Monthly Archives: August 2011

Review – The Female Man


Take a moment and ask yourself would you hide a secret army of women to fight in the battle against men in a distant alternative future?

The Female Man by Joanna Russ asks just that question. I picked up the book after seeing an article following her death in April this year.  I feel ashamed to admit I’d never heard of Ms Russ prior to that, especially given that she is hailed as the forerunner of feminist science fiction writing and cited as a significant influence on modern authors such as William Gibson. The Female Man was written in 1969/70 and published five years later in a literary genre dominated by men. It received a mixed response, but has since become an extremely well respected novel, nominated for the 1975 Nebula Award for Best Novel and then winning one of the three Retrospective Tiptree Awards in 1996.

I understand why it elicited strong responses, released as it was at the height of the second-wave feminist movement. In many ways it is more a study in feminism than a science fiction story, yet I’m not sure where else it might be fit if not as Sci-Fi.

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Eeek! Infomania?


Arrgghhhhh! I’m chirruping on Twitter at the moment and I’m feeling it a little more, perhaps I could get into it. But it’s having an unexpected side effect…information overload!

There is so much to read out there and there was more than enough before.

Lets start with the news. Obviously I have to read a few different sites, just to make sure I’m getting a rounded view. Then to catch up on my Facebook friends, follow some of their shares…a music video, a feature, a comic strip. Then there’ emails and personal messages to action or reply to. Don’t forget those little chores; looking up recipes, researching a future purchase, job opportunities?

A few minutes to spare? I should do some background reading for a blog post I had an idea about. Which reminds me, I have a mountain of blogs to catch up on, just reading them isn’t enough, I should be commenting…I claim to be a writer right? Oh and I really really must look into some stuff for that story idea.

Add Twitter into the mix and suddenly I’m bombarded by a whole new set of features to read, people to look up, stuff to see and do….

I feel I’m in danger of disappearing under a mountain of information, and yet I’m hungry….no starving for more, more, more!

Infomania is the debilitating state of information overload, caused by the combination of a backlog of information to process (usually in e-mail), and continuous interruptions from technologies like phones, instant messaging, and e-mail. It is also understood as distraction caused by the urge to check e-mail, text messaging and other sources of information, which causes the person to show symptoms to neglect other, often more important things—duties, family, etc. (For instance, a typical symptom of infomania is that of checking e-mail frequently during vacation.)” According to the great info source in the web…wikipedia