February 19, 2014
Like much current prison literature, Orange is the New Black seeks strenuously – and tellingly – to reaffirm the triumph of the human spirit. Rather than dwell on her misfortune or become too accustomed to prison life, Piper Kerman stages a protest, Oprah-style: no one can keep her down.
February 19, 2014
I couldn’t question Hemingway’s mastery of prose. His pancake recipe inspired less confidence.
February 18, 2014
Is a writer allowed to have regrets? Certainly. Is she allowed to air them publicly? I mean, yeah, it’s a free internet, why not? Do I want to hear a single additional word about the world of Harry Potter from J. K. Rowling that is not in the form of another book? No, not particularly.
February 14, 2014
But does a universal, mystical “Russian Soul” really exist? Did it ever? Is it the only explanation for what makes Russians Russian? For this crop of authors, the answer is nyet.
February 13, 2014
This kind of gymnastic use of a single word is Smith’s specialty, but instead of simply engaging in verbal pyrotechnics for their own sake, Smith wants to understand the dynamic between language and our inner lives.
February 12, 2014
by Ted Gioia
You may think that the most interesting man in the world has a scraggly gray beard, drinks Mexican beer, and hangs out with women half his age. But you’re dead wrong. I discovered the real deal. His name was Martin Gardner.
February 10, 2014
by Matt Seidel
I can think of no better way to honor both the man and his singular hero possessed of an “incurable wanderlust” and a “vocation for defeat” than by quoting the latter’s bathroom graffiti, bits of wisdom written by the Gaviero in his seclusion.
February 6, 2014
by M. M. Owen
Accusations of scientism and reductionism may or may not be warranted, but the fact remains: the most fundamental discovery in all of biological science remains more-or-less completely un-talked about in English seminars.
February 5, 2014
In America, teachers are either seen as angelic or caustic, saviors or sycophants. These stereotypes enable politicians to convince the public to support the latest education fad or slash needed budgets. The reality is we teach because we love to help kids, and we think literature is a way to examine and understand our complex lives.
January 31, 2014
The Grand Experimenter, it turns out, was Ludwig van Beethoven. This musical colossus, completely deaf, his personal affairs in chaos, perennially behind in his finances, unwell and unloved, reworked the string quartet in ways that continue to bewilder and astonish.