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The Echo Maker

SUMMARY Õ TACUAREMBOFC.CO ☆ Richard Powers FREE READ ê The Echo Maker Following a near fatal accident Mark Schluter is nursed by his reluctant sister But when he emerges from his coma Mark believes that this woman – who looks acts and sounds just like his sister – is really an identical impostor As a famous neurologist investigates his condition Mark tries to learn what really happened the night of his accidentOn a winter night on a remote Nebraska road 27 year old Mark Schluter flips his truck in a near fatal accident His older sister Karin his only near kin returns reluctantly to their hometo. My wife is such a sweetie She saw that my job had me knee deep in numbers and thought maybe I d appreciate words in my life for ballast With that in mind she arranged for me to take an online writing class We just started Week 2 Show don t tell One of the discussion prompts was to cite examples of a writer who shows particularly well Turns out I have a ready supply of uotable passages from books I ve been meaning for too long to review The set I had for this one just about ran my highlighter dry So here were the examples I postedMark A child who out of pity always picked the worst players for his team An adult who called only when weepy drunkThe bathroom was a science fair project in full bloomNothing had the power to hurt her except for what power she gave it Every barrier she d ever chafed against was no than a Chinese finger lock that opened the instant when she stopped pullingThat s the thing about dogs There isn t a human being in the world worthy of any dog s welcomeShe reddened again Her skin was instant litmusMark marveled at Weber s professional patter Man If I could talk like you I d be getting laid on a daily basis He launched into imitative psychobabble almost convincing enough to earn him a comfortable wage somewhere on the West CoastThe two of them ended up at a restaurant back in Kearney one of those chains drawn up in Minneapolis or Atlanta and faxed around the nationKarin called Bonnie She got the infectious answering machine I wish I was here to talk to you for real in that cheerful treble that sounded like the horn of a Ford Focus on mood elevatorsMy brain all those split parts trying to convince each other Dozens of lost Scouts waving crappy flashlights in the woods at night Where s me I don t know this for a fact but my guess is that the instructor would have given him an A on any show don t tell assignment he submitted Powers as I ve opined elsewhere is a bona fide genius He merges science language arts and humanity as seamlessly as anyone out there This particular book delves into an interesting mental disorder and features an Oliver Sacks type character to diagnosetreatexploit it The plot is a good one and his characters are well drawn Metaphors abound And his bigger points are touching and wise But rather than telling you to read this gem of a book I ll rely on the examples above to show you glimpses of the phrenic delights you d be missing if you don t

SUMMARY Õ TACUAREMBOFC.CO ☆ Richard Powers

SUMMARY Õ TACUAREMBOFC.CO ☆ Richard Powers FREE READ ê The Echo Maker Wn to nurse Mark back from a traumatic head injury But when he emerges from a protracted coma Mark believes that this woman – who looks acts and sounds just like his sister – is really an identical impostor Shattered by her brother’s refusal to recognize her Karin contacts the cognitive neurologist Gerald Weber famous for his case histories describing the infinitely bizarre worlds of brain disorder Weber recognizes Mark as a rare case of Capgras Syndrome a doubling delusion and eagerly investigates What he discovers in Mark. Here we are again in the world of literature Powers is a powerful writer The length of the book 451 pps does not really tell the length of this work It is not a fast read There is much content woven into the pages a tapestry of imagery and meaning that enhances the action of the storyKearny Nebraska is a way station on the central flyway a place where thousands of cranes congregate every year on their way north and south providing an industry for the town The descriptions of the migration are uite wonderful Mark Schluter is a twenty something who crashes his truck and barely survives suffering extreme head trauma Karin Schluter his sister leaves her job to try to help with his recovery Mark cannot accept her as his sister believing that she is a copy Karin seeks help from the famous neurologist Gerald Weber who comes to Kearny for a look see Gerald struggles to figure out just what is going in with Mark s brain The case is very very unusual There is a wonderful aide Barbara at the nursing home where Mark recuperates She seems exceptionally tuned in and eager to help She has a talent everyone can see but a past that she keeps to herself Daniel is the local head of an environmental protection group and was Mark s best friend until they parted ways as teens He also had a thing for Karin and now Karin seeks his help for Mark Powers is after existential prey here What is the nature of consciousness What is reality Does it have external constancy or is all reality just what our brains make of available input Is the seuence always cause then effect It is an invigorating ride Is it connection to others that gives us anchors to life keeps the drifting balloons that are our conscious brains from floating entirely awayAlong the way he offers us a few mysteries Who is Barbara really Why did Mark run off the road Will the crane stopping point be saved What will happen with Karin and Daniel Will Mark ever return to his old selfPayload is of crane behavior river ecology the climate of the area water issues A separate payload track is neuroscience There is much in here that will not be found in the local paper about obscure brain malfunctions and their implications This was an interesting and engaging read Buried Mountain Secrets going in with Mark s brain The case is very very unusual There is a wonderful aide Barbara at the nursing home where Mark recuperates She seems exceptionally tuned in and eager to help She has a talent everyone can see but a past that she keeps to herself Daniel is the local head of an environmental protection The Deranged Cousins or Whatever group and was Mark s best friend until they parted ways as teens He also had a thing for Karin and now Karin seeks his help for Mark Powers is after existential prey here What is the nature of consciousness What is reality Does it have external constancy or is all reality just what our brains make of available input Is the seuence always cause then effect It is an invigorating ride Is it connection to others that Intuición gives us anchors to life keeps the drifting balloons that are our conscious brains from floating entirely awayAlong the way he offers us a few mysteries Who is Barbara really Why did Mark run off the road Will the crane stopping point be saved What will happen with Karin and Daniel Will Mark ever return to his old selfPayload is of crane behavior river ecology the climate of the area water issues A separate payload track is neuroscience There is much in here that will not be found in the local paper about obscure brain malfunctions and their implications This was an interesting and engaging read

Richard Powers ☆ 1 FREE READ

SUMMARY Õ TACUAREMBOFC.CO ☆ Richard Powers FREE READ ê The Echo Maker Slowly undermines even his own sense of being Meanwhile Mark armed only with a note left by an anonymous witness attempts to learn what happened the night of his inexplicable accident The truth of that evening will change the lives of all three beyond recognition Set against the Platte River’s massive spring migrations – one of the greatest spectacles in nature – The Echo Maker is a gripping mystery that explores the improvised human self and the even precarious brain that splits us from and joins us to the rest of creatio. The issue of subjectivity is a hotly debated topic in the fields of philosophy and the cognitive sciences But is subjectivity necessary at all Why is it not just enough to see and react as a robot might do What advantage is conferred on the organism by actually experiencing something over just doing it It is important to consider that animals may not have subjectivity but only react as if they do Some in this field point out that because we cannot determine that animals do have subjective feelings ualia we can say that in fact they don t until it is demonstrated otherwise It may be argued however that the burden of proof is on those who deny subjectivity in animals For myself I suspect that subjectivity is what the nervous system is all about even at the most primitive levels of evolution As an obvious corollary to that suspicion I also suspect that consciousness as the substrate for subjectivity does not exist outside the realm of nervous system function or its nonbiological euivalent if there is any Rodolfo Llin s This uote is taken from Llin s fascinating I of the Vortex specifically from a chapter on the concept of the self in relation to the human mind and how this human pretense can be explained through physical states and activity in the brain In his utterly fascinating exploration of brain plasticity and the way that neuronal signaling almost seems to communicate with various external environments to create physical movement Llin s focuses on the perplexing psychological obsession that human beings have with the concept of an I me or a self This preoccupation informs most of the troubling debates about the nature of consciousness most importantly the paradoxical notion of how a thinking self could ever objectively reflect on its own various mental states Is matter responsible for the stuff of thought Is there a ghost in the machine These are all very complicated uestions even for someone such as Llin s the preeminent neuroscientist of the twentieth century Now take a second to consider the passage listed above and a few to consider the basic uestion of selfness or subjectivity The Echo Maker by Richard Powers is a story almost predicated on this theoretical concern one so central to the aims of neuroscience Or even consider Capgras Syndrome which is what Mark Schluter the main character of the story is inflicted with after a terrible and mysterious automobile accident To paraphrase this interesting neurological complication basically the patient becomes incapable of emotionally registering the faces or physical presence of loved ones It s a strange form of agnosia and while the person still retains all of their previous memories just as lucidly as anyone else they do not recognize close relatives It s been suggested by a number of neuroscientists such as VS Ramachandran that because the brain is incapable of registering the faces of loved ones it attempts to logically acknowledge their presence as that of an impostor or double As Mark struggles with with this delusion one brought on by a physical brain state usually damage to the prefrontal cortex a number of characters the first and foremost being his sister Karin Powers meditates on how human beings deal with the suggestion that they are merely physical mechanisms responding in kind to the biological sublimity of the natural worldTo be fair there is much going on in Powers book on a cultural level anyway It s set in Kearney Nebraska which is clearly intentional on the authors part Powers is from Illinois and he critically takes on this particularly barren midwestern landscape and culture with the voice of one who ostensibly resents it to some degree Mark Schluter is sort of a redneck archetype who s as misunderstood as Bart Simpson He s a relatively bright man albeit something of a stubborn American cliche There is a certain sensitivity to his character but at the same time Powers presents him all of this after the accident of course as something of a shit kicking Natural Ice slurping Nascar fan His friends Duane and Rupp who may have had something to do with the accident are even worse something of an excuse for the degenerate path that Mark has chosen in life His sister moved away from Kearney with the explicit intention of removing herself from these types of people and pursuing a middle upper class lifestyle far away from the religious zealotry and backwoods paranoia of people like her mother and father Now she must return because she is the only person that can take care of Mark Of course the problem is that he can t recognize her and he believes that she is an actress who has temporarily taken the real Karin s place In many ways it s really an incredible utilization of such a neurological disease as a paradoxical emotional ballast to the rest of the story As Karin tries desperately to rehabilitate her brother back to normal she enlists the support of a few old friends and a few outsiders It s at this point that she revisits her old fling Daniel a local ecoterrorist type who works at the bird sanctuary and was alienated by both Karin and Mark in the past At one point he does some research on Capgras and offers her a book by an Oliver Sacksesue neuropsychologist by the name of Gerald WeberThe main focus of Weber s work as a neuropsychologist as well as a writer of popular science books was Capgras delusion A man who is plagued by the thought that his work in the popular science writing industry is negatively affecting his true calling as a brain scientist Weber initially feels over and done with exploiting case histories as fodder for publication material but he is truly compelled when he discovers the rarity of Mark s case as he has Capgras which was caused by closed head trauma So he flies out to Nebraska eventually incapable of helping due to the crippling amount of insecurity he has developed from negative book reviews about how much of a scientific hack he has become If Weber s character or Mark s for that matter don t come across as big enough symbolical stereotypes of specific kinds of narrowly defined people then they most certainly do in a roundabout way after Powers has introduced all them Especially as Karin reconnects with Robert Karsh who she had left Daniel for as a teenager and duplicitously sleeps with both men all the while helping wage a war between the earnest idealism of Daniel and nature conservancies and the cold progress motivated force of Karsh and his development team Even Karin to a certain degree could be seen as the sort of woman who because she felt so alienated by her peers growing up did everything in her power to escape the stultifying ignorance of her midwestern roots The characters all seem like such mindless puppets controlled by the whims of Powers banal imagination and what he thinks their type should be doing within the storyWhat s strange about The Echo Maker is that regardless of how solidly the narrative moves along it s bogged down by various narrative techniues that just muddle up an otherwise simple story about a woman who is basically struggling to come to terms with the idea that the brain is a physical organ merely responding in its damaged state It s likely that her brother may never recognize her again and after throwing her current lifestyle away for the sake of her brother she ll be left with the realization that all of her efforts are in vain Powers uses a lot of what s been referred to as double voicing a narrative techniue in which a third person narrator describes the mental state of the character in uestion in a language that suggests that particular characters style of thinking and speaking Keep in mind that Powers also has numerous philosophical reflections to make on the nature of the self as well as the various mysteries of human consciousness It s in this way that the narrative lurches along with a lot of cognitive science oriented discussions of physical brain states and how these influence the way in which people think and act When he s double voicing for Weber in particular the narrative drones on like a bland version of Ramachandran s A Brief Tour of Human Consciousness or some incredibly dull introduction to neuroscience While The Echo Maker contains a handful of profound moments of human beings struggling with the natural mystery of their own brains and what they think makes them individualistic or special it fails to deliver well on a story imbued with so much dense technical knowledge Every explanation makes certain parts of the book read like non fiction which certainly isn t a good thing considering what Powers seems to be attempting to accomplish More importantly the probing uestions about the nature of consciousness and the abstract meditations on the ecosystems of Cranes their brains human brains and the boorish march of progress that Powers seems to think that human beings are so notorious for just overwhelm the book Add to all of this characters that are insufferable after ten or twenty pages and all you have left is a really neat premise that gets carried away with its own ponderous lack of limits


10 thoughts on “PDF The Echo Maker

  1. says: PDF The Echo Maker

    PDF The Echo Maker My wife is such a sweetie She saw that my job had me knee deep in numbers and thought maybe I’d appreciate words in my life for ballast With that in mind she arranged for me to take an online writing class We just started Week 2

  2. says: REVIEW The Echo Maker Richard Powers ☆ 1 FREE READ PDF The Echo Maker

    REVIEW The Echo Maker Richard Powers ☆ 1 FREE READ PDF The Echo Maker I find the task of reviewing Richard Powers daunting and humbling This is my third one after Orfeo and The Time of Our Singing and they are all brilliant in subtly different ways One obvious difference is that there is much less music in this one but there is a wealth of ideas on the brain on nature and evoluti

  3. says: PDF The Echo Maker

    PDF The Echo Maker SUMMARY Õ TACUAREMBOFC.CO ☆ Richard Powers Richard Powers ☆ 1 FREE READ Karin returns to her small town in Nebraska to care for her brother Mark almost killed in a mysterious highway ac

  4. says: REVIEW The Echo Maker SUMMARY Õ TACUAREMBOFC.CO ☆ Richard Powers Richard Powers ☆ 1 FREE READ

    SUMMARY Õ TACUAREMBOFC.CO ☆ Richard Powers PDF The Echo Maker Richard Powers ☆ 1 FREE READ Here we are again in the world of literature Powers is a powerful writer The length of the book 451 pps does not really tell the length of this work It is not a fast read There is much content woven into the pages a tapestry of imagery and meaning that enhances the action of the storyKearny Nebraska is a way station on the central flyway a place where thousands of cranes congregate every year on their way nort

  5. says: PDF The Echo Maker

    PDF The Echo Maker This book stunk so badly that I left it on the seat of the train as I was leaving A woman behind me said Excuse m

  6. says: REVIEW The Echo Maker PDF The Echo Maker Richard Powers ☆ 1 FREE READ

    PDF The Echo Maker Mr Powers I have no doubt in your ability to write the sappiest story ever Not only do you manage to force a sister brother bond over whooping cranes and frost you also manage to force a shameful but safe romance between said sister and said brother's successful counterpart I hate you Thanks to you I will never

  7. says: SUMMARY Õ TACUAREMBOFC.CO ☆ Richard Powers PDF The Echo Maker Richard Powers ☆ 1 FREE READ

    REVIEW The Echo Maker PDF The Echo Maker SUMMARY Õ TACUAREMBOFC.CO ☆ Richard Powers The issue of subjectivity is a hotly debated topic in the fields of philosophy and the cognitive sciences But is subjectivity necessary at all? Why is it not just enough to see and react as a robot might do? What advantage is conferred on the organism by actually experiencing something over just doing it? It is important to consider that ani

  8. says: REVIEW The Echo Maker PDF The Echo Maker Richard Powers ☆ 1 FREE READ

    PDF The Echo Maker Flowers for Algernon for the new millenniumOkay not really no Well maybe a little?The best parts of this book we

  9. says: PDF The Echo Maker Richard Powers ☆ 1 FREE READ REVIEW The Echo Maker

    PDF The Echo Maker SUMMARY Õ TACUAREMBOFC.CO ☆ Richard Powers REVIEW The Echo Maker The Echo Maker 2006 won the National Book Award and was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize Here is a small sample of the many glowing reviews that the book and its author received “A grand novel – grand in its reach grand

  10. says: PDF The Echo Maker

    PDF The Echo Maker SUMMARY Õ TACUAREMBOFC.CO ☆ Richard Powers REVIEW The Echo Maker This is my fourth Richard Powers book in as many weeks When the Austin paper reviewed The Echo Maker prior to its release I was intrigued and drawn to this author with an immediate urgency to read him First I read the beautiful and o

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  • Hardcover
  • 451
  • The Echo Maker
  • Richard Powers
  • English
  • 15 September 2020
  • 9780374146351