Conrad Aiken’s tombstone reads: “Cosmos Mariner — Destination Unknown.” Which raises the question: what exactly does this epitaph say about the poet’s work? In the LA Times, an argument that Aiken deserves a reappraisal.
If you read one piece on early computer scientist Alan Turing that’s come out in celebration of his 100th birthday last Saturday (if you were wondering about Friday’s Google Doodle) you might do very well to make it this one in the Atlantic on how his reading of Charles Darwin and the theory of evolution influenced his work and continues to shape the way we work with computers. It’s also about the limits of artificial intelligence.
“One thing that could have made this story end differently is if the United States had a significant cultural policy. We have a trade policy – we protect industries we value – and we have an anti-trust policy designed to protect consumers. We have arts and humanities endowments that assist institutions. But our cultural policy is mostly to let culture fend for itself in the open market. It works great, but sometimes it doesn’t.” Salon looks at what Amazon, the Penguin-Random House merger, and the imposition of capitalism to culture might mean for literature at large.
Max Axe here. I was seven years old when the Garbage Pail Kids debuted and quickly became all the rage, so news that this Garbage Pail Kids book – with an introduction by creator Art Spiegelman – is hitting bookstores now is transporting me back to my schoolyard days. (Also, how did I not know until now that Spiegelman was behind GPK?)
Heads up! Fantasy Magazine is looking for submissions for their special issue, “People of Colo(u)r Destroy Fantasy.” Per the guidelines: “We’re looking for original, unpublished fantasy stories of up to 7500 words written by People of Colo(u)r. The stories can be set in this world with fantastical elements or they can take place in another world entirely. Please avoid timeworn cliches like the White Savior, the Magical Negro, and the Woman Who Is Only A Sex Object.”