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The Charge In The Global Membrane Paperback – Illustrated, Jan. 21 2019

4.9 out of 5 stars 9 ratings

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"B. W. Powe's The Charge is a much-needed intervention in our moment of cultural opening troubled by opposing forces seeking to halt the movement. Ranging from ancient literature and history to space travel, ecological crises, science fiction movies, and the current political turmoil around the globe, this powerful book discloses interconnections among all of these phenomena. Having drunk from the same visionary wells as William Blake, Simone Weil, Teilhard de Chardin, Bob Dylan, and the prophet Isaiah, Powe offers lightning flashes of insight into our disturbing and exhilarating times."

Jerry Harp, author of Spirit Under Construction

"If Marshall McLuhan were to rejoin us today, he would be stunned at how much has changed so quickly. ...Your Membrane text does the update exactly as he would. ...The integration of text with art work made me think at first of (what is for me) the best of Arthur Kroker... The artwork by Marshall Soules is nothing short of amazing. He's a sort of Wyndham Lewis, Marc Chagall, and Picasso rolled into one. ...The text is masterly, always marrying precision and elegance with phrases such as 'ripples of sensibility, ' "global epic of extremism," the notion of pattern recognition flipping into paranoia... Well done!"

W. Terrence Gordon, author of Marshall McLuhan: Escape into Understanding, dramatist and essayist

"It takes a visionary to be able to make sense of the blur of the world whirling ever faster around us. The drawn images add another dimension to the words. ...It takes a non-linear poetic mind to describe the new normal of our existence. ...Loved the way this tied in Rimbaud and the 'cusp artists.'

Diane Keating, poet, novelist, author of The Crying Out

"This is a great piece of work: a really timely synthesis of much of B.W.P's thinking over the years. And the Cuban street-art plays at so many levels (I particularly like the irony)."

Jim Berry, artist and entrepreneur

"The Charge is by far the best thing Powe´s written since McLuhan and Frye, sweeping in scope, finely tuned, and appropriate in style, deeply provocative in thought."

Wilfred Cude, author of The PhD Trap and Weapons of Mass Disruption

About the Author

B.W. Powe is a writer and a teacher. He has written over 14 books of poetry and prose, and he teaches at York University. He lives in Canada and Spain.

Marshall Soules is the former Chair of Media Studies at Vancouver Island University and author of Media, Persuasion and Propaganda (2015) among other works. He has been photographing wall art since the 1980s.

Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Neopoiesis Press, LLC; Illustrated edition (Jan. 21 2019)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 176 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0997502185
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0997502183
  • Item weight ‏ : ‎ 435 g
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 17.78 x 1.17 x 25.4 cm
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.9 out of 5 stars 9 ratings

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Reviewed in Canada on January 2, 2020
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Reviewed in Canada on January 24, 2020
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5.0 out of 5 stars Unconscious clicks!
By Andrew Danson Danushevsky on January 24, 2020
…a wake-up call
The Charge In The Global Membrane by B.W. Powe review by Andrew Danson Danushevsky

In the early1900’s not long before my great grandmother died, she wrote a letter to her eleven children telling them to “live in their own time”.

B.W. Powe’s ‘The Charge in the Global Membrane’ messages “Love of the order of the world” (Weil). Powe also messages our confusions, and anxiety about living in this time, ‘our time’. In part, Powe is warning us that our unrestrained fixation with pixels, clicks, lifespeed’s hypnosis, status quo and money, is feeding the rapidity of (societal) change and global decline. He is also messaging about hope in our time, in this time of escalating global unrest.

Could McLuhan, (Powe’s professor and subject of Powe’s writing) have possessed any inkling about enviro-socio-political decline with his words: “We shape our tools and thereafter our tools shape us? There are no passengers on spaceship earth. We are all crew” wrote McLuhan. It would appear to this writer that most of the crew has now defected to the passenger section.

McLuhan’s words have become prophetic in regards to the worst of “our tools” and the worst of our driving technology. The crew on spaceship earth have been scammed by the 1% who have amassed obscene wealth, power and the membrane’s offerings. We are slowly gobbling those offerings driven by overconsumption and the power of the 1%. We are mesmerized with the aid of ETA, electro-tech addiction.

Powe’s words “The poetry of love between humans” embodies optimism while he ponders the Twitter feed, a simplistic and perilous conduit for complex issues. Powe’s macroscopic narrative examines the potency of Twitter-bits that shadow Trump’s deception; that is, Trump’s mastery of keeping us off-balance utilizing his weaponized lies and fake news.

Powe informs us about bowing to the golden calf of contrivance technology. His message exposes our psychological/spiritual bewilderment generated by clicks and subversive algorithms. Alexa, is anyone there with you? Within our political and monetized divides
Powe is ultimately warning us to be alert to the strategies of belief and doubt created by those who want our minds, eg the Bannon factor. “I see you but you can’t see me” (Harvard professor Shoshana Zuboff, “The Age of Surveillance Capitalism”).
“Dumming down” = “Numbing down” as one steps further into Powe’s prescient sensibility. “Conspiracy theories” are the mothers of fear and abuse of power. We have no time to absorb, let alone process.
Stress disorders are a child of speed. “And if we could sit still; and if we could unplug and breathe…We’d nourish our dreaming…” writes Powe in his deep desire for relief and calm.

Powe’s concerns are honed in his thinking as both a visionary and a parent of children who are (as my own child) destined to live in acceleration where instant becomes slow. The newly designed exascale supercomputer performs ‘a billion, billion calculations per second…or 1 exaflop’. Faster than light particles lead us to darker energy…but Powe lays bare his words “…love beyond the speed of light.”

Attention spans have/are diminishing observes Powe. He wants us to recognize that the ground we stand on is unstable because it keeps changing. Little wonder Powe states that he is “writing in freefall”.

“The exoduses and pilgrimages that are physical and digital”….. writes Powe. Does he infer we are leaving parts of the planet that are becoming unlivable? “The rains aren’t coming anymore” but the salt water is beginning to smother coastlines….we are on fire! Will digital technology really help, or accelerate the mass movements of people who can no longer live where they were born?

Powe invokes realities connected to our planetary decline. The electric message in “hyper-speed” is hastening ‘the charge in the global membrane’. The membrane containing the existence of plant, animal, and humans on earth is threatened by heat, more fire, rising seas and a disappearing water supply. How far can the membrane stretch.. or is it already developing ‘pin holes’? “The Gaia (Greek for Mother Earth) is convulsed” writes Powe.

Astronomers are telling us that the night sky filled with many thousands of white-streaked satellites launched for high-speed internet are so dazzling they are competing with the stars.

“Anxiety of loneliness is our deepest form of alienation” states Powe.
Millisecond media is a food for anxiety. Outdoor play, movement and exercise for (especially) young people has been replaced by indoor screens and pixels. Our heads and our bodies are falling out of whack. “Everything seems to be closing in, seizing up” says Powe. People see less of each other as our bloodless electronic devices (social media) trumps face to face synergy….interaction.

“Gaia is lashing out in grief and pain” states Powe. Our fake complacency (generated by fear) finds most our heads even deeper in the sand.

Though Powe extends “Greetings, blessings and the approach of hope”, the WMO (World Meteorological Organisation) presents a grim picture of the accelerating physical signs and socio-economic impacts of the climate change across the world. Mar 29, 2019)

Membrane serves up a warning about our decline that falls between fear and our greed-creed for money: there is never enough. Our money will not save us.

The Charge is superbly illustrated with provocative images of street art captured in the photos of Marshall Soules. The images rebound between Powe’s words of hope, caution, and the edgy images. The Charge in the Global Membrane messes with traditional book design mashing up fonts, typeface and visual space. The book’s overall graphic appearance is a ‘visional wake-up’ in conjunction with Powe’s provocative words which poke the membrane.

B.W. Powe’s ‘The Charge in the Global Membrane’ does contain a passionate expression for hope, a “prayer for the hearts” in this age of Surveillance Capitalism (Zuboff). The Charge suggests that nihilism is not the best way to approach the world; optimism holds options.

Powe charges us with his innate (and poetic) optimism while warning us that business as usual may exert enough pressure to rupture the membrane. We believed that technology, trust in the electric pulse, would save us, however are we even closer to an ‘Outage’?
Is “the poetry and love between humans and the universe” enough to save us? Is hope ‘accepting the present reality?’

by Andrew Danson Danushevsky
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Reviewed in Canada on November 22, 2019
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Reviewed in Canada on October 30, 2019
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Reviewed in Canada on November 15, 2019
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