Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Bungle Fever

Mood: Rod, Jane and Freddy Kruger
Music: Manyfingers - 'Our Worn Shadow' - promo
Current Reading: Atomised - Michel Houllebecque
Why are We at War? - Norman Mailer

Lack of recent posts due to feelings of depressed post-election resignation. Everything turned out as predicted, except I had the naivety to get my hopes up that Blair might step down and Brown step up. The Liberal Democrats got a token number of extra seats. Pressing need for electoral reform insulted by Blair assuring us that there is currently 'no appetite' for it in the UK. Having just read Michel Houellebecq's 'Atomised' I can't help feeling that it would make little difference to the fate of humanity anyway. The future is female, or the future is fucked.

But hopefully not before I get my new album out, which I have just mastered.

6 comments:

jml said...

in psychiatry, reading houellebecq when already depressed must be considered as suicidal tendency.
take care please.

sarah said...

did you like atomised? i read it last week, the first book of his i read, as i wasn't very impressed. there was a huge display of praise all over the cover but the book felt sterile and forced to me. the dialogue seemed very unrealistic, the characters unredeemable brutes. kundera does such things far better, i think.

horace goes skiing said...

don't suppose you saw JG Ballards post election analysis in the New Statesman? Classicly bleak analysis basically saying that the most influential decision any of us can hope to make is how many times a year we go to Ikea.

-tom

michael said...

all this talk of post-election stress reminds of a few months ago here in the states, when all our dreams were thrown down the well. all you have left is a forced glimmer of hope, that wasn't there before. good luck to you guys over there...are we in the same boat yet?

Nick Talbot said...

I just did an interview (read: rant) for Speakers Push the Air on many of the points raised here.
http://www.speakerspushtheair.com

Should be posted up there soon.
Amid criticism of our lot, I am thankful we can at least publicly grill our politicians.

I liked Atomised very much; the characters were indeed unredeemable brutes, though Michel has integrity on an intellectual level. None of it amounts to more than a funny but deeply nihilistic portrait of two damaged men, but then you reach the last chapter and realise the paradigm-shifting implications of Michel's research. In my more pessimistic moods, I am inclined to agree: the future is female, or we have no hope beyond the self-extremination of the species.

I found the dialogue perfecly acceptable. I also found the book very funny. The central thesis suits my rather dim of view of men, and extreme distrust of monotheistic religion.

Houllebecque has been accused of Islamophobia. I personally loathe all monotheistic (and invariably mysoginistic)religions equally as they are socially divisive; if a religion say there is only one true God, it is stating that all other religions are a sham. Religious tolerance is a charade; when it comes to the crunch, all religious groups believe the others are false-idol worshipping infidels.
No wars have ever been fought in the name of Buddhism or pantheism.

I love Ballard, I didn't read his New Statesmen piece though. I buy it occasionally but often find it rather gutless.

sarah said...

"No wars have ever been fought in the name of Buddhism or pantheism." - maybe not but people who follow such beliefs have certainly started wars and committed all kinds of attrocities.