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From: "j e" 
Subject: (urth) inhuma in brazil
Date: Sat, 20 Jul 2002 13:35:48 -0400

Reading _Brazilian Adventure_ late last night (by Peter Fleming - about an 
exploration of central Brazil in the early thities) there's a section where 
the writer descibes some of the birds they see while travelling on the 
Araguaya river. Among the birds is the inhuma, which is:

...a gigantic and mysterious fowl, bigger than a cock capercailzie but built 
on more or less the same lines. These would take refuge in the tops of trees 
and thence utter a strange, murmurous and rather asthmatic crooning. Whether 
they are good to eat I can not say.

I tried a google search on inhuma and Brazil but all I came up with is a 
reference to a Lake Inhuma. Still, I'm always thrilled to  find something 
like this - a possible clue. Like the time I found a section on decision 
trees in a book on math for engineers. There was a "source to sink" diagram 
which struck me as similar to the kabbalah's tree of life. From that I had a 
moment of intuition about Severian's judgement in Urth. When Tzadkiel says 
(I paraphrase)_that we have examined your future and determined that the 
probability of your bringing a new sun is high_, I see the corridors of time 
viewed as a great decision tree. (It's interesting that the masters of Briah 
acknowledge some uncertainty and of course it fits the god does play dice 

While I'm de-lurked here, I have another conjecture. Does Olivine's manner 
of speech indicate we are to hear it as an echoing from an incompletly 
configured voice generator rather than a processing defect where she begins 
a sentence, doesn't register that it's begun and repeats it. Her character 
makes me sad and to think of her voice beginning as an hollow, broken sound 
that echos just a little more audibly makes me want to weep.

I think the focus on speech mannerisms is an effort of Wolfe's to have us 
hear the words, rather than read them flat. And there is likely a philosophy 
behind it rather than it just being a device to give depth to a realization. 
I don't find any of them embarrassing or laughable as some have stated here. 
In the interview with Nick Gevers recently he said Remora and Incus were 
based on people he'd met. Anyone we might have heard of?

Joe Eull

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