What I’ve been reading

Naomi Klein, Doppelganger: A Trip into the Mirror World.  Have you ever been confused by Naomi Klein vs. Naomi Wolf?  Intellectually they are both pretty crazy.  And they are both named Naomi.  Some might think they bear some resemblance to each other.  Well, here is a whole book on that confusion!  And it is written by Naomi Klein.  How much insight and self-awareness can one intellectually crazy person have about being confused for another intellectually crazy person?  Quite a bit, it turns out.  Recommended, though with the provision that I understand you never felt you needed to read a whole book about such a topic.

Benjamin Labutut, The Maniac.  Chilean author, he has penned the story of von Neumann but in the latter part of the book switches to contemporary AI and AlphaGO, semi-fictionalized.  Feels vital and not tired, mostly pretty good, thoiiugh for some MR readers the material may be excessively familiar.

J.M. Coetzee, The Pole.  Short, compelling, self-contained, again deals with older men who have not resolved their issues concerning sex.   Good but not great Coetzee.

Gary S. Becker, The Economic Approach: Unpublished Writings of Gary S. Becker.  I am honored to have blurbed this book.

Richard Campanella, Bienville’s Dilemma: A Historical Geography of New Orleans is one mighty fine book.

Shuchen Xiang, Chinese Cosmopolitanism: The History and Philosophy of an Idea.  Chinese cosmopolitanism, there was more of it than you might have thought.  Should we be asking “Where did it go?”  Or is it there more than ever?


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