Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Allegory of Invasion and Spiritual Erosion

The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch is certainly one of Philip K. Dick's best novels. Here is a Palmer Eldritch digital panting by artist Sally Marsh.






















Another image inspired by this frightening novel can be viewed HERE.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Man and Superman

None of the dogmas of modern science are immutable. Gigantic factories, office buildings rising to the sky, inhuman cities, industrial morals, faith in mass production, are not indispensable to civilization. Other modes of existence and of thought are possible. Culture without comfort, beauty without luxury, machines without enslaving factories, science without the worship of matter, would restore to man his intelligence, his moral sense, his virility, and lead him to the summit of his development.

                                       – Alexis Carrel

Saturday, September 23, 2017

History of Japanese Woodblock Prints

By period and artist, please click HERE.

Katsukawa Shuncho, "No. 5, from the series
Twelve Months in Six Sheets 

(Jûni kô rokumai tsuzuki)", 1789-95

Friday, September 22, 2017

Formae Luminis





















Soon as the force of that fallacious Fruit,
That with exhilerating vapour bland
About thir spirits had plaid, and inmost powers
Made erre, was now exhal'd, and grosser sleep
Bred of unkindly fumes, with conscious dreams
Encumberd, now had left them, up they rose
As from unrest, and each the other viewing,
Soon found thir Eyes how op'nd, and thir minds
How dark'nd; innocence, that as a veile
Had shadow'd them from knowing ill, was gon,
Just confidence, and native righteousness
And honour from about them, naked left
To guiltie shame hee
cover'd, but his Robe
Uncover'd more, so rose the Danite strong
Herculean Samson from the Harlot-lap
Of Philistean Dalilah, and wak'd
Shorn of his strength…

         --John Milton, Paradise Lost, 9.1046-1062

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Monday, September 18, 2017

The Whispering Moirai

"When silence is prolonged over a certain period of time, it takes on new meaning."                        
                                                               — Yukio Mishima

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Jolly Roger Symbols






















Please click HERE for an article on submarines flying the Jolly Roger.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Cassini, final images and archive

As we all know, yesterday the Cassini spacecraft plunged into the clouds of Saturn, ending its twenty year mission (launched 1997, inserted into orbit 2004).

The NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory has published the final images of Cassini's descent into Saturn's atmosphere, as well as an archive of Cassini images.  Please click HERE.

Cassini's final image.  JPL.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Virginia Woolf on the Meaning of Life















What is the meaning of life? That was all--a simple question; one that tended to close in on one with years, the great revelation had never come. The great revelation perhaps never did come. Instead, there were little daily miracles, illuminations, matches struck unexpectedly in the dark; here was one.
                               ― Virginia Woolf, To the Lighthouse

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Conversations with Philip K. Dick by Tessa B. Dick

I just received a copy of Ms. Dick's new book. An excerpt was published in Emanations: I Am Not a Number, and I have been looking forward to the appearance of this book since.  Please click HERE to view the Amazon description.


Saturday, September 2, 2017

Emanations: I Am Not a Number reviewed

Emanations: I Am Not a Number has received a favorable review on Amazon-Canada.  Please click HERE.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Brian Aldiss

British author Brian Aldiss passed away last Saturday.

At 10:00 p.m. last Monday BBC Radio 4 The World Tonight done featured a short piece on Mr. Aldiss, and includes an interview with Michael Moorcock talking about him. It's the final piece in the program. Please click HERE. It begins at 39:15.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Conversations with Philip K. Dick

Emanations: I am Not a Number readers are familiar with extracts from Tessa B. Dick's new book about her late husband, Philip K. Dick, which is now available on Amazon.  Considering the insightful and prophetic novels of Philip K. Dick, and the contemporary scientific, social, and political political developments which he foresaw, this is a significant volume.

To view the Amazon page for Conversations with Philip K. Dick, please click HERE.


Friday, August 18, 2017

Apropos

Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right.

                                             --George Orwell, 1984

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Friday, August 11, 2017

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Light, Geometric Planes, Attendant Emotions

Lyonel Feininger, Sunset at Deep (Sunset), 1930, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

"Whatever Happened to Bishop Pike?"

Dr Martin Luther King at Grace Cathedral with Bishop James Pike and Reverend George L Bedford

















Worth a few minutes.  Please click HERE.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Peter Dizozza Live at the Sidewalk Cafe

In anticipation of the publication of Terrance Lindall's Milton in Outer Space,  Peter Dizozza and Terrance Lindall have composed a musical number. Please click HERE for a sample of Mr. Dizzoza premiering the piece on July 26 at the Sidewalk Cafe in New York.

Peter Dizozza


Saturday, July 29, 2017

Aapparatus for for purging carbon dioxide from Lunar Module, Apollo 13


















Interior view of the Apollo 13 Lunar Module (LM) showing the "mail box," a jury-rigged arrangement which the Apollo 13 astronauts built to use the Command Module (CM) lithium hydroxide canisters to purge carbon dioxide from the LM. Lithium hydroxide is used to scrub CO2 from the spacecraft's atmosphere. Since there was a limited amount of lithium hydroxide in the LM, this arrangement was rigged up to utilize the canisters from the CM. The "mail box" was designed and tested on the ground at the Manned Spacecraft Center (MSC) before it was suggested to the problem-plagued Apollo 13 crew men. Because of the explosion of one of the oxygen tanks in the Service Module (SM), the three crew men had to use the LM as a "lifeboat".
Source 

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Andrew Darlington on Michael Butterworth

UK writer Andrew Darlington has fiction appearing in a number of Emanations anthologies, including the latest, Emanations: I Am Not a Number.

He maintains a blog and has recently posted a lengthy interview/essay/bibliography on Michael Butterworth, who is a member of the International Authors editorial board.  Please click HERE to view the piece.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Recommendation: Kristine Shmenco

Poet and fiction writer Kristine Shmenco has been associated with International authors for some time. In fact, she was part of International Authors before it became International Authors--which as a "community" traces back perhaps fifteen years (but more on that story later)...  Meanwhile, in addition to contributing to the Emanations anthology, she helped staff the International Authors table at the Brooklyn Book festival in 2013.  She also joined us in Manhattan for a meeting of International Authors in 2015

She posts a steady stream of intriguing short fiction to her blog, Indigo Vales.  Please click HERE to view her latest work.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Kabul















Female students at the Polytechnical University in Kabul, Afghanistan, mid-1970s.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Edward Drinker Cope



















On December 29, 1906, a meeting was held in the American Museum of Natural History to present an installation of ten marble busts commemorating “Pioneers of American Science”. The personal character, the contributions and the significance of each scientist was the subject of an address given by a presenter, of which there were ten.  Here is the text of the address commemorating Edward Drinker Cope delivered by Dr. Henry Fairfield Osborn, Curator, Department of Vertebrate Palæontology:
In the marble portrait of Edward Drinker Cope, you see the man of large brain, of keen eye and of strong resolve, the ideal combination for a life of science, the man who scorns obstacles, who while battling with the present looks above and beyond. The portrait stands in its niche as a tribute to a great leader and founder of American Palæontology, as an inspiration to young Americans. In unison with the other portraits its forcible words are: “Go thou and do likewise.
Cope, a Philadelphian, born July 28, 1840, passed away at the early age of fifty-seven. Favored by heredity, through distinguished ancestry of Pennsylvania Quakers, who bequeathed intellectual keenness and a constructive spirit. As a boy of eight entering a life of travel and observation, and with rare precocity giving promise of the finest qualities of his manhood. Of incessant activity of mind and body, tireless as an explorer, early discovering for himself that the greatest pleasure and stimulus of life is to penetrate the unknown in Nature. In personal character fearless, independent, venturesome, militant, far less of a Quaker in disposition than his Teutonic fellow citizen Leidy. Of enormous productiveness, as an editor conducting the American Naturalist for nineteen years, as a writer leaving a shelf-full of twenty octavo and three great quarto volumes of original research.  A man of fortitude, bearing material reverses with good cheer, because he lived in the world of ideas and to the very last moment of his life drew constant refreshment from the mysterious regions of the unexplored.
In every one of the five great lines of research into which he ventured, he reached the mountain peaks where exploration and discovery guided by imagination and happy inspiration gave his work a leadership. His studies among fishes alone would give him a chief rank among zoölogists, on amphibians and reptiles there never has been a naturalist who has published so many papers, while from 1868 until 1897, the year of his death, he was a tireless student and explorer of the mammals. Among animals of all these classes his generalizations marked new epochs. While far from infallible, his ideas acted as fertilizers on the minds of other men. As a palæontologist, enjoying with Leidy and Marsh the Arcadian period when all the wonders of our great West were new, from his elevation of knowledge which enabled him to survey the whole field with keen eye he swooped down like an eagle upon the most important point.
In breadth, depth and range we see in Cope the very antithesis of the modern specialist, the last exponent of the race of the Buffon, Cuvier, Owen and Huxley type. Of ability, memory and courage sufficient to grasp the whole field of natural history, as comparative anatomist he ranks with Cuvier and Owen; as palæontologist with Owen, Marsh and Leidy—the other two founders of American palæontology; as natural philosopher less logical but more constructive than Huxley. America will produce men of as great, perhaps greater genius, but Cope represents a type which is now extinct and never will be seen again.
















Source:  The American Museum Journal, Vol. VII, No. 2, February, 1907, p. 25-26.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The Medium is the Message















Today many people are active on the internet and communicating globally. If our technology was still limited to shortwave communications, I doubt so many would feel the need to broadcast themselves around the world.  Perhaps the key factor here is the preference for written over verbal communications?  Compare the preference people have to "text" rather than speak over their telephones.

For a quick glance at the contemporary world of shortwave radio communications, please click HERE.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Q.E.D.






















The Amazon description is similarly convincing.  Please click HERE.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Pendant






















Venus and Cupid astride a fanciful fish.  Gold, enamel, rubies and pearls.  Italian or German, ca. 1580?

Friday, July 14, 2017

Meanwhile, 249 miles above the Earth's surface...

International Space Station











The International Space Station is the third brightest object in the sky. Click HERE to track the station as it passes overhead.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Monday, July 10, 2017

Professor Hodges on the July 2 Talk

My International Authors colleague Horace Jeffery Hodges has blogged on the paper I read Sunday, July 2 at the WAH Center.  The title of his brief essay is "Carter Kaplan on Truth and Free Speech."

In the introduction to my paper, I equivocate (in a good way) about the presence of politics (and, significantly, the absence of politics) in the editorial process. Of course, that "absence" of politics itself has antecedents worth looking at, hence the attention I give, again at the beginning of the paper, to Milton's Areopagitica. To view Professor Hodges' reflections, please click HERE.


















To learn about Professor Hodges' new collection of poetry, Radiant Snow, please click HERE.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Illustrating the Visions: Alloys of Art, Poetry, Politics, and Philosophy

Terrance Lindall has published an on-line ebook with with the full text of my paper and photographs from the July 2 talk. To view the free book, please click HERE.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Aesthetics over science, or a deliberately inaccurate image of the Earth?

I don't have to explain to the Highbrow Commonwealth the thoughtfulness Stanley Kubrick put into his films, where each image, each movement, each word of dialogue, each character's expression, each subtle turn of plot... is is some way nuanced to exact an aesthetic response, or is designed to produce meaning, or is suggestive of complex themes--some of which take decades to surface in one critical discussion or another.

Today I would like share an image from 2001: A Space Odyssey.  What has captured my attention is the vague appearance of the surface of the Earth. The film was released in 1968, and for years astronauts in orbit had been taking photographs of our planet.  Now, look at a sample of those photographs, and then compare them to the image of the Earth's surface from the film.  Why in this particular detail--and Kubrick was nothing if not a stickler for details--I say, why doesn't the Earth in the film resemble the photographs that had been taken of the Earth's surface by Mercury or Gemini astronauts?

Earth as photographed from Gemini 11






















Southern tip of the Indian subcontinent from an altitude of 760 kilometers (Gemini 11).




















Now look at this still from 2001.  It's beautiful, but it's also--what? Let's say, "scientifically vague". Was this the director's deliberate intention? I want to emphasize that Kubrick was meticulous in such matters--the technological artifacts and astronomical subjects exhibited in the film were each carefully-guided representational exercises based upon the latest scientific information. Naturally, apropos to the image of the Earth, Kubrick had the resources to create a more authentic image in these orbital scenes.  But instead we get this exuberant aquamarine fantasy, moreover juxtaposed alongside a spectacularly detailed technological marvel.



Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

July 4, 1776














IN Congress, JULY 4, 1776
The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen United States of America
When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

Please click HERE to read the rest of the document.

Please click HERE to read about the origins of these ideas..

Saturday, July 1, 2017

河鍋 暁斎




Kawanabe Kyōsai (1831–1889), Skeleton Shamisen Player in Top Hat With Dancing Monster, 1881-1889

Thursday, June 29, 2017

"...in a free and open encounter..."

And though all the winds of doctrine were let loose to play upon the earth, so Truth be in the field, we do injuriously, by licensing and prohibiting, to misdoubt her strength. Let her and Falsehood grapple; who ever knew Truth put to the worse, in a free and open encounter?

                              --John Milton, Areopagitica, 1644 
David Martin, "Paul at Areopagus",  1639-1721