Some fun definitions from a fun book

Here’s what I learned from Cory Doctorow’s new book of old essays, Context (Tachyon 2011)I mean other than lots of which gizmafnagle to use if I want to lammading the warflux without mingoping the axiole. 

I learned the delightful definition of a techno-thriller per Bruce Sterling, author of The Caryatids (Bantam 2009), which I plan to read like some time, when I get around to it and the library has it and I’m in the mood for fake instead of real politics.  It is, “a science fiction novel with the president in it.”

I also learned that I have forgotten if I ever read the Theodore Sturgeon story, “If All Men Were Brothers, Would You Let One Marry Your Sister?” and I’m pretty sure I don’t still have the 1967 Dangerous Visions it was published in.  (Another trip to the library.) But I learned this in the context of learning another definition, that of “cosmopolitan.”  According to Doctorow, “to be cosmopolitan is to live your life by the ancient science fictional maxims: ‘All laws are local’ and ‘No law knows how local it is.’ ” 

Context is a pretty good book, despite the really mean last line.  Short short essays – good for reading on public transit, while eating dinner or accomplishing other short-term bodily functions.  You don’t want to sit down and read it for a couple of hours straight, but you do want to read it.


One Response to “Some fun definitions from a fun book”

  1. Ruthy Says:

    Thanks. I have downloaded it (for free, as with all of his works) to my tab for reading on vacation.

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