All I did in school was halfass papers, but I seemed to at least be decent at that. I feel too fucking mental to write now, though, meaning I can’t even attempt to do anything with my degree.
I figure a step toward not being that way would be reading again, preferably academic papers, literary criticism, poetics, political stuff… iuno, things I can have opinions of and use to orientate myself.
I’d like to better understand academic feminism. Read a fair amount of feminist literary criticism in school, but that was about it. I think I could gain something from that.
I guess I’m just asking for pdf’s of people’s homework, though book recommendations are welcome all the same – just a bit broke to be buying them.
And also the whole canadian bit alienates readers because its only interesting to canadians of course and nobody really cares outside of there. And he talks as if he’s on the level of some of the greates writers but really he is pretty mediocre compared to the mad writing of the greats of now (DFW, Pynchon, Powers etc.).
Huainanzi would be a crazy place to jump in to early Chinese thought, but there’s enough charming bite sized narratives in there that it could also be kind of rewarding in its own light. I haven’t used that translation much so I can’t talk about it specifically, but I am confident that it is a good translation.
Also haven’t read JAG Roberts history, but a) what a cool name and b) I’m immediately skeptical of short histories that purport to cover that much material. If you’re interested in Chinese history, I recommend skimming a super short overview quickly and identifying a specific period, and then get the Belknap Press book about that period. I think they’ve finished the whole series by now.
They aren’t perfect either, but it is a lot more manageable than trying to do 2000+ years of history in one fell swoop.
Thanks. I’ll see what I can find electronic versions of a bit later.
I was reading Greg Egan stuff before, but it became difficult for me to enjoy fiction when I started having more issues. After awhile I just can’t enjoy anything.
Been on pills for nearly a month, but they don’t seem to help in this sense, nor did the other ones I was on. They just make certain, truly idle activities more doable or make me feel as though I can actually tolerate living where/the way I do.
My job and relationship were the only things keeping me together most of last year. I lost the former and seem to be losing the later – terrified to push anything, though.
I was just thinking lately how I don’t feel like I enjoy reading as much as probably should. I mean I love the idea of it, spreading knowledge, picking up on different ways of thinking and all that but it’s always been difficult for me to sit down and enjoy that stuff. Just got me thinking to how I consumer other forms of media like movies anime and sequential art. There’s that word called Sakuga used to refer to label interesting or high quality bits of animation. So I kinda want to ask readers that are more active than me, what is the sakuga of reading? Is there an equivalent of just reading a paragraph or more that you are able to just smoothly absorb it all and feel like you just observed something great.
I think the closest I feel that is when I read something that I can take with me so to speak. I remember back in 3rd grade how I read a book about a blind girl and how she interacted with the world. Her family hire’s a maid/tutor for her and the first thing she is taught is how to pour her own drink using her fingers folded over the lip of the cup so she could feel when the cup was full. And that was the spark that lead me to using that information to pour my own drinks at night without having to turn a light on in the middle of the night.
Habitualization devours works, clothes, furniture, one’s wife, and the fear of war. ‘If the whole complex lives of many people go on unconsciously, then such lives are as if they had never been.’ And art exists that one may recover the sensation of life; it exists to make one feel things, to make the stone stony. The purpose of art is to impart the sensation of things as they are perceived and not as they are known. The technique of art is to make objects ‘unfamiliar,’ to make forms difficult, to increase the difficulty and length of perception because the process of perception is an aesthetic end in itself and must be prolonged.
some nonfiction collections i have been reading and enjoying and which i use to relax or feel human again::
borges - collected nonfiction: just a constant delight, goes between movie reviews and capsule biographies to longform essays on dante, berkeley, homer to reviews of detective novels to multiple odds and ends in between, you can go to almost any page and get caught up and excited by some train of thought or casual but perfect description, is good, i have been going back and back to this for maybe 3 years
max beerbohm - prince of minor writers / sj perelman - the most of sj perelman / myles na gopaleen - the best of myles: collections of humorous short pieces which are unusual in that they are actually funny and not just loud-friend kind of funny, almost any booklength compilation of newspaper pieces will be exhausting taken all at once but individually they are almost uniformly perfect, highlights for me were: beerbohm on goethe, perelman on “captain future” (later turned into an anime?? the serial not the piece), the “WAAMA” section of the mng book. the perelman book is actually free on archive.org somewhere!
erich auerbach - mimesis: i am reading this right now in the evenings and it is much more immediately engaging than i had expected, all the chapters so far are short self-contained readings on a particular passage from western lit, which then become comparisons on eg representation of history and interiority across time or between two traditions (eg biblical and homeric). i do not know its standing in the world of literature departments but as someone who has no experience of that world i am enjoying it.
misc essay collections with more topical type subjects but which i still enjoy reading for their style: bartleby in manhattan by elizabeth hardwick, on our own now by gore vidal, proud to be a mammal by czeslaw milosz
jenny diski - stranger on a train: not collection of short pieces, although could probably be read that way. travelling thru USA by train and using it not as a way to doggedly comment on scenery and local quirks so much as to daydream and remember and listen, i am immediately taken by any travel narrative where the author is so determined to never actually step outside.