New books are being added all the time. If you have a book to suggest, please contact us. For the old list of books in INCUNABULA A Catalog of Rare Books, Manuscripts & Curiosa Conspiracy Theory, Frontier Science & Alternative Worlds go here.
Finite and Infinite Games
“There are at least two kinds of games,” states James Carse as he begins this extraordinary book. “One could be called finite; the other infinite.”
Finite games are the familiar contests of everyday life; they are played in order to be won, which is when they end. But infinite games are more mysterious. Their object is not winning, but ensuring the continuation of play. The rules may change, the boundaries may change, even the participants may change—as long as the game is never allowed to come to an end.
What are infinite games? How do they affect the ways we play our finite games? What are we doing when we play—finitely or infinitely? And how can infinite games affect the ways in which we live our lives?
Carse explores these questions with stunning elegance, teasing out of his distinctions a universe of observation and insight, noting where and why and how we play, finitely and infinitely. He surveys our world—from the finite games of the playing field and playing board to the infinite games found in culture and religion—leaving all we think we know illuminated and transformed. Along the way, Carse finds new ways of understanding everything from how an actress portrays a role, to how we engage in sex, from the nature of evil, to the nature of science. Finite games, he shows, may offer wealth and status, power and glory. But infinite games offer something far more subtle and far grander.
Carse has written a book rich in insight and aphorism. Already an international literary event, Finite and Infinite Games is certain to be argued about and celebrated for years to come. Reading it is the first step in learning to play the infinite game. Google Books
Present Shock: When Everything Happens Now
“If the end of the twentieth century can be characterized by futurism, the twenty-first can be defined by presentism.”
This is the moment we’ve been waiting for, explains award-winning media theorist Douglas Rushkoff, but we don’t seem to have any time in which to live it. Instead we remain poised and frozen, overwhelmed by an always-on, live-streamed reality that our human bodies and minds can never truly inhabit. And our failure to do so has had wide-ranging effects on every aspect of our lives.
People spent the twentieth century obsessed with the future. We created technologies that would help connect us faster, gather news, map the planet, compile knowledge, and connect with anyone, at anytime. We strove for an instantaneous network where time and space could be compressed.
Well, the future’s arrived. We live in a continuous now enabled by Twitter, email, and a so-called real-time technological shift. Yet this “now” is an elusive goal that we can never quite reach. And the dissonance between our digital selves and our analog bodies has thrown us into a new state of anxiety: present shock. LINK
The Sync Book: Myths, Magic, Media, and Mindscapes
26 bloggers/writers/artists share their experiences and perspectives on the strange and beautiful universe in which we live.Featuring writers from: The Sync Whole, Reality Sandwich, Etemenanki, The Mask of God, Labyrinth of the Psychonaut, The Stygian Port, Live From The Logosphere, Star Theory, The Patternist, Gosporn, All The Happy Creatures, Kosmos Idikos, Radio8Ball, Constellation Contemplation, Kozmikon, Accidental Alchemist, Libyan Sibyl, A Few Shots To Shaman, Mercury’s Messenger, Synchromysticism ForumAlan Abbadessa-Green + Goro Adachi + Jason Barrera + Douglas Bolles + Peg Carter + Tommy Fulks + Kevin Halcott + Kyle Hunt + Sibyl Hunter + Stefan Jablonski + Jeremy + Andras Jones + Crystal Kanarr + Jon Kidd + Jake Kotze + Neil Kramer + Rammer Martínez Sánchez + Justin Gray Morgan + Will Morgan + Christopher “C” Myers + Eunus Noe + Jennifer Palmer + Jim Sanders+ Michael Schacht + Toure + Steve WillnerEdited by Alan Abbadessa-Green. Google Books
Supergods:What Masked Vigilantes, Miraculous Mutants, and a Sun God from Smallville Can Teach Us about Being Human
For Grant Morrison, arguably the greatest of contemporary chroniclers of the “superworld,” these heroes are powerful archetypes whose ongoing, decades-spanning story arcs reflect and predict the course of human existence: Through them we tell the story of ourselves, our troubled history, and our starry aspirations. In this exhilarating work of a lifetime, Morrison draws on art, science, mythology, and his own astonishing journeys through this shadow universe to provide the first true history of the superhero—why they matter, why they will always be with us, and what they tell us about who we are . . . and what we may yet become. Google Books
ARE YOU LIVING IN A COMPUTER SIMULATION?
This paper argues that at least one of the following propositions is true: 1.) the human species is very likely to go extinct before reaching a “posthuman” stage; 2.) any posthuman civilization is extremely unlikely to run a significant number of simulations of their evolutionary history (or variations thereof); 3.) we are almost certainly living in a computer simulation. It follows that the belief that there is a significant chance that we will one day become posthumans who run ancestor-simulations is false, unless we are currently living in a simulation. A number of other consequences of this result are also discussed. SCRIBD Also see: http://www.simulation-argument.com/
The Holographic Universe
Today nearly everyone is familiar with holograms, three-dimensional images projected into space with the aid of a laser. Now, two of the world’s most eminent thinkers — University of London physicists David Bohm, a former protege of Einstein’s and one of the world’s most respected quantum physicists, and Stanford neurophysiologist Karl Pribram, one of the architects of our modern understanding of the brain — believe that the universe itself may be a giant hologram, quite literally a kind of image or construct created, at least in part, by the human mind. This remarkable new way of looking at the universe explains now only many of the unsolved puzzles of physics, but also such mysterious occurrences as telepathy, out-of-body and near death experiences, “lucid” dreams, and even religious and mystical experiences such as feelings of cosmic unity and miraculous healings. Google Books
Synchronicity: Through the Eyes of Science, Myth, and the Trickster
Carl Jung coined the term “synchronicity” to describe meaningful coincidences that conventional notions of time and causality cannot explain. Working with the great quantum physicist Wolfgang Pauli, Jung sought to reveal these coincidences as phenomena that involve mind and matter, science and spirit, thus providing rational explanations for parapsychological events like telepathy, precognition, and intuition. Synchronicity examines the work of Jung and Pauli, as well as noted scientists Werner Heisenberg and David Bohm; identifies the phenomena in ancient and modern mythologies, particularly the Greek legend of Hermes the Trickster; and illustrates it with engaging anecdotes from everyday life and literature. Google Books
Homo Ludens: A Study of the Play-Element in Culture
Homo Ludens or “Man the Player” (alternatively, “Playing Man”) is a book written in 1938 by Dutch historian, cultural theorist and professor Johan Huizinga. It discusses the importance of the play element of culture and society. Huizinga uses the term “Play Theory” within the book to define the conceptual space in which play occurs. Huizinga suggests that play is primary to and a necessary (though not sufficient) condition of the generation of culture. Google Books
Ever get the feeling that life’s a game with changing rules and no clear sides, one you are compelled to play yet cannot win? Welcome to gamespace. Gamespace is where and how we live today. It is everywhere and nowhere: the main chance, the best shot, the big leagues, the only game in town. In a world thus configured, McKenzie Wark contends, digital computer games are the emergent cultural form of the times. Where others argue obsessively over violence in games, Wark approaches them as a utopian version of the world in which we actually live. Playing against the machine on a game console, we enjoy the only truly level playing field–where we get ahead on our strengths or not at all.
Gamer Theory uncovers the significance of games in the gap between the near-perfection of actual games and the highly imperfect gamespace of everyday life in the rat race of free-market society. The book depicts a world becoming an inescapable series of less and less perfect games. This world gives rise to a new persona. In place of the subject or citizen stands the gamer. As all previous such personae had their breviaries and manuals, Gamer Theory seeks to offer guidance for thinking within this new character. Neither a strategy guide nor a cheat sheet for improving one’s score or skills, the book is instead a primer in thinking about a world made over as a gamespace, recast as an imperfect copy of the game. Available to read free online under a CC BY-NC-ND 2.5
The electronic disturbance
Short pieces and essays examining the changing rules of cultural and political resistance: The current technological revolution has created a new geography of power relationsas data, human beings confront an authoritarial impulse that thrives on absence. As a virtual geography of cognizance and action, resistance must assert itself in electronic space. Google Books
A Hacker Manifesto
A double is haunting the world–the double of abstraction, the virtual reality of information, programming or poetry, math or music, curves or colorings upon which the fortunes of states and armies, companies and communities now depend. The bold aim of this book is to make manifest the origins, purpose, and interests of the emerging class responsible for making this new world–for producing the new concepts, new perceptions, and new sensations out of the stuff of raw data. A Hacker Manifesto deftly defines the fraught territory between the ever more strident demands by drug and media companies for protection of their patents and copyrights and the pervasive popular culture of file sharing and pirating. This vexed ground, the realm of so-called “intellectual property,” gives rise to a whole new kind of class conflict, one that pits the creators of information–the hacker class of researchers and authors, artists and biologists, chemists and musicians, philosophers and programmers–against a possessing class who would monopolize what the hacker produces.
Drawing in equal measure on Guy Debord and Gilles Deleuze, A Hacker Manifesto offers a systematic restatement of Marxist thought for the age of cyberspace and globalization. In the widespread revolt against commodified information, McKenzie Wark sees a utopian promise, beyond the property form, and a new progressive class, the hacker class, who voice a shared interest in a new information commons. Google Books
High Weirdness by Mail
High Weirdness by Mail, by Ivan Stang is a 1988 book dedicated to an examination of “weird culture” by actually putting the reader in touch with it by mail. This book is a great compendium of the old mail-art network from the 80s.
The book is divided into sections—”Weird Science,” “UFO Contactees,” “Drug Stuff,” and others, and each section contains a variety of mini-articles describing organizations. Each organization article concludes with a mailing address (and in some cases, phone numbers). Several years after the book’s publication, Stang reported on the newsgroup alt.slack that his inclusion of entries for white supremacist groups in the book caused his name to be mentioned by those groups as a possible target for retaliation. (The book’s commentaries on various hate groups were less than flattering.) Stang reported this incident to the FBI, but did not receive any actual harassment or threats from the groups in question. Google Books
The Future of the Book
The death of the book has been duly announced, and with it the end of brick-and-mortar libraries, traditional publishers, linear narrative, authorship, and disciplinarity, along with the emergence of a more equitable discursive order. These essays suggest that it won’t be that simple. The digitization of discourse will not be effected without some wrenching social and cultural dislocations.
The contributors to this volume are enthusiastic about the possibilities created by digital technologies, instruments that many of them have played a role in developing and deploying. But they also see the new media raising serious critical issues that force us to reexamine basic notions about rhetoric, reading, and the nature of discourse itself. Google Books
The Assault on Culture: Utopian Currents from Lettrisme to Class War
The post-surrealist artistic and cultural tendencies leading to punk traced elegantly by Griel Marcus in his Lipstick Traces are explored here by one of the UK’s most well-placed art practitioners and activists. Whereas Marcus bring a potent critical cultural sensitivity to his analysis, Home adds a depth of art practice and anarchist politics that Marcus skirts. A fabulous introduction to some of the submerged cultural an artistic tendencies of the 20th century. Google Books FREE
The Beach Beneath the Street: The Everyday Life and Glorious Times of the Situationist International
Over fifty years after the Situationist International appeared, they continue to influence activists, artists and theorists. From the Invisible Committee’s bestselling The Coming Insurrection to Iain Sinclair’s psychogeographic explorations, their work is still found to be rich with possibilities, yet its breadth and diversity is still unexplored. In the first account since Greil Marcus’s Lipstick Traces (1989), McKenzie Wark traces the Situationist International’s beginnings in 1950s bohemian Paris up to the explosive days of May 1968. This account puts the legendary figure of Guy Debord back into the context of the other fascinating figures who made up the movement, including Constant, Asger Jorn, Michèle Bernstein and Jacqueline De Jong. It treats them as an international movement of conflicting passions rather than as a Paris coterie. Accessible to those who have only just discovered the Situationists and filled with new insights, Wark reconnects their work to new practices in communication, built form, and everyday life. Google Books
Supernatural: Meetings with the Ancient Teachers of Mankind
Less than 50,000 years ago mankind had no art, no religion, no sophisticated symbolism, no innovative thinking. Then, in a dramatic and electrifying change, described by scientists as “the greatest riddle in human history”, all the skills and qualities that we value most highly in ourselves appeared already fully formed, as though bestowed on us by hidden powers.
In Supernatural Graham Hancock sets out to investigate this mysterious “before-and-after moment” and to discover the truth about the influences that gave birth to the modern human mind.
His quest takes him on a journey of adventure and detection from the stunningly beautiful painted caves of prehistoric France, Spain and Italy to remote rock shelters in the mountains of South Africa where he finds a treasure trove of extraordinary Stone Age art.
He uncovers clues that lead him to travel to the depths of the Amazon rainforest to drink the powerful plant hallucinogen Ayahuasca with Indian shamans, whose paintings contain images of “supernatural beings” identical to the animal-human hybrids depicted in prehistoric caves and rock shelters. And hallucinogens such as mescaline, also produce visionary encounters with exactly the same beings. Scientists at the cutting edge of consciousness research have begun to consider the possibility that such hallucinations may be real perceptions of other “dimensions”.
Could the “supernaturals” first depicted in the painted caves and rock shelters be the ancient teachers of mankind? Could it be that human evolution is not just the “blind”, “meaningless” process that Darwin identified, but something else, more purposive and intelligent, that we have barely even begun to understand. Google Books
Coyotes and town dogs: Earth First! and the environmental movement
From tree-spiking old-growth forests to “cracking” desert dams, Earth First! redefined environmentalism in America. Susan Zakin’s fast-paced tale of these scruffy radicals and their suit-and-tie counterparts in Washington, D.C., has been described as an unholy marriage of Hunter S. Thompson and Tom Wolfe. The hipster cowboys who founded Earth First! were the first people to sound the alarm on globalization, extinction, and other major environmental issues that face us today. Zakin’s gonzo yet impeccably researched account of the rocky trail leading to the morning when FBI agents rousted Earth First! founder Dave Foreman from his bed at gunpoint is essential reading for anyone who cares about mountains, deserts, and freedom. Google Books
Magical Realism: Theory, History, Community
Magical realism is often regarded as a regional trend, restricted to the Latin American writers who popularized it as a literary form. In this critical anthology, the first of its kind, editors Lois Parkinson Zamora and Wendy B. Faris show magical realism to be an international movement with a wide-ranging history and a significant influence among the literatures of the world. In essays on texts by writers as diverse as Toni Morrison, Günter Grass, Salman Rushdie, Derek Walcott, Abe Kobo, Gabriel García Márquez, and many others, magical realism is examined as a worldwide phenomenon.
Presenting the first English translation of Franz Roh’s 1925 essay in which the term magical realism was coined, as well as Alejo Carpentier’s classic 1949 essay that introduced the concept of lo real maravilloso to the Americas, this anthology begins by tracing the foundations of magical realism from its origins in the art world to its current literary contexts. It offers a broad range of critical perspectives and theoretical approaches to this movement, as well as intensive analyses of various cultural traditions and individual texts from Eastern Europe, Asia, North America, Africa, the Caribbean, and Australia, in addition to those from Latin America. In situating magical realism within the expanse of literary and cultural history, this collection describes a mode of writing that has been a catalyst in the development of new regional literatures and a revitalizing force for more established narrative traditions—writing particularly alive in postcolonial contexts and a major component of postmodernist fiction. Google Books
Here to Go
“Here To Go” is Terry Wilson’s classic book of interviews with Brion Gysin, the artist, writer and long-term collaborator of William Burroughs. Gysin, whose published books include “The Process” and “The Last Museum,” developed the revolutionary Cut-Up method of writing, conceived the Dreamachine, and worked on the experimental films of Antony Balch as well as exhibiting his art worldwide.
Subjects covered include magick, sound/word cut-ups, painting/photography/film, psychic warfare, control systems, literature and drugs; plus a rare extract from Gysin’s original screenplay for “Naked Lunch.”
With many illustrations, “Here To Go “comprehensively documents the life, work and philosophy of one of the 20th century’s most neglected, yet visionary polymaths-one of the few artists who can genuinely be described as “modern.” Google Books
The Third Mind
The Third Mind is a book by Beat Generation novelist William S. Burroughs and artist/poet/novelist Brion Gysin. First published in a French-language edition in 1977, it was published in English in 1978. It contains numerous short fiction pieces as well as poetry by Gysin, and an interview with Burroughs. Some chapters had previously been published in various literary journals between 1960 and 1973. The book is a combination literary essay and writing collection showcasing the cut-up technique popularized by Burroughs and Gysin in the 1960s. Cut-ups involves taking texts, cutting the pages, and then rearranging and combining the pieces to form new narratives. The technique was adapted for filmmaking, as demonstrated by Burroughs and director Antony Balch in their early 1960s short film, The Cut-Ups. Google Books
Future Primitive Revisited
“Zerzan’s writing is sharp, uncompromising, and tenacious.” — Derrick Jensen
“John Zerzan’s importance does not only consist in his brilliant intelligence, his absolute clearness of analysis and his unequalled dialectical synthesis that clarifies even the most complicated questions, but also in the humanity that fills his thoughts of resistance. Future Primitive Revisited is one more precious gift for us all.”—Enrico Manicardi, author of Liberi dalla Civiltá (Free from Civilization)
“Anyone who travels with his eyes open understands the sense of much of what you have written, and the longer I live the greater my contempt for the opportunists who run governments and dictate our lives with technology.”—Paul Theroux
“Of course we should go primitive. This doesn’t mean abandoning material needs, tools, or skills, but ending our obsession with such concerns. Declaring for community, our true origin: personal autonomy, trust, mutual support in pursuit of all the joys and troubles of life. Society was a trap—massive, demanding, impersonal and debilitating from day one. So hurry back to the community, friends, and welcome all the consequences of such an orientation. The reasons for fear and despair will only multiply if we remain in this brutal and dangerous state of civilization.”—Blok 45 publishing, Belgrade
As our society is stricken with repeated technological disasters, and the apocalyptic problems that go with them, the “neo-primitivist” essays of John Zerzan seem more relevant than ever.
“Future Primitive,” the core innovative essay of Future Primitive Revisited, has been out of print for years. This new edition is updated with never-before-printed essays that speak to a youthful political movement and influential writers such as Derrick Jensen and Paul Theroux.
An active participant in the contemporary anarchist resurgence, John Zerzan has been an invited speaker at both radical and conventional events on several continents. His weekly Anarchy Radio broadcast streams live on KWVA radio. Google books
A packet of hand-scrawled letters found in a stranger’s backpack tells of self-sufficient communities growing from the ruins of California’s housing collapse and the global recession. In unfinished Mojave Desert housing tracts and foreclosure ghost towns on the raw edges of the chaotic cities of the West, people have gathered to grow their own food, school their own children and learn how to live without the poisons of gossip, greed, television, mobile phones and the Internet. Encouraged by an enigmatic wanderer known only as “B,” the communities thrive as more families and workers are discarded by an indifferent system. But this quiet revolution and its simple rituals cannot stay unnoticed for long, because the teachings of “B” threaten an entire structure of power and wealth dependent upon people toiling their lives away to buy things they don’t need. Q&A with author Google Books
Every economics textbook says the same thing: Money was invented to replace onerous and complicated barter systems—to relieve ancient people from having to haul their goods to market. The problem with this version of history? There’s not a shred of evidence to support it.
Here anthropologist David Graeber presents a stunning reversal of conventional wisdom. He shows that for more than 5,000 years, since the beginnings of the first agrarian empires, humans have used elaborate credit systems to buy and sell goods—that is, long before the invention of coins or cash. It is in this era, Graeber argues, that we also first encounter a society divided into debtors and creditors.
Graeber shows that arguments about debt and debt forgiveness have been at the center of political debates from Italy to China, as well as sparking innumerable insurrections. He also brilliantly demonstrates that the language of the ancient works of law and religion (words like “guilt,” “sin,” and “redemption”) derive in large part from ancient debates about debt, and shape even our most basic ideas of right and wrong. We are still fighting these battles today without knowing it.
Debt: The First 5,000 Years is a fascinating chronicle of this little known history—as well as how it has defined human history, and what it means for the credit crisis of the present day and the future of our economy. Google Books
Award-winning writer, documentary filmmaker, and scholar Douglas Rushkoff traces how corporations went from being convenient legal fictions to being the dominant fact of contemporary life. Indeed, as Rushkoff shows, most Americans have so willingly adopted the values of corporations that they’re no longer even aware of it.This fascinating journey, from the late Middle Ages to today, reveals the roots of our debacle. From the founding of the first chartered monopoly to the branding of the self; from the invention of central currency to the privatization of banking; from the birth of the modern, self-interested individual to his exploitation through the false ideal of the single-family home; from the Victorian Great Exhibition to the solipsism of MySpaceÐthe corporation has infiltrated all aspects of our daily lives. Life Inc.exposes why we see our homes as investments rather than places to live, our 401(k) plans as the ultimate measure of success, and the Internet as just another place to do business. Google Books
This book is the first single volume to present a complete guide to the most notorious and radical art movement of the twentieth century, the Situationist International (SI). Simon Ford offers a unique history and analysis of the SI and its main protagonists, including Guy Debord, Asger Jorn, Constant and Michele Bernstein. Tracing its development back to the European avant-garde, Ford provides a comprehensive historical background to the SI’s foundation.Tracing its development back to the European avant-garde and groups such as COBRA, the Lettrists and the International Movement for an Imaginist Bauhaus, Ford provides a comprehensive historical background to the 1957 foundation of the Situationist International under its self-proclaimed leader, the brilliant Guy Debord. Looking at painting, architecture and cinema, Ford includes detailed profiles of the main members such as the Asger Jorn, Constant, Pinot-Gallizio and Ralph Rumney. The final chapter looks at how the SI’s legacy, following its disintegration in 1972, can be traced within subsequent artistic and activist movements, from punk through to culture jamming and media activism. Google Books
The Das Kapital of the 20th century. An essential text, and the main theoretical work of the situationists. Few works of political and cultural theory have been as enduringly provocative. From its publication amid the social upheavals of the 1960′s up to the present, the volatile theses of this book have decisively transformed debates on the shape of modernity, capitalism, and everyday life in the late 20th century. This new edition is the Ken Knabb translation. Certainly it has the most “modern” design of all three editions, as well as a short new introduction from the translator. Free
The Matrix conveys the horror of a false world made of nothing but perceptions. Based on the premise that reality is a dream controlled by malevolent forces, it is one of the most overtly philosophical movies ever to come out of Hollywood. These thought-provoking essays by the same team of young philosophers who created The Simpsons and Philosophy discuss different facets of the primary philosophical puzzle of The Matrix: Can we be sure the world is really there, and if not, what should we do about it? Other chapters address issues of religion, lifestyle, pop culture, the Zeitgeist, the nature of mind and matter, and the reality of fiction. Google Books
More than 7 million viewers are captivated weekly by Fringe, a science fiction procedural in the best tradition of The X-Files with a taut central mythology, rich characters, and it’s own laboratory cow. In its weekly cases and its overarching plot, Fringe strikes a compelling balance between the strange and the familiar, and the quirky and the tragic.Fringe Science delves into the science, science fiction, and pseudoscience of Fringewith a collection of essays by science and science fiction writers on everything from alternate universes to time travel to genetically targeted toxins, as well as discussions on the show’s moral philosophy and the consequences of playing God. Google Books
Mirage Men: An Adventure Into Paranoia, Espionage, Psychological Warfare, and UFOs
Part personal odyssey, part espionage adventure, and part social history, Mirage Men delves into the world of UFOs, those who believe in them, and those who would have us believe in them. This is not your average UFO book. Mirage Men explores the strange and symbiotic relationship between the U.S. military and intelligence agencies and the community who believes strongly that UFOs have visited earth.Just how has the U.S. government manipulated the public’s belief in UFOs to hide military aircraft experimentation? Among the UFO believers are the “mirage men”–a close-knit group of men and women whose careers span science medicine, the military, and the intelligence services. They believe they have received parts of a flying saucer-shaped puzzle, whose final pieces lie tantalizingly out of reach. Dive into this comprehensive and astonishing exposition of exactly what these Mirage Men believe, and why. Interviews, anecdotes, and cold hard facts make this a persuasive book that’s hard to ignore. Many are sure that official disclosure–government announcement of extraterrestrial presence–is just around the corner. Google Books
Are there other dimensions beyond our own? Is time travel possible? Can we change the past? Are there gateways to parallel universes? All of us have pondered such questions, but there was a time when scientists dismissed these notions as outlandish speculations. Not any more. Today, they are the focus of the most intense scientific activity in recent memory. In Hyperspace, Michio Kaku, author of the widely acclaimed Beyond Einstein and a leading theoretical physicist, offers the first book-length tour of the most exciting (and perhaps most bizarre) work in modern physics, work which includes research on the tenth dimension, time warps, black holes, and multiple universes. The theory of hyperspace (or higher dimensional space) – and its newest wrinkle, superstring theory – stand at the center of this revolution, with adherents in every major research laboratory in the world, including several Nobel laureates. Beginning where Hawking’s Brief History of Time left off, Kaku paints a vivid portrayal of the breakthroughs now rocking the physics establishment. Why all the excitement? As the author points out, for over half a century, scientists have puzzled over why the basic forces of the cosmos – gravity, electromagnetism, and the strong and weak nuclear forces – require markedly different mathematical descriptions. But if we see these forces as vibrations in a higher dimensional space, their field equations suddenly fit together like pieces in a jigsaw puzzle, perfectly snug, in an elegant, astonishingly simple form. This may thus be our leading candidate for the Theory of Everything. If so, it would be the crowning achievement of 2,000 years of scientific investigation into matter and itsforces. Already, the theory has inspired several thousand research papers, and has been the focus of over 200 international conferences. Many leading scientists believe the theory will unlock the deepest secrets of creation and answer some of the most intriguing questions of all. Google Books
lFrom H.G. Wells to Isaac Asimov to Ursula K. Le Guin, time travel has long been a favorite topic and plot device in tales of science fiction and fantasy. But as any true SF fan knows, astounding stories about traversing alternate universes and swimming the tides of time demand plausible science. That’s just what Paul J. Nahin’s guide provides.An engineer, physicist, and published science fiction writer, Nahin is uniquely qualified to explain the ins and outs of how to spin such complex theories as worm holes, singularity, and relativity into scientifically sound fiction. First published in 1997, this fast-paced book discusses the common and not-so-common time-travel devices science fiction writers have used over the years, assesses which would theoretically work and which would not, and provides scientific insight inventive authors can use to find their own way forward or backward in time. From hyperspace and faster-than-light travel to causal loops and the uncertainty principle and beyond, Nahin’s equation-free romp across time will help writers send their characters to the past or future in an entertaining, logical, and scientific way.If you ever wanted to set up the latest and greatest grandfather paradox-or just wanted to know if the time-bending events in the latest pulp you read could ever happen-then this book is for you. Google Books
In this eclectic and interdisciplinary work, chaos pioneer Ralph Abraham traces the history of consciousness through a rediscovery of the three forces that drive it: chaos, gaia, and eros-the mind, body, and spirit of evolution. With startling originality and clarity of vision, Abraham employs photographs, timelines, charts, and an engaging format to sweep the reader along on this wild ride through math, science, mythology, philosophy, and the whole of history.Sure to fascinate the poet, scientist, philosopher, and historian in all of us, Chaos, Gaia, Eros is a mind-bending masterwork that reunites the chaotic and mythological forces of human history and blows the doors off existing modes of thought.Chaos, Gaia, Eros deliteralizes history so we see it not only as a sequence of events, but as a flow ofideas and cultural myths… T]his is an important book for understanding the past, living in the present, and shaping the future.-David Fideler, founder of Phanes Press and editor of Alexandra: The Journal of the Western Cosmological Traditions
Ralph Abraham is a world renowned chaos theorist and professor emeritus of mathematics at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Google Books
A book by anarchist writer Hakim Bey published in 1991 by Autonomedia. It is composed of three sections, “Chaos: The Broadsheets of Ontological Anarchism,” “Communiques of the Association for Ontological Anarchy,” and “The Temporary Autonomous Zone.”The book describes the socio-political tactic of creating temporary spaces that elude formal structures of control. The essay uses various examples from history and philosophy, all of which suggest that the best way to create a non-hierarchical system of social relationships is to concentrate on the present and on releasing one’s own mind from the controlling mechanisms that have been imposed on it.In the formation of a TAZ, Bey argues, information becomes a key tool that sneaks into the cracks of formal procedures. A new territory of the moment is created that is on the boundary line of established regions. Any attempt at permanence that goes beyond the moment deteriorates to a structured system that inevitably stifles individual creativity. It is this chance at creativity that is real empowerment. FREE COPY HERE
Bey later expanded the concept beyond the “temporary,” saying “we’ve had to consider the fact that not all existing autonomous zones are ‘temporary.’ Some are … more-or-less ‘permanent.’
History. Cultural Studies. America was founded as a land of drop-outs, and almost immediately it began to produce its own crop of dissidents – visionaries, utopians, Maroons (escaped slaves), white and black Indians, sailors and buccaneers, tax rebels, angry women, crank reformers, tri-racial isolate communities – all on the lam from Babylon, from control. In this book they return, speaking for a romantic becoming – for an insurrectionary moment – for a restoration of the unknown.
Lost history viewed through cracks in the cartographies of control, including “tri-racial isolate” communities, buccaneers, “white Indians,” black Islamic movements, the Maroons of the Great Dismal Swamp, the MŽtis nation, scandalous eugenics theories, rural hippie communes, and many other aspects of North American autonomous cultures. A festschrift honoring late historian Hugo Leaming Bey of the Moorish Science Temple. Google Books
This neo-Luddite sequel to Elements of Refusal includes Future Primitive, The Mass Psychology of Misery, Tonality and the Totality, The Catastrophe of Postmodernism, excerpts from The Nihilists Dictionary, and other essays, columns, and reviews. From the editor of Against Civilization and the confidant of alleged Unabomber Ted Kazcynski. Scribd