Just finished- Children of Chaos by Douglas Rushkoff Though it hasn’t affected my personal philosophy as much as Kevin Kelly’s excellent Out Of Control (sadly out of print, and I leant my copy to someone and never got it back), this book has allowed me to work out the theme of Seeds and my next planned novel. The human race is charging headlong towards the next level of cultural evolution, where we’re all interconnected by the internet and other networks. This, if we allow it, will lead to the revitalisation of the sense and idea of community (not necessarily bound by geography any more), the loss of which has exacerbated many of the problems of the last few decades. It’s the kids who are leading this evolution, and parents (or paternalistic governments and institutions) who are afraid of it. Protesting too much, and resisting the new connectivity, is just going to make the transition more painful.

It’s not a perfect book. Rushkoff makes the Trivial Pursuit mistake of having Superman and Spiderman published by the same company. If he can get something that simple wrong, then some of his other research is suspect. But I don’t feel that the occasional error of fact makes the central argument any weaker. The only other criticism would be that it’s a bit too optimistic about the kids’ ability to beat down the marketers (or perhaps I’m a bit to pessimistic). Though if you’re proposing a revolution, I suppose it’s better to go for broke than start out compromising.

Just Started- The English Nation: The Great Myth by Edwin Jones (or in paperback, though this takes longer to arrive)