Extreme Metaphors: Interviews with J.G. Ballard (1967-2008) by J. G. Ballard, Simon Sellars, Dan O'Hara

By J. G. Ballard, Simon Sellars, Dan O'Hara

A startling and from time to time unsettlingly prescient selection of J.G. Ballard's maximum interviews. J.G. Ballard used to be a literary vast. His novels have been certain and superb. To the newshounds and admirers who sought him out, Ballard used to be the 'seer of Shepperton'; his domestic the vantage from which he saw the emerging suburban tide, a part of a altering society captured and second-guessed so plausibly in his fiction. Such acuity was once now not specific to his novels and, as this publication reminds us, Ballard's restive intelligence sharpened itself in discussion. He entertained many with insights into the area as he observed it, and speculated, usually competently, approximately its destiny. a few of these observations earned Ballard an oracular popularity, and proceed to yield an uncannily exact statement this present day. Now, for the 1st time, 'Extreme Metaphors' collects the best interviews of his occupation. Conversations with cultural figureheads reminiscent of Will Self, Jon Savage, Iain Sinclair and John grey, and collaborators like David Cronenberg, are a reminder of his wit and humanity, testomony to Ballard's profound worldliness up to his otherworldly mind's eye. This assortment is an critical tribute to 1 of modern history's such a lot incisive and unique thinkers.

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Extra info for Extreme Metaphors: Interviews with J.G. Ballard (1967-2008)

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This, as a scientific rather than a religious theory, is still notably challenging, as it presupposes a conscious dimension to reality. Borges took this matter 26 Introduction seriously whilst never abandoning his sceptical scrutiny. In an interview with Burgin he described a possible synchronistic event and suggested an explanatory conclusion that displays sympathy with the deeper ontological implications of Jung’s theory, whilst maintaining a sceptical, almost cynical, standpoint. So illustrative is the episode of the curious tension in Borges between scepticism and a predisposition to religious experience that it deserves citation in full: Borges: […] I’m on the lookout for symmetries.

He oscillates between disavowal of God, and desire for verification of a divine existence. On the one hand he at times intellectualizes God and seems to be dismissing his existence on rational grounds; on the other, he continuously searches for something bigger than himself or the intellect. […] The tension lies in the balance which Borges struggles to strike between his enquiring intellect and a faith reality. (Flynn 2009: 4–5) In a similar fashion Borges employed logical, reasoned, arguments to disprove the existence of time, arguing that there is no extension to the present, being the mere conjunction of past and future, and thus it cannot be considered as occupying any time.

In addition to favouring the supernatural whilst simultaneously disavowing the supernatural, we find numerous instances in Borges’ essays and interviews in which, like Lönnrot, he seeks the anomalous aspect of human experience before the strictly rational. 18 He cites Bede’s description of how Cædmon was first amongst poets, ‘porque no aprendió de los hombres sino de Dios’ [‘because he did not learn from men, but from God’], and he indicates that ‘esperemos que [Caedmon] volvió a encontrarse con su ángel’ (1974: 643) [‘Let us hope he met his angel again’] (1964: 16).

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