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Recursion is a central motif of Morrison’s work, with its emphasis on repetition and cyclical structures. The theory of recursion also touches upon several of Morrison’s key themes and interests, including language (linguist Noam Chomsky believes it to be a defining aspect of human communication), fractal geometry (where recursive patterns dictate the development of non-Euclidean natural structures), and what the cognitive scientist Douglas Hofstadter refers to as “strange loops”, whereby a return to origin is the end point in certain kinds of relations, and where hierarchy disappears and becomes “heterarchy”.
Many of Morrison’s comics blend immersive strategies with recursive structures, and both are realised at the level of theme, and in the form of the comics themselves, on the one hand exploring notions of identity, storytelling, apocalypse and transcendence, but also tapping into the very fabric of communication and cognition. Morrison’s comics integrate these concepts and themes in a dizzying roller-coaster ride of playful intertextuality, pop-magic and intellectual seriousness, making him one of the most fascinating authors working today.