Light, Time, and Gravity Excerpt

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« Reply #15 on: April 19, 2013, 01:40:20 pm »
Quote from: Madness
I would just remind everyone this isn't over. And that we are the unique experiences of something pretty novel - I mean, there can't have been many times in history that an author has released a book in serials, over the course of a number of weeks with an active commenting audience. Not to mention, the literary boundaries he's pushing writing a novel that explicitly references the cognitive experience of reading.

But hey, maybe he's just gonna fuck with us and he's got an alternate, print version ending coming!?

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« Reply #16 on: April 19, 2013, 01:40:34 pm »
Quote from: Callan S.
I don't enjoy reading from a screen either.

Anyway, blown away. Yeah, taken by surprise in the end by the original Cutter foreshadowing - but who's handwriting was it on the manuscript? The 'it'?

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« Reply #17 on: April 19, 2013, 01:40:46 pm »
Quote from: Murphy
I really liked it. Some things didn't go the way I expected at all. I really thought the editor's "forward" was going to turn out to be written by Dylan. Also I fell for Dylan's demonizing of Cutter, and took it all at face value until the penultimate section, so the ending worked well on a surprise level, when you realise the whole thing is about justifying the fact he killed a perfectly ordinary guy for no real reason.

And the last line goes to Scarface! Pop culture won.

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« Reply #18 on: April 19, 2013, 01:41:00 pm »
Quote from: Madness
Welcome, Murphy. Good to see you that dose of Light, Time, and Gravity brought you here. I have a feeling LTG's little subforum is going to boom a little.

I always laugh when I read titles within books. Fucking Family Guy.

I've got a quick philosophy paper to write but I'm probably going to start rereading LTG again this aft as I have three days off from work and I intend on ignoring them for that long. So expect some posting from me - especially on Light, Time, and Gravity and Neuropath.

By the way, Murphy - a little food for thought - I can imagine an interpretation of this tale suggesting that Cutter doesn't exist, that he is nothing more than Dylan's It.

You know... I wonder if Bakker took the last two week absence from the blog - as LTG's been written so he has just been posting cuts - to polish up the TUC excerpt ;). Perhaps, we're still waiting for the left hook.

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« Reply #19 on: April 19, 2013, 01:42:37 pm »
Quote from: Murphy
Hi! Thanks for having me.

"By the way, Murphy - a little food for thought - I can imagine an interpretation of this tale suggesting that Cutter doesn't exist, that he is nothing more than Dylan's It."

Ooh! That is even better.

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« Reply #20 on: April 19, 2013, 01:42:49 pm »
Quote from: Callan S.
Well, I'm not sure the demonising was missplaced. It's probably an apt evaluation that Cutter is obnoxious.

Quote
I always laugh when I read titles within books. Fucking Family Guy.
What's that one? I don't think I've seen it?

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« Reply #21 on: April 19, 2013, 01:43:45 pm »
Quote from: Murphy
But what is so bad about Cutter, once you take away Dylan's comments on him? This punk kid bangs his friend's wife. Even though for work reasons, he gets irritated by Jerry, in the end he's loyal to his friend and tells him. The punk kid takes a swing at him and Cutter beats the crap out of him (the only really harsh thing he does). Hardly lives up to all the machiavellian malice Dylan ascribes to him. The whole depiction of Cutter seems to be a way of setting him up as a deserving victim - Dylan's rewriting of history to suit his own purposes.

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« Reply #22 on: April 19, 2013, 01:43:57 pm »
Quote from: Callan S.
What's so bad about Cutter when you keep the comments on him? Yeah, he got mowed down. That doesn't mean the charges are false and he's angelic. Nor does it mean he deserved mowing down somehow.

Quote
By the way, Murphy - a little food for thought - I can imagine an interpretation of this tale suggesting that Cutter doesn't exist, that he is nothing more than Dylan's It.
I was thinking about that and if I were to go that way I'd reverse it - Cutter is nothing more than Dylan's Human. And It kills him. That'd tie into the lack of a chimpanzee scream of rage or any such, as well.

One of the things I love is the sheer deviousness of the presentation. Who is Dylan talking to...it so looks like he's talking to the real life readers/real life academics. But the preface creates a world where collegues and fictional academics read this manuscript. So it's like a trap - the moment a real life academic argues with it (so as to dismiss it) - well, the whole things just fictional, ol' chap! So the RL academic is stuck with this argument in his craw. Or he has to take it seriously in order to argue, which removes the capacity for dismissal. Every time a RL academic thinks they can own the direct to reader passages - well, they aren't direct to reader and it's all like "Well buddy, what, are you gunna take this fiction seriously, or try and argue with a fictional character as he argues with other fictional characters, as if that's gunna dismiss this?". It sort of takes the bullshit 'these thoughts are just my performance' stuff and either leaves an argument lodged in someones throat, or they have to take it seriously and can't just fall onto a dismissal method. He scares me.

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« Reply #23 on: April 19, 2013, 01:44:09 pm »
Quote from: Murphy
"What's so bad about Cutter when you keep the comments on him?"

Sure, fair enough. It's a question of why Dylan would choose to represent him in that way, though, surely?

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« Reply #24 on: April 19, 2013, 01:44:21 pm »
Quote from: Callan S.
Well (for now treating the observations as facts/factual), it's "why did he present those particular facts?" 'choose to represent' seems kind of like it just refers to his opinion.

No doubt he focused on facts that help a particular view. But you don't get to choose your facts (you only get to choose which ones you fail to mention). Maybe Cutter helps raise funds for the poor and it's never mentioned. But if his obnoxiousness is a fact, then it exists even if this other fact remains unmentioned.

Or you can assert they are personal opinion/personal preferences expressed rather than facts, but that's another approach.

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« Reply #25 on: April 19, 2013, 01:44:30 pm »
Quote from: Murphy
I'd be inclined to hestitate before calling Cutter's obnoxiousness a fact. Is anyone's obnoxiousness or lack of it a "fact"? Is it different for a character? Perhaps it is.

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« Reply #26 on: April 19, 2013, 01:44:41 pm »
Quote from: sciborg2
So it ends with murder....interesting. Might have to go back, as somewhere in there I just gave up on this as some new form of hand wringing and whining.

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« Reply #27 on: April 19, 2013, 01:44:57 pm »
Quote from: Madness
I feel like this commentary could quickly get divided between the two threads. Pertinent thoughts only:

Callan, there is episode of Family Guy where Peter says he gets super excited hearing actors say movie titles in the movies. So I always laugh whenever I encounter this in any entertainment medium now. It happens in LTG XIII, I believe. One of the best lines in the book too.

A lens to consider is psychopathy. This is a subject that arises again and again in Bakker's writings, as something central and antithetic to the human commons.

Cutter, by Dylan's narration throughout the book, seems like a textbook psychopath. The only issue with this is that no instance of action by Cutter actually validates that diagnosis in the book's entirety.

Also, as Murphy suggests, nothing except Dylan's narrative suggests that Cutter is anything but Joe Blow Dickhead from down the road.

The one thing that Dylan does pine for is Cutter's confidence. Dylan seems to wish to be as Cutter is, to act and speak as he does, despite rejecting this numerous times in the narrative.

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« Reply #28 on: April 19, 2013, 01:45:11 pm »
Quote from: Callan S.
Quote from: sciborg2
...and whining.
and it never goes anywhere...

Heh, got that one in first!  :mrgreen:


Madness,
Quote
seems like a textbook psychopath. The only issue with this is that no instance of action by Cutter actually validates that diagnosis in the book's entirety.
Well, how does he seem like a textbook psychopath, and yet also it seems he conducts no actions to forfil that 'seems'? It's probably worth grappling with the idea we got primed. Why lay it all on Dylan - assuming Cutter did shit in the baggie, then Cutter did shit in the baggie? So Dylan reported that (fact) after priming the reader with the idea that Cutter is a psycho. How is this 'choosing a representation'? It's not - it's merely working the readers capacity to become primed, with accurate facts. The readers involved in any such 'seems' as well - a third party to this. Did Dylan rewrite history, or does being primed rewrite history? What are we primed to in regard to Dylan, now? What does that make of all the prior text/history, suddenly?

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« Reply #29 on: April 19, 2013, 01:46:42 pm »
Quote from: sciborg2
Don't get me wrong, take out a good deal of the telling and you have a good novel in there. But even stuff like that one odd guy out they don't want quoting Scarface, that didn't the teleprompter commentary as far as I could see.