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Dr. Stuart Marcovitch

Associate Professor

Stuart Marcovitch

Timequake
by Kurt Vonnegut

I was pleasantly surprised when I read Timequake, as I didn’t expect a comedic science fiction book to demonstrate strong connections to my research on the development of the conscious control of actions. A timequake has caused the last 10 years to repeat, forcing people into an automated mode as they replay their actions exactly as they occurred the first time around. When the timequake abruptly ends, mayhem ensues as people have forgotten how to execute an intentional and deliberate response. Vonnegut’s work was inspiring to me, as it produced the ultimate thought experiment on what life would be like without conscious control. Perhaps more importantly, it made me laugh out loud.