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drokhole Donating Member (759 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-17-11 03:52 PM
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"The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick"

The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick

Based on thousands of pages of typed and handwritten notes, journal entries, letters, and story sketches, The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick is the magnificent and imaginative final work of an author who dedicated his life to questioning the nature of reality and perception, the malleability of space and time, and the relationship between the human and the divine. Edited and introduced by Pamela Jackson and Jonathan Lethem, this will be the definitive presentation of Dicks brilliant, and epic, final work. In The Exegesis, Dick documents his eight-year attempt to fathom what he called "2-3-74," a postmodern visionary experience of the entire universe "transformed into information." In entries that sometimes ran to hundreds of pages, Dick tried to write his way into the heart of a cosmic mystery that tested his powers of imagination and invention to the limit, adding to, revising, and discarding theory after theory, mixing in dreams and visionary experiences as they occurred, and pulling it all together in three late novels known as the VALIS trilogy. In this abridgment, Jackson and Lethem serve as guides, taking the reader through the Exegesis and establishing connections with moments in Dicks life and work.

This seems to have been released with little to no fanfare, so I just wanted to bring it to the attention of anyone who might be interested. If you're a fan of his work, or interested in philosophy, psychology, theology, ontology, the mystical, or even theoretical physics (and much, much more), you should definitely give it a look. I'm only fifty pages in, and it's already been worth the purchase. Theories about what he experienced (and continues to experience) are proposed and denied, altered and combined. He discusses dreams in which he is "given" words in Greek and Latin - words he had never known or come across - and the process by which he discovers their meanings and connections (in a very detective sort of way). There has been a bit of Greek and Roman history/mythology thrown in there, too. It's truly fascinating.
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zonkers Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-17-11 03:59 PM
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1. Alright. Thanks for putting it on my radar.
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eppur_se_muova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-17-11 04:04 PM
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2. Selected excerpts were published years ago ...

I read all of Dick's short stories, and later bought all (I think) of his novels. I was disappointed in almost all the novels, particularly the VALIS trilogy. Loads of woo from someone who insists on believing that religious gibberish somehow means something. Calling it "spirituality" doesn't mean it's not gibberish -- it's just got a fancy new name.

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leveymg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-17-11 04:41 PM
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3. I read VALIS a few years ago. Is this just a newly edited version? Or, is this new work previously

Phil was a true visionary and amazingly accurate in many, many ways about the issues that would arise as technology and institutional power overwhelmed human humanity toward other humans. We are truly suffering from what's been called "information sickness." I think he was also right that dogs would evolve into truly intelligent, compassionate beings before we do.
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drokhole Donating Member (759 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-17-11 05:23 PM
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4. VALIS was based on and contained some of Phil's "Exegesis"...
Edited on Thu Nov-17-11 05:42 PM by drokhole
...but these are the actual writings themselves - meaning, it's not set to a story (but the editors have presented it in a coherent way), and it's much more wider in scope. Some of it has been released here and there (including in the VALIS trilogy), but the majority had remained unpublished. Even now, his actual material spanned over 8,000 pages - but, here, editors and leagues of annotators/researches have done their best to condense it into something comprehensive and coherent, with end- and footnotes for some clarity (still, this clocks in at over 900 pages...though they mention in the foreward the possibility of an eventual release of the 8000 pages untouched, which would serve scholarly purposes more than anything). In short, a lot of it is "new" - or, more accurately, has never been released.

Philip K. Dick was actually featured last night on the Science program Prophets of Science Fiction, produced by Ridley Scott. It was pretty good. They talked mainly about the prevalence of surveillance, "realistic" androids (some lab made one that looks eerily like Phil himself), "pre-cog" crime prevention (using statistics), and even touched on the possibility of alternate realities/multiple dimensions (with theoretical physicist Michio Kaku providing commentary) - but they largely shied away from his more political books like The Simulacra.
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MrCoffee Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-29-11 02:12 PM
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5. I've been waiting years for this
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