Whatcha reading?

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Dr. Medulla
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by Dr. Medulla » 08 Nov 2017, 12:02pm

Silent Majority wrote:
08 Nov 2017, 11:30am
I'm seeking to climb the ladder at the bookies as quickly as possible for more cash and security. Using a more moral version of the techniques that spurred the title character through the Years of Lyndon Johnson is seeing my reputation rise in the company.

I'll be killing Vietnamese children before you know it.
Don't forget to fume constantly that people don't love you enough while you're at it.
Walrus birth doesn't make good breakfast conversation!

Dr. Medulla
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by Dr. Medulla » 11 Nov 2017, 12:04pm

Finished listening to Coates on my basement ride this morning. It's all quite thought-provoking stuff, especially the symbolic value of the Obamas to African Americans. That's something I've minimized a great deal in my criticism/disappointment in him. Coates' discussions of the "myth of white innocence," whereby even raising issues of racism bring defensive gasps and outrage, are also quite strong. That said, he does drift into race reductionism too often, making racism the hub around which all of American life revolves. He's quite correct that Trump demonstrated that being overtly white supremacist showed that whiteness was an electoral quality in itself, something that could be more valuable than competency (i.e., a black candidate who acted the way Trump did would have absolutely no chance of being elected). But he says that his supporters, even if not white supremacist, were fundamentally fine with voting a white supremacist, proving the centrality of white supremacy in American life. Okay, but why doesn't his election say that his supporters are fine with voting for a misogynist and sexual predator, that those are the central qualities? I'm not denying that racism isn't an inescapable quality of the American fabric, but Coates' presentation, however unintentionally, minimizes other hierarchies, like sex and gender. I would suggest, too, that abuse of, contempt for the working class is just as core. Yes, people of colour within the same class are treated much worse as a rule, but isn't that a centuries-old tradition of dividing people who should have much in common? Race is a vital weapon, but one in service of class fragmentation. In other words, it's a lot more complicated. In the end, tho, that's something I do love about Coates' work—I can have constructive arguments with him in my head, disagreements don't rise to contempt or dismissal.

Got about 15 minutes into the next audiobook:
Image
Three early thriller novels from Matheson. Such a masterful, seemingly effortless writer.

Bathtub book that I'm starting today:
Image
Proper disclosure: this is by my niece, based on her dissertation. I started reading the diss years ago and got annoyed because she and I have very different views on the intelligence of the general public, and, accordingly, which theorists to use in our work. Her affection for Adorno is rooted in a snobbery that the great consuming masses are dopes who can be suckered into anything. But I bought her book a few months ago and finally decided to give it a spin, knowing I'm probably to going to grumble the whole way thru.

edit: I read the introduction. It's painfully social science. This is going to be real work to get thru.
Walrus birth doesn't make good breakfast conversation!

Silent Majority
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by Silent Majority » 13 Nov 2017, 12:24pm

30) Goebbels: the Biography - Peter Longerich. "Oh, the fuhrer, he's so right in this, such a wonderful clever man. We'd really be lost without him. He thinks I'm great, you know." - Dr Josef Goebbels, all his life.
'But also: hey dude, you can just go looking for more glasses. They're all free now. '

www.pexlives.libsyn.com/

eumaas
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by eumaas » 13 Nov 2017, 12:26pm

Silent Majority wrote:
13 Nov 2017, 12:24pm
30) Goebbels: the Biography - Peter Longerich. "Oh, the fuhrer, he's so right in this, such a wonderful clever man. We'd really be lost without him. He thinks I'm great, you know." - Dr Josef Goebbels, all his life.
Have you ever seen Downfall? The dude playing him looks like he's made of wet clay.
"The only thing that really occurs to me that I can say on this is to point out how fascinating it is that the Hassan-i-Sabbah archetype keeps turning up over and over again ... He disappears up into the mountains and is never seen again. Believe me, he'll never be seen again. He'll live forever because of that."

Silent Majority
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by Silent Majority » 13 Nov 2017, 12:29pm

eumaas wrote:
13 Nov 2017, 12:26pm
Silent Majority wrote:
13 Nov 2017, 12:24pm
30) Goebbels: the Biography - Peter Longerich. "Oh, the fuhrer, he's so right in this, such a wonderful clever man. We'd really be lost without him. He thinks I'm great, you know." - Dr Josef Goebbels, all his life.
Have you ever seen Downfall? The dude playing him looks like he's made of wet clay.
Never been in the mood for Downfall, but I'll watch it one day.
'But also: hey dude, you can just go looking for more glasses. They're all free now. '

www.pexlives.libsyn.com/

eumaas
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by eumaas » 13 Nov 2017, 12:34pm

Silent Majority wrote:
13 Nov 2017, 12:29pm
eumaas wrote:
13 Nov 2017, 12:26pm
Silent Majority wrote:
13 Nov 2017, 12:24pm
30) Goebbels: the Biography - Peter Longerich. "Oh, the fuhrer, he's so right in this, such a wonderful clever man. We'd really be lost without him. He thinks I'm great, you know." - Dr Josef Goebbels, all his life.
Have you ever seen Downfall? The dude playing him looks like he's made of wet clay.
Never been in the mood for Downfall, but I'll watch it one day.
I view it as a black comedy. Loads of Nazis blowing their brains out. It's great. I don't buy the frame of the innocent secretary, though.
"The only thing that really occurs to me that I can say on this is to point out how fascinating it is that the Hassan-i-Sabbah archetype keeps turning up over and over again ... He disappears up into the mountains and is never seen again. Believe me, he'll never be seen again. He'll live forever because of that."

Silent Majority
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by Silent Majority » 13 Nov 2017, 12:36pm

eumaas wrote:
13 Nov 2017, 12:34pm
Silent Majority wrote:
13 Nov 2017, 12:29pm
eumaas wrote:
13 Nov 2017, 12:26pm
Silent Majority wrote:
13 Nov 2017, 12:24pm
30) Goebbels: the Biography - Peter Longerich. "Oh, the fuhrer, he's so right in this, such a wonderful clever man. We'd really be lost without him. He thinks I'm great, you know." - Dr Josef Goebbels, all his life.
Have you ever seen Downfall? The dude playing him looks like he's made of wet clay.
Never been in the mood for Downfall, but I'll watch it one day.
I view it as a black comedy. Loads of Nazis blowing their brains out. It's great.
Ah, you've sold me.
'But also: hey dude, you can just go looking for more glasses. They're all free now. '

www.pexlives.libsyn.com/

Dr. Medulla
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by Dr. Medulla » 16 Nov 2017, 10:24am

Research reading:
Image
Long meant to read this just for its own sake given my love for the film and its historical context. The title refers to a line that Ben Marco delivers to Raymond Shaw regarding his brainwashing, but in the introduction the authors observe that it's also a basic question/assumption that cultural scholars ask—that we have limited autonomy and are shaped by capitalist logic, so what are we built to do (and how do we resist)? That was a great concern of many social critics in the 50s—how can the individual survive against so many forces arrayed to massify him/her?—and, in the era of social media and bots and purposeful misdirection, it's worth appreciating that, if we've somewhat made our peace with popular culture, it's a problem that hasn't been solved.
Walrus birth doesn't make good breakfast conversation!

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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by Dr. Medulla » 17 Nov 2017, 10:59am

Bedtime reading:
Image
I hatehatehate that subtitle—unless your evidence is from classified files or secured after an Indiana Jones-type raid into an Illuminati fortress underneath the Alps, there's no such thing as a fucking secret history—but this is a decent book in concept and, thus far, in execution. Martin seeks to counter popular and even scholarly memory that treats the 80s as a period of absolute right-wing control. In a series of independent essays, he explores how those who opposed the dominant mood of the time, such activists against nuclear proliferation foes and American imperialism in Central America. There's also a chapter on the "post-punk" (I'm guessing that actually means hardcore and other alternative music) scene, but I haven't gotten there yet. A healthy reminder not to give in to lazy lumpish historical thinking and that fighting the currents always has value.
Walrus birth doesn't make good breakfast conversation!

eumaas
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by eumaas » 17 Nov 2017, 11:30am

Dr. Medulla wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 10:59am
Bedtime reading:
Image
I hatehatehate that subtitle—unless your evidence is from classified files or secured after an Indiana Jones-type raid into an Illuminati fortress underneath the Alps, there's no such thing as a fucking secret history—but this is a decent book in concept and, thus far, in execution. Martin seeks to counter popular and even scholarly memory that treats the 80s as a period of absolute right-wing control. In a series of independent essays, he explores how those who opposed the dominant mood of the time, such activists against nuclear proliferation foes and American imperialism in Central America. There's also a chapter on the "post-punk" (I'm guessing that actually means hardcore and other alternative music) scene, but I haven't gotten there yet. A healthy reminder not to give in to lazy lumpish historical thinking and that fighting the currents always has value.
I wouldn't be surprised if the subtitle were at the publisher's behest. Gotta make it sexy.
"The only thing that really occurs to me that I can say on this is to point out how fascinating it is that the Hassan-i-Sabbah archetype keeps turning up over and over again ... He disappears up into the mountains and is never seen again. Believe me, he'll never be seen again. He'll live forever because of that."

Dr. Medulla
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by Dr. Medulla » 17 Nov 2017, 11:54am

eumaas wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 11:30am
I wouldn't be surprised if the subtitle were at the publisher's behest. Gotta make it sexy.
Oh, definitely. I should have added that I wasn't necessarily dumping on the author for that. It certainly smells of dumb marketing, like the reader is getting a glimpse of the taboo, the history they don't want you to know about. Possibly the only thing worse is a description that a work is definitive. Well, I guess we don't have to debate the subject anymore then as it's all been settled by Prof. Oswald Q. Smartypants' definitive study.
Walrus birth doesn't make good breakfast conversation!

Kory
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by Kory » 17 Nov 2017, 1:20pm

Dr. Medulla wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 11:54am
eumaas wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 11:30am
I wouldn't be surprised if the subtitle were at the publisher's behest. Gotta make it sexy.
Oh, definitely. I should have added that I wasn't necessarily dumping on the author for that. It certainly smells of dumb marketing, like the reader is getting a glimpse of the taboo, the history they don't want you to know about. Possibly the only thing worse is a description that a work is definitive. Well, I guess we don't have to debate the subject anymore then as it's all been settled by Prof. Oswald Q. Smartypants' definitive study.
I like how Bill Watterson called his C&H 2-book collections things like The Indispensable, The Authoritative, The Essential...he thought they were funny titles because those books were none of those things.
Inder:
Absolutely. Here's another collection of words:

Table salt (spoon hinge)
Octopus (Ukraine)
St. Petersburg (arms)
Ginger beer (cauliflower)
Pat Sajak (PSak)
Lamp post (self evident)
Florida Timeshare (ditto)
Heraclitus (EMI)
Developers (Developers Developers)
Boogie With Your Children

Dr. Medulla
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by Dr. Medulla » 17 Nov 2017, 1:41pm

Kory wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 1:20pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 11:54am
eumaas wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 11:30am
I wouldn't be surprised if the subtitle were at the publisher's behest. Gotta make it sexy.
Oh, definitely. I should have added that I wasn't necessarily dumping on the author for that. It certainly smells of dumb marketing, like the reader is getting a glimpse of the taboo, the history they don't want you to know about. Possibly the only thing worse is a description that a work is definitive. Well, I guess we don't have to debate the subject anymore then as it's all been settled by Prof. Oswald Q. Smartypants' definitive study.
I like how Bill Watterson called his C&H 2-book collections things like The Indispensable, The Authoritative, The Essential...he thought they were funny titles because those books were none of those things.
Even tho his stuff, far more so than most, justifies descriptors like indispensible and essential. So there's kinda sorta an extra layer of humour there.

(Man, Calvin sure has a weak bladder when it comes to car company logos …)
Walrus birth doesn't make good breakfast conversation!

Kory
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by Kory » 17 Nov 2017, 2:02pm

Dr. Medulla wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 1:41pm
Kory wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 1:20pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 11:54am
eumaas wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 11:30am
I wouldn't be surprised if the subtitle were at the publisher's behest. Gotta make it sexy.
Oh, definitely. I should have added that I wasn't necessarily dumping on the author for that. It certainly smells of dumb marketing, like the reader is getting a glimpse of the taboo, the history they don't want you to know about. Possibly the only thing worse is a description that a work is definitive. Well, I guess we don't have to debate the subject anymore then as it's all been settled by Prof. Oswald Q. Smartypants' definitive study.
I like how Bill Watterson called his C&H 2-book collections things like The Indispensable, The Authoritative, The Essential...he thought they were funny titles because those books were none of those things.
Even tho his stuff, far more so than most, justifies descriptors like indispensible and essential. So there's kinda sorta an extra layer of humour there.

(Man, Calvin sure has a weak bladder when it comes to car company logos …)
I ONLY LIKE IT WHEN HE PEES ON FORD. I FEEL VERY STRONGLY ABOUT THIS.
Inder:
Absolutely. Here's another collection of words:

Table salt (spoon hinge)
Octopus (Ukraine)
St. Petersburg (arms)
Ginger beer (cauliflower)
Pat Sajak (PSak)
Lamp post (self evident)
Florida Timeshare (ditto)
Heraclitus (EMI)
Developers (Developers Developers)
Boogie With Your Children

Dr. Medulla
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Atheistic Epileptic
Posts: 71177
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Re: Whatcha reading?

Post by Dr. Medulla » 17 Nov 2017, 2:08pm

Kory wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 2:02pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 1:41pm
Kory wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 1:20pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 11:54am
eumaas wrote:
17 Nov 2017, 11:30am
I wouldn't be surprised if the subtitle were at the publisher's behest. Gotta make it sexy.
Oh, definitely. I should have added that I wasn't necessarily dumping on the author for that. It certainly smells of dumb marketing, like the reader is getting a glimpse of the taboo, the history they don't want you to know about. Possibly the only thing worse is a description that a work is definitive. Well, I guess we don't have to debate the subject anymore then as it's all been settled by Prof. Oswald Q. Smartypants' definitive study.
I like how Bill Watterson called his C&H 2-book collections things like The Indispensable, The Authoritative, The Essential...he thought they were funny titles because those books were none of those things.
Even tho his stuff, far more so than most, justifies descriptors like indispensible and essential. So there's kinda sorta an extra layer of humour there.

(Man, Calvin sure has a weak bladder when it comes to car company logos …)
I ONLY LIKE IT WHEN HE PEES ON FORD. I FEEL VERY STRONGLY ABOUT THIS.
There were probably a good couple dozen guys from high school who would also have strong feelings, too, tho they might want him peeing on Chevy or Hyundai or whatever. Guys who have emotional attachments to their vehicles unnerve me. Seriously.
Walrus birth doesn't make good breakfast conversation!

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