Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Prisons Purging Books on Faith From Libraries

Prisons Purging Books on Faith From Libraries

One of the most interesting points to this story is the fact that the government is using the possibility of preventing terroristic recruiting/terrorism to operate with impunity and remove works it did not find to be appropriate. I think it is possible there is a direct correlation to the Patriot Act where the government's purpose is not to seek out terrorists but to increase the ability to peer into the lives of its citizens.

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To Burundi and Beyond for Coffee’s Holy Grail

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

how does it work?

There is a good post here about the point of a blog in academic writing from a fantastic blog entitled The Valve which has proven to be thoroughly excellent.
It's amazing how the classes I'm taking are so relevant to our present situation. Check out Mining the Blogosphere at First Monday. Listen to Siva Vaidhyanathan discuss the Googlization of Everything via the New First Monday Podcasts. Vaidhyanathan with his work, The Anarchist in the Library has trampolined himself to one of my favorite author/agitator/blogger/scholar/person I would really like to meet and to be really sauve in greeting but I would be really awkward bc of Vaidhyanathan's almost celebrity status.
First Monday is a valued and necessary place to be accessing information if you're not already using it.

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Monday, September 10, 2007

and we're back

from vacation that is. a glorious week of vacationing at a cabin on a lake in Maine. absolutely wonderful. Almost didn't come back but managed at the last second to pull ourselves away. School started up last week which means I'm a week behind already but vacation was worth it. Among the other cool things we did like climb Mt. Washington and fish and kayak, we also did a lot of reading. I read, among other things, On the Road by Jack Kerouac. I would like to write a more stylized critique of this work in the future so i will hold off for right now and simply state that I enjoyed it. I would like to discuss Fiction and Literature for a moment. I was in use d book store in Bridgton, Maine and toward the back of the store there was a section of used books. On the right hand side there was a section of shelves labeled 'Fiction' and on the left hand side was a much smaller area, thrust in between the children's section and misc other writings was the section labeled 'Literature'. Why is this important you ask? glad you asked. This is important because the works in the 'Fiction' shelves were sci-fi and trade paper back thrillers such as Grisham, Steele and other writers I don't know. Now the 'Literature' section was a much more respectable, albeit smaller, section containing misc works of Shakespeare, a short story collection by Huxley, which we quickly appropriated, and various and sundry other works associated with the grand old title of 'Literature'. However the works in the 'Literature' section, according to Kermode, contain fictions which assist the author in dealing with the world or relationship to the world. Obviously all works of fiction use 'fictions' as vehicles for the story but what causes the separation from simply a work of 'Fiction' to that vaunted pedestal of 'Literature'? I'm not totally sure. Frankly most, if not all, of the works in the 'Fiction' section would be better off as recycled wood pulp for printing more 'Literature' books. But the fact that the 'Literature' section was approximately a quarter of the size of the 'Fiction' section and that 1 out of 4 Americans didn't read a book last year, according to the AP's poll.
Makes you wonder.