robertogreco + rayuela   6

Liza Sabater 🇵🇷👸🏾🌹 on Twitter: "BOOK BUTCHER is better for it’s alliteration. this raises one of my biggest peeves with book publishers: people buying a paper book should get an EPUB/PDF copy. EPUB/PDF are ghastly misused because publishe
“BOOK BUTCHER is better for it’s alliteration.

this raises one of my biggest peeves with book publishers: people buying a paper book should get an EPUB/PDF copy.

EPUB/PDF are ghastly misused because publishers only use them as copy formats & not distinct creative media…
Yesterday my colleague called me a ‘book murderer’ because I cut long books in half to make them more portable. Does anyone else do this? Is it just me? [image of three books, Infinite Jest, Middlesex, and Dostoyevsky (bio?), each separated into two.

this is why, as am getting ready to shop book proposals, am absolutely clear my biggest negotiating challenge will be the digital rights to my books.

my web dev skills COMPLETELY changed the way i write and think of writing. when i built the publishing front-end of my blogs…

i did so inspired mainly by many of the tactics of the avant gardes, especially CONSTRUCTIVISM.

because i see typography as an art form and art objects that can bring a different “something” to your writing ―not just in conventional syntaxes. think of e. e. cummings…

THING1 is reading “House of Leaves” by Mark Z. Danielewski and am looking forward to reading myself, exactly because of what he does with typography and page design.

but would love to see how they succeeded or failed to translate the page design to EPUB/MOBI in particular… [image of open pages from House of Leaves]

BECAUSE YOU LAZILY CAN’T. most publisher just process the DOCX file to EPUB and don’t even have the decency to add a basic style-directive (CSS file) to it.

for Danielewski’s book, if you’re not going to use Javascript, then you’ll need to use robust CSS3 and…

Responsive Design tactics to make it a proper EPUB/MOBI version of the book.

but that would mean, it’s only a translation ―and since that’s core to the plot, then that EPUB should be an opportunity to exapand the story, not just copy it.

with a PDF though…

you have 2 options:

an IMAGE copy of the paper pages

or

an INTERACTIVE ⁺ REFLOWABLE version

so we have 5 ways of getting the same book ported:

1. text dump (EPUB/MOBI)
2. image dump (PDF)
3. CSS3 ⁺ Responsive (EPUB)
4. Javascript ⁺ CSS3 (EPUB)
5. IA/Reflowable PDF



anybody who has read RAYUELA (Hopscotch) by Julio Cortázar, will see la mar de posibilidades that we have for going beyond the lazy conventions of treating EPUB & PDF as just copies of a paper book.

this is why the DMCAA has been devastating…

claiming a new publishing copyright for just transposing across formats is criminal.

you should have something else, even if it is technically the same book or song.

because each format, each medium, has it’s own set of challenges. just copying, as in transposing, isn’t it…

so, if you are a writer, it would behoove you to learn about the principles of web development ―because all EPUBS are, basically, websites made portable with a ZIP file (EPUB/MOBI are zip files).

notice i do not mention AZW3. they’re proprietary EPUBs ―and tbh a waste of time…

all this to say:

you wouldn’t butcher books if you had an EPUB version on your phone or a tablet. even a PDF image dump is preferable.

am weeding my book collection.

with ⁺50 yrs of books, i’ve noticed they’re not only works of art but cherished memory capsules.

/fin”
lizasabater  books  epub  formatting  pdf  bookdesign  digital  ebooks  2020  markdanielweski  rayuela  form  constructivism  avantgarde  mobi  docx  fileformats  css  responsivedesign  webdev  javascript  juliocortázar  conventions  syntax 
5 weeks ago by robertogreco
Spaces of encounter: the performative art of reading | Thinkpiece | Architectural Review
"When the ‘counter novel’ Hopscotch by Julio Cortázar was published in 1963 it was celebrated as one of the most innovative experiments in 20th-century literature. The book was written to allow and encourage many different and complementary readings. As the author’s note at the beginning of the novel suggests, it can be read either progressively in the first 56 chapters or by ‘hopscotching’ through the entire set of 155 chapters according to a ‘Table of Instructions’. Cortázar also allows the reader the option of choosing their own unique path through the book. It’s no coincidence that the narrative – from the title of the book to the several overlapping stories that are contained in it – is based on a game often played in small groups in public spaces and playgrounds, in which the player has to hop or jump to retrieve a small object tossed into numbered patterns drawn on the ground. The book’s main structure has strong allusions to the notions of ‘space’ and the way we navigate through it, with its three main sections entitled ‘From the Other Side’, ‘From this Side’, and ‘From Diverse Sides’.

[image: "Since 2010, the ‘book bloc’ has been a visible feature of protests"]

Similarly, but from a different perspective, one of the first things the reader notes when flipping through Fantasies of the Library edited by Anne-Sophie Springer and Etienne Turpin and published in 2016 by MIT Press, is that the book itself can be understood as a kind of public space. In effect, it presents a brilliant dérive through books, book collections and the physical spaces of libraries from a curatorial perspective, going from private collections and the way their shelves are organised, to more ad hoc and temporary infrastructures, such as the People’s Library at Occupy Wall Street in New York, or the Biblioburro, a travelling library in Colombia that distributes books from the backs of two donkeys, Alfa and Beto. Various configurations and layouts have been designed in response to these narratives. They include essays, photos and interviews, setting up different kinds of encounters between authors, editors, readers, photographers and illustrators. Once you have the book in your hands, you gradually start to apprehend that the four conversations are printed only on left-hand pages, interspersed with other essays on right-hand ones. So it is only when you start reading voraciously and are interrupted by the ‘non-sense’ of these jumps, when the understanding of the dynamics imposed by the layout manifests itself, that you become aware you are already ‘hopscotching’ from page to page. The chapter ‘Reading Rooms Reading Machines’ is not only a visual essay about the power of books to create spaces around them and gather a community, it is also a curated, annotated and provocative history of these spaces as a conceptual continuation between the book and the city, ‘two environments in conjunction’, as Springer writes.

In some ways, it resembles the encounters you have in the streets of your neighbourhood. Some people you only glance at, others you smile at, there are a few with whom you talk and if you’re lucky, you might meet a friend. Within the texts, you can hop back and forth, approving, underlining, or absorbing in more detail. From individual object to the container known as the library, the idea of the book as a territory is explored in depth. Different kinds and sizes of spaces and the interactions that happen in and between them emerge. Springer describes the library as ‘a hybrid site for performing the book’ – a place where the book is not a static object but a space in which the reader is an active agent, coming and going from the outside; outside the pages and outside the library. It recalls Ray Bradbury’s assertion that: ‘Books are in themselves already more than mere containers of information; they are also modes of connectivity and interrelation, making the library a meta-book containing illimitable intertextual elements.’

[image: "Improvised book blocs on the street" from source: Interference Archive]

In moving from the ‘hopscotching’ suggested by Cortázar to the idea of the ‘library as map’ as discussed by Springer and Turpin, it is clear that the inextricable relationship between books and space forms the basis of our understanding of books as spaces of encounter, and the importance of heterogeneous books – whether fiction, poetry or critical theory – as spaces of encounter for architectural discourse. In that sense, books can be perceived as new kinds of spaces, where empathy, alterity and otherness are stronger than ideologies. Catalysing dissent and open dialogue, they can be one of the most effective tools of resistance in times of censorship, fake news and post-truth. Social anthropologist Athena Athanasiou explains how books have been used in public space as part of political struggles. ‘People have taken to the streets to fight for critical thinking and public education, turning books into banners and shields against educational cuts and neoliberal regimes of university governance’, she writes. This activism emphasises the strong symbolic power of the relationship between books and architectural spaces, ‘where the books were not only at the barricades, they were the barricades’. Such agency can transgress almost any kind of limit or boundary, and can happen in any sort of space – from your mobile device to the library or the street. But it is in the public sphere where the book’s agency can have the ‘power to affect’, becoming ‘a hybrid site for performing the book’ beyond the confines of the library.

Books can be ‘performed’ in many ways, especially when critical writing and the act of reading create spaces of encounter in the city. In June 2013, after plans were unveiled to develop Istanbul’s Gezi Park, artist Erdem Gunduz initiated his Standing Man protest while he stood motionless in Taksim Square for eight hours. This thoughtful form of resistance inspired a group of ‘silent readers’ who successfully transformed a space of fighting and friction into a meaningful space of encounter by simply standing still and reading books. It became known as the Tak sim Square Book Club, paradoxically one of the most dynamic demonstrations in recent years. The strength and energy contained in the bodies of each reader, but also in every book and the endless stories and narratives between covers, transformed Taksim Square into a highly politicised space. Instead of being compromised by conflict between government and citizens, it became a space of encounter that gave agency to each silent reader and to the wider collectivity they brought into being.

[image: "Readers in Istanbul’s Taksim Square transform the space through peaceful activism"]

The moment when writing, often carried out in solitude, is published, circulated and made accessible to everyone is the moment of generating public space, argues the French philosopher and art historian Georges Didi-Huberman. This was demonstrated in the ‘Parasitic Reading Room’, a nomadic, spontaneous and parasitic set of reading spaces staged during the opening days of the 4th Istanbul Design Biennial. Initially consisting of a series of out-loud readings of texts at selected venues, it then expanded to become an urban dérive across the streets of the city in the company of a mobile radio broadcasting the live readings. In that moment, the ‘walking reading room’ became a space of exchange, knowledge and collaboration. Different points of view coexisted, enriching each other, forming knowledge assemblages. It reminds us that reading together, whether silently or aloud, forces us to interact, to respect the times and rhythms of others, to learn new words and their sounds and to think new thoughts. In doing so, we rediscover new territories of empathy that become visible when visiting these spaces of encounter, where we learn that we can host otherness as part of the self. Where comradeship is a means instead of an end. Books create the spaces in which to play hopscotch together again."
ethelbaraonapohl  césarreyesnájera  books  reading  howweread  howwewrite  rayuela  2019  neilgaiman  fiction  space  performance  etienneturpin  derive  collections  libraries  raybradbury  connectivity  interrelation  hypertext  athenaathanasiou  architecture  protest  biblioburro  nomads  nomadism  nomadic  ows  occupywallstreet  conversation  neighborhoods  urban  urbanism  cities  istanbul  geziprk  erdemgunduz  taksimsquare  georgesdidi-huberman  comradeship  solidarity  empathy  writing  visibility  hopscotch  juliocortázar  anna-sophiespringer  dérive 
january 2019 by robertogreco
It's Nice That | Graphic Design: Peter Mendelsund's brilliant covers for Julio Cortázar novel
"Some things take a few tries to get right, be it baking, swimming, snogging, or a book jacket design for a much-loved title. In designer Peter Mendelsund’s case, it was the latter he struggled with, and when asked to come up with a book cover for Julio Cortázar’s Hopscotch, he and a whole host of other designers set to work trying to whittle it down into a a book-sized visual. The New York Times made a list of the entries, including some of Mendelsund’s, which illustrated the sheer time and effort that goes into the best book covers. I’m not talking no service station fodder, the best books deserve time and money to make their covers sing, and Peter Mendelsund has achieved just that."
juliocortázar  petermendelsund  via:tealtan  design  bookdesign  graphicdesign  graphics  rayuela 
august 2017 by robertogreco
The Subtle Radicalism of Julio Cortázar's Berkeley Lectures, Collected in 'Literature Class' - The Atlantic
[See also:
"Julio Cortázar's Berkeley Lectures Demonstrate the Writer as Dream Professor" (Tobias Carroll, 2017)
https://theculturetrip.com/north-america/usa/articles/julio-cortazars-berkeley-lectures-demonstrate-the-writer-as-dream-professor/

"Cortázar at Berkeley" (Jessica Sequeira, 2014)
https://soundsandcolours.com/articles/argentina/cortazar-at-berkeley-22708/ ]

"“What good is a writer if he can’t destroy literature?” The question comes from Julio Cortázar’s landmark 1963 novel Hopscotch, the dense, elusive, streetwise masterpiece that doubles as a High Modernist choose-your-own-adventure game. Famously, it includes an introductory “table of instructions”: “This book consists of many books,” Cortázar writes in it, “but two books above all.” The first version is read traditionally, from chapter one straight through; the second version begins at chapter seventy-three, and snakes through a non-linear sequence. Both reading modes follow the world-weary antihero Horacio Oliveira, Cortázar’s proxy protagonist, who is disenchanted with the tepid certainties of bourgeois life, and whose metaphysical explorations form the scaffolding of a billowing, richly comic existential caper. Of his magnum opus, Cortázar said, laconically, “I’ve remained on the side of the questions.” But it was the novel’s formal daring—its branching paths—that hinted at what was to be the Argentine author’s most persistent and most personal inquiry: Why should there be only one reality?

That suspicion of grand narratives—both in literature and in life—informs much of Literature Class, a newly published collection of eight lectures the writer delivered at the University of California, Berkeley in 1980. The consequent lectures—originally delivered in Spanish and translated adeptly by Katherine Silver—are erudite, intimate, charmingly fragmented, and anecdotal, covering a range of topics, from “Eroticism and Literature” to “The Realistic Short Story.” The unifying through line is Cortázar’s abiding insistence on the elasticity of literary art, the better to capture what he saw as a fleeting, contentious, and ever-fluid reality. At one point, Cortázar tells his students, “I had lived with a complete feeling of familiarity with the fantastic because it seemed as acceptable to me, as possible and as real, as the fact of eating soup at eight o’clock in the evening.” The fantastic, then, was a means of leavening the flatness of the widely accepted, or the merely prosaic. The sentiment becomes something of a refrain. For Cortázar, like his creation Horacio, the joyless—and, in cases, politically expedient—narrowing of lived possibility was forever conspiring with a larger falseness, one he called “the prefabricated, pre-established world.”

While Cortázar doesn’t explicitly explain what he meant by this, his work suggests a deep distrust of the very everydayness of life, a suspicion that it constitutes a paralysis masquerading as a soothing routine. “It occurred to me like a sort of mental belch,” Horacio says in one of Hopscotch’s lengthy internal monologues, “that this whole A B C of my life was a painful bit of stupidity, because it was based solely on…the choice of what could be called nonconduct rather than conduct.” Elsewhere, in the short story The Instruction Manual, Cortázar writes with similar misgiving, “How it hurts to refuse a spoon, to say no to a door, to deny everything that habit has licked to a suitable smoothness.” The lectures take up arms against that smoothness with a disarming candor: “Why do people accept that things are the way they are when they could be some other way?” he asks his students in a lecture called “The Ludic in Literature.” It seems a simple, even banal, question, yet it animated his work to an extraordinary degree.

By the time of his Berkeley sojourn, Cortázar was no stranger to undermining these kinds of assumptions. Indeed, for the offshoot of literary modernism referred to as the Latin American Boom—in which Cortázar played a definitive role in its 1960s heyday—a radical reevaluation of reality came with the territory. The Boom, which included the fertile works of Gabriel García Márquez, Carlos Fuentes, and José Lezama Lima, among others, helped to shatter the barriers between the mundane and the fantastic. Cortázar himself brought a kind of cosmopolitan cubism to the novel in which time, place, language, even the literal text itself, became sites of contention, participation, and play. The read-as-you-like instructions of Hopscotch, then (“The reader may ignore what follows with a clean conscience”) should not be taken as mere gamesmanship or avant-garde posturing; rather, they actively pushed up against a literary realism that no longer suited the fragmented textures of contemporary Latin American life.

Widespread political turbulence was an inescapable feature of that experience, even as a concomitant concern with what it meant to be a politically engaged Latin American artist took shape beside it. A new wave of fiercely complex, narratively adventurous novels like Augusto Roa Bastos’s I, the Supreme, a barely concealed censure of the Paraguayan dictator Alfredo Stroessner, and Mario Vargas Llosa’s The Time of the Hero, copies of which the Peruvian military burned, showcased the potency of literature as a means of speaking to dictatorial power. “I think it is now clear that the inevitable dialect that always exists between reality and literature has evolved deeply in many of our countries through the force of circumstance,” Cortázar tells his students in “A Writer’s Paths,” the most nakedly autobiographical of the Berkeley lectures. Literature Class is punctuated by such candid remarks, and suggests that the sparkle and audacity of Cortázar’s work, to say nothing of the Boom as a whole, are in many ways inextricable from that tumultuous mid-century political moment. Cortázar’s mid-career epiphany that literature should be “born out of the process of the populace, the peoples that the author belongs to” arguably came out of this experience; it represented a radical awakening to a frankly political, though never crudely didactic, art. “I had to switch my emphasis to the condition of being Latin American,” Cortázar says in the same lecture, “and take on everything that came with that responsibility and that duty.”

No small part of that duty was Cortázar’s project of reality-testing. Just as in his novels and short stories, that word—“reality”—appears dozens of times throughout Literature Class. Over the course of the lectures, the word accretes a kind of moral gravity until one begins to understand it as Cortázar himself appeared to: a battlefield over which opposing forces grappled for control. This was no mere abstraction. During the brutal regimes of Perón, Batista, Somoza, and others, officially sanctioned reality lost any claim to the real; rather, it served as a kind of malignant fiction in which the State was the unquestioned narrator. (The Trump administration’s insistence on “alternative facts” is only the latest iteration of this tactic.) Cortázar’s experience of this encroachment would be sporadic—he had lived in Paris since 1951—but profound. The so-called “Dirty War” saw thousands of his countrymen killed or “disappeared” in the 1970s as anti-communist death squads ruthlessly eliminated supposed dissidents. “It is in this realm,” Cortázar says to his students in the lecture “Latin American Literature Today,” “so stained with blood, torture, prisons, and depraved demagoguery, where our literature is fighting its battles.”

Cortázar’s quest for reality, then, became indistinguishable from his critique of it. In a 1976 edition of the international literary quarterly Books Abroad, he wrote, “Nothing seems more revolutionary to me than enriching the notion of reality by all means possible.” No matter what form that enrichment took in his fiction (the branching paths of Hopscotch, the visionary naïveté of Cronopios and Famas, the genre instability of Blow-Up: And Other Stories), its objective, as he suggests in “The Realistic Short Story,” was to produce “reality as it is, without betraying it, without deforming it, allowing the reader to see beneath the causes, into the deeper workings, the reasons that lead men to be as they are or as they are not.” Always something of a moving target in his work, reality, finally, wasn’t meant to be found, much less achieved. It was an endless pursuit, morally malleable, generous, radically free. “When you reach the limits of expression,” he says in another lecture, “just beyond begins a territory where everything is possible and everything is uncertain.” In Cortázar’s terms, we’ve reached Eden: the ultimate state of grace.

The classroom, of course, was another story entirely. Cortázar might have seen it as a place where official narratives, that “pre-established world,” could be nurtured and legitimized for students—an irony he was doubtless abundantly aware of as he lectured. Indeed, almost immediately one can feel him chafing beneath the authority conferred by the lectern. “I want you to know that I’m cobbling together these classes very shortly before you get here,” he says on his first day. “I’m not systematic, I’m not a critic or a theorist.” Later, in the lecture “Writing Hopscotch,” he reveals the ultimate source of his apprehension: “How can [the writer] denounce something with the tools that are used by the enemy, that is … a language already used by the masters and their disciples?” Whatever the ostensible topic of a given lecture, these evasions continue to surface like an anxious tic. Taken together, they comprise the enormously enjoyable subtext of Literature Class: the ambivalence of a great writer who seeks to interrogate the efficacy of a weapon he has no choice but to use.

… [more]
juliocortázar  radicalism  authority  2017  ucberkeley  reality  1960s  literacy  theboom  elboom  life  meaning  everyday  literature  1963  rayuela  linearity  nonlinear  1980  katherinesilver  elasticity  magicrealism  fantasy  gabrielgarcíamárquez  carlosfuentes  josélezamalima  cubism  language  latinamerica  mariovargasllosa  alfredostoessner  augustoroabastos  argentina  alternativefacts  grace  non-linear  alinear 
may 2017 by robertogreco
The Electronic Labyrinth Home Page
"The Electronic Labyrinth is a study of the implications of hypertext for creative writers looking to move beyond traditional notions of linearity.

Our project evaluates hypertext and its potential for use by literary artists in three ways:

1. By placing the development of hypertext in the context of the literary tradition of non-linear approaches to narrative. This context provides a means of re-evaluating the concept of the book in the age of electronic text. Specific points of investigation include Cortázar's Hopscotch, Nabokov's Pale Fire, Pavic's Dictionary of the Khazars, and Sterne's Tristram Shandy.

2. By investigating literary works created specifically for computerized hypertext. These include Joyce's Afternoon, A Story, McDaid's Uncle Buddy's Phantom Funhouse, and Wilmott's Everglade.

3. By evaluating the hardware platforms and software environments available to writers. Criteria include ease of use, availability, methods of distribution and publication, and the tools available to the writer and reader. Our emphasis is placed on the assumptions each environment makes of the writing and reading processes, the metaphors reinforced by the environment, and the freedom allowed the writer to explore new forms. We have focused on IBM-compatible and Apple hardware platforms, and reviewed such software as Eastgate System's Storyspace, Claris' HyperCard, IBM's Linkway, and Ntergaid's Hyperwriter."
via:litherland  1993  christopherkeep  timmclaughlin  robinparmar  storyspace  linkway  hyperwriter  hypercard  jamesjoyce  hypertext  bookfuturism  ebooks  books  publishing  nonlinear  narrative  rayuela  juliocortázar  vladimirnabokov  electroniclabyrinth  non-linear  alinear  linearity 
december 2013 by robertogreco
The American Crawl : Rhizomatic Listening: On Shuffling Audiobooks
"And this is what I’ve been thinking about: the shift in narrative as a result of audio shuffle…

Cortazar’s Hopscotch supposedly works in random-ish order.

I think a more controlled chaos could also work. I think of the three parts of Skippy Dies and, considering Paul Murray tells you exactly what happens by the end of the book in the title, wonder how my experience would be altered if I shuffled the three parts of the books. Ditto the five parts (and three bound volumes) of Bolano’s 2666.

I think of Deleuze and Guittari’s notion of the rhizome. A model for looking at research and culture, the notion of the rhizome differs significantly from traditional tree-like hierarchies. Seeing multiple points of entry and exploration, they write that “any point of a rhizome can be connected to anything other, and must be.” The world is shuffled. We curate rhizomatic experience everytime we create a playlist – a digital piñata of randomly falling sonic riches."
harukimurakami  skippydies  theunfortunates  bsjohnson  paulmurray  forthewin  corydoctorow  playlists  ipod  nicholasjaar  gabrielgarcíamárquez  rhizome  2666  robertobolaño  rayuela  hopscotch  randomization  machinemixing  remixing  listening  deleuze&guattari;  shuffling  audiobooks  juliocortázar  shuffle  2012  anterogarcia  remixculture  from delicious
december 2012 by robertogreco

related tags

1960s  alfredostoessner  alinear  alternativefacts  anna-sophiespringer  anterogarcia  architecture  argentina  athenaathanasiou  audiobooks  augustoroabastos  authority  avantgarde  biblioburro  bookdesign  bookfuturism  books  bsjohnson  carlosfuentes  christopherkeep  cities  collections  comradeship  connectivity  constructivism  conventions  conversation  corydoctorow  css  cubism  césarreyesnájera  deleuze&guattari;  derive  design  digital  docx  dérive  ebooks  elasticity  elboom  electroniclabyrinth  empathy  epub  erdemgunduz  ethelbaraonapohl  etienneturpin  everyday  fantasy  fiction  fileformats  form  formatting  forthewin  gabrielgarcíamárquez  georgesdidi-huberman  geziprk  grace  graphicdesign  graphics  harukimurakami  hopscotch  howweread  howwewrite  hypercard  hypertext  hyperwriter  interrelation  ipod  istanbul  jamesjoyce  javascript  josélezamalima  juliocortázar  katherinesilver  language  latinamerica  libraries  life  linearity  linkway  listening  literacy  literature  lizasabater  machinemixing  magicrealism  mariovargasllosa  markdanielweski  meaning  mobi  narrative  neighborhoods  neilgaiman  nicholasjaar  nomadic  nomadism  nomads  non-linear  nonlinear  occupywallstreet  ows  paulmurray  pdf  performance  petermendelsund  playlists  protest  publishing  radicalism  randomization  raybradbury  rayuela  reading  reality  remixculture  remixing  responsivedesign  rhizome  robertobolaño  robinparmar  shuffle  shuffling  skippydies  solidarity  space  storyspace  syntax  taksimsquare  theboom  theunfortunates  timmclaughlin  ucberkeley  urban  urbanism  via:litherland  via:tealtan  visibility  vladimirnabokov  webdev  writing 

Copy this bookmark:



description:


tags: