Babel-17/Empire Star

Babel Empire Star Author of the bestselling Dhalgren and winner of four Nebulas and one Hugo Samuel R Delany is one of the most acclaimed writers of speculative fiction Babel winner of the Nebula Award for best no

Author of the bestselling Dhalgren and winner of four Nebulas and one Hugo, Samuel R Delany is one of the most acclaimed writers of speculative fiction Babel 17, winner of the Nebula Award for best novel of the year, is a fascinating tale of a famous poet bent on deciphering a secret language that is the key to the enemy s deadly force, a task that requires she travel wiAuthor of the bestselling Dhalgren and winner of four Nebulas and one Hugo, Samuel R Delany is one of the most acclaimed writers of speculative fiction Babel 17, winner of the Nebula Award for best novel of the year, is a fascinating tale of a famous poet bent on deciphering a secret language that is the key to the enemy s deadly force, a task that requires she travel with a splendidly improbable crew to the site of the next attack For the first time, Babel 17 is published as the author intended with the short novel Empire Star, the tale of Comet Jo, a simple minded teen thrust into a complex galaxy when he s entrusted to carry a vital message to a distant world Spellbinding and smart, both novels are testimony to Delany s vast and singular talent.

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Babel-17/Empire Star

  1. Samuel Ray Delany, also known as Chip, is an award winning American science fiction author He was born to a prominent black family on April 1, 1942, and raised in Harlem His mother, Margaret Carey Boyd Delany, was a library clerk in the New York Public Library system His father, Samuel Ray Delany, Senior, ran a successful Harlem undertaking establishment, Levy Delany Funeral Home, on 7th Avenue, between 1938 and his death in 1960 The family lived in the top two floors of the three story private house between five and six story Harlem apartment buildings Delany s aunts were Sadie and Bessie Delany Delany used some of their adventures as the basis for the adventures of his characters Elsie and Corry in the opening novella Atlantis Model 1924 in his book of largely autobiographical stories Atlantis Three Tales.Delany attended the Dalton School and the Bronx High School of Science, during which he was selected to attend Camp Rising Sun, the Louis August Jonas Foundation s international summer scholarship program Delany and poet Marilyn Hacker met in high school, and were married in 1961 Their marriage lasted nineteen years They had a daughter, Iva Hacker Delany b 1974 , who spent a decade working in theater in New York City.Delany was a published science fiction author by the age of 20 He published nine well regarded science fiction novels between 1962 and 1968, as well as several prize winning short stories collected in Driftglass 1971 and recently in Aye, and Gomorrah, and other stories 2002 His eleventh and most popular novel, Dhalgren, was published in 1975 His main literary project through the late 1970s and 1980s was the Return to Nev r on series, the overall title of the four volumes and also the title of the fourth and final book.Delany has published several autobiographical semi autobiographical accounts of his life as a black, gay, and highly dyslexic writer, including his Hugo award winning autobiography, The Motion of Light in Water.Since 1988, Delany has been a professor at several universities This includes eleven years as a professor of comparative literature at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, a year and a half as an English professor at the University at Buffalo He then moved to the English Department of Temple University in 2001, where he has been teaching since He has had several visiting guest professorships before and during these same years He has also published several books of criticism, interviews, and essays In one of his non fiction books, Times Square Red, Times Square Blue 1999 , he draws on personal experience to examine the relationship between the effort to redevelop Times Square and the public sex lives of working class men, gay and straight, in New York City.In 2007, Delany was the subject of a documentary film, The Polymath, or, The Life and Opinions of Samuel R Delany, Gentleman The film debuted on April 25 at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival.

834 Reply to “Babel-17/Empire Star”

  1. Empire Star is the short side of Babel 17, flip Babel 17 upside down and over and there s Empire Star, ready to be read It s apparently the way Delany originally wanted it published but it never happened With Empire Star I can see clearly the rollicking, adventurous, humorous sides of Delany s writing It s a coming of age type of novella starring Comet Jo on his journey to deliver an important though as yet unknown to him message to Empire Star which ends up being the sort of mystical heart of [...]

  2. Problems of linguistics, translation, communication, cast into sharp relief by a future expanded beyond only earth s human languages and a protagonist whose pattern recognition skills, particularly in human interactions, border on telepathy This is always at its best when riffing off of the major thematic concerns of language and meaning, which are fortunately well worked into the fabric of the novel, as the very speech patterns and off handed body language descriptions of have key plot points t [...]

  3. I think some of my favorite SF Fantasy stories are the ones that give language a special place in the universe Bene Gesserit witches commanding people with the Voice Wizards in the world of Earthsea practicing magic by knowing something s true name Add to that list Babel 17, a language so analytically precise it can give you telepathic like abilities At the heart of this fictional language is the Sapir Whorf hypothesis, which in my crude layman s simplification is the idea that your language sha [...]

  4. If I could give this 0 stars, I would have And to think I suggested this to our book club I was embarrassed I never was into sci fi and thought this would be a great first entry because it was about language Oh, it was so bad

  5. Updated review please see the last paragraph for a review of the Empire Star portion of this book Babel 17 opens a new universe in the midst of intergalactic turmoil There s starships, space pirates, genetically modified people, totally alien folks, and, of course, a poet It s basically what I imagined a sci fi world would be, but somehow it s all a backdrop for the main action on the interaction between thought, identity, and language It s an energetic read and will engage those who are interes [...]

  6. Delightful Space poets, linguistics, aggressive body modifications, threesomes, and all somehow packed into a classic space opera plot a galactic empire is at war with mysterious aliens with enough fights and murders to make the pages fly by Quite enjoyable The second book is a long story, and feels like a sketch, but is an agreeable philosophy into fiction kind of thing.

  7. An excellent birthday gift I received because I m interested in the interaction between language and thinking I enjoyed it very much and couldn t stop reading it.

  8. Babel 17This is pretty crazy I thought I was going to have a lot of fun reading this book, apparently I was wrong Babel 17 reads like a work of thesis than a work of entertaining sci fi I m not sure whether I completely understand whatever Delany wrote in this book I don t think I do This is the kind of sci fi that you must read again and again to understand completely, because everything inside the book is so outrageously new that it is so hard to relate to all of it within a single read It st [...]

  9. That s 3 stars for Babel 17 and damn near 5 stars for Empire Star, averaging out to 4 stars.I had low expectations for this book after suffering through the pretentious mess that is Dhalgren I ll admit When I cracked open Babel 17 and read the opening line, Here, fumes rust the sky, the General though I nearly threw the book out the window The General didn t think that No General would think that But, cringeworthy dialogue and ponderous figurative language aside, there s a lot to like about Babe [...]

  10. Put together like the old Ace double headers you get both the novel and the novella mentioned in the novel Self reference is everywhere and Delaney is a remarkably complex writer I m still not sure exactly what it was all about but it reminded me of Dick without all the psychotic baggage It s remarkable that Delaney could toss off Empire Star in just five days I ve read some of Moorcock s rush jobs and they just don t even come close.I ll have to breakdown and read Dhalgren I guess since it is s [...]

  11. I had to read this one twice I think it a transitional novel between sf pulp and sf literature The main character Rydra is asked by the military to decipher a code, Babel 17, heard over the radio shortly before incidents of sabotage that benefit the Invaders She puts together a crew and goes into space There are elements of the earlier pulps as Rydra is a starship captain and there is a scene where she fights enemies by literally going outside the ship without a spacesuit But at the same time, R [...]

  12. Just finished Empire Star, the novella published with Babel 17 By itself, I would give it 4 stars Excellent, thoughtful read dealing with an interesting caste system and the complexities of Time Delany s control of prose is masterful, although I didn t realize it right away Although, considering this piece, that only makes it obvious I am glad this was the first of his works I finished Now, I only want to read .On to Babel 17.Occasional places where I was surprised the language got a little clu [...]

  13. The thing about this book is that it s not so much about the plot but a kind of treatise on ways that language and thought go together on one side and how complex thought and ideology go together Plus time travel I had a good enough time reading it but the end of empire star made me mad because it s like if you didn t see where this is going you re an idiot and I hate that kind of condescension Unless I m being too lol sensitive and it s just a joke I hope its just a joke Anyways, I d probably n [...]

  14. Babel 17 this is Delany swinging for the fences, even though it is his early work Queered relationships, hardcore linguistics, strong female protag, poetry, and something that doesn t show up much in his later work action scenes Well written action scenes, at that Of all his works, this is the one that could become a movie most easily HIGHLY recommended.

  15. In 50 or 100 or 200 years, The Complete Works of Samuel R Delany will be as important a tome as The Complete Works of William Shakespeare is today.

  16. An extremely creative book that has stuck with me despite the fact that I was not smart enough to understand most of it.

  17. I was pretty distracted during my protracted reading of Babel 17 Empire Star, and yet, I still noticed how these books were full of incredible linguistic ideas in extraordinary science fiction worlds Babel 17 was a little disappointing to me, because its ideas about language shaping the mind and culture and society are concepts I ve rolled around in my head for some time, and I found the dollops of philosophical analysis superficial and lacking The surprising consolation for this letdown was tha [...]

  18. Two excellent works, with Babel 17 being near prefect My only real complaint the reveal of Wong as a credentialed captain is jarring, and doesn t fit the reader s first impression of her You ll probably find that part a bit forced Read Empire Star first The reason isn t a major one, but you ll see why.Both works are concerned with how language and thought shape one s perceptions of the world, including what aspects of that world one is able to perceive and grasp in the first place Both stories a [...]

  19. I don t have a lot to say about this one I tried reading one of Delany s short story collections and couldn t get into it I have a hard time with finishing short story compilations , so I picked Babel 17 at random based on the description I ended up reading Empire Star first, because I didn t realize the book was set up that way I liked Babel 17 better, but they were both interesting The language stuff in Babel 17 was cool, but I don t feel strongly about the story overall The characters were fi [...]

  20. Nebula 2b 1966 Babel 17The Alliance military approaches poet and intergalactic sensation Rydra Wong and contracts her to decode, and ultimately translate, a dense and powerful invader language, code named Babel 17 Delany follows up with an insanely imaginative adventure filled with seedy back alley deals, high profile assassination attempts, space pirates, spys, and sabotage which all revolves around a fascinating exploration of the philosophy of language So much fun, and enjoyable in spite of a [...]

  21. This is a really a 3.5 for me but I am comfortable bumping it up to 4 I enjoyed the language aspect of Babel 17 though I found it hard to follow parts of it I found it funny that in all this technology, they were still using tapes to record things, ha it was written in the late 60 s The last 10 or so pages of Empire Star had me riveted though Overall, a fun read, and I m glad I got it.

  22. 5 5 for Empire Star, and a 4 5 for Babel 17 individually4.5 5 togetherI will update the review when my brain sufficiently marinates in the material For now I will just say Delany is en route to become one of my favourite authors,

  23. An interesting read I ll def check it by Delany in the future Crazy to realize the man s been writing and winning awards for several decades and I just found out about him a few weeks ago when he came through for a Queering Sci Fi symposium.

  24. At its best it s profound and thought provoking, especially on the topic of linguistics and the way it shapes human thinking, but some of the suspenseful scenes weren t really suspenseful at all but just confusing and the conclusion felt a little rushed.

  25. Babel 17 is perfect I wish I read this before Dhalgren Much accessible than his longer work Empire Star was merely great in comparison, but definitely worth reading alongside babel 17.

  26. A bit hard to jump in, the poetry italics sections are beautiful, Rydra is a great character to follow, glad her voice ended the story rather than Mocky s voice in the dungeon.

  27. On dit beaucoup de bien de l auteur, je l ai vu alors qu il donnait une conf rence dans une universit dans un vid o youtube.J ai ramass le bouquin Et d j avec les premi res phrases disparaissaient mon int r t.

  28. This was the book that solidified SRD s position as third favorite sci fi author Previously, I had read Nova, which is a slightly traditional space opera than Babel 17 and Nova is my recommended SRD starting point, although I m not an expert yet This book is an old school flip over book popular back in the day SRD apparently wanted it these two works to be published together, but for whatever reason, they were not Now, for the first time, it s available a SRD intended A lot of reviews focus on [...]

  29. This is a duel reader publication, which includes two works for the price of one the 1966 novel Babel 17and flip it over the novella Empire Star from the same year Empire Star appears as a fictional novel or series in the course of Babel 17, so it s possible that it is a kind of meta sci fi science fiction that was conceived as a sci fi novel that would appeal to people of the far future It s also just possible that Delany didn t have that in mind when he wrote it, but needed a name for his fict [...]

  30. My introduction to Grandmaster of Science Fiction Samuel R Delany came in a fun little package the novel Babel 17 that flips over to become the tangentially related Empire Star Babel 17, as its name suggests, is about language I ve gathered that Delany is well known for tackling heady, complex topics in his writing, and here he designs the entire story around an examination of how language and thought conception are inherently connected Rydra Wong a polyamorous bisexual non neurotypical Asian he [...]

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