Over at The Story Prize blog, I have a guest post up. Check it out here.
In presenting deeply conflicted characters, and sometimes unpleasant characters, I guess, in hindsight, I was looking for ways to broaden the emotional landscape of much of so-called contemporary Indian American fiction—though perhaps more accurately I was reacting to what felt like a strangled emotional territory. And also to make, in my own small way, a larger claim on the universality of experience, and that it doesn’t have to born out of exhausted tropes— the newly arrived immigrant, the clash of cultures, the relatively narrow emotional bandwidth of adapting to American middle class life.
Are there any honest-to-god climate change deniers for real, or are there just a handful boastful of contrarians with authority-figure issues and a few paid-in-full so-called scientists massaging big oil’s balls ‘cos they ain’t getting grant money any other way? Just asking.
A new study published in Nature goes into the warm details.
By 2047, Coldest Years May Be Warmer Than Hottest in Past
“Go back in your life to think about the hottest, most traumatic event you have experienced,” Dr. Mora said in an interview. “What we’re saying is that very soon, that event is going to become the norm.”
Read the rest over at yesterday’s New York Times.
Over at NBC.com, they go into greater detail on the study.
“The warming in the tropics is not as much but we are rather more quickly going to go outside that recent experience of temperature and that is going to be devastating to species and it is probably going to be devastating to people,” Stuart Pimm, a conservation biologist at Duke University, who was not involved with the new study but is familiar with its contents, told NBC News.
Take a look here.
Over at The Guardian, Philip Pullman calls any form of illegal downloading “moral squalor” and equivalent to stealing money right out of an artist’s pockets. I’m a strong defender of copyright. I find apologists for illegal downloading and the net anarchists who argue that all information should be free to be both delusional and dangerous.
However, I do believe there is a place within the ecosystem of the Web for free downloading, even for illegal downloading. It’s going to happen, and it’s primarily going to happen among young people. And in certain parts of the world, say in India, it’s almost necessary. Much of the content is not even available to buy, or the cost is set at Western prices, out of reach of many in the middle classes.
What I’d argue for are forms of education that help re-instill the value of actually paying for something, and also spell out the consequences for a culture, and a world, in which artists and creators are not compensated. And I certainly believe those consequences are dire.
Illegal downloading is a kind of “moral squalor” and theft as much as reaching in to someone’s pocket and stealing their wallet is theft, the author Philip Pullman will say this week.
In an article for Index on Censorship, Pullman, who is president of the Society of Authors, makes a robust defence of copyright laws. He is withering about internet users who think it is OK to download music or books without paying for them.
“The technical brilliance is so dazzling that people can’t see the moral squalor of what they’re doing,” he writes. “It is outrageous that anyone can steal an artist’s work and get away with it. It is theft, as surely as reaching into someone’s pocket and taking their wallet is theft.”