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Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon
#1
I've read Gravity's Rainbow eight times forwards and twice backwards.

It is my favourite work of art.

It is also an amazing artistic journey through deep black material and suppressed and repressed ideas.

Academia defines Gravity's Rainbow as a leading example of postmodernism. And academia thus attempts - often successfully - to castrate its power.

Most of the book ostensibly takes place in the Zone that existed in the last few months of WW2: the time of the V2 rocket, of stateless refugees, of barbarism and small human kindnesses.

Amongst the many key notions in the book are:
- the WASP Puritan concept of Elect and Preterite,
- Paranoia/Connectedness,
- various Jungian concepts and their practical usage in tools such as the Tarot,
- behaviourist science and human experimentation,
- IG Farben and war as business and theatre,
- the practice genocide of the Herero people in Sud-West Afrika in 1904, written out of Their history books but the symbolic heart of Gravity's Rainbow,
- the hunting & the gathering of the Nazi scientists and the archetypal meanings of the rocket.

Quote:But the Rocket has to be many things, it must answer to a number of different shapes in the dreams of those who touch it - in combat, in tunnel, on paper - it must survive heresies shining, unconfoundable... and heretics there will be. Gnostics who have been taken in a rush of wind and fire to chambers of the Rocket-throne... Kabbalists who study the Rocket as Torah, letter by letter - rivets, burner cup and brass rose, its text is theirs to permute and combine into new revelations, always unfolding... Manichaeans who see two Rockets, good and evil, who speak together in the sacred idiolalia of the Primal Twins (some say their names are Enzian and Blicero) of a good Rocket to take us to the stars, an evil Rocket for the world's suicide, the two perpetually in struggle.

But these heretics will be sought and the dominion of silence will enlarge as each one goes down... they will all be sought out. Each will have his personal Rocket. Stored in its target-seeker will be the heretic's EEG, the spikes and susurrations of heartbeat, the ghost-blossomings of personal infrared, each Rocket will know its intended and hunt him, ride him a green-doped and silent hound, through our World, shining and pointed in the sky at his back, his guardian executioner rushing in, rushing closer....

p727, Gravity's Rainbow
"It means this War was never political at all, the politics was all theatre, all just to keep the people distracted...."
"Proverbs for Paranoids 4: You hide, They seek."
"They are in Love. Fuck the War."

Gravity's Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon

"Ccollanan Pachacamac ricuy auccacunac yahuarniy hichascancuta."
The last words of the last Inka, Tupac Amaru, led to the gallows by men of god & dogs of war
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Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon - by Jan Klimkowski - 02-04-2009, 09:19 PM

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