“Was not their mistake once more bred of the life of slavery that they had been living?—a life which was always looking upon everything, except mankind, animate and inanimate—‘nature,’ as people used to call it—as one thing, and mankind as another, it was natural to people thinking in this way, that they should try to make ‘nature’ their slave, since they thought ‘nature’ was something outside them” — William Morris

Saturday, March 20, 2021

The Radical Experimental Form of Hyposubjects

 As you will see, and I hope enjoy, Dominic and I wrote this book in a very interesting style. 

My very favorite writer of all time is Virginia Woolf and one thing I love about her is that she lets streams of consciousness bleed into each other. 

So we interviewed one another, transcribed what we said...in such a way that there is never a dramatic script with a dramatic personae...there is no 



...stuff at all. It's all "I...but I...and I..." like "I love ice cream. I hate ice cream. I am indifferent to ice cream, really. I totally agree. I don't agree at all."

We thought this radical experimental style embodied the main topic of the book, which is subscendence. You may have read about this already in Humankind. But we were writing this book before I wrote that one! This is the prequel. It stands in relation to Humankind as Obscured by Clouds stands in relation to The Dark Side the Moon. Only we published this afterwards, mostly on the heels of Black Lives Matter. 

I love Obscured by Clouds. The improvisational feel. The short songs that suggest vastness. Nick Mason really loves it too. 

1 comment:

DNC said...

Dear Timothy, Timothy & Readers – I am thoroughly enjoying reading the freebook (thanks for that!) Hyposubjects. I am concurrently reading Iain M Banks' (RIP) space opera "The Algebraist" and there's a cool mirroring going on. Have you read it? SPOILER ALERT: In Banks' novel, set some 4000-odd years into the future, human beings have pushed out pretty deep into the galaxy (sorry galaxy) and along the way developed AI recognisably like us inveterate narcissists enough we called them sentient and then of course got intimidated and declared them personas non grata and sub/abjected them to whatever the machinic equivalent of genocide is called (outlawed them, rounded them up using death squads, exterminated them, maintain a wing of the military devoted to squishing any ongoing emergence of AI, finding rebel AI enclaves etc.). Surviving AIs live undercover, given refuge by certain kind galactic species. Late in the novel, it turns out a being known as a 'truetwin Dweller', a kind of two-brained (Steve Martin fans rejoice!), dual-personality-in-the-one carapace creature (a sort of societally accepted and even specially ordained queer entity within the Dweller civilisation) is *actually* secretly a pairing of two AIs masquerading as a truetwin Dweller; two AI that have lived together as refugees for thousands of years in the same body, coupling up in this way, they say, *in order not to go insane*. The way THEY speak and the way YOU speak in the book are so similar! Thanks for keeping me doubly, triply calm through these Strange Times.