Saturday, December 26, 2009
Magnus Carlsen Interviewed in Time Magazine
Eben Harrell's Time interview, "Magnus Carlsen: The 19-year-old King of Chess," is the latest evidence that Carlsen has the ability to generate media interest in the game. It is a very positive interview where the world number one says, "I'm not afraid the computer will find all the ideas and leave no room for imagination." Of course, the article also suggests that chess is still judged with suspicion in the media, as though it were responsible for Fischer's dementia (instead of being the reason Fischer remained somewhat sane as long as he did): Carlsen is also asked, "Do you fear that trying to master a game of near-infinite variation can make you insane?" The Time article even links to the 1972 article "Why They Play: The Psychology of Chess," which recalls the Freudian view of the game frequently cited back then. I think the Freudians would have a field day with Tiger Woods and golf, so it's rather a shame their mode of interpretation doesn't get wider play or parody today. For more thoughts on the Time piece, check out Mig Greengard's "Time for Magnus Carlsen."