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April 11, 2006

Diamond Age Part One

Stephenson, Diamond Age 1 (rescheduled from 14 Apr) -- Jerz: Intro to Literary Study (EL150)

This book is similar to a previous book we read, The Machine, in a way that it is futuristic as well as it shows a change in humans with the way technology fills their minds. I really dont like to read this type of genre, but it is interesting to read how people can change quickly and adapt to the new technological change.
Throughout the book there are italic sentences/passages that explain the following section which is very helpful if you cant follow along with the reading or it bores you. I do like how he does incorporate daily family issues that occur now, like how Harv says "Because that's all we can afford because of the economics, mom's gotta compete with all kinds of Chinese and stuff that dont have any self-respect and so they'll work for nothing." This is an issue now because of all the illegal immigrants in the USA and now they are trying to crack down on this by having them become citizens which hurts income for most parents who just have a high school diploma.
I love how Stephenson describes the Freedom Machine, "a mite that lived in your womb and caught eggs and ate them." I think this is describing the process of becoming pregnant, just to me it seems very weird. But this book is taken place decades from now.
I love how there is a lot of description in the book as well as lots of fascinating machines that, in a way, could be useful. The feed tray of one machine on page 63, shuffles paper and grabs the edge of each page momentarily and extracted its contents. This machine also "sucked in a tremendous jolt of hypersonic ice and shot back warm water. A fresh sheet of paper appeared in the cabinets output tray." To me this machine sounds like a quick way to find out what books or articles are about. I am not sure, but then again, I am slightly confused about the main purpose of the book.
I just think that this book shows the flaws of technology and shows that the world is more focused on trying to figure out how to become more advanced than about poverty, the economy or wars. It is really scary to think about. What is the human race coming to?
But as of now, I am a little confused on what is going on. There is so many minor aspects to the book, that I can not find the major point.
I do think that the book is about a little, poor girl who finds this magical book that helps her become a woman, or well that is at least what I am getting so far. I know that the book talks to her and helps her read, but then it will go into the book and I lose it, the main line for the story, again. How about you guys?

Posted by Denamarie at April 11, 2006 10:56 PM

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There are a lot of storylines in the book, but they really will start meshing together in the middle part of the book. Right now, the author is setting up all the pieces.

Posted by: Dennis G. Jerz at April 11, 2006 11:04 PM

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