slow river and corporations

Of all the "subplots" that make up this novel, I found the Lore/Sal Bird -- Magyar one the most intriguing. In the beginning it definitely inspires a disgust for the corporate machine and how little it seems to care about the consumers of its "product", which is essential to life: water. All of this seems to suggest that in a technological age, one of humanity's few remaining weaknesses is its dependence on greedy profit-driven corporations for survival, which is certainly true of our real world.

At first I was stunned that Magyar ends up falling in love with Lore/Sal Bird; I thought that Magyar would just be the thorn in Lore's side, the annoying boss who is intimidated by her intelligence and pretends that Lore's work isn't good enough to save some face. However, in this section of menial worker ants, Lore is probably the only one who has ever given Magyar a good challenge. But this ending kind of bothered me because of how "Hollywood" it was...walking away hand in hand 'into the sunset' per se.

Also, Magyar in some ways is made to seem more traditionally "feminine" than Spanner (mainly implied by numerous references to her glorious hair swishing behind her), thus suggesting that the best kind of lesbian relationship can only happen between two "feminine" women. I was glad that someone brought this up in class because although it's clear that Griffith sets out to break a lot of boundaries and go against readers' expectations, she also goes along with some other stereotypes (the porno lesbian being the main one)

Anyway, that's my rant on this novel; not my favorite, but certainly innovative when it comes to sexuality and gender issues.

I'm not sure that the ending is "hollywood", as you put it...I think, and I believe it was mentioned in class, that the ending is purposefully at odds with the lack of resolution of the larger, societal issues at work. by giving Lore a simple, happy ending, Griffith is emphasizing the fundamental difference between people like Lore's family and the rest of the world--no matter how much they are exposed to the rigors and problems of lower-class life, they will never understand it because they will always have options that "natives" of the class lack.