Moxyland by Lauren Beukes - I Read, Therefore I Blog
Oct 5, power of technology and its relationship to people in Moxyland (). In the end, Moxyland is a good example of a novel whose forebears. She argues that it is Zinzi's symbiotic relationship with her animal familiar that end of Moxyland while Toby and Lerato (the two most negatively portrayed. Oct 21, In Moxyland (), Lauren Beukes develops an account of Cape As a consequence, we have yet to come to terms with the relationship between nature and .. The novel ends with Tendeka's friend Toby atop a Cape Town.
Fear has to be managed. Fear has to be controlled. In the process, people have become so much easier to manipulate. It is all about who controls the spin. Corporations in this dystopia are more powerful than governments. Allegiances to corporations are taken more seriously than any patriotism to countries. Orphaned AIDs babies are grabbed and thrown into corporate schools. Indoctrination and dependency are established early.
I just read an article about the fact that the University of Phoenix wants to get into teaching lower grades. They want to provide an alternative to public school.
They plan to have the students jacked into the internet all day, learning online.
The future becomes the present. Lerato was one of those AIDs babies and now is trying to jostle her way to the top of a massive corporate structure where the higher you go the better the view.
She is a brilliant programmer. She is promiscuous with preapproved men from the same corporation, which eliminates the need for signing reams of nondisclosure agreements.
She looks down on those normal people who are unassociated with a corporation. I would guess that outlook was encouraged at the corporate school.
She is set really. Lerato is a computer programmer who works for a major corporation and therefore enjoys the privileges reserved for the "corporati.
As an orphan, whose parents died from AIDS and who has earned everything she has, Lerato is proud of her power. Yet when others begin to mount an insurrection, she risks her status by providing the codes and logistical data they need.
Finally, there is Kendra, an up-and-coming artist and photographer. She seems to resent the expectation that she milk every relationship for increased exposure, yet she is the character whose compromise is most dramatic. In exchange for increased mental and physical health, she allows herself to be injected with nanobots that make her crave a soft drink called Ghost. This is the book's opening image and perhaps the central one: While the dialogue in Moxyland is consistently witty, my favorite scenes are the ones where the catty back-and-forth is broken up with Beukes's action scenes, many of which depict floundering attempts at political defiance.
One standout is the art opening where Kendra unveils a series of photographs taken with an old film camera. She is concerned that her work will be upstaged by an already established art star's installation, a "lab-manufactured plastech bio-breed" made of living flesh, which observes the crowd and responds with an ever-changing song of groans, hisses, and whines p. The conversation and networking opportunities are cut short, however, when Tendeka and his followers burst into the gallery and start hacking the sculpture to pieces with traditional African machetes.
Speculiction Review of Moxyland by Lauren Beukes
Beukes's voice shines here, not in her description of the action itself but in her treatment of the crowd's response. People can't figure out whether the violence is real or a marketing device or somehow both: There is a scattershot of applause, and laughter, as the others move in. It's only when the artist starts wailing that it becomes apparent that this was not part of the program" p.
Other memorable moments include a young software designer who falls in love with her teacher and writes him a love letter in the form of a computer virus; and Toby's redemption, which comes only after he accidentally films a friend's death in hopes of getting good material for his vlog. Moxyland isn't a perfect novel.
It's Beukes's first, after all, and she at times indulges her talent for wit in ways that interrupt the flow of the story. Furthermore, the book alternates between chapters told in first person by each of the four main characters, a device reminiscent of Irvine Welsh's landmark Trainspotting. However, Beukes fails to give each character a fully distinctive voice, and this robs the technique of its power.
Nevertheless, Moxyland makes a refreshing and thought-provoking debut, and offers an interestingly secular update to the cyberpunk cannon.
It shares the jazzy language associated with early masters like Gibson and Sterling, but lacks the spiritual logic often found in their work. Their protagonists of '80s cyberpunk were often jaded and cynical, but believed in salvation through technology, what Erik Davis would call techgnosis. The hope of transcendence through uploading the soul into cyberspace or through evolution into a posthuman future put the sound of church organs in the backgrounds of these books.
Lauren Beukes's writing has none of this sensibility.
Like the cellphones in her novel, which are required to get in or out of every building but which also deliver a debilitating shock whenever the police wish them to, the technology in her world is necessary for survival, sometimes a point of pride, and often dangerous. Again, a very clever use of language.
What I did not like was basically everything else: Most of the negative reviews of Moxyland focus on the reviewers' dislike of the four main characters' personalities. It is true that they are very flawed and, therefore, not particularly likeable. I didn't mind that so much.
My problem with the characters is they are all static, flat characters. There's no development whatsoever. Each character stands for one thing and never waivers from just representing that one thing. When they do finally act, they either act because of this one-driving idea or because of some unexplored reason more on this below.
And then there's the plot. Because there are four first-person narrators, the book reads like a series of vignettes that documents each character's life.