Category Archives: Uncategorized

Oh, Not That Man Again!

During my last trip to Iran, my eight-year-old son who was overwhelmed with the new images that he saw around him began to say and do things that made me more conscious of the internal contradictions of the term contemporary. … Continue reading

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3 fragments on the contemporary

The contemporary. Three appropriately fragmented and possibly unrelated observations or quotations: 1) The very contemporary Arabic fiction I have read in the last couple of months (all published since 2013, so the literal or popular definition of ‘contemporary’) is invariably … Continue reading

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Visions of the Future / Looking Back

In Annie Ernaux’s literary-sociological portrait of French society from the 40s to the present, Les Années (‘The Years’, 2009), an anonymous any-family sits around the Sunday lunch table and pictures life in the year 2000: what they imagine are familiar … Continue reading

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Material Archives

When the crew of an interstellar prisoner transport vessel in Alastair Reynolds’ Slow Bullets (2015) learn that the ship’s memory store of precious data about life on earth is gradually being overwritten, their solution is to etch what material they … Continue reading

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