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Archive for the ‘literature’ Category

“Enthusiasm for the mysterious emissaries of pulp”: an interview with David Britton (the Savoy interviews, part 2a)

By • Feb 22nd, 2010 •

Category: audio, censorship, H.P. Lovecraft, Iain Sinclair, Ian Curtis, interviews, Lead Story, literature, music, New Worlds, punk, Savoy Books, Shanghai

The story of Savoy Books is one of the strangest in publishing history: a tale of lost opportunities, missed opportunities, repression, censorship, imprisonment … and, most importantly, an incredible legacy of work that continues to disturb, challenge and confront. All of those qualities are equally applicable to Savoy Records, the music arm of Savoy’s black empire, as Simon Sellars discovers when he talks to Savoy co-founder David Britton. The interview features sound clips from selected Savoy releases.



“Enthusiasm for the mysterious emissaries of pulp”: an interview with David Britton (the Savoy interviews, part 2b)

By • Feb 22nd, 2010 •

Category: audio, censorship, H.P. Lovecraft, Iain Sinclair, Ian Curtis, literature, music, New Worlds, punk, Savoy Books

The story of Savoy Books is one of the most strangest in publishing history: a tale of lost opportunities, missed opportunities, repression, censorship, imprisonment … and, most importantly, an incredible legacy of work that continues to disturb, challenge and confront. All of those qualities are equally applicable to Savoy Records, the music arm of Savoy’s black empire, as Simon Sellars discovers when he talks to Savoy co-founder David Britton. The interview features sound clips from selected Savoy releases.



Unique visual complexities: A review of Grande Anarca

By • Aug 19th, 2008 •

Category: Ambit magazine, animation, architecture, Chris Marker, David Cronenberg, film, Italy, literature, medical procedure, religion, reviews, short stories, Steven Spielberg, surveillance, Tarkovsky, urban decay

Jamie Sherry reviews a unique on-screen adaptation of Ballard’s work, now showing on BallardoTube: the Italian animation, Grande Anarca, based on JGB’s 1985 short story, ‘Answers to A Questionnaire’. Can the filmmakers succeed where other, big-name suitors have failed — decanting Ballard’s experimental literary narratives into a more linear cinematic language? Or does Ballard resist classification yet again?



Ballardoscope: some attempts at approaching the writer as a visionary

By • Jul 26th, 2008 •

Category: Alain Robbe-Grillet, America, autobiography, Barcelona, Bruce Sterling, deep time, drained swimming pools, features, flying, hyperreality, inner space, literature, medical procedure, science fiction, sexual politics, Shanghai, Shepperton, space relics, speed & violence, Steven Spielberg, surrealism, technology, war, WWII

Jordi Costa, the curator of J.G. Ballard: Autopsy of the New Millennium, currently exhibiting at the Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona, gifts us this incisive analysis of the major themes in Ballard’s work. Accompanying the essay is the alternate version of the exhibition’s promo trailer.



Empire of the Sun: First Draft

By • Jun 7th, 2008 •

Category: academia, autobiography, Ballardosphere, literature, psychology

What can JGB’s handwriting tell us?



Authentic literature

By • Jan 23rd, 2008 •

Category: Ballardosphere, literature, science fiction

I had to smile when I read this from Wired’s Clive Thompson [via Boing Boing]: If you want to read books that tackle profound philosophical questions, then the best — and perhaps only — place to turn these days is sci-fi. Science fiction is the last great literature of ideas. From where I sit, traditional […]



How to Build a Utopia in Your Spare Time

By • Dec 23rd, 2007 •

Category: academia, alternate worlds, Australia, dystopia, enviro-disaster, film, Fredric Jameson, Iain Sinclair, Jean Baudrillard, Lead Story, literature, Pacific, reviews, science fiction, terrorism, utopia

A review of Demanding the Impossible, the Third Australian Conference on Utopia, Dystopia and Science Fiction, held at Monash University, Clayton, Melbourne, Australia, Dec 5-7.



Jimmy Ballard Rides Again

By • Aug 18th, 2007 •

Category: Ballardosphere, literature, music

LEFT: Johnny in his Crime days (1977; photo by James Stark). Johnny Strike, lead vocalist and guitarist with original San Fran punk legends Crime, has just released a new collection of short stories published by Rudos and Rubes. Entitled A Loud Humming Sound Came from Above, it features ‘Jimmy Ballard’s Hospital Review’, first published here […]



Autopsies on Celebrity and Desire

By • Jul 29th, 2007 •

Category: Ballardosphere, celebrity culture, Chris Petit, literature, speed & violence

More on the Dead Di meme, as Chris Petit reviews 12:23 by Eoin McNamee and The Accident Man by Tom Cain: The princess, as a largely self-invented figure, is a gift to fiction, not least because the reasons she might have been killed are finally less arresting than speculation on her untimely death: the swansong […]



Fire Up the Core Cannon

By • Jul 29th, 2007 •

Category: Ballardosphere, Bruce Sterling, cyberpunk, literature, science fiction

Pedro writes: The canon of “Slipstream literature,” defined by a panel at Readercon has been posted by Paul DiFilippo. JGB is mentioned (Complete Stories as part of the “core canon” at number 10 and Empire of the Sun at 99). Kindness of Women was also suggested by one of the participants. Here is a response […]



Angry Old Men: Michael Moorcock on J.G. Ballard

By • Jul 9th, 2007 •

Category: Borges, Brian Eno, film, Iain Sinclair, interviews, literature, Michael Moorcock, music, New Worlds, Shepperton, Steven Spielberg, William Burroughs

Michael Moorcock, J.G. Ballard and JGB’s partner Claire Walsh in September, 2006 (photo courtesy Linda Moorcock). ———————————————— Interview by Mike Holliday ———————————————— Michael Moorcock has been a prolific writer and editor for the last five decades. Born in London, he was editing his first magazine by the age of seventeen, and started writing genre fiction […]



'If I had a pound for every time someone mentioned psychopathology': A Review of the First International Conference on the Work of J.G. Ballard

By • May 10th, 2007 •

Category: academia, alternate worlds, architecture, Brian Eno, gated communities, literature, Michael Moorcock, New Worlds, reviews

The UEA Studio: Conference Headquarters (photo: Simon Sellars). I attended From Shanghai to Shepperton: An International Conference on J.G. Ballard at the University of East Anglia on the weekend, and I’m suffering a bit of a comedown. I always get a bit melancholy when these temporary autonomous zones collapse and everyone returns to virtual communication. […]



‘The Stuff of Now’: Toby Litt on J.G. Ballard

By • May 2nd, 2007 •

Category: Australia, consumerism, interviews, invisible literature, literature, medical procedure, suburbia, Toby Litt

Interview by Gwyn Richards & Simon Sellars Toby Litt is an English novelist who published his first book, Adventures in Capitalism (a volume of short stories), in 1996, when he was 28. He’s since won praise for the dark inventiveness of his writing, a combination of cinematic prose, apocalyptic imagery and sharp wit that freely […]



The Greatest

By • Feb 24th, 2007 •

Category: Ballardosphere, celebrity culture, literature

The Guardian has sparked off an unholy war: When the Guardian referred to Martin Amis as ‘Britain’s greatest living author’ last week, one reader was so outraged she threatened to emigrate – or worse. So if not Amis, who? Stephen Moss assesses the field.” [ via Ben Austwick ] Again, Ballard doesn’t make the cut. […]