 Jun 2006
Posts: 6622
Location: Penguin's Most Feared Intellect
There is a lot wrong in your report. I will start from the top.

First, magic consists of more than just sleight of hand and misdirection. Sure, both are important, but there is also the entertainment factor. Plus, then you get into escapes and large illusions. Which use more as well. Plus, you forget about gimmicks. And psychology. I could go on, but I won't, since I've made my point.

60% of magic isn't done with sleight of hand and palming. There are thousands of self-working effects. As well as the use of gimmicks and other props. Then there are the large stage illusions, as well as escapes, and mentalism. There is a lot of magic, that doesn't use sleight of hand or palming. Finally, sleight of hand isn't also known as palming, as you claim.

Copperfield is one word, not two. Also, stage magic isn't just large illusions. Many stage magicians use things like cards and ropes, really not that large. Many stage magicians pack quite small and use no large stage illusions.

You contradict yourself by saying that magic is dated back to 2600 B.C. then claiming that the first magician lived in 2700 B.C. You also imply that cups and balls were the first magic effect, but they weren't. The first recorded magic effect that we are aware of now is the decapitation of a bird, and then restoring it's head (David Blaine performed this on one of his specials).

Also, when you said that most Christians and Jews in early times thought all magic was fake isn't true at all. Jews, from a very early time, had a strong belief in magic. Magic is even mentioned in the Bible. Just look to the story of Moses. Christians also had a strong belief in magic, and were responsible for the deaths of many so called witches.

First, Houdini claimed to have been born in Appleton Wisconsin. And he fully well knew he was born in Budapest Hungary. His wife also knew this, so did his family. There are even records of him having a passport claiming his birth place as Budapest Hungary. He never spoke with the dead. He may have acted as if he did, but he did admit he couldn't speak with the dead. And at the end of his life, he fought a brutal battle with the Spiritualist movement, exposing many of the techniques that mediums of the time used.

Houdini didn't do a stunt where he would have a volunteer punch him in the stomach. He would state that he was in such great condition that he could take the strongest blows to his abdomen. Also, it wasn't a punch that ruptured his appendix. It is basically accepted that that would have been impossible, according to modern day knowledge of medicine. Also, while he had an appendicitis, he still performed his escapes. Finally, he didn't die right there once he was rushed to the hospital. He actually seemed to have been getting better after an operation they did. Also, it was 1926 when he died.

When talking about tv magic, Doug Henning should have been mentioned. He is the one who recreated tv magic. Also, I've never heard of David Copperfield changing magic completely. Because he really hasn't. Plus, he didn't fly over the Great Wall of China, he walked through it.

Penn's name is Penn Jillette. I have no idea how you didn't find that. He's not that secretive about it. He uses it as his name basically everywhere. If you couldn't find it, it just meant you didn't do much of a search. Also, BullSh*t isn't about trying to read minds and find aliens. It's about exposing fraud. They expose mind reading, feng shui, and other stuff like that. The reason they are hated by some isn't just because of the exposure of magic (which they really don't expose much, and the majority of what they expose, is there own effects, that no one else would redo anyway). It's because they are very atheist, and they promote that fact. They attack many beliefs that people hold dear to them. That's where most of the hate comes from.

Doing the history of magic, something about India and China should have been mentioned. You basically just skipped over all of that history. You also got a lot of the magic history about Europe wrong. They weren't doing simple just simple stuff. Many of the greats came from Europe. For one, Jean Eugene Robert-Houdin. Or the Maskelynes. There was also David Devant, just to name a few.

Finally, the last thing I'm going to mention is that magic isn't about making people say things like "Oh my God, how did he do that?" Magic is about entertaining people. Magicians are entertainers.

Now I didn't correct all of the mistakes. And it's cool that you want to write about the history of magic, but please, if you do so, make sure you do your research. Also, some of the mistakes you made, you were informed were mistakes awhile ago. There is no excuse.

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