Friday, January 7, 2011

Winter on Mars?

Would anyone be interested in another reading project? Or reading about another reading project?

Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars Trilogy has been on my reading list ever since I started (and disappointingly never finished) reading Fredric Jameson's Archaeologies of the Future, a study of utopian thought and science fiction. Robinson's trilogy gets significant attention in Jameson's book, and I was pretty enthused about it but failed to follow up. About a year and a half ago, a number of commenters on a post on this blog (and on The Valve) pushed me toward it yet again, but once more I thought "that sounds awesome! and I'll get to it later!" and later kept being later.

No more! I plan to follow a simple schedule similar to Party in the U.S.A.—one book every month, posts coming at the end of the month or the beginning of the following month. January is Red Mars; February is Green Mars; March, Blue Mars. (I'm ignoring The Martians.) Depending on how things go, I might try to read Icehenge alongside, but that will be strictly extracurricular.

I hope (despite the short notice) this might encourage a few people to join the reading; I imagine some readers of this blog may already have read the trilogy, or parts of it. If you have, and you've written something about it or about Robinson, or have run into something written about it or him, please post a link in the comments—it'll be a great way to get things started.


Jonathan said...

Polish up on your Greimas.

Gerry Canavan said...

Great idea! I'll be reading and may even allow myself to get sucked in if I'm not careful.

I've written a little bit about KSR a few times before in a few different places:

* our interview from the most recent issue of Polygraph

* a short thing on the conflict between Green Martians and Red Martians in the series in the context of ecological Marxism and "Zizecology"

* a brief review of Galileo's Dream, his 2009 novel

* video from his visit to Duke last January (with a bonus coda)

Ben said...

Good stuff, keep it up, I'm curious about Robinson, I'll make sure to read your reviews.

Andrew Seal said...


Any recommendations on where to start? I only know Greimas's work through Jameson.


Thanks for the links! I had read the Zizecology piece before actually, but had forgotten about it--it's a great analysis of Zizek, and hopefully soon I'll understand the Greenism vs. Redism.

Saad said...

Glad it's available for Kindle. I'll read along :)

Donald Nelson Stewart said...

I believe I read Red Mars at some point, but never attempted the trilogy. I'll read along!

Fred said...

I would be interested in reading your comments on Robinson's RGB Mars trilogy. I've already read it, and I would enjoy reading other's comments on the series, a favorite of mine. I've read _The Martians_, and I've posted a very short commentary about it on my blog.

I'm going to do a couple of posts on Robinson's _Three Californias_ (aka the Orange County trilogy) during the year. Because of the unusual relationship of the three works, I thought that _The California Troika_ would be a more descriptive title for the works.