MAIN PAGE ⎔ SECTION PAGE ⎔ SITE MAP ⎔ GLOSSARY
MIRRORFORM ANALYSIS – SKIP TO A SECTION
INTRO ⎔ THE INTERVIEW ⎔ CLOSING DAY ⎔ A MONTH LATER ⎔ TUESDAY
THURSDAY ⎔ SATURDAY ⎔ MONDAY ⎔ WEDNESDAY
SPECIALS: GREAT PARTY ⎔ GINGERBREAD HOUSE ⎔ SHINED & CONFUSED
MIDWAY ⎔ MIDDLE-END
As Hallorann finishes saying that not everything that happened in the hotel over the years was a good thing, there’s a shape in his head thanks to the stained glass windows, and this is the shape of a didrachm, an ancient piece of money linked to the minotaur. So, if Hallorann is thinking of the Grady murders in this moment, and Grady was a minotaur like Jack, this is good timing.
On the flip side, backward Wendy is saying, “I’m very confused…and I just need a chance to think things over”. Staying with the labyrinth metaphor for a second, this is like if Theseus tipped his hand to the bullman, and said, “Jeez this labyrinth is really somethin’ innit? I tell ya, it’s really havin’ the intended effect on me.”
But still, this is a good impulse; Wendy should try to overcome her confusion. That’s how she’ll survive.
But there’s another layer to this scary past/confusion business.
Wendy is directly across the room from where the March 1978 issue of Scientific American appeared during the scene where Jack is whipping the tennis ball (eleven audible times), and on its cover appears The Tower of Babel, as painted by Bruegel the Elder. The staircase Wendy and Jack are climbing here is not unlike the way that version of the tower was painted. Most significantly, “Babel” is derived from a word, “bilal”, which means “to confuse”. (Also: crazy, but true: as they walk up the 23×7-step stairs, they’re heading closer to room 237, and this volume of Scientific American is No. 238.)
When Wendy gets to the top of the stairs here, she has a light fixture above her, shaped like a halo, so perhaps by toppling Jack (and the patriarchy?) she’s taking on the form of the god who destroyed the Tower of Babel, which, in the myth, dispersed the peoples who were working on it across the world, and caused them to speak other languages and to not understand each other anymore. Recall that when Jack is coming to in the following scene, he’s babbling to himself incoherently.
Now, the king who commissioned the building of the Tower had three names (a man of “many forms” you might say), one of which was Nimrod, which derived from a word spelled mrd, which I presume was pronounced something like “im-rid”. That word meant “rebellion”. And it looks…an awful lot…like murder. Which, you could say, if you were feeling poetic, is like a rebellion against life.
Also, this magazine appears behind Wendy while she’s pacing in Suite 3, the moment she first hears Tony/Danny going “REDRUM, REDRUM”. So the connection is not purely my imagination.
And the first time the magazine appears is at the lobby entrance, at the beginning of the movie. Which is the room where the REDRUM takes place.
According to the Genesis Rabbah 42(!) Nimrod also had the name Amraphel “as he declared ‘I will cast down'”, and Wendy casts Jack down, but even more than that, Nimrod in the modern parlance means a dunce, an idiot, a…
…dope. Like Dopey, the sticker coloured in with the wrong colours. With the wrong Winnie-the-Pooh colours. And which disappears at the appearance of Wendy.
Oh, and Amraphel/Nimrod built the Tower of Babel in the land of Shinar, where he was king. Shinar, a name that might be a corruption of the Hebrew Shene neharot, meaning “two rivers”. Shinar, which is only mentioned five times in the bible, one of which was in Daniel 1:2. Now, the name The Shining was definitely inspired by John Lennon, and possibly Stephen King heard that the Rockies (both in Canada and America) are known by the indigenous populations as the “Shining Mountains”. In fact, the Nakoda (the people from the Oxborough paintings) are partly responsible for that name, and Glacier National Park specifically (where the opening Montanan mountains are from) was known to be known by that handle.
But you have to admit, that Shinar/Daniel/Babel connection is pretty spectacular. It’s moments like that where you have to wonder if Stephen King is just such a brilliant conduit of the human creative spirit that he can conjure up these subtle connections without even realizing it (I’m assuming he would deny the connection), or if the world is just so full of detail that something like this was bound to turn up. Nevertheless, I didn’t go scrounging for this detail, or hardly any of the details I’ve discovered in any of my theories, really. The bulk of my study has been done using Wikipedia. I’m not trying to do deep dives (emphasis on “trying”). But when Kubrick points me in one direction, I go that way and see what comes up. This is what came up.
If you saw my intro documentary, you might be wondering if I’m going to bring up how Tower of Babel is from Genesis 11:7 and how that ties into the film-and-novel’s interest with seven-elevens. Or even how 711 is 237 times 3. But that’s a big subject, so if you’d like more on this topic, head here.
Click here to return to where you were in Through the Mirrorform, Part 3: Closing Day
Or Click here to continue on to Through the Mirrorform, Part 4: A Month Later
MAIN PAGE ⎔ SECTION PAGE ⎔ SITE MAP ⎔ GLOSSARY
OTHER MAIN PAGES FOR SHINING ANALYSIS
THE MIRRORFORM ⎔ THE BEATLES ⎔ THE RUM AND THE RED
BACKGROUND ART ⎔ OVERLOOK PHOTOGRAPHS ⎔ GOLDEN SPIRALS
PHI GRIDS ⎔ PATTERNS ⎔ VIOLENCE AND INDIGENA ⎔ ABSURDITIES
THE STORY ROOM ⎔ ANIMAL SYMBOLS ⎔ THE ANNOTATED SHINING