Tag Archives: David Foster Wallace

A Brief Philip K Dick Interlude

I recently binged both the TV and book versions of The Man in the High Castle. Thatsa lotta Nazis.

I started to blog about these particular alternative histories–both the Asian-centric original and the Nazi-centric contemporary. But then I picked up a minor Philip Dick work, published 2 years after TMitHC, The Simulacra, and it was like TMitHC took acid, watched a bunch of Marx Brothers films, and foresaw a future in which Nazi evil takes the form of corporate oligarchy subduing the masses with HGTV and an ornate, comprehensive bureaucracy of citizenship.

As can happen when you pick up a Dick novel.

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Book Reviewlet: The Blazing World, Siri Hustvedt

Setup: a wealthy white genius daughter/wife, pissed at the patriarchy and tired of exclusion by the Art World, plots a long con. She secretly hires dudes to pretend her work is theirs. After three, she’ll unveil herself in triumph to prove to the Patriarchy that the Patriarchy exists.

The Patriarchy’s like, uh, yeah? What’s your point?

And the world blazes on. With footnotes.

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Crisis at the Bookstore!

Look! That book cover is PURTY. Didn’t that book get reviewed in the Times this weekend?

Should I buy it?

I only sold a few widgets at the widgetmart this weekend. I want the book! But how will I know my widget dollars are going where I want them to go?

Thinker for Hire!

Should I buy this book?!?!?

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#Post-Ac Essay in Progress!

Hey y’all, I’m working on another post-ac essay. It’s Part Three of last year’s two-part blog series about reading only women authors.

The part where I figure out why I care increasingly less about my dissertation research every year. (Is that true?! It may be true??!!!??)

Here’s a teaser from the draft:

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Book Reviewlets: Everyone’s Pretty

A Christian Scientist, a delusional messianic boozer pornographer, and a drag queen walk into a bar. The bartender says, we don’t serve your kind here.

So the Christian Scientist duct tapes his wife to the toilet, the messianic boozer plots elaborate capers, and the (after-hours) drag queen goes back to his management job at “Statistical Diagnostics.”

They all live in LA. Obviously.

That’s pretty much the plot of this book, Lydia Millet‘s fourth book, from the mid-2000s.

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A Year in Reading Women, Continued

The second in a 2 or 3 part series. Who knows what else I’ll decide I need to say about this?

On Friday I articulated the notion of Feminist Compromise:

That if you care about full equality for women (and other disempowered groups), and you also want to participate in the world like by watching TV or reading books,  you have to compromise.

Daily.

In just about any experience with popular culture. Many workplace interactions. Flipping through any magazine with ads.

Once you learn how to see it, the feminist way of seeing disempowerment everywhere, you can’t unsee it. And you don’t want to. Even though this new sight—Femi-vision!—pretty much bars you from contented consumption of most entertainment.

However, the Bechdel Rule will only get you so far. Sometimes you just want a sitcom and a beer before bed. Hence the Compromise.

The real rules for women

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