Rewiring the Real: In Conversation with William Gaddis, Richard Powers, Mark Danielewski, and Don…

Paperback | October 7, 2014

byMark C. Taylor

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Digital and electronic technologies that act as extensions of our bodies and minds are changing how we live, think, act, and write. Some welcome these developments as bringing humans closer to unified consciousness and eternal life. Others worry that invasive globalized technologies threaten to destroy the self and the world. Whether feared or desired, these innovations provoke emotions that have long fueled the religious imagination, suggesting the presence of a latent spirituality in an era mistakenly deemed secular and posthuman.

William Gaddis, Richard Powers, Mark Danielewski, and Don DeLillo are American authors who explore this phenomenon thoroughly in their work. Engaging the works of each in conversation, Mark C. Taylor discusses their sophisticated representations of new media, communications, information, and virtual technologies and their transformative effects on the self and society. He focuses on Gaddis's The Recognitions, Powers's Plowing the Dark, Danielewski's House of Leaves, and DeLillo's Underworld, following the interplay of technology and religion in their narratives and their imagining of the transition from human to posthuman states. Their challenging ideas and inventive styles reveal the fascinating ways religious interests affect emerging technologies and how, in turn, these technologies guide spiritual aspirations. To read these novels from this perspective is to see them and the world anew.

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Digital and electronic technologies that act as extensions of our bodies and minds are changing how we live, think, act, and write. Some welcome these developments as bringing humans closer to unified consciousness and eternal life. Others worry that invasive globalized technologies threaten to destroy the self and the world. Whether ...

Mark C. Taylor is professor of religion and chair of the Department of Religion at Columbia University. His most recent books are Recovering Place: Reflections on Stone Hill; Refiguring the Spiritual: Beuys, Barney, Turrell, Goldsworthy; Field Notes from Elsewhere: Reflections on Dying and Living; After God; Mystic Bones; and Confiden...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:344 pages, 8 × 6 × 0.68 inPublished:October 7, 2014Publisher:Columbia University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0231160410

ISBN - 13:9780231160414

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Read the chapter "Nexus" from Rewiring the Real: In Conversation with William Gaddis, Richard Powers, Mark Danielewski, and Don Delillo

Table of Contents

List of IllustrationsneXus1. Counterfeiting Counterfeit Religion: William Gaddis, The Recognitions2. Mosaics: Richard Powers, Plowing the Dark3. Figuring Nothing: Mark Danielewski, House of Leaves4. "Holy Shit!": Don DeLillo, Underworld5. Concluding Unscientific Postscript: Two Styles of the Philosophy of ReligionAcknowledgmentsNotesIndex

Editorial Reviews

Rewiring the Real is a collection of wide-ranging and incisive conversations about contemporary fiction and useful... primer to Taylor's thought.... Taylor is a gifted explainer with a remarkably direct and personable style...