« July 2006 | Main | September 2006 »

August 26, 2006

Look for me in the whirlwind

This is one of the best justifications I've seen for naming a blog. I love posts like this, picking apart the history of a phrase you'd otherwise barely notice - from rap back to the Black Panthers and then to black activist Marcus Garvey


Long time no show.

Apart from getting ready to leave Cambridge and become a hobo, I seem to have spent a lot of the past few days squeeing over steampunk. There's Neal Stephenson's Diamond Age on the one hand, and Miyazaki's Castle in the Sky on the other.

I adore the almost Heath Robinson aesthetic of massive machines patched together from scraps of metal. It makes everything seem functional, compared to the gleaming, polished steel of most futurism.

The thing that bugs me is: where on earth does the 'punk' come in. Cyberpunk as a genre stripped out all of the politics and most of the rebellion, but there was at least a glimmer of connection between the cyber and the punk. But what politics there is in steampunk is a hearkening-back to empire, occasionally scattered with a bit of affection for the people being destroyed by it. Steampunk made with real punk: there's something I'd enjoy reading.