February 2009 Archives

Were you ever bothered by the redundancy in He-Man's magic phrase?

February 28, 2009

"By the power of Greyskull, I have the power!"

Let's consider some alternatives, starting with my personal favorite:

By dE(Greyskull)/dt, I have the power!

The Diamond Age, part III

February 12, 2009

What about plot, characters, voice, etc.? All brilliant. The plot moves you at the right time; the reader is able to get into the characters’ heads and feel their highs and lows; there are many distinct voices – you’re certainly never confused about who is speaking or thinking.

Thank God She Is Dead

February 10, 2009

Eluana Englaro, 38, force-fed without purpose or meaning since 1992, has died. While her injury was no doubt a tragedy, her death should marked by humanists as a triumph of reason and celebrated by those who believe in an afterlife. "Death is a messenger of joy," to paraphrase Baha'u'llah, for with it comes the "joyful tidings of reunion." The greatest tragedy, today, is not that she has died. It is that so many have fought so hard against allowing nature to take its course.

The Diamond Age, part II

February 5, 2009

Sex plays an important and ingenious role in The Diamond Age, most of it animalian and trance-like. His use of sex in this and other works has me conflicted. Yes, I am a bit of a prude; but more importantly I am keen to avoid misogyny. Sex in Stephenson’s works often feels demeaning and like a nod toward titillating the mostly male sci-fi audience. But it also drives the plot (especially here) when it occurs.

The Diamond Age: A Review In Three Parts (I)

February 2, 2009

The Diamond Age: Or, a Young Lady's Illustrated Primer (Bantam Spectra Book)Back in December, before cold became a four-letter word (as it does every January in Minnesota), I re-read Neal Stephenson’s neo-Victorian novel The Diamond Age: Or, A Young Lady’s Illustrated Primer. Very enjoyable, filled with social insight, and not so easy to analyze.

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