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Archive for May, 2012

Marie returns to converse with me about Watership Down in all its forms.  Correction: to converse rather exhaustively about Watership Down in all its forms.

You have been warned.

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Of course I couldn’t resist using the cover from the Czech edition.

Here on this blog and elsewhere on the internet I’ve drifted in and out of conversations about the New Weird to varying degrees of success. The main trouble is that no one quite seems to know what it actually is. Well, there is a rather simple explanation: the New Weird is the work of a bunch of authors who decided to call their work New Weird, but that’s hardly satisfactory. There are a few shared characteristics that are not, however, limited to one specific movement. Since the job of defining New Weird is outside the scope of a single blog post, we’ll leave it as “I know it when I see it”, and move on to critique.

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Further to the podcast on medieval medicine, Marie’s show Iatropexy has gone live on YouTube.  Below is the video referenced in said podcast:

You can listen to the extended (half-hour long) podcast drawn from this video here, should you wish to hear more of our lovely voices and haven’t listened to the podcast already.

If your thirst for medicine-related videos remains unsated, there are indeed further episodes of Iatropexy available at Marie’s YouTube channel.

Go!  Watch!  Now!

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My Altar

As I have little to nothing to say today, here’s a picture of my bookshelf (click to embiggen):

You can tell a lot about a person from his or her bookshelf.  In my case, space is rather limited, and I have to cull my books often, so what’s left is almost pure, distilled me.

(Well, except for that copy of His Majesty’s Dragon hanging about, which I will dispose of shortly, and the Gormenghast trilogy, which I have so far proven unable to tackle due to falling asleep within the first ten pages).

I will note that I still have two boxes of books in Edmonton, while the majority of Polish books remain on another, smaller shelf.

And, as always, the bookshelf guardians remain on active duty:

I will not explain the book to the far left.

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Perusing various blogs I’ve found two history books pop up frequently: Jared Diamond’s Guns, Germs and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies (1997) and Victor Davis Hanson’s Carnage and Culture: Landmark Battles in the Rise of Western Power (2001). It’s not often grand historical theories get discussed on a popular level this way. Major publishers released both books, as opposed to academic presses, and reviewers often frame them in opposition. In part, Hanson has encouraged a “battle of the books” by directly referencing (and criticizing) Guns Germs and Steel in the introduction to Carnage and Culture. The similarity between the two titles probably isn’t a coincidence on Hanson’s part, either.

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