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10/16 (Tue.) Oryx and Crake (Host: Felicia)

文章發表於 : 週三 9月 19, 2018 5:21 pm
Hello everyone, this is Felicia. I will be the host on Oct. 16th. This time, I would like to introduce you a Canadian novelist, Margaret Atwood, and her Oryx and Crake which is a dystopian and post-modern novel. This novel is intwined by so many avant-grade, complicated and imaginative themes for discussion to explore the possibilities in the future.

Story Summary:
The two animals of oryx and crake in the title both refer to two meanings with connotations. Oryx was a kind of goat and died out in the background. Oryx was also a female name which was the protagonist, Jimmy’s lover and died. Crake was Jimmy’s best male friend and also referred to an extinct bird. There were two spectrums in this post-modern novel. One was to depict the world before Armageddon by virus conspiracy by Crake. The other was the contaminated world with the only survivor, Snowman, and new humans, Crakers. When Jimmy and Crake were young, Crake usually hacked into disgusting and forbidden sites with Jimmy. They were surfing snuff and pornographic websites, watching hedsoff.com (live execution), etc. Both of them were unforgettable while seeing Oryx's image (maybe 8 years old) on a child porno site. After Crake became a new generation genetic company's leader, he found Oryx and brought her to Jimmy and his lives. They share Oryx together. Crake also played the role like God to create many novel hybrid creatures and the most ultimate one was the new human being, Crakers.

Suffered from physical disease and psychological trauma, Snowman was sometimes befuddled and confused reality with dream/memories. He usually saw Oryx’s illusion and heard Crake’s voice often. Maybe that was because the most foremost people died in front of him and he didn’t save him due to his selfishness. He was haunted from both past and present. Monologue displayed how difficult he suffered and no one with him. There was only hopelessness. Besides, absurdly, he had to confront with many hybrid monsters created by his best friend and parents. Every minute and every moment, he fought with dangers, feeling exhausted but no choice. His last hope was to find the “old” human being like him.

Three main characters and minor creatures:
1) Jimmy/Snowman: Armageddon was the watershed to distinguish. Before Armageddon, the protagonist was called Jimmy, and after the catastrophe, his name was changed to Snowman. Jimmy was an emotional, stressful and sensitive boy, who studied in liberal arts. Contrary to his parents, they were elites in micro-biological technology company to create and recombine animal gene transplantation and cloning; he was regarded as a failure.

2) Crake: He was Jimmy’s only and best friend, who was a genius in high-tech and biological technology fields, becoming the leader in biological technology. He created new types of viruses and many hybrid animals, including new humans named, Crakers.

3) Oryx: When Jimmy and Crake were in their adolescence. They surfed a porn site. Both of them had a crush on this beautiful Asian child prostitute. After Crake took over a biological technology company and became the power holder. He traced and found out this little girl at any cost, and brought Oryx to Jimmy and his life.

4) Craker(s): Herbivore. New humans were made by Crake. They were all with perfect body figure and immune from virus and disease. They didn't have high IQ but rather like retards. They were very innocent and friendly without any hostility.

5) Pigoon: Carnivore. Pigs with 5-6 lungs/kidneys were used for organ transplantation. Their intelligence was like humans’ but their bodies are stronger and more vicious. They usually set a trap for Jimmy in order to eat him, being the biggest threat for Jimmy.

Session I: Jimmy, Oryx, Crake
1.If you were Crake, a maniac scientist and mastermind, what kind of hybrid animal would you create? For instance, in this novel, there were Rakunk (raccoon+skunk), Pigoon, Wolvog(wolf+dog) or even Crakers. Why? What functions and abilities would the creature have?

2. What did you think Oryx’s background? Where may she come from? For survive, what kind of hardship she may suffer before? What was her personality? If you were Oryx, would you do devil things for someone you love? (I will tell you what happened about the scenario in the meeting.) Do you like Crake or Jimmy more? Why? What were the faults or advantages from each of them?

3. Did you have similar experience like Jimmy, surfing and tracing someone on internet to collect each of the piece you found not easily? What was the psychological status you had? Why did you do that? Would you take action to the next step when you collected this person's information? Why?

4. Internet is a cross-age invention. Despite it breaks the obstacles from distance and accelerates time efficiency, it seems to build a higher wall between people’s practical interaction and makes people become more alienated. How did internet influence your life? Do you rely on it a lot? Do you become more paralyzed and numb with images like Jimmy and seek for deeper and stronger stimulation?

Session II: Snowman, Crakers, Pigoon
1.French philosopher, Albert Camus, has proposed a profound question in The Myth of Sisyphus : There is only one seriously philosophical issue; that is, suicide. If you were Snowman, would you still want to live on polluted food/trash and environment? If yes, why? If not, why? What is your meaning of existence?

2.If you were Snowman, the only and last human being in the world, to survive, what kinds of living skills in your opinion are inevitably necessary? How would you cope with many uncontrollable menaces or hardships, pollutant and toxic environment without any resources?

3.On what purpose, do you think why Crake wanted to create Crakers and eliminate the world? In your opinion, he is an optimistic or pessimistic person for future? Why? Do you think Crakers were good inventions (or evolutionary version of “us”)? Why?

4. If you were Snowman, at the end, you found the other humans from the old world. What would you do? Would you feel happy and want to get together with them? Would you hesitate? Why? What is your concern?

Sixth/Final Update:2018/10/16

6:50~ 7:00pm Greetings & Free Talk / Ordering Beverage or Meal / Getting Newcomer’s Information
7:00 ~ 7:20pm Opening Remarks / Newcomer’s Self-introduction / Grouping
(Session I)
7:20 ~ 8:00pm Discussion Session (40 mins)
8:00 ~ 8:20pm Summarization (20 mins)
8:20 ~ 8:30pm Regrouping / Instruction Giving / Taking a 10 Minutes Break (Intermission)
(Session II)
8:30 ~ 9:10pm Discussion Session (40 mins)
9:10 ~ 9:30pm Summarization / Concluding Remarks / Announcements (20 mins) ********************************************************************************************************************************************
聚會時間:請準時 7:00 pm 到 ~ 約 9:30 pm 左右結束
地址、電話:台北市濟南路三段25號 地圖 (02) 2740-2350
捷運站:板南線 忠孝新生站 3 號出口
走法:出忠孝新生站 3 號出口後,沿著巷子(忠孝東路三段10巷)走約 2 分鐘,到了濟南路口,左轉走約 2 分鐘即可看到。
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1. 文章是否需要列印請自行斟酌,但與會者請務必自行列印 Questions for discussion。
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Re: 10/16 (Tue.) Oryx and Crake (Host: Felicia)

文章發表於 : 週日 9月 23, 2018 11:04 pm
Here comes another novel to read! :D

Re: 10/16 (Tue.) Oryx and Crake (Host: Felicia)

文章發表於 : 週三 10月 03, 2018 9:29 am
Kooper 寫:Here comes another novel to read! :D

I got customer complaint from Wen-han. He asked me to change the subject. Hahahahahahahaha :lol: :D 8) LOL

Re: 10/16 (Tue.) Oryx and Crake (Host: Felicia)

文章發表於 : 週六 10月 06, 2018 12:24 pm
Felicia.Tong 寫:
Kooper 寫:Here comes another novel to read! :D

I got customer complaint from Wen-han. He asked me to change the subject. Hahahahahahahaha :lol: :D 8) LOL

Too late. We've crossed the Rubicon. :lol:

Re: 10/16 (Tue.) Oryx and Crake (Host: Felicia)

文章發表於 : 週日 10月 14, 2018 10:56 pm
Don't worry, Felicia. Such kind of topic can reflect the host in-depth preparation and trigger attendants' curiosity!
Thanks Kooper, I learn the phrase" cross the rubicon "

Re: 10/16 (Tue.) Oryx and Crake (Host: Felicia)

文章發表於 : 週一 10月 15, 2018 12:49 am
Way 寫:Don't worry, Felicia. Such kind of topic can reflect the host in-depth preparation and trigger attendants' curiosity!
Thanks Kooper, I learn the phrase" cross the rubicon "

This is my bad habit/habitus. I always re-read and re-write over and over until I felt satisfied. But it seemed never happened. :D :) :lol: I will finish before the deadline anyway and hopefully each comer could have novel inspiration through this topic.

Re: 10/16 (Tue.) Oryx and Crake (Host: Felicia)

文章發表於 : 週三 10月 17, 2018 5:32 am
Attendees(17): Amy, Chris Lin, David Jr., Devry, Ellen Lin, Georgia, Felicia (host), Ian, Janice, Kooper, Light, Miller, Steve Cheng, Tashi, Tom Lee, Way, Wen-han