Overview Enchanting stories about the evolution of the universe, with characters that are fashioned from mathematical formulae and cellular structures. “Naturally, we were all there, - old Qfwfq said, - where else could we have been? Nobody knew then that there could be space. Or time either: what use did we have for time, packed in there like sardines?” Translated by William Weaver. A Helen and Kurt Wolff Book Fantasies on the evolution of...
- ISBN-13: 9780156226004
- Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
- Publication date: 10/28/1976
- Series: Harbrace Paperbound Library
- Pages: 168
- Sales rank: 129,785
- Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 7.95 (h) x 0.39 (d)
5.0 / 5.0
Ever since our ancestors started looking into the night sky, the saw patterns and connections between the stars, moons and planets, and used stories and myths to imbue those patterns with meaning and structure. With the big hindsight of the scientific worldview, all those ancient stories may seem quaint and naïve. And indeed, the advent of modern astronomy and astrophysics has greatly enriched and deepened our understanding of the Cosmos. But these wonderful new insights should not be taken in opposition to our imagination when we stare in the sky. And this is the starting point of Italo Calvino's wonderful book "Cosmicomics." It is in a sense a variation on the theme of Cosmos. Each one of the chapters in the book takes a certain scientific fact about the Cosmos, its evolution and the present state, and turns it into an imaginative story with a deeply personal theme. The main protagonist, whimsically named Qfwfq, is present in many forms throughout history of the Cosmos and he narrates its main events through very personal eyes. Many of the stories are love stories of the most imaginative kind, which is not surprising since Calvino is known and excels at that genre. Overall this is a wonderful book that tries to reestablish a very human face of the Cosmos. I highly recommend it.
4.0 / 5.0
I fell head over heels in love with the first story, The Distance of the Moon. In Cosmicomics, Calvino writes with magic and beauty. For anyone who grew up completely immersed in Aesop's Fables and the fantasy and mere aesthetic pleasure of it, read this!
5.0 / 5.0
Could anyone but Calvino write compelling romances centered around things like the beginnings of color on Earth or the proximity of the moon? Or, best of all, the unforgettable final story, which implies that all of the variety of life on Earth was created as a spontaneous act of love?