Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

A Week for Reading

I'm making preparations for next week's teaching in Berkeley -- my yearly summer's turn back to the Greeks and Romans is always like an ecstatic leap into an overheated pool -- but this is mostly a week off for rest and recovery from the near madness of the end of term scrum behind me. I've been reading Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, starting with her latest novel Americanah and then polishing off her most famous Half of a Yellow Sun in just a day's distress, both of which were spellbinding in their different ways. Now I'm wondering if I should turn next to her short story collection or her debut novel, both of which are now waiting on my desk, tapping their little book feet impatiently for my attention. I am a compulsive completist in my reading, and have been since I was about ten, mostly swallowing science fiction canons whole. Responding to a book has always lead me to vacuum up everything the author has written, and forcing myself through even texts that are failed early experiments or which don't work for me for other reasons just to try to get at more fully whatever it was that moved me initially, or even just once, has lead me by the hand to find new possibilities in myself available for the places the author has been that I'm more ready to change into than I could ever know in advance. I have always known it was a flaw in my mind that I rarely have the resources of attention for neighbors that I have for books on shelves. On the few occasions I have read people as I do books, it was usually because I had fallen in love first, or in the reading found myself falling. There are things I haven't had time to write about lately that have been on my mind, but I don't know if I'll be blogging a lot this week or if all that will have to wait for the weird rhythms of summer teaching.

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