Kirsty's Reviews > But What If We're Wrong? Thinking About the Present As If It Were the Past

But What If We're Wrong? Thinking About the Present As If It ... by Chuck Klosterman
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really liked it
bookshelves: non-fiction, on-creating-bad-art, best-of-2016

As the opening chapter questions whether we could be wrong about the existence of gravity, I thought this would be a book about philosophy and the nature of existence. Of course, I should have looked closely at the author's name - Chuck Klosterman writes about the arts and pop culture, so rather than questioning the nature of existence, mostly this book questions our value judgements on the arts and pop culture. The chapter on books asks just how wrong we can be about who will be the voice of this generation. The chapter on music asks how rock music will be remembered 100 years in the future. And so on through TV and televised sports.

There is one chapter of philosophical questions, asking: what if reality is just a computer simulation? What if our dreams are more significant than we think? This was my favourite chapter, and I wish the whole book was more along these lines. Oh well, no use wishing a book was something that it's not.

Each chapter is slightly too long - the reader already gets the point, but Klosterman still gives us one more example just in case. Still, his style is always enjoyable, and this book did change the way I thought about what I (and everyone) consider 'good' art.

I'm currently struggling with the first draft of my second novel, and this book reminded me that it doesn't matter what I write anyway - in time I will be forgotten or remembered based on future criteria we can't even begin to imagine. So I might as well just try to tell a good story.

One of my favourites of 2016, in the category 'Best Book About Pop Culture':
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Reading Progress

February 14, 2016 – Shelved
February 14, 2016 – Shelved as: to-read
February 17, 2016 – Started Reading
March 1, 2016 – Shelved as: non-fiction
March 1, 2016 – Shelved as: on-creating-bad-art
March 1, 2016 – Finished Reading
January 8, 2017 – Shelved as: best-of-2016

Comments Showing 1-2 of 2 (2 new)

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message 1: by Hvvost (new)

Hvvost thank you for fine tuning my expectations toward that book! good luck with your novel!

Sarah You put into words what I could not after reading this one. Well put.

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