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(The Sirens Of Titan (S.F. MASTERWORKS))…
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(The Sirens Of Titan (S.F. MASTERWORKS)) [By: Kurt Vonnegut] [Sep, 1999] (1959 original; edició 1999)

de Kurt Vonnegut (Autor)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaConverses / Mencions
9,232109639 (4.02)1 / 157
Malachi Constant, "the richest man in America," gives up his indulgent lifestyle to follow an urgent calling to probe the depths of space. He participates in a Martian invasion of Earth, mates with the wife of an astronaut adrift on the tides of time, and follows the lure of the "Sirens of Titan."
Membre:echinops
Títol:(The Sirens Of Titan (S.F. MASTERWORKS)) [By: Kurt Vonnegut] [Sep, 1999]
Autors:Kurt Vonnegut (Autor)
Informació:Gateway (1999)
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca, Llegint actualment
Valoració:
Etiquetes:No n'hi ha cap

Informació de l'obra

The Sirens of Titan de Kurt Vonnegut (1959)

  1. 82
    The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy de Douglas Adams (mike_frank)
  2. 47
    Watchmen de Alan Moore (wvlibrarydude)
    wvlibrarydude: Is there meaning to the universe, or one big joke of coincidences.
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» Mira també 157 mencions

Anglès (106)  Alemany (1)  Suec (1)  Italià (1)  Totes les llengües (109)
Es mostren 1-5 de 109 (següent | mostra-les totes)
An impressive book for 1959, and for a debut. Vonnegut uses science fiction to satirize the wealthy, the military, religion, and mankind’s role in the universe, and manages to tell an entertaining tale on top of it. While fantastical, it’s brilliantly creative. There is a chrono-synclastic infundibula which spreads one of the characters and his dog out across space in a wave, such that they appear on Earth when its orbit regularly intersects it. There are translucent, diamond-shaped creatures in deep caves of Mercury with only one sense, touch, that cooperate with one another. There are creatures on the planet Tralfamadore who can’t find any purpose to existence and wage war against each other, ultimately turning the job over to machines ala the Terminator.

The satire of the ultra-wealthy, who believe they are that way because of their consummate business skill or because “someone up there likes me,” implying a God who actually pays attention to our little lives and favors them, is not only effective but well ahead of its time, and highly relevant today. We see overpaid CEO’s who don’t understand how much sheer luck played a role in their success. We see the immorality of their excesses, war profiteering, and the “philanthropy” of buying art and lending it out to museums in reality being PR and good investments. We see the creation of shell corporations that are “a marvelous engine for doing violence to the spirit of thousands of laws without actually running afoul of so much as a city ordinance.” We see generational wealth maintained via marrying within the set, even if it means with cousins. It’s just remarkable stuff, and one can only imagine what Vonnegut would think of the elite today.

Relative to the military, in some of his best and most chilling writing, Vonnegut describes a Martian army controlled by antenna implants into the brain and regular memory scrubbing, so that they strictly follow orders, even if it means cold-blooded killing. A military commander wears the uniform of an elite tactical group which caught his fancy, “regardless of how much hell anybody else had to go through for the privilege.” The Earthling military response is out of all proportion to the danger, with thermonuclear devices rendering the moon “unfit for human occupation for at least ten million years.”

As for religion and the delusion that there is a God looking down upon us, the story alludes to how this is weaponized, and how one of the characters creates a new church, that of the “God of the Utterly Indifferent” to combat this. Vonnegut writes: “No longer can a fool like Malachi Constant point to a ridiculous accident of good luck and say, ‘Somebody up there like me.’ And no longer can a tyrant say, ‘God wants this or that to happen, and anybody who doesn’t help this or that to happen is against God.’ O Lord Most High, what a glorious weapon is Thy Apathy, for we have unsheathed it, have thrust and slashed mightily with it, and the claptrap that has so often enslaved us or driven us into the madhouse lies slain!”

As for mankind, the story plays with meaninglessness in a vast universe and free will (or lack thereof) in fanciful ways. It also alludes to our violence, creatively captured in a statue of Neanderthals roasting a human foot on a crude spit, and one of a scientist with an erection for having discovered atomic power – there being little that is pure or cooperative about the species. Bonus points for the protagonist wanting to be let down in Indianapolis near the end because it was “the first place in the United States of America where a white man was hanged for the murder of an Indian,” referring to the Fall Creek Massacre of 1824 and subsequent hanging of three of the perpetrators the following year.

Great stuff here, full of meaning, but written in a light, engaging way. One to seek out. ( )
1 vota gbill | Nov 10, 2021 |
Very enjoyable book - i'll have to re-read it again in the future ( )
  KrakenTamer | Oct 23, 2021 |
[read as an audio-book]

A man, learning (from a man who is stuck in a magical spacetime loop with his dog) he's to travel in space to ultimately pro-create with a woman he doesn't like, does everything in his power to prevent this from happening.

“I was a victim of a series of accidents, as are we all.”

Liked:
- the clever satirical tone which is consistently held and highly entertaining
- how Vonnegut makes the characters simultaneously unlikeable and likeable
- how Vonnegut answers the meaning of life

Disliked:
- the third act features a character not earlier expanded on, although briefly mentioned, making some parts of the plot feel a bit deus ex machina
- would have loved a bit more exploration of Beatrice's character, especially her reaction to [redacted] but I suppose the plot covers itself through memory loss
- the third act itself, on Titan, ends fairly abruptly (translation: I need more of Malachi and Beatrice on Titan, thanks)

Final Thoughts:
A visceral gut-punch to the stomach of a satire, which starts off so absurdly comical that it seems confusing how it can pack such a punch. Vonnegut masterfully navigates the human existence and explores the concept of free will, religion, and purpose. Easily one of my favorite sci-fi books and books in general. ( )
  petricor | Sep 26, 2021 |
an insane and indescribable odyssey ( )
  Caleb67 | Aug 23, 2021 |
I see a lot of glowing reviews. Unfortunately, it left me indifferent to its characters, plot and supposed existential commentary. ( )
  ToHoy | Aug 11, 2021 |
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» Afegeix-hi altres autors (20 possibles)

Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Vonnegut, Kurtautor primaritotes les edicionsconfirmat
Adams, MarcAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Chris MooreAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Kapari, MarjattaTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Koeppl, LíviaTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Powers, RichardAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Rowohlt, HarryÜbersetzerautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Snyder, JayNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Teason, WilliamAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
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"Every passing hour brings the Solar System forty-three thousand miles closer to Globular Cluster M13 in Hercules—and still there are some misfits who insist that there is no such thing as progress."
—Ransom K. Fern
Dedicatòria
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For Alex Vonnegut, special agent, with love
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Everyone now knows how to find the meaning of life within himself.

But mankind wasn’t always so lucky. Less than a century ago men and women did not have easy access to the puzzle boxes within them. 

They could not name even one of the fifty-three portals to the soul.
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Wikipedia en anglès (2)

Malachi Constant, "the richest man in America," gives up his indulgent lifestyle to follow an urgent calling to probe the depths of space. He participates in a Martian invasion of Earth, mates with the wife of an astronaut adrift on the tides of time, and follows the lure of the "Sirens of Titan."

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Mitjana: (4.02)
0.5 4
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2 75
2.5 26
3 422
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4 811
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