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Some reading and listening



My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor, read by Rita Moreno.

For a Supreme Court Justice, Sotomayor is a heck of a good storyteller. She's only a few years older than I am, and though her life has been about as different from mine as a fellow American's can be, I'm surprised at how much I identify with the limitations, challenges, and mores that we've both seen dramatically altered in our lifetime.

It's a memoir, not an autobiography, and it's wonderfully frank and personal. Rita Moreno narrates with real sensitivity, and there are sections where she reads gorgeous Puerto Rican poetry in Spanish that will knock your socks off.

Debt: The First 5000 Years by David Graeber, read by Grover Gardner.

It's my fourth time through this demanding and fascinating look at money, slavery, religion, and morality across pretty much the whole of recorded human history. One of the best things about it is how Graeber puts "the Western world" in its place as the laggard, unsophisticated latecomer to economic processes invented centuries earlier by India, China, and the Arab world. I still don't know what conclusions to draw from it other than plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose and "the Occupy Movement is probably onto something," (and "Thank God I'm out of debt-not-counting-my-mortgage") but it's a fascinating listen.

Singled Out: How Singles Are Stereotyped, Stigmatized, and Ignored, and Still Live Happily Ever After by Bella dePaulo.

A bit of a whine, a bit of a rant, but it offers some eye-opening ideas about its subject matter. Like, why should my Social Security vanish when I die just because I don't have a spouse? Confirms my sense that my single-hood is very different socially from that of my divorced and widowed friends and relations.

Foucault in 90 Minutes by Paul Strathern

IDK. IDEFK. Foucault was a big noise in my university years (the 80s), one of several whose ideas I pretty much completely failed to grasp, and the other day Heidegger came up in conversation with [personal profile] ravurian, and I went to the library, and there next to Heidegger for the Perplexed was this slim volume. I figured ol' Michel was worth 90 minutes.

One thing I've learned about from the book so far: composer Jean Barraqué (one of Foucault's lovers). I don't begin to understand this guy's music, which is Serialist and extremely abstract, but it's weirdly compelling, and this sonata is one of the few pieces of music I've ever found that I can listen to and think at the same time.



And in lighter reading: I'm back on a Supernatural kick. roxymissrose has some great classic recs here--Amnesia fics. It's a whole category. God, I love fandom.

Crossposted from Dreamwidth, where there are comment count unavailable comments.

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
harrigan
Jan. 18th, 2014 02:50 pm (UTC)
If there is anything better than an SPN fic rec post, or a mainstream book rec post, it's a post with both. Woo hoo! Thanks for sharing!
emeraldsedai
Jan. 18th, 2014 06:50 pm (UTC)
Well thanks. I do these occasionally, mostly for my own future reference. I've tried Goodreads, but I like it better here.

I'm taking a break from Debt to read the most heart-wrenching and heartwarming Amnesia!Dean fic from that rec post, called Where Do We Begin (The Rubble or Our Sins?) by dimeliora. Retired or not, I love Saturday morning with coffee and fic.

Edited at 2014-01-18 06:52 pm (UTC)
roxymissrose
Jan. 18th, 2014 04:10 pm (UTC)
Fandom--whatever you want, there it is. ;)
emeraldsedai
Jan. 18th, 2014 06:52 pm (UTC)
Fandom--whatever you want, there it is

Between that and your "We Never Close" icon, you have completely captured the whole thing.

I'm reading Dimeliora's Amnesia!Dean fic this morning (accident, moves to Maine, neighbors Zoe and Amy?) and it's lovely.
roxymissrose
Jan. 18th, 2014 11:13 pm (UTC)
*BEAMS*

I *love* that story! I *LOVE* dimeliora's OCs, in any story of hers. They're all wonderful, interesting people.
emeraldsedai
Jan. 18th, 2014 11:15 pm (UTC)
Just finished it, and that is what I call the ideal fic: long, plotty, angsty, lots of hurt/comfort, great OCs (as you say). I'll go back and check out more of her work.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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