I just read it because of this comment. I was pretty impressed by the few Chiang stories I've read before (Nancy mentions "Seventy-Two Letters" which I was amazed by). He has a very smooth prose style that reminds me of one of my favorite SF authors, Gene Wolfe, and seems to have an intellectual depth comparable to another favorite of mine, Jorge Luis Borges.

I have no idea what to make of this one. I'm baffled. I'm horrified, I think. The final lines twist the dagger. Do I take it as a reductio of divine command theories of morality? Of an investigation of true love? Or what?

Do I take it as a reductio of divine command theories of morality? Of an investigation of true love? Or what?

There are small notes attached to each story in my book. The note to this one contains:

(…) For me one of the unsatisfying things about the Book of Job is that, int he end, God rewards Job. (…) One of the basic messages of the book is that virtue isn’t always rewarded; bad things happen to good people. Job ultimately accepts this, demonstrating virtue, and is subsequently rewarded. Doesn’t this undercut the message? It seems to me that the Book of... (read more)

Open Thread, April 2011

by ata 1 min read2nd Apr 2011111 comments

5


It seems we have agreed that open threads will continue but that they will go in the Discussion section, so here's this month's thread.