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Umbrella 1
Umbrella 3
Umbrellas for the Civil but Discontent Man designed by Bruce and Stephanie Tharp of Materious… via Core77.

In Civilization and Its Discontents, Sigmund Freud contends that aggressiveness is a fundamental human instinct whose inhibition is a necessary obligation of social life:

“Men are not gentle, friendly creatures wishing for love, who simply defend themselves if they are attacked, but that a powerful measure of desire for aggression has to be reckoned as part of their instinctual endowment.”

Fundamentally there is a tension between the freedom to gratify these natural desires and the conformity demanded by civilization.  What results is a muted, guilty, and ultimately a discontent populous in which the possibility of a more complete happiness has been traded for a degree of security.

Umbrellas for the Civil but Discontent Man combines a symbol of gentlemanly refinement—the full-sized, dark umbrella—with an element of more manly sword-bearing times.  The umbrellas offer brief psychological respite from the dictates of social amiability; aggressive fantasies are allowed and encouraged on the daily commute to the office.  The effete civilian’s grasp of the handle takes him into the world of the masterful samurai, the medieval barbarian, or the triumphant cavalryman.

Phillip Torrone

Editor at large – Make magazine. Creative director – Adafruit Industries, contributing editor – Popular Science. Previously: Founded – Hack-a-Day, how-to editor – Engadget, Director of product development – Fallon Worldwide, Technology Director – Braincraft.


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Comments

  1. Stephen Conway says:

    I hope that we’ll be seen cases for these, if only to hassle airport security.

  2. jeff-o says:

    Geez, if someone needs to release their aggressive tendencies they should join the SCA.