Tag Archives | Literature

The Rewriting of David Foster Wallace

For fans of David Foster Wallace’s writing (Infinite Jest being the main event), the current focus on the man himself rather than his (admittedly challenging) literary legacy is more than a little disturbing, as recounted by Christian Lorentzen at Vulture:

Nobody owns David Foster Wallace anymore. In the seven years since his suicide, he’s slipped out of the hands of those who knew him, and those who read him in his lifetime, and into the cultural maelstrom, which has flattened him. He has become a character, an icon, and in some circles a saint. A writer who courted contradiction and paradox, who could come on as a curmudgeon and a scold, who emerged from an avant-garde tradition and never retreated into conventional realism, he has been reduced to a wisdom-dispensing sage on the one hand and shorthand for the Writer As Tortured Soul on the other.

David Foster Wallace

David Foster Wallace.

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Why Are Beggars Despised? by George Orwell

Sandra Druschke (CC BY 2.0)

Sandra Druschke (CC BY 2.0)

via Reddit (r/books):

It is worth saying something about the social position of beggars, for when one has consorted with them, and found that they are ordinary human beings, one cannot help being struck by the curious attitude that society takes towards them. People seem to feel that there is some essential difference between beggars and ordinary “working” men. They are a race apart–outcasts, like criminals and prostitutes. Working men “work,” beggars do not “work”; they are parasites, worthless in their very nature. It is taken for granted that a beggar does not “earn” his living, as a bricklayer or a literary critic “earns” his. He is a mere social excrescence, tolerated because we live in a humane age, but essentially despicable.

Yet if one looks closely one sees that there is no essential difference between a beggar’s livelihood and that of numberless respectable people.… Read the rest

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James Joyce — Modern Psychonaut

Bobby Campbell (CC BY 2.0)

Bobby Campbell (CC BY 2.0)

“I am convinced personally that Mr. Joyce is a genius all the world will have to recognize.”
– Aleister Crowley, The Genius of Mr. James Joyce

“Joyce’s prose prepared me to enter psychedelic space.”
– Timothy Leary, FLASHBACKS

“(Finnegans Wake is) about as close to LSD on the page as you can get…”
– Terence McKenna, Surfing on Finnegans Wake

“If you’ve never had a psychedelic, reading Joyce is the next best equivalent.”
– Robert Anton Wilson, RAW Explains Everything

“I have read Finnegans Wake aloud at a time when takers of LSD said, ‘that is JUST LIKE LSD.’ So I have begun to feel that LSD may just be the lazy man’s form of Finnegans Wake.” 
– Marshall McLuhan, Q & A

“Someday I’m going to get my article published; I’m going to prove that Finnegans Wake is an information pool based on computer memory systems that didn’t exist until centuries after James Joyce’s era; that Joyce was plugged into a cosmic consciousness from which he derived the inspiration for his entire corpus of work.Read the rest

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A Very Seussian Call of Cthulhu

Australian artist, R.J. Ivankovic has diabolically mashed up two disparate, yet oddly complimentary genres in this fabulous collection: the weird fantasy and horror of H.P. Lovecraft and the weird fantasy and childlike wonder of Dr. Suess. Feast your eyes on the eldritch, sanity-blasting horror of two literary masters melded into an unspeakably delightful melange by creative forces beyond the ken of hapless mortals. We might live on a placid island of ignorance, but sometimes setting sail on the black seas of infinity is its own reward. Sometimes not, as the doomed narrator of the following tale will attest, but them's the breaks, kids. hpl_s_the_call_of_cthulhu___cover_by_drfaustusau-d4knqrz
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Brush with a Goddess

I burst into my home at about 1:30 AM, and there she was, John Tim in tow. Before I could even eek out a proper greeting, she let out a bellow, the kind you’d expect from a tortured owl. Planted herself into the middle of the living room, still howling she grabbed and tugged at the clothes of the four gentleman present. She was wobbly and reeked of peach schnapps, and we weren’t gonna have any part in it. After her first assault failed, she looked up and smiled, “Don’t you guys get it? I love you all equally!” and then continued howling, this time the shrieking of holy orgasm. She then tried to mount my roommate sitting at his computer desk, no take, so she went on to just spread her legs as wide as possible, still moaning. She tried removing her top, that attempt was stifled.… Read the rest

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The Evolution of Language and the Death of “I”

The Dark Meaning Research Institute has just published its third paper, which is on the evolution of language. Dark Meaning Research Institute logoIt states:

Since we saw in Paper No. 1 that the self and the other are inseparable, we can also begin to see how one of the biggest tricks in The Language Show – “sawing a person in half” – is achieved. Two aspects of the same self can be made to look like completely separate parts thanks to the old magic dividing wand of “I”, which forces a person into a very narrow position with a limited view of reality.

The trick is very easy to perform: an unwitting actor’s attention is directed away from their true centre by making them focus on a magic dot in their limited field of vision while a bend is made behind them. This results in the victim maintaining that they are an individual, which always gets a big laugh from the audience, who fail to realise they are also victims of the same trick.

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ATTMind Radio EP. 4 – Entheodelic Storytelling With Benton Rooks

Benton Rooks ATTMind Radio ep 4This interview is with Benton Rooks, author of the TRETA-YUGA graphic novel trilogy, writer for Reality Sandwich and Disinfo, and a generally awesome guy. In 2014 he co-coined the term “entheodelic storytelling” with Graham Hancock, shamanic filmmaker/author Rak Razam, and Jeremy D. Johnson, editor of the psychedelic culture section of RS.

We speak about the often-marginalized power of the storytelling narrative in fiction and literature, the role of mythology in contemporary culture, altered states for creativity, and generally what it's like to be a fringe-writer in the modern world.

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Huxley’s Letter to Orwell Regarding “1984”

orwell-huxley

In case you aren’t aware, Aldous Huxley was George Orwell’s French teacher at Eton College. The below letter contains Huxley’s brief review and initial thoughts on Orwell’s iconic masterpiece.

Wrightwood. Cal.

21 October, 1949

Dear Mr. Orwell,

It was very kind of you to tell your publishers to send me a copy of your book. It arrived as I was in the midst of a piece of work that required much reading and consulting of references; and since poor sight makes it necessary for me to ration my reading, I had to wait a long time before being able to embark on Nineteen Eighty-Four.

Agreeing with all that the critics have written of it, I need not tell you, yet once more, how fine and how profoundly important the book is. May I speak instead of the thing with which the book deals — the ultimate revolution? The first hints of a philosophy of the ultimate revolution — the revolution which lies beyond politics and economics, and which aims at total subversion of the individual’s psychology and physiology — are to be found in the Marquis de Sade, who regarded himself as the continuator, the consummator, of Robespierre and Babeuf.

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Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow by Kurt Vonnegut

If it was good enough for your grandfather, forget it … it is much too good for anyone else!

GRAMPS FORD, his chin resting on his hands, his hands on the crook of his cane, was staring irascibly at the five-foot television screen that dominated the room. On the screen, a news commentator was summarizing the day’s happenings. Every thirty seconds or so, Gramps would jab the floor with his cane-tip and shout, “Hell, we did that a hundred years ago!”

Emerald and Lou, coming in from the balcony, where they had been seeking that 2185 A.D. rarity—privacy—were obliged to take seats in the back row, behind Lou’s father and mother, brother and sister-in-law, son and daughter-in-law, grandson and wife, granddaughter and husband, great-grandson and wife, nephew and wife, grandnephew and wife, great-grandniece and husband, great-grandnephew and wife—and, of course, Gramps, who was in front of everybody. All save Gramps, who was somewhat withered and bent, seemed, by pre-anti-gerasone standards, to be about the same age—somewhere in their late twenties or early thirties.… Read the rest

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