Crake vs. the Oankali

So, we very briefly touched on this in class today, but I was interested in the parallels between Oryx and Crake and Xenogenesis. Clearly, the biggest parallel was that the human race ends up wiped out and reformatted against its will, for its own good (or so someone claims). The narration of both novels takes place at least mostly in the immediate aftermath.

Gender Inequality in Oryx and Crake.

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Our brief discussion of how Snowman is a corrupting influence on the Crakers started me thinking about how Snowman teaches human principles of ranking. He introduces the concept that men and women should behave differently, picking the men to lead the trek and surround and protect the women and children. Biological sex differences may lead to men and women taking different roles, but Snowman assigns these roles of different value without explaining why, simply citing it as "the proper way" (350).

ahahaahaa last minute

As I was reading, I noticed several self-referential comments woven into the narrative, remarks that seemed to comment back on Neuromancer and the academic work surrounding it. Though apparently Gibson is less aware than I thought him to be -- how did he not notice that he had created another character with the name Case?

Pass

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I'm taking my second pass on Gibson.

Also, how awesome is watching Battlestar Galactica for class? I'm definitely not going to make it through four seasons, but I'm pretty hooked...

The End of the Past and Seeing Beyond

At first, I was a bit confused about why The Matrix was our movie to watch with Pattern Recognition, but having thought about it I think there are two major themes that run through both works, though Pattern Recognition clearly tries to stay grounded roughly in the present, while The Matrix extrapolates them to far more extreme situations. Both works, though, demonstrate the key challenges of defining history, through a character's ability to "see beyond" reality to some hidden truths.

Pattern Recognition

Pattern Recognition Science Fiction?

Identity and Relationships in Pattern Recognition's Online Space

I thought one of the most interesting bits of Pattern Recognition was the way people's online friendships worked out - what with Parkaboy/Cayce and Judy/Taki eventually hooking up in the real world based on affections that were developed almost exclusively through online chatting. Obviously, this stuff says a lot about how Gibson sees the world of 2002 and the relation of technology in it to human interactions.

Identity and Relationships in Pattern Recognition's Online Space

I thought one of the most interesting bits of Pattern Recognition was the way people's online friendships worked out - what with Parkaboy/Cayce and Judy/Taki eventually hooking up in the real world based on affections that were developed almost exclusively through online chatting. Obviously, this stuff says a lot about how Gibson sees the world of 2002 and the relation of technology in it to human interactions.

Movies in Pattern Recognition.

One element of Pattern Recognition that struck me was the use of movie titles or directors in descriptions of both people and places in the novel. While I did not enjoy the novel much as a whole, I liked how Gibson included these contemporary tidbits of information. It really helped clear up some of the environments that Cayce was in, and gave the novel a more realistic narrative feel. I noticed references to The Matrix and to female characters in general in most role-playing games on page 187. And to director Ridley Scott's sets on page 248.

Unrepresentable

One of the things that struck me while reading Pattern Recognition is that it must be impossible to convincingly describe rapturous aesthetic experience. Or to represent an aesthetic work within an aesthetic work. I'm thinking of the "footage" in the novel and how basically unappealing it sounded to me whenever described.

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