The author of an article I read for my term paper writes that SF and myths operate similarly. Both are a reflection of man's thirst for knowledge about his origins and his fate; SF is considered a more self-conscious form of myth-making. This is especially prevalent in Oryx & Crake, during those instances when the Children of Crake ask Snowman to tell them creation stories. Oryx and Crake are likened to Godlike beings: "Crake made the bones of the Children of Crake out of the coral on the beach, and then he made their flesh out of a mango.
In a lot of different ways, Pattern Recognition reminds me of some postmodern books I've read, especially Infinite Jest. IJ also exhibits signs of our society's preoccupation with brands (Large corporations advertise by sponsoring/subsidizing a year. For example, "Year of Dairy Products from the American Heartland.") Also, during the discussion of Slow River, conspicuous consumption. These are themes that also pop up in PR.
Hey, does anyone remember where that Aunt Lydia quote about freedom to/freedom from is in The Handmaid's Tale? I can't seem to find it...
I was talking to my roommate about our scifi class and this obsession with information (like those tapes from Cyteen) and the Metaverse from Snow Crash, and she brought up this anime movie called "Ghost in the Shell."
Here's a clip from youtube. http://youtube.com/watch?v=txXeLt1ECwI&feature=related
Has anyone else ever seen this?
Reality tv shows have become more popularized these last few years. Despite the fact that they're not intellectually stimulating, don't have a plot, and are probably not even completely "reality," people love them! Reading about the Metaverse made me think about Second Life, which interestingly enough, was modeled after the Metaverse in Snow Crash. Just like reality shows seem to dominate television these days, games like the Sims entertain by trying to recreate ordinary everyday activities. I personally don't understand how this can be interesting; what is the goal of this "game"?
In many of the novels we've read for this class, information and knowledge have been closely tied to technology and/or power. The collection and accumulation of information and its practical applications demonstrate and enforce control. With all of this focus on bettering one's social and financial status through useful knowledge, what happens to the individual? In Slow River, as we discussed in class on Monday, Lore has identity issues (illustrated through parallel narratives, different point of views, etc.).
I, too, shall pass...
I could not understand Delany's book. :-( On the plus side, I like "The Brother from Another Planet."
There are a lot of interesting oxymoronic concepts in Lilith's Brood. Throughout the series, the Oankali mention that the Human race is full of life and death, horror and beauty. Simultaneously, Lilith notices the subtle ways the Oankali treat the Humans. Their imprisonment isn't actively aggressive, but it's an aggressiveness hidden in kindness. "And they had done it all so softly, without brutality, and with patience and gentleness so corrosive..." (67). Also, when the ooloi and the humans are fighting, Lilith describes it as "gentle chaos."
...This was meant to be a response to the long thread of comments on the entry titled, "The extension of human masculinity," but it became this:
It's interesting to watch people get so riled up about gender in class. I understand that some people believe it's a social construct and that stereotypes are evil, etc. etc., but I think that this belief in gender and the stereotypes attached to each one is so deeply ingrained, that there's no point in arguing aimlessly about it.
Warning: I am feverish and have induced a headache from a superfluous amount of coughing, so I apologize if this entry is kind of wonky.