[Air-l] recent cyberculture novels?

Frank Schaap architext at fragment.nl
Thu Nov 6 00:56:10 PST 2003

cvb wrote:
> In my undergraduate Communication Technology and Culture class, I typically
> assign one or two novels. In the past I've assigned Stephenson's _Snow
> Crash_ (1992) and Coupland's _Microserfs_ (1995).
> I'm looking for more recently-published novels that contain similar themes.
> If you have any suggestions to share, please send an email.

One thing I've been noticing with regard to 'cyberpunk' novels, is that 
fewer and fewer of them seem to appear. Authors like Sterling, Gibson, and 
Stephenson seem to be tracking backwards in time, with for instance Gibson's 
latest novel, _Pattern Recognition_, set in the current time, and 
Stephenson's novels becoming historical rather than futuristic.

For what it's worth, I enjoyed Pat Cadigan's novels: _Synners_, _Tea From An 
Empty Cup_, and _Dervish Is Digital_. I think Cadigan's descriptions and 
issues with cyber/online space could work in class. The offline world in her 
novels always feels a bit less futuristic than in Gibson's earlier novels.

Melissa Scott's novels _Trouble And Her Friends_, _Dreaming Metal_ and 
recently _The Jazz_ are nice too. Here too we see a movement from more 
out-there cyberpunkish themes to more present day settings. _Dreaming Metal_ 
isn't so much about the Net though, but rather about artificial intelligence.

And, unrelated, but highly recommended are Jon Courtenay Grimwood's novels 
and do have a look at _Ship Of Fools_ by Richard Paul Russo :)


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