Charlie Harvey

February 2012 Reading

  • Snow Crash, by Neal Stephenson

    It isn’t exactly news that I am a big fan of Stephenson. Snow Crash is an older book, written very much in the cyberpunk style. Lots of virtual reality and futuristic dystopia. But done entertainingly and combining those themes with some intelligent and entertaining investigations of organised crime, capitalism, religion and pizza delivery. Hugely fun.

    2012-02-29 by Charlie Harvey
  • Félix Guattari: A Critical Introduction, by Gary Genosko

    Oh man. How come nobody can write about Guattari or even about Deleuze without slipping into obfuscationary technical jargon? Sentences like this abound, Meta-modelizing maps do not interpret unique unique auto-references of individuals with reference to a preexisting set of co-ordinates (referenced to childhod ’events’ or ’'traumas’' of the human race), but attempt to respect self-positing trajectories in order to see if they are helpful in freeing up blockages in a given situation by taking risks with certain technological phyla…. Its a shame because I think that some of the political analysis could be very powerful and relevant were it accessible to non-academics. That said, I rather enjoyed learning more about Guattari’s work.

    2012-02-20 by Charlie Harvey
  • Code version 2.0 by Lawrence Lessig

    A bit of a treat from the local Oxfam last year, this has been staring at me from my to read pile for some time. Lessig’s investigation of the regulability of cyberspace and how it might be fashioned to preserve liberty is a particularly aposite read in these times when state power is being all to frequently abused to bolster private monopolies (and vice versa) to the detriment of individual freedom. Whilst I don’t, in the end, agree with the liberal reformist analysis of the necessity of government (or corporations) Lessig is compelling and makes a very strong case for working towards an architecture of internet that embeds values of liberty; certainly preferable to the panopticon proposed by the entertainment/content/state complex.

    2012-02-20 by Charlie Harvey
  • Point Omega by Don Delillo

    I find Delillo’s writing almost hypnotic — pared-down, always asking metaphysical questions yet never providing answers. Point Omega worth reading both for its haunting potrayal of loss and mortality and for Delillo's sheer technical competence.

    2012-02-20 by Charlie Harvey
  • Delete This At Your Peril, by Neil Forsyth

    My sis and her feller, Martin got me this as a Christmas pressie. Funnily enough I got Martin it too! I’m never quite sure how I feel about spambaiting, but this is genuinely funny stuff.

    2012-02-09 by Charlie Harvey
  • Sauserre, by Jonathan Culler

    I’m a big fan of those 1960s and 70s Fontana books, and this one was great. A very readable and accessible introduction to the work of the structuralist linguist. Particularly insightful were the parallels that Culler drew with Freud and Durkheim — exact contemporaries of Sauserre’s and working in remarkably analogous ways in their respective fields.

    2012-02-09 by Charlie Harvey


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