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Dr Alistair Brown | Associate lecturer in English Literature; researching video games and literature

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Through exploring the psychopathology of Capgras syndrome, in which a patient mistakes a loved one for an imposter, The Echo Maker offers a sustained meditation on the ways in which we project our own problems onto other people. As a reflection on the mysteries of consciousness, the novel offers some interesting if not especially new insights into the fuzzy boundaries between scientific and literary interpretations of the mind. Read more

Reading Lists

Monday, April 07, 2008

Recently reading Aldous Huxley's little-known The Devils of Loudun, and wanting to know what others might have made of it, I stumbled across a website called Portico. Maintained by "R. J. Keefe, gent," its writer admirably keeps a daily blog of his reading of books and reviews, and other cultural activities.

As you will have realised by the sporadic nature of my postings on The Pequod, life as an academic reader and writer keeps me so busy that I do not have time to update the blog as often as I would like (some would say, given the babbling stream of my consciousness, that this is a good thing). However, the Portico example did get me thinking I could do a little more to track my reading habits.

I was aware that there are a number of online "reading list" websites - coming under the rubric of "social cataloguing" - through which you can chart your reading and share it with others of a like mind. Having trialled the best-known of these, LibraryThing, and discovering that its free version allows you to upload only 200 books, I finally opted for Goodreads. I am not sure quite what intellectual purpose cataloguing one's reading habits can serve, other than bloated self-satisfaction at the volume of books devoured. Nevertheless, I quite like being able to track all my past, present and future reads in one place, and am happy to be able to share it with you - the world! - through the gadget now in the left sidebar of all pages on The Pequod.

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Posted by Alistair at 11:29 am


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