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» One Touch Football - Archive » Books » Has anyone picked up a single novel during the World Cup? (Page 2)

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Count Victor Lustig
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Reading Vanity Fair, very entertaining. Jane Austen with somewhat more bite.
Finished off Sword of Honour, finally.

Can't recall any others - been vegging a good bit really. Added MAO II to the books I didn't finish list.

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Diamond Broon
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TPC - how does Snow Crash compare to Cryptonomicon ? The only other book of Stephenson's I've read is Zodiac ,which I thought was a pretty poor Carl Hiaasen copy.Was it his first novel? Cryptonomicon is excellent,and with Sgt Bobby Shaftoe,has one of my favourite characters in fiction.
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imp
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I've managed one book, Robertson Davies' Murther and Walking Spirits, which I mostly enjoyed. The narrator, a film critic, catches a colleague shagging his wife, the colleague kills him instantly with his swordstick, then the narrator, as a ghost, gets to watch the wife's and colleague's subsequent lives, though mainly he watches films playing out his family history going back a couple of hundred years. Some grey humour, mostly good writing, and a string of engaging 'films'/stories, although a slightly flat ending.

Fishboy, I'd appreciate it if you could tell me the "ace" bits in The Crying of Lot 49. All I could find was pretentious toss, although I gave up half way through.

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Reed
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Wittgenstein's Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus is many things...important, brilliant, difficult, inscrutible, groundbreaking, 50,000-PhD-dissertation-launching, but it is definitely not "ace."
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goldfishboy
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IMP, I was floored by the last 20 or so pages, which I found incredibly beautiful. I'll explain at length if necessary.

Reed, are you saying I can't use young people's slang to enthuse about serious, groundbreaking works of philosophy? How old school of you...

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Puggie Winnings
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Since the start of the WC, I've read a book of George Orwell's essays (enjoyed it), The Myths & Religious Practices of pre-Columbian America by Dr Someone (a little dull in places) and am currently half way through the Picador Book of Contemporary Scottish Fiction, which I'm finding to be very good. I think I'm actually reading more than I was before the world cup.
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imp
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g-boy - please do. I wish it had said on the cover to go straight to the last 20 pages.
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Gerry two-fish
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Trying to finish A season with Verona, by Tim Parks.It's a pretty good read and all that, but the World Cup together with a new PS2 has delayed me a tad.
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Ted Pikul
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I've just read an excellent sports travelogue called Road Swing by a guy called Steve Rushin who took a year out to drive around sporting attractions/landmarks in the US clocking up 26,000 miles and almost as many hot dogs on the way.

He even puts in a good word for soccer. In St Louis of all places.

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Diggedy Derek
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GFB, I've always been put off early Wittgenstein because he repudiated it in late works like Philosphical Investigations.

Wasn't he essentialy saying that sentences are like pictures of thoughts? And this tends to fall down because it's hard to pin down exactly which words refer to which thoughts. That's why in later works he said sense depends on usage.

That said, I've never got through the whole of Philosophical Investigations, fab though it is.

He's wicked Wittgenstein. He designed his own house, with everything including radiators worked out to within millimeters. He could whistle entire symphonies note perfect, and he liked to lose himself in films after long days debating words.

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goldfishboy
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Yes, and he was saying logic is a kind of formal grammar that can't be expressed, so all logical propositions are tautological nonsense. The last line is "What we cannot speak about, we must pass over in silence".

Part of what I like about the early stuff is the knowledge that he trashed it later on, that after creating this incredibly lucid and watertight system through rigorous logic his thoughts on language became a lot more descriptive and empirical.

But from another point of view the progression from the Tractatus to PI is an extension of the same method rather than a U-turn: moving from dissecting the underlying form of language to examining what we mean when we use it. I like that whole path that he took, there's something very honest about it.

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Diggedy Derek
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Very eloquently expressed GFB.

To extend your point, I guess he was only content with his language philosophy when he felt he'd tested it rigourously against as many modes of speech as possible. Anyway, much more honest than most language philosophers.

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Reed
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"I've always been put off early Wittgenstein because he repudiated it in late works like Philosphical Investigations."

No. Or at least, not according to the prof of the Wittgenstein class I took in grad school, the late Burton Dreben. He contends, and I can't really come up with any way to conclusively agree or disagree, that the roots of the later work are present in the Tractatus.

That was a real bitch of a class. Sitting there for three hours during dinner time while this man, a bit of a legend in the field, tried to intimidate all the PhD students who were there primarily to kiss his ass.
http://phil.flet.mita.keio.ac.jp/person/sagisawa/bdreben.htm

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Wyatt Earp
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Where is it that young people still say "ace"?
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Dr. Hofzinser
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The last novel I read was finished just before the World Cup started - the distinctly average How to be Good by Nick Hornby.

Since then I've not read much at all, confining myself to re-reading certain passages of Unweaving the Rainbow by Richard Dawkins and Brian Glanville's Story of the World Cup.

Today, however, I impulsively bought The Language Instinct by Steven Pinker and I started reading it tonight. It's a compulsive, fascinating read, and I can tell I'm going to be hooked until it's finished.

It's not a novel, mind you.

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