Download Chaos Bound: Orderly Disorder in Contemporary Literature and by Katherine Hayles PDF

By Katherine Hayles

While that the learn of nonlinear dynamics got here into its personal in the
sctences, the point of interest of literary stories shifted towards neighborhood, fragmentary modes of
analysis within which texts have been not considered as deterministic or predictable.
N. Katherine Hayles the following investigates parallels among modern literature and significant conception and the rising interdisciplinary box often called the
science of chaos. She reveals in either clinical and literary discourse new interpretations of chaos, that's obvious not as ailment yet as a locus of maximum
information and complexity. the recent paradigm of chaos contains components that,
Hayles indicates, have been glaring in literary idea and literature sooner than they became
prominent within the sciences. She asserts that such similarities among the natural
and human sciences are the outcome no longer of direct impression yet of roots in a
common cultural matrix.
Hayles lines the evolution of the concept that of chaos and evaluates the paintings of
such theorists as Prigogine, Feigenbaum, and Mandelbrot, for whom chaos
entails an unpredictably open universe during which wisdom is restricted to local
sites and clinical versions can by no means exhaust the chances of the particular. But
this view doesn't suggest that scientists have given up the quest for international reasons of typical phenomena, for chaos is conceived of as containing its own
form of order. Hayles envisions chaos as a double-edged sword: it may be viewed
either as a popularity that sickness performs a extra very important function in natural
processes than had hitherto been well-known or as an extension of order into areas
that had hitherto resisted formalization. She examines buildings and subject matters of
disorder within the schooling of Henry Adams, Doris Lessing's Golden Notebook,
and works by means of Stanislaw Lem. Hayles concludes by means of displaying how the writings of
poststmcturalist theorists include vital positive aspects of chaos theory-such as
an curiosity in pertaining to neighborhood websites to worldwide stmctures; a notion of order and
disorder as interpenetrating instead of adversarial; an understanding that during complex
systems small motives can result in big results; and an knowing that
complex structures may be either deterministic and unpredictable.
Chaos certain will give a contribution to and liven up present debates between chaos
theorists, cultural critics and cultural historians, serious theorists, literary
critics attracted to 19th- and twentieth-century literature, researchers in
nonlinear dynamics, and others all for the relation among science
and tradition.

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Additional info for Chaos Bound: Orderly Disorder in Contemporary Literature and Science

Example text

This development I call "Shannon's Choice," after the decision that Claude Shannon made to equate information with entropy, rather than to oppose them, as had been accepted practice until then. This decision was possible, I argue, because the underlying heuristic had changed, allowing the problem that Maxwell's Demon had posed to be conceptualized in a new way. The example illustrates how scien­ tific theory can be guided by conceptual sets embodied in heuristic Maxwell's Demon and Shannon's Choice 33 narratives, even though these sets are not part of the theory as such.

It points to a similarity, but the similarity is striking because in other respects the concepts are very different. A metaphor is vital only as long as the relation is problematic-that is to say, as long as similarity and difference are both perceived to be present. When differences in the relation have been so successfully suppressed through use and habit that they are no longer capable of putting a torque or, as Ricoeur says, a "twist" (p. 50) on our under­ standing of the concepts, the metaphor is dead.

The denatured concepts include language, time, context, and, increasingly as postmodernism progresses, the human. Chaos has its frightening as well as its liberating aspects. Fragmentation and unpredictability are not, I argue, always cause for celebration. The title of this study, Chaos Bound, was chosen because it hints at the complexities of these contemporary inscriptions of chaos. One cluster of meanings centers on the sense of "bound" as a limit line or boundary. Bringing into view a third territory that lies between or­ der and disorder, chaos theory draws boundaries where previously there was only bifurcation.

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