"The Cursory Remix" - interactive experimental poetry book

  • Michał Kamil Piotrowski

Can you save Understanding from the totalitarian Google Translate? This interactive book takes you on a translating adventure. Escape the country that sacrifices friends and save yourself from the Not Fault Tolerant services of Google. Don’t get fooled by the unattainable absolute of Wikipedia on your way to the Seven Serpents. Do you have what it takes to help people understand each other?

The Cursory Remix takes sections from the book The Cursory Epic by Stephen Mooney and reuses them in order to illustrate, using Google Translate, why that same Google Translate is a flawed tool and shouldn’t be used as widely and uncritically as it is now.
The numbering system used in The Cursory Epic allows the application of numerically ranked languages to the text within the Google Translate process employed.
This process applied to ‘The Shamutanti Hills’ has resulted in the text of ‘Google error’, Part 1 of The Cursory Remix. Each phrase separated by slashes has been translated into a foreign language and back into English.
The 103 languages served by Google Translate have been ranked according to the total number of native speakers globally, and a different language has been assigned to each section number from ‘The Shamutanti Hills’ and then ‘The Seven Serpents’ (Part 1 and Part 3 of The Cursory Epic, respectively).
Part 3 of The Cursory Remix, ‘The One Hundred and Three Languages’ is an interactive text – the reader is invited to use Google Translate to translate sections of ‘The Seven Serpents’, reproduced alongside ‘The One Hundred and Three Languages’, applying the system used in Part 1, translating into the assigned language and back into English – these languages are indicated within the text.
Although section numbers taken from ‘The Shamutanti Hills’ and ‘The Seven Serpents’ differ, the same system of assigning languages to these numbers has been used – the lower the number of the section, the more highly ranked the language.
Part 1 of The Cursory Remix shows you how to play the book, Part 3 invites you to partake in play, while Parts 2 and 3.5 are original texts, not directly based on The Cursory Epic, how to employ them in play is all about your agency as the reader.