Having done a recent reading roundup, I know you’re all dying to know what’s in my immediate reading future, so, without further ado:

The Cambridge Handbook of Metaphor and Thought, Ed. Raymond W. Gibbs, Jr.

  • Currently reading. Yes, I do actually read scholarship. 😉 While I am afraid of getting lost in metaphor theory, as I explained, I can’t avoid it. I actually wrote that post knowing this book was in my immediate future.
  • So far, I’m enjoying it, although I’m being very careful to not read it from cover to cover right now. Too many fascinating essays on too many fascinating topics. Right now, I’m limiting myself to “The neural theory of metaphor” (George Lakoff), “Philosophy’s debt to metaphor” (Mark Johnson), “Rethinking metaphor” (Gilles Fauconnier and Mark Turner), “How metaphors create categories—quickly” (Sam Glucksberg), Metaphor as structure-mapping” (Dedre Gentner and Brian Bowdle), “Metaphor in education” (Graham Low), and “Metaphor in picture and multimodal representations” (Charles Forceville).

Stories: All-New Tales, Ed. Neil Gaiman and Al Sarrantonio

  • Neil Gaiman and Al Sarrantonio contacted a number of authors and asked them for new stories that “used a lightning-flash of magic as a way of showing us something we have already seen a thousand times as if we have never seen it at all.” They wanted stories, as Gaiman explains in his introduction, that invoked the four words Gaiman suggested should be written on the wall of a children’s section of a library: “…and then what happened?” (A librarian asked Gaiman for his suggestion.)
  • I’ve read the first few. Good stuff. I’d heard Gaiman say that the first story, Roddy Doyle’s vampire story “Blood,” was unlike no other vampire story you’ve ever read. I think something like “turns the genre on its head” or something like that was said. He’s right.

Saga of the Swamp Thing Book Three, Alan Moore et. al.

  • As I’ve explained, I’m looking forward to reading the end of Alan Moore’s Swamp Thing run and see the debut of John Constantine. On June 29, everything else goes on hold. 🙂

Marshall McLuhan Unbound, Marshall McLuhan

  • The Medium is the Massage, which regular readers will know I often teach, is in many ways comparable to Walter Ong’s Orality and Literacy. Both are surveys that skim the surface of their subject, maps to give you a sense of the territory rather than comprehensive and definitive accounts. As a collection of McLuhan’s essays that circle around his books. As the promotional material explains, “Some were written after the book and encapsulate major themes; some set out additional discoveries or matters left out of the book; some present material discovered as a result of writing the book.”
  • In reading these, I’m looking for further insight into McLuhan, for essay-length pieces I can give to students to supplement The Medium of the Massage, and, eventually, readings for a class I want to someday teach on McLuhan and Ong, which I’ll title “The Prophet and the Priest: something, something, something.”