Kim Stanley Robinson: "Art is strongest when it is inspired by science"

Illustration for article titled Kim Stanley Robinson: Art is strongest when it is inspired by science

Publishers Weekly interviews Kim Stanley Robinson about his "mindblowing" new novel 2312, and some sections that were too lengthy for the magazine have gone up online. Including a great part where Robinson talks about borrowing from John Brunner and John Dos Passos, to use collage and different types of writing to fill out a whole world, in lieu of lots of exposition.


He also explains why the wealth of scientific ideas and terminology out there can our literary culture a new vitality:

Art in our time is strongest when it is aware of science, includes science, is inspired by science, or is about science. On the linguistic level, the new words coined by scientists to describe their new discoveries form a giant growing lexicon that means English is simply bursting with new possibilities, resembling the Elizabethan age in that respect. Then conceptually, science is creating new stories to tell, by deluging us with new information and potentialities. In this deluge we need art to do its usual job of sorting things out, by giving things their human dimension and by exploring how they might feel and what they might mean. So to me the arts and the sciences are completely intertwined. Maybe that's always been true, but now more than ever.


The whole thing is well worth checking out. [Publishers Weekly]

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Corpore Metal

Well, I don't know about that but, I would say that pop music suffers when music technology stalls. Think of how music really hasn't changed much since the early 90s. I think that's due to no new gadgets to make or record noises with.

Really, we have software now that put a professional recording studio into a laptop—aside from amplication, mikes and quiet room that is. All the synthesizer stuff that used to cost a few 1000 dollars back in the early 80s is all in open source software now. The only thing you're paying for in synths these days is the durable works that support the play and springiness of the keys.

Sorry this is a total tangent to what this article is about but it just came to me as one of those science, in the form of technology, informs art things.