#9: Cyberpunk With Author Malka Older

Malka Older’s Centenal Cycle Series begins with Infomocracy followed by Null States and State Tectonics, and takes readers through a world of micro-democracies.

I love how she’s using the series to create small laboratories in which to investigate social technologies and structures as well as the diverse characters moving among them. This series is a true cyberpunk technothriller!

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Good Karma Opp!

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Show Notes: What You’ll Find in Episode 9

Personal Update

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This week I share my new Audible sponsorship, including Malka’s series as read by Christine Marshall (it’s an awesome performance)! You can also click this link for a running list of punk-related audiobooks I recommend.

Storypunks Social Audible D

Interview With Cyberpunk Author Malka Older

Malka shares all kinds of fantastic insight, including why her work is probably better termed mezzo-cyberpunk, not post-cyberpunk.

Basically, you will feel smarter after this conversation with Malka, and especially if you dive into this series . . . I know I did!

Mentioned in this episode:

Malka Older’s Website

Detroit’s Digital Access Divide (New York Times)

Brave New World Conference

Neil Harbisson – Cyborg

Moon Ribas – Cyborg

Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion

Also, here’s a list of questions I asked Malka:

  • In this show, we discuss “the punks”, and today we’re talking about cyberpunk. Since everyone has their own take on the term, how do you define it and what do you feel qualifies as in-bounds?
  • For anyone who has not yet jumped in with your Centenal Cycle series, can you give us an overview and share what themes readers can expect?
  • You are a humanitarian worker as well as an author and PhD candidate. How have your work and studies informed the Centenal Cycle, or is it the other way around (or both!)?

Malka Older Centenal Cycle

  • I think a lot of us in the cyberpunk community love exploring system-oriented alternatives or ideas to what we see in real-world political arenas. Since your series explores very interesting ideas such as microdemocracies, could you share your thoughts on this? And/or, could you please share other high-level, system-oriented ideas about our real-world governments and, if relevant, how they manifest themselves in your series?
  • You recently spoke at the future-focused Brave New World Conference in Leiden. Since I’m sure my listeners all wish they could have attended, can you share a couple ideas from your address, or do you have any additional observations from that experience?
  • As we record this at the beginning of 2018, what does the future of cyberpunk look like? What do you project for cyberpunk in 2018 and beyond?


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