کتاب پیانوی خودنواز

اثر کورت ونه گات از انتشارات سبزان - مترجم: زهرا طراوتی-دهه 1950 میلادی

Kurt Vonnegut’s first novel spins the chilling tale of engineer Paul Proteus, who must find a way to live in a world dominated by a supercomputer and run completely by machines. Paul’s rebellion is vintage Vonnegut—wildly funny, deadly serious, and terrifyingly close to reality.


خرید کتاب پیانوی خودنواز
جستجوی کتاب پیانوی خودنواز در گودریدز

معرفی کتاب پیانوی خودنواز از نگاه کاربران
In reading this I was surprised to find a book that wasnt filled with Vonneguts usual sarcasm and absurdity (in a good way). Then I realized this was his first book and that he was still probably finding his voice as a writer when he wrote it. Instead of relying solely on comical misunderstandings and dialogue, you find a more genuine story of people struggling to find a purpose in an unhappy world. Although nothing for me will ever match Slaughterhouse-Five, I enjoyed this more than books like Breakfast of Champions and Galapagos.

مشاهده لینک اصلی
THE GREAT COMPLETIST CHALLENGE: In which I revisit older authors and attempt to read every book they ever wrote

Currently in the challenge: Margaret Atwood | Christopher Buckley | Daphne Du Maurier | Michel Houellebecq | John Irving | Kazuo Ishiguro | Shirley Jackson | Bernard Malamud | Tim Powers | Philip Roth | John Updike | Kurt Vonnegut

Although I read a handful of Kurt Vonneguts 80s novels back when I was in college, almost thirty years ago now, this year will be the first time Ive ever attempted to either read him comprehensively, read his really early works, or even learn more about him and his career history; and so that made it a big surprise last week to read his Wikipedia page for the first time and realize that he was actually considered a mid-tier Silver Age science-fiction author for the first five books of his career, all the way up to his 1969 breakout hit Slaughterhouse-Five. So in other words, not an Isaac Asimov but more a Frederik Pohl, with books that were loved by hardcore genre obsessives but that never really made a dent with the general public.

This is very clearly on display in his first-ever novel, 1952s Player Piano, which is shocking in hindsight precisely for what a so-so book it actually is, and how conventionally written it is, given how famous Vonnegut eventually became for both his unusual writing style and the high quality of his concepts. Ironically, the speculative novel is about a @world of the [email protected] that has largely come to actually pass by 2018 -- an America where not only have most industrial and factory jobs been automated and are now run by robots, but even most white-collar jobs like writers, accountants and secretaries, Vonnegut envisioning a crazy far-future when computers can do things like (gasp!) catch typos in memos and automate tax preparation. In Vonneguts world, pretty much the only humans left with actual jobs are computer engineers and their managers, eerily predicting the actual state of Silicon Valley in the 21st century; and while the rest of the country is still well taken care of, due to the socialized basic income that all this automation can now afford, its left the US in a state of violent despondency over most people now no longer knowing their @[email protected] in life, most former blue-collar workers now throwing themselves into their fraternal organizations like the Elks and the Rotary Club with a kind of zeal that has turned them almost into weaponized religious cults.

The novel is mostly notable now for the ways that Vonnegut correctly predicted much of the technology that would pass in the 65 years between then and now, even while badly misjudging what kind of effect this technology would have on society at large; he pictures this sea change in technology happening in a sociological bubble that completely stands still, leading to a shell-shocked populace who are utterly unequipped to adapt themselves to their rapidly changing times, while in reality over the last 65 years weve seen an America that has largely been able to successfully change its outlook and educational options to adapt to this rise in technological automation, giving us a contemporary US in 2018 that by and large is much wealthier and better-working than the barely functioning dystopia Vonnegut imagines in his book. (Also glaringly obvious to modern readers, Vonneguts complete and total inability to predict in 1952 the rise of creative industries to replace all the factory workers and administrative peons of his own times -- designers, marketers, TV and film producers, craft artists, small business owners, @user [email protected] experts, basically all the modern job types that get lumped into the catch-all term @creative [email protected])

That makes the book problematic for contemporary readers, because its hard to get over the schism here of Vonnegut describing a world that technologically works much like our real world does, but that in his case produces an Orwellian nightmare of a society that is perpetually on the brink of an ideologically based violent revolution; and like mentioned before, this is then compounded by the fact that his writing style here is barely above serviceable, a book that reads and feels exactly like the genteel Mid-Century Modernist relic that it actually is. According to his Wikipedia page, Vonnegut didnt develop his now iconic @Vonnegutian [email protected] of writing until 1973s Breakfast of Champions, which apparently was the result of a nervous breakdown and an erroneous belief that that book was going to be the last of his career (but more on all this when we reach it); so while I work my way up to that point, Im going to keep my expectations low for these more straightforward sci-fi novels from the start of his career, advice that I recommend to others as well who are making their way through his early books. Although Im glad I now have it under my belt, I cant honestly say that I will ever take on Player Piano again, a reading experience that mostly left me anxious to get to Vonneguts mature classics from later in his career.

مشاهده لینک اصلی
Despite its science fiction trappings this is really a fun house look at the present. Writing in 1952, Vonnegut depicts a world where automation has rendered most jobs obsolete except for a small cadre of managers and engineers who administer the factories and create new machines. Those put out of their jobs are provided a safety net of medical care, housing, income, etc. but deprived of meaningful work they are resentful of the status quo. Of course this sounds prescient today with threats of AI takeover and presidential candidates lamenting jobs lost to China.

But really its always been that way. Vonnegut knows that. He takes shots at all sides. But hes definitely tougher on @[email protected] Its a useful corrective. Growth has its costs. Beware executives holding team building activities. The problem is that a lot of those points are dulled by being buried in lectures masquerading as dialogue. The jokes often fall flat. He hits his stride in the second half and you can see the absurdist outlines of his later work in there.

In the @what they got [email protected] department: in the far future its still the 50s as far as women are concerned, Pittsburgh as the center of the the US economy and an outsize role in society for fraternal organizations: as Charles Murray points out in @Coming [email protected] most Americans dont belong to them these days.

Some quotes:

“Well, what the heck,” said Buck. “I mean, they aren’t people. They don’t suffer. They don’t mind working.” “No. But they compete with people.” “That’s a pretty good thing, isn’t it—considering what a sloppy job most people do of anything?” “Anybody that competes with slaves becomes a slave,” said Harrison thickly, and he left.

----

“All right,” said Lasher, his voice low. “In the past, in a situation like this, if Messiahs showed up with credible, dramatic messages of hope, they often set off powerful physical and spiritual revolutions in the face of terrific odds. If a Messiah shows up now with a good, solid, startling message, and if he keeps out of the hands of the police, he can set off a revolution—maybe one big enough to take the world away from the machines, Doctor, and give it back to the people.”

مشاهده لینک اصلی
This was Vonneguts first novel and what a quantum leap the author makes from this drab and dated work to his amazing second novel published 7 years later: The Sirens of Titan.

Player Piano was the most conventional and boring of the Vonnegut novels Ive read. Its clear he still hadnt found that profound, irreverant, dark humor that him high up on my pantheon of favorite authors. He clearly had yet to find his voice.

There just wasnt much here to sink my teeth into, but Im glad to have read this to see how far Vonnegut would come from this debut. I would only recommend Player Piano to Vonnegut enthusiasts and completists.

مشاهده لینک اصلی
I cant really explain why I didnt like this one more than I did. I did some vigorous head-nodding with the message, and its an at-least-decent showing for a first novel, and there are moments that seem downright prescient for something written 60 years ago. So why did I keep nodding off in the middle of it? Why did I entertain thoughts of abandoning it? Its a 2-star book with several 4-star moments, but not enough to average out to 3-stars. Not for me. Were my expectations too high? Was I spoiled by Slaughterhouse-Five and Breakfast of Champions ?

See also:
http://www.accreditedonlinecolleges.c...

مشاهده لینک اصلی
کتاب های مرتبط با - کتاب پیانوی خودنواز


 کتاب مرید راستین
 کتاب جان آگاه
 کتاب رد گم
 کتاب باد سهمگین
 کتاب جنگاوران اخترناو
 کتاب جشن تولد