Tag Archives | Books

Revolutionaries of the Soul

soulIn western societies, the canon is the greatest ally to social conditioning and nation-building. Schools and media echo it with great alacrity. There are even prizes, ranging from local to international (and very prestigious, as well as remunerative), assigned to sundry representatives of the canon. The significance of such prizes is twofold: further to establish and divulge the canon, and to enroll clever minds in its service. The resulting world is deceptively varied but in fact univocal. Most of us are led to believe that that’s all there is and, often, believe it we do. Then, one day, some of us stumble on something that seems completely extra-canonical. We either dismiss it as sheer nonsense or, to our surprise, we are attracted to it—and the doors of a whole new world are swung open.

Gary Lachman’s Revolutionaries of the Soul: Reflections on Magicians, Philosophers, and Occultists is just the sort of book that those of you who have overdosed on the platitudes so incessantly dished out by the canon-enforcers will enjoy reading.… Read the rest

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What are you reading this October?

31CLp9ZsBiLA couple of weeks ago, I asked the Disinfo crowd which movies everyone had seen and/or planned to see. I just thought I’d do the same for books as my movie post garnered some decent discussion.

I’m currently reading Polish Postcommunist Cinema by Ewa Mazierska. So far, it’s okay. Mazierska gives a decent overview of the cinematic climate after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. In the first part, she analyzes films through popular genres such as police/gangster films and heritage cinema. I sometimes think genre studies can be a bit reductive and, so far, Mazierska’s overviews have been brief and sometimes underdeveloped. I am looking forward to her discussion of The New Cinema of Moral Concern and women’s cinema. However, I’m still wading through the genre breakdowns.

Have anything interesting you’d like to share with the rest of us? Anything I can add to my Goodreads account? I don’t usually give out my social media information, but I’d be willing to connect on Goodreads.… Read the rest

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Generation Hex Chapel of Sacred Mirrors retrospective (2005)

‘Welcome to – how do you say – “a hole in history itself.’
This book is about magic, and about Generation Hex, teenagers and young adults who practice it.’

- Jason Louv (from Generation Hex, Introduction)


 From Binding the Occult

For those of you that weren’t around during it’s heyday it would be hard to understand. There was no proper term for it. I could say Hyper Culture, I could say Ultra Culture, there were a million different terms for what was going on. It was a movement. The internet was still fresh and new. It had been born from some chaotic cesspool and out from it came a storm of ideas and people who were steeped in all sorts of eclectic occult knowledge. One, especially a sixteen year old boy, could just bathe in. Here was a world where the only books I could easily find were by a witch named Silver Ravenwolf, and suddenly I am diving into ideas that until recently were completely obscure.

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PSA: Disinformation 3 Day Weekend Sale – 40% off everything!

disinformation 3 day sale

Disinfolks, we are trying to increase the traffic to our store and because it’s a long weekend for most of us, we decided to offer 40% off LIST prices in our store. This is a great opportunity to pick up some titles that you’ve wanted to purchase. You can start using the code right away!

Go to the Store

Use the Code: 3dayweekend

The code is good through midnight (east coast time) September 1, 2014.

Links for easy access:
Books
Disinfo Products
True Mind Films
Shelter Island Films
Apparel
Other

American Jesus_cover JOTU Boredom_cover Pleaneat BeePeople box art flat Hidden-Wisdom StickerNation enlg 533936 inffaux EDGE44D

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Create your own book of Wikipedia articles

Photos of books made by PediaPress with Wikipedia content. By Jann Glasmacher for PediaPress via Wikimedia Commons.

Photos of books made by PediaPress with Wikipedia content. By Jann Glasmacher for PediaPress via Wikimedia Commons.

I can’t believe that I just found out about this service: you can create your own book of Wikipedia articles. After gathering the articles you want to include, you can compile them into a book, and then download it as a PDF, ODF, or even get it printed. I think I just checked a few people off of my  “What the Hell Do I Get Them?” Christmas list.

via the Wikipedia Help:Books page:

Tips for creating great books

Topic and title

There are almost no limits when creating books from Wikipedia content. A good book focuses on a certain topic and covers it as well as possible. A meaningful title helps other users to have the correct expectation regarding the content of a book.

Length

Books should have a reasonable number of articles. One article is not enough, but books that result in PDFs with more than 500 pages are probably too big, and may even cause problems on older computers.

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Lilith Returns: Party At The World’s End

Party At The World's End“We are on the side of man, of life and of the individual. Therefore we are against religion, morality and government. Therefore our name is Lucifer.

We are on the side of freedom, of love, of joy and laughter and divine drunkenness. Therefore our name is Babalon.

Sometimes we move openly, sometimes in silence and in secret. Night and day are one to us, calm and storm, seasons and the cycles of man, all these things are one, for we are at the roots. Supplicant we stand before the Powers of Life and Death, and are heard of these powers and avail. Our way is the secret way, the unknown direction. Ours is the way of the serpent in the underbrush, our knowledge is in the eyes of goats and of women.” -Jack Parsons

Ten years in the making, “Party At The World’s End,” is a counter-cultural urban fantasy is coming in September from Disinfo alum James Curcio.Read the rest

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The Hidden Messages in Children’s Books

Alice_in_WonderlandAre there really hidden messages in children’s books or are certain adults just determined to impose their own subtext? From BBC Culture:

As a child many of my favourite books had food as a theme. One in particular told the story of a boy who helped save his local burger bar by becoming a gastro-sleuth to track down a lost secret ingredient.

Long after losing track of the book and forgetting its title, I found myself in Edinburgh to interview Alexander McCall Smith. He was already the mega-selling author of The No 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, but years earlier, he had published a few children’s books. There among them on a shelf was The Perfect Hamburger.

It was my book. Except that it wasn’t – not really. While burgers do indeed feature in lip-smacking detail, this time it was clear to me that The Perfect Hamburger is actually a tale of corporate greed and the fate of small businesses forced to compete with big chains.

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Harvard Confirms It Has Book Bound In Human Flesh

book fleshA few weeks ago we ran a story about Harvard University’s library containing books bound in human flesh. Scientists at Harvard have now confirmed the report for at least one volume, Arsène Houssaye’s Des destinées de lame, per The Independent:

Harvard scientists have confirmed a volume in one of its libraries is “without a doubt” bound in human skin after a series of tests conducted on the binding confirmed the origin of the material.

Scientists and conservators used several different methods to test the binding and are now “99.9 per cent” sure the material covering the book, Arsène Houssaye’s Des destinées de l’ame, is of human origin.

A team used a process known as peptide mass fingerprinting to examine microscopic samples of the covering and eliminate the chance that the 19th century book was made out of other binding materials such as sheep or goat skin.

The binding was then analysed further to determine the order of amino acids, the building blocks of each peptide, which are different in each species.

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Trigger Warnings On Classic Literature Are One Small Step From Book Banning

160px-Gatsby_1925_jacketPersonally I completely agree with Jen Doll, who adds that so-called “trigger warnings” are “one giant leap for censorship. Why add a ‘spoiler alert’ to the pain – and healing – inside the act of reading itself?,” writing at The Guardian. Any differences of opinion, disinfonauts?

There’s a discussion that’s been heating up for a while in various corners of the internet, and now at a number of US colleges, about how we take in information, and whether that information should be treated with what essentially constitutes a warning label – so long as it’s likely to impact anyone in an unfavorable way due to their personal background, emotional state and/or life experiences. We call these emotional disclaimers “trigger warnings”, alerting a consumer that the content within might offend or cause distress.

“This is triggering” (and therefore requires a trigger warning) is a phrase you might see in the comments section of an online article that addresses racism, rape, war, anorexia or any number of subjects about which a discussion may not leave the reader with a care-free, fuzzy sort of feeling.

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Why You Should Avoid Best-Selling Books

As duas irmãs - Renoir“If you read what everyone else reads, soon you’ll start thinking like everyone else,” claims Shane Parrish, relating his tale of reading 161 books in a year at The Week:

We all know we should read more. Few of us do.

Well, last year I made reading a priority and ended up reading 161 books cover-to-cover. I reasoned that if reading was the key to getting smarter, I wouldn’t let anything get in my way.

What I learned most from my year of reading surprised me because it wasn’t found in any particular bit of knowledge in any of the books I read. The big lesson was a simple heuristic: Avoid most best-selling books. These books are not fertile ground for learning and acquiring knowledge. In fact, most are forgotten within a year or two. Why learn something that expires so quickly?

Well let’s start with this question: Why do we read best-sellers in the first place?

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