Friday, January 18, 2013

This Book Will Change Your Life - The Map of the System of Human Knowledge by James Tadd Adcox.

Books love we. And not just reading them, because love that we do. Immensely and compulsively. But touching them. Running our fingers across the binders. Having the covers pop into our consciousness. And yes, sure, losing ourselves in the blur of words before us, page after page and on and on forever too. This might sound like the start of an anti-ebook rant and while true that we are not so ebook inclined, unless its one of ours and that is the only way you will buy it this is not anti- anything. We don't think? No, this is about book titles. Or more accurately how often we pay much attention to titles at all. Their meaning and intent. The thought that may have gone behind them. Titles are a bit like lyrics in that way for us. They are there and we celebrate that, just enough anyway to figure out what's happening, but otherwise barely pay attention to them. And yet, sometimes a title comes along that is so telling it deserves attention, and such a title is The Map of the System of Human Knowledge, the recent joint by the James Tadd Adcox. Because here is a title that tells you everything you need to know. This is a book about everything, more especially, about learning about everything, dissecting things, relationships mainly, but still all that might be explored and deconstructed. Which isn't to say the title should overshadow the content, and Adcox's linguistically jackhammer-like efforts to rip open everything in his reach and look inside. It's merely a desire to pay tribute to how effectively he tells us what he is going to do and then goes and does it. And that's the thing, he does it, and does it, and does it, searching, exploring, seeking, assessing, everything, seeking not not just answers, but understanding. Which Of course is the thing about understanding. Just because you figure out how to see what lies behind the curtains, and just because doing so may change your life in some fashion, it doesn't mean doing so provides you with a better grasp of why it is there in the first place.