Author Topic: What are you currently reading?  (Read 658565 times)

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Offline Ken B

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8740 on: July 12, 2018, 06:03:20 PM »
I like Defoe as a writer. I had no idea he was a Calvinist (just how Robinson Crusoe can be interpreted as Calvinist propaganda is beyond me), but hey nobody's perfect, not even a great writer.  ;D
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Offline Florestan

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8741 on: July 13, 2018, 12:11:39 AM »
He couldn’t help it, it was predestined.

 :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
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Offline Alberich

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8742 on: July 19, 2018, 08:40:32 AM »
Reading Ben Jonson's "The Alchemist".
"Javert, though frightful, had nothing ignoble about him. Probity, sincerity, candor, conviction, the sense of duty, are things which may become hideous when wrongly directed; but which, even when hideous, remain grand."

- Victor Hugo

Offline SimonNZ

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8743 on: July 20, 2018, 11:38:06 PM »


a history of Eritrea through the twentieth century

Offline Alberich

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8744 on: July 22, 2018, 10:29:07 AM »
Fitzgerald's Tales of the Jazz Age, the short story "The Diamond as Big as the Ritz".
"Javert, though frightful, had nothing ignoble about him. Probity, sincerity, candor, conviction, the sense of duty, are things which may become hideous when wrongly directed; but which, even when hideous, remain grand."

- Victor Hugo

Offline Daverz

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8745 on: July 22, 2018, 08:56:20 PM »
I don't read much fiction these days.  These detective novels are set in the pre-war Third Reich.


Online vandermolen

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8746 on: July 22, 2018, 11:50:02 PM »
I don't read much fiction these days.  These detective novels are set in the pre-war Third Reich.



I've wanted to read those for some time. Like the TV series Babylon Berlin I like detective stories set in that time.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline Christo

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8747 on: July 23, 2018, 01:33:06 AM »
An old favourite, in this very classical format:
… music is not only an `entertainment’, nor a mere luxury, but a necessity of the spiritual if not of the physical life, an opening of those magic casements through which we can catch a glimpse of that country where ultimate reality will be found.    RVW, 1948

Offline André

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8748 on: July 23, 2018, 03:24:51 AM »
I don't read much fiction these days.  These detective novels are set in the pre-war Third Reich.



Excellent, all three of them. Kerr has supplied spin-offs set in German-occupied Prague, Nazi-infested Argentina under Perón, pre-Castro Cuba, etc. Like the proverbial cat, Bernie Gunther has many lives !

Offline Draško

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8749 on: July 23, 2018, 04:31:06 AM »


Picked up a random volume of Giacomo Casanova's memoirs (Histoire de ma vie), just to see whether it's readable and worth spending the time, the whole thing is rather long.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2018, 04:35:14 AM by Draško »

Offline Ken B

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8750 on: July 23, 2018, 12:49:40 PM »
I've wanted to read those for some time. Like the TV series Babylon Berlin I like detective stories set in that time.

Slightly a mixed bag, but I enjoyed them. The later ones I read were not as good as these three IMO.
Give a man a fire and he is warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he is warm for life.

Offline San Antone

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8751 on: July 24, 2018, 06:41:30 AM »


Hah.  I like the Raymond Carver reference.  ;)

Online vandermolen

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8752 on: July 24, 2018, 06:50:17 AM »
A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles which I'm enjoying greatly.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline aligreto

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8753 on: July 24, 2018, 07:06:47 AM »
Kazuo Ishiguro: The Unconsoled





I am about one third of the way through this book and I have no idea what is really going on here. I find it disconcerting. Other than very well stage managed choreography within the linear plot and credible characters, if a somewhat incredible storyline, the basic premise eludes me or has yet to be revealed later. I hope that it is the latter.
The ability to talk comes with knowledge. The ability to listen comes with wisdom.

Online vandermolen

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8754 on: July 24, 2018, 01:46:27 PM »
Slightly a mixed bag, but I enjoyed them. The later ones I read were not as good as these three IMO.

Thank you Ken.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline Draško

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8755 on: July 24, 2018, 02:12:58 PM »
Kazuo Ishiguro: The Unconsoled





I am about one third of the way through this book and I have no idea what is really going on here. I find it disconcerting. Other than very well stage managed choreography within the linear plot and credible characters, if a somewhat incredible storyline, the basic premise eludes me or has yet to be revealed later. I hope that it is the latter.

No, it won't get any clearer or more linear by the end.  >:D

I absolutely loved the novel. One of my very favorite contemporary pieces.

I understood it / read it as four parts being four dreams over four nights of a concert pianist on a tour in some random city, where his everyday experiences of travel, hotels, practicing, anxiety about the concerts get mixed and jumbled with his memories of his life, family, his youth, his fears and frustrations and all in this dream logic where everything is familiar but not quite, where one can enter a broom closet and exit miles away, where nothing resolves and multiple characters can represent the same person, but in some strange way it all makes sense. It did to me at the time, at least.   

Offline aligreto

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8756 on: July 25, 2018, 06:51:49 AM »
No, it won't get any clearer or more linear by the end.  >:D

I absolutely loved the novel. One of my very favorite contemporary pieces.

I understood it / read it as four parts being four dreams over four nights of a concert pianist on a tour in some random city, where his everyday experiences of travel, hotels, practicing, anxiety about the concerts get mixed and jumbled with his memories of his life, family, his youth, his fears and frustrations and all in this dream logic where everything is familiar but not quite, where one can enter a broom closet and exit miles away, where nothing resolves and multiple characters can represent the same person, but in some strange way it all makes sense. It did to me at the time, at least.   

Thank you for that; it actually makes some sense to me as I understand what you are saying. I thought that some coherence might eventually evolve but as it will not I will reappraise my outlook on the experiences related as I move on.
The ability to talk comes with knowledge. The ability to listen comes with wisdom.

Offline Alberich

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8757 on: July 26, 2018, 07:20:55 AM »
The Diamond as Big as the Ritz is freaking amazing! It is absurd as hell - but it doesn't matter!
"Javert, though frightful, had nothing ignoble about him. Probity, sincerity, candor, conviction, the sense of duty, are things which may become hideous when wrongly directed; but which, even when hideous, remain grand."

- Victor Hugo

Offline BPS

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8758 on: July 26, 2018, 08:21:42 AM »
The notion of causality (ie A causes B) is extremely fundamental but very poorly understood.  The social sciences in particular appear clueless about causality.  When scientists tried to answer the question "does smoking cause cancer", it turned out they lacked the tools to properly study the question.

Daniel Pearl has led the charge amongst the machine learning crowd to tackle this fundamental problem, and invented a "causality calculus" to that end.  This book is his attempt to discuss his (and others') progress in the field to lay persons (such as myself).

The Book of Why: The New Science of Cause and Effect
by Judea Pearl and Dana Mackenzie

I am reading the book slowly because I think the book may be IMPORTANT.  Hopefully he won't disappoint.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2018, 09:57:13 AM by Bubbles »
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Offline Mahlerian

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #8759 on: July 26, 2018, 08:33:31 AM »
The notion of causality (ie A causes B) is extremely fundamental but very poorly understood.  The social sciences in particular appear clueless about causality.

That's because none of them have read much philosophy, and many of them ridicule it (which goes for most scientists, actually).  If they actually looked at what's been said over the years, they would know that actually proving that one event caused another particular event to happen is logically and epistemologically thorny.

Hume, anyone?

Oh, thread duty:

村上春樹: 1Q84

The Japanese split long novels into multiple volumes.  I'm on "Book 2" now.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2018, 08:37:14 AM by Mahlerian »
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