Bringing together penetrating conversations between poets of different generations as they explore process and poetics, poetry’s influence on other art forms, and the political and social aspects of their work, 12 × 12 restores poesis to the center of poetry.
Christina Mengert and Joshua Marie Wilkinson have assembled an expansive and searching view of the world through the eyes of twenty-four of our most vital and engaging poets. Punctuated by poems from each contributor, 12 × 12 brings together an unparalleled range of poets and poetries, men and women from around the world, working poets for whom the form vitally matters.
Jennifer K. Dick–Laura Mullen
Jon Woodward–Rae Armantrout
Sabrina Orah Mark–Claudia Rankine
Christina Hawkey–Tomaž Šalamun
Christine Hume–Rosemarie Waldrop
Srinkath Reddy–Mark Levine
Karen Volkman–Allen Grossman
Paul Fattaruso–Dara Wier
Mark Yakich–Mary Leader
Michelle Robinson–Paul Auster
Sawako Nakayasu–Carla Harryman
Ben Lerner–Aaron Kunin
If you thought the most challenging aspects of a career in acting would involve choosing the "right" roles and dodging the paparatzzi, think again. Success requires a tremendous amount of hard work, creativity, and dedication, as you'll learn from some of the industry's most respected name, in Acting Now.
Biographies are so much more than lists of teachers, roles, and awards. The Actor’s Art conveys stories about numerous productions, insight about becoming and being an actor, and opinions about issues such as color-blind casting and the future of theatre. Together, these conversations form lively, thought-provoking sketches of such stars as Hume Cronyn and Jessica Tandy, Ruby Dee, Julie Harris, Cherry Jones, James Earl Jones, Stacy Keach, Nathan Lane, and Jason Robards. The Actor’s Art demonstrates the value of listening, and the pleasures of reading.
Through a series of provocative conversations, Frederick Luis Aldama and Herbert Lindenberger, who have written widely on literature, film, music, and art, locate a place for the discomforting and the often painfully unpleasant within aesthetics. The conversational format allows them to travel informally across many centuries and many art forms. They have much to tell one another about the arts since the advent of modernism soon after 1900—the nontonal music, for example, of the Second Vienna School, the chance-directed music and dance of John Cage and Merce Cunningham, the in-your-faceness of such diverse visual artists as Francis Bacon, Pablo Picasso, Willem de Kooning, Egon Schiele, Otto Dix, and Damien Hirst. They demonstrate as well a long tradition of discomforting art stretching back many centuries, for example, in the Last Judgments of innumerable Renaissance painters, in Goya’s so-called “black” paintings, in Wagner’s Tristan chord, and in the subtexts of Shakespearean works such as King Lear and Othello. This book is addressed at once to scholars of literature, art history, musicology, and cinema. Although its conversational format eschews the standard conventions of scholarly argument, it provides original insights both into particular art forms and into individual works within these forms. Among other matters, it demonstrates how recent work in neuroscience may provide insights in the ways that consumers process difficult and discomforting works of art. The book also contributes to current aesthetic theory by charting the dialogue that goes on—especially in aesthetically challenging works—between creator, artifact, and consumer.
A collection of portraits of many remarkable Alabamians, famous and obscure, profiled by award-winning journalist and novelist Roy Hoffman
Alabama Afternoons is a collection of portraits of many remarkable Alabamians, famous and obscure, profiled by award-winning journalist and novelist Roy Hoffman. Written as Sunday feature stories for the Mobile Press-Register with additional pieces from the New York Times, Preservation, and Garden & Gun, these profiles preserve the individual stories—and the individual voices within the stories—that help to define one of the most distinctive states in the union.
Hoffman recounts his personal visits with writer Mary Ward Brown in her library in Hamburg, with photographer William Christenberry in a field in Newbern, and with storyteller Kathryn Tucker Windham and folk artist Charlie “Tin Man” Lucas at their neighboring houses in Selma. Also highlighted are the lives of numerous alumni of The University of Alabama—among them Mel Allen, the “Voice of the Yankees” from 1939 to 1964; Forrest Gump author Winston Groom; and Vivian Malone and James Hood, the two students who entered the schoolhouse door in 1963. Hoffman profiles distinguished Auburn University alumni as well, including Eugene Sledge, renowned World War II veteran and memoirist, and Neil Davis, the outspoken, nationally visible editor of the Lee County Bulletin.
Hoffman also profiles major and minor players in the civil rights movement, from Johnnie Carr, raised in segregated Montgomery and later president of the Montgomery Improvement Association; and George Wallace Jr., son of the four-time governor; to Theresa Burroughs, a Greensboro beautician trampled in the march over the Edmund Pettus Bridge; and Diane McWhorter, whose award- winning book explores the trouble- filled Birmingham civil rights experience. Juxtaposed with these are accounts of lesser-known individuals, such as Sarah Hamm, who attempts to preserve the fading Jewish culture in Eufaula; Edward Carl, who was butler and chauffeur to Bellingrath Gardens founder Walter Bellingrath in Theodore; and cousins William Bolton and Herbert Henson, caretakers of the coon dog cemetery in Russellville.
Hoffman’s compilation of life stories creates an engaging and compelling look into what it means to be from, and shaped by, Alabama. “Alabama Afternoons,” he writes in the introduction, “is a small part of the even bigger question of what it means to be an American.”
Read an article about domestic lives by Roy Hoffman in the New York Times here: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/25/garden/25Domestic.html
In this lively look at current debates in American philosophy, leading philosophers talk candidly about the changing character of their discipline. In the spirit of Emerson's The American Scholar, this book explores the identity of the American philosopher. Through informal conversations, the participants discuss the rise of post-analytic philosophy in America and its relations to European thought and to the American pragmatist tradition. They comment on their own intellectual development as well as each others' work, charting the course of American philosophy over the past few decades.
Giovanna Borradori, in her substantial introduction, explains the history of the analytic movement in America and the home-grown reaction against it. In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, American philosophy was a socially engaged interdisciplinary enterprise. In transcendentalism and pragmatism, then the dominant currents in American thought, philosophy was connected to history, psychology, and public issues. But in the 1930s, the imported European movement of logical positivism redefined philosophical discourse in terms of mathematical logic and theory of language. Under the influence of this analytic view, American philosophy became a professionalized discipline, divorced from public debate and intellectual history and antagonistic to the other, more humanistic tradition of continental thought.
The American Philosopher explores the opposition between analytic and continental thought and shows how recent American work has begun to bridge the gap between the two traditions. Through a reexamination of pragmatism, and through an attempt to understand philosophy in a more hermeneutical way, the participants narrow the distance between America's distinctly scientific philosophy and Europe's more literary approach.
Moving beyond classical analytic philosophy, the participants confront each other on a number of topics. The logico-linguistic orientations of Quine and Davidson come up against the more discursive, interdisciplinary agendas of Rorty, Putnam, and Cavell. Nozick's theory of pluralist anarchism goes face-to-face with the aesthetic neo-foundationalism of Danto. And Kuhn's hypothesis of paradigm shifts is measured against MacIntyre's ethics of "virtues."
Borradori's conversations offer an unconventional portrait of the way philosophers think about their work; scholars and students will not be its only beneficiaries, so will everyone who wonders about the current state of American philosophy.
Musical theater has captivated American audiences from its early roots in burlesque stage productions and minstrel shows to the million-dollar industry it has become on Broadway today. What is it about this truly indigenous American art form that has made it so enduringly popular? How has it survived, even thrived, alongside the technology of film and the glitz and glamour of Hollywood? Will it continue to evolve and leave its mark on the twenty-first century?
Bringing together exclusive and previously unpublished interviews with nineteen leading composers, lyricists, librettists, directors, choreographers, and producers from the mid-1900s to the present, this book details the careers of the individuals who shaped this popular performance art during its most prolific period. The interviewees discuss their roles in productions ranging from On the Town (1944) and Finian's Rainbow (1947) to The Producers (2001) and Bounce (2003).
Readers are taken onto the stage, into the rehearsals, and behind the scenes. The nuts and bolts, the alchemy, and the occasional agonies of the collaborative process are all explored. In their discussions, the artists detail their engagements with other creative forces, including such major talents as Leonard Bernstein, Jerome Robbins, Bob Fosse, Liza Minnelli, Judy Garland, Barbra Streisand, Jule Styne, Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, Alan Jay Lerner, Zero Mostel, and Gwen Verdon. They speak candidly about their own work and that of their peers, their successes and failures, the creative process, and how a show progresses from its conception through rehearsals and tryouts to opening night.
Taken together, these interviews give fresh insight into what Oscar Hammerstein called "a nightly miracle"—the creation of the American musical.
Carl von Clausewitz (1780–1831), the Prussian military theoretician who wrote On War, is known above all for his famous dictum: “War is the continuation of politics by other means.” In René Girard’s view, however, the strategist’s treatise offers up a more disturbing truth to the reader willing to extrapolate from its most daring observations: with modern warfare comes the insanity of tit-for-tat escalation, which political institutions have lost their ability to contain. Having witnessed the Napoleonic Wars firsthand, Girard argues, Clausewitz intuited that unbridled “reciprocal action” could eventually lead foes to total mutual annihilation. Haunted by the Franco-German conflict that was to ravage Europe, in Girard’s account Clausewitz is a prescient witness to the terrifying acceleration of history. Battling to the End issues a warning about the apocalyptic threats hanging over our planet and delivers an authoritative lesson on the mimetic laws of violence.
A story with the power to change how people view the last years of colonialism in East Africa, The Boy Is Gone portrays the struggle for Kenyan independence in the words of a freedom fighter whose life spanned the twentieth century's most dramatic transformations. Born into an impoverished farm family in the Meru Highlands, Japhlet Thambu grew up wearing goatskins and lived to stand before his community dressed for business in a pressed suit, crisp tie, and freshly polished shoes. For most of the last four decades, however, he dressed for work in the primary school classroom and on his lush tea farm.
The General, as he came to be called from his leadership of the Mau Mau uprising sixty years ago, narrates his life story in conversation with Laura Lee Huttenbach, a young American who met him while backpacking in Kenya in 2006. A gifted storyteller with a keen appreciation for language and a sense of responsibility as a repository of his people's history, the General talks of his childhood in the voice of a young boy, his fight against the British in the voice of a soldier, and his long life in the voice of shrewd elder. While his life experiences are his alone, his story adds immeasurably to the long history of decolonization as it played out across Africa, Asia, and the Americas.
In the 1980s a poor farmer's son from Recife, Brazil, joined the Brazilian navy and began selling cocaine. After his arrest in Rio de Janeiro he spent the next eight years in prison, where he joined the Comando Vermelho criminal faction and eventually became one of its leaders. Robert Gay tells this young man's dramatic and captivating story in Bruno. In his shockingly candid interviews with Gay, Bruno provides many insights into the criminal world in which he lived: details of day-to-day prison life; the inner workings of the Brazilian drug trade; the structure of criminal factions; and the complexities of the relationships and links between the prisons, drug trade, gangs, police, and favelas. And most stunningly, Bruno's story suggests that Brazilian mismanagement of the prison system directly led to the Comando Vermelho and other criminal factions' expansion into Rio's favelas, where their turf wars and battles with police have terrorized the city for over two decades.
The Changing Face of Economics gives the reader a sense of the modern economics profession and how it is changing. The volume does so with a set of nine interviews with cutting edge economists, followed by interviews with two Nobel Prize winners, Paul Samuelson and Kenneth Arrow, reflecting on the changes that are occurring. What results is a clear picture of today's economics--and it is no longer standard neoclassical economics.
The interviews and commentary together demonstrate that economics is currently undergoing a fundamental shift in method and is moving away from traditional neoclassical economics into a dynamic set of new methods and approaches. These new approaches include work in behavioral economics, experimental economics, evolutionary game theory and ecological approaches, complexity and nonlinear dynamics, methodological analysis, and agent-based modeling.
David E. Colander is Professor of Economics, Middlebury College.
J. Barkley Rosser, Jr., is Professor of Economics and Kirby L. Kramer Jr. Professor of Business Administration, James Madison University.
Richard P. F. Holt is Professor of Churchill Honors and Economics, Southern Oregon University.
Karin Rosa Ikas offers probing and insightful interviews with ten Chicana writers of diverse backgrounds: Denise Chávez, Gloria Anzaldúa, Lucha Corpi, Cherríe Moraga, Lorna Dee Cervantes, Mary Helen Ponce, Jamie Lujan, Demetria Martinez, Estela Portillo-Trambley, and Pat Mora. The interviews address such topics as personal background, education, sense of ethnic and gender identity, the origins and intention of published works, and general views on writing, culture, and art, revealing a rich multiplicity of Chicana voices and views in diverse genres including poetry, drama, and fiction. For each of these women, though, her identity as a Chicana and as a woman is critically important to her evolution and purpose as a writer. Chicana Ways documents the rich diversity and brilliance of contemporary Mexican American writing and is essential reading for anyone interested in multicultural and feminist literature.
What can the disciplines of political science and economics learn from one another? Political scientists have recently begun to adapt economic theories of exchange, trade, and competition to the study of legislatures, parties, and voting. At the same time, some of the most innovative and influential thinkers in economics have crossed the boundaries of their discipline to explore the classic questions of political science. Competition and Cooperation features six of these path-breaking scholars, all winners of the Nobel Prize for Economics, in a series of conversations with more than a dozen distinguished political scientists. The discussions analyze, adapt, and extend the Nobelists' seminal work, showing how it has carried over into political science and paved the way for fruitful cooperation between the two disciplines. The exchanges span all of the major conceptual legacies of the Nobel laureates: Arrow's formalization of the problems of collective decisions; Buchanan's work on constitutions and his critique of majority rule; Becker's theory of competition among interest groups; North's focus on insecure property rights and transaction costs; Simon's concern with the limits to rationality; and Selten's experimental work on strategic thinking and behavior. As befits any genuine dialogue, the traffic of ideas and experiences runs both ways. The Nobel economists have had a profound impact upon political science, but, in addressing political questions, they have also had to rethink many settled assumptions of economics. The standard image of economic man as a hyper-rational, self-interested creature, acting by and for for himself, bears only a passing resemblance to man as a political animal. Several of the Nobelists featured in this volume have turned instead to the insights of cognitive science and institutional analysis to provide a more recognizable portrait of political life. The reconsideration of rationality and the role of institutions,in economics as in politics, raises the possibility of a shared approach to individual choice and institutional behavior that gives glimmers of a new unity in the social sciences. Competition and Cooperation demonstrates that the most important work in both economics and political science reflects a marriage of the two disciplines.
An entire generation of Russian writers have been living in exile from their homeland. Although today's glasnost has special meaning for many of these banished writers, it does not dissolve their experience of forced separation from their country of origin. In Conversations in Exile, John Glad brings together interviews with fourteen prominent Russian writers in exile, all of whom currently live in the United States, France, or Germany. Conducted between 1978 and 1989, these frank and captivating interviews provide a rich and complex portrait of a national literature in exile. Glad's introduction situates the three distinct waves of westward emigration in their historical and political framework. Organized by genre, the book begins with discussions with the older generation of writers and then moves on to more recent arrivals: the makers of fantasy and humor, the aesthetes, the moralists, and the realists. Each voice is compelling for its invaluable testimony--some reveal startling insights into the persecution of dissidents under Soviet rule while others address the relationship between creativity, writing, and conditions of exile. Taken together these interviews reveal the range of modern Russian writing and document the personalities and positions that have made Russian writers in emigration so diverse, experimental, and controversial.
The Writers: Vasily Aksyonov, Joseph Brodsky, Igor Chinnov, Natalya Goranevskaya, Frifrikh Gorensetin, Roman Goul, Yury Ivask, Boris Khazanov, Edward Liminov, Vladimir Makisimov, Andrei Siniavsky and Maria Rozanova, Sasha Sokolov, Vladimir Voinovich, Aleksandr Zinoviev
Excerpt John Glad: You're a Russian poet but an American essayist. Does that bring on any measure of split personality? Do you think you are becoming less and less Russian? Joseph Brodsky (recipient of 1987 Nobel Prize for Literature): That's not for me to say. As far as I'm concerned, in my inner self, inside, it feels quite natural. I think being a Russian poet and an American essayist is an ideal situation. It's all a matter of whether you have (a) the heart and (b) the brains to be able to do both. Sometimes I think I do. Sometimes I think I don't. Sometimes I think that one interferes with the other.
In recent years, few areas of research have advanced as rapidly as cognitive science, the study of the human mind and brain. A fundamentally interdisciplinary field, cognitive science has both inspired and been advanced by work in the arts and humanities. In Conversations on Cognitive Cultural Studies: Literature, Language, and Aesthetics, Frederick Luis Aldama and Patrick Colm Hogan, two of the most prominent experts on the intersection of mind, brain, and culture, engage each other in a lively dialog that sets out the foundations of a cognitive neuroscientific approach to literature. Despite their shared premises, Aldama and Hogan differ—sometimes sharply—on key issues; their discussion therefore presents the reader not with a single doctrine, but with options for consideration—an appropriate result in this dynamic field.
With clarity and learning, Aldama and Hogan consider five central topics at the intersection of literature and cognitive science. They begin with the fundamental question of the nature of the self. From here, they turn to language, communication, and thought before moving on to the central issue of the structure and operation of narrative. The book concludes with thought-provoking explorations of aesthetics and politics. Illustrating their arguments with work that ranges from graphic fiction and popular cinema to William Faulkner and Bertolt Brecht, Aldama and Hogan leave the reader with a clear sense of what cognitive cultural studies have already achieved and the significant promise the discipline holds for the future.
Conversations on Philanthropy: Emerging Questions on Liberality and Social Thought aim is to promote inquiry and reflection on the importance of liberality—in the dual sense of generosity and of the character befitting free individuals—for the flourishing of local communities, political societies, and humanity in general. As such we seek to open new perspectives on the roles, theories, and practices of philanthropic activities ranging from charitable giving, the actions of eleemosynary organizations, trusts, foundations, voluntary associations, and fraternal societies to volunteerism, mutual aid, social entrepreneurship and other forms of social action with beneficent intention (whether or not also combined with commercial and/or political purposes). To facilitate conversations among traditional academic disciplines, Conversations on Philanthropy will include papers from a number of fields, including history, political science, economics, sociology, anthropology, philosophy, philanthropic studies, religious studies, belles lettres, law, and the physical sciences, as well as from philanthropic practitioners. Published comments on feature essays are a means of providing a transparent peer-review process to enhance interdisciplinary understanding.
Although elected to the prestigious French Academy in 1990, Michel Serres has long been considered a maverick--a provocative thinker whose prolific writings on culture, science and philosophy have often baffled more than they have enlightened. In these five lively interviews with sociologist Bruno Latour, this increasingly important cultural figure sheds light on the ideas that inspire his highly original, challenging, and transdisciplinary essays.
Serres begins by discussing the intellectual context and historical events-- including the impact of World War II and Hiroshima, which for him marked the beginning of science's ascendancy over the humanities--that shaped his own philosophical outlook and led him to his lifelong mission of bringing together the texts of the humanities and the conceptual revolutions of modern science. He then confronts the major difficulties encountered by his readers: his methodology, his mathematician's fondness for "shortcuts" in argument, and his criteria for juxtaposing disparate elements from different epochs and cultures in extraordinary combinations. Finally, he discusses his ethic for the modern age--a time when scientific advances have replaced the natural necessities of disease and disaster with humankind's frightening new responsibility for vital things formerly beyond its control.
In the course of these conversations Serres revisits and illuminates many of his themes: the chaotic nature of knowledge, the need for connections between science and the humanities, the futility of traditional criticism, and what he calls his "philosophy of prepositions"--an argument for considering prepositions, rather than the conventionally emphasized verbs and substantives, as the linguistic keys to understanding human interactions. For readers familiar with Serres's works as well as for the uninitiated, Conversations on a Life in Philosophy provides fascinating insights into the mind of this appealing, innovative and ardent thinker.
Michel Serres has taught at Clermont-Ferrand, at the University of Paris VIII (Vincennes) and at the Sorbonne. He has served as visiting professor at Johns Hopkins University and has been on the faculty of Stanford University since 1984. Bruno Latour, a philosopher and anthropologist, is Professor of Sociology, L'Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines in Paris. He has written several books and numerous articles on the ties between the sciences and the rest of culture and society.
Roxanne Lapidus is Managing Editor of SubStance: A Review of Theory and Literary Criticism. Conversations on a Life in Philosophy was originally published in France as Eclaircissements.
At the edge of mortality there is a place where the seriously ill or dying wait—a place where they may often feel vulnerable or alone. For over forty years, bioethicist cum philosopher Richard Zaner has been at the side of many of those people offering his incalculable gift of listening, and helping to lighten their burdens—not only with his considerable skills, but with his humanity as well.
The narratives Richard Zaner shares in Conversations on the Edge are informed by his depth of knowledge in medicine and bioethics, but are never "clinical." A genuine and caring heart beats underneath his compassionate words. Zaner has written several books in which he tells poignant stories of patients and families he has encountered; there is no question that this is his finest.
In Conversations on the Edge, Zaner reveals an authentic empathy that never borders on the sentimental. Among others, he discusses Tom, a dialysis patient who finally reveals that his inability to work—encouraged by his overprotective mother—is the source of his hostility to treatment; Jim and Sue, young parents who must face the nightmare of letting go of their premature twins, one after the other; Mrs. Oland, whose family refuses to recognize her calm acceptance of her own death; and, in the final chapter, the author's mother, whose slow demise continues to haunt Zaner's professional and personal life.
These stories are filled with pain and joy, loneliness and hope. They are about life and death, about what happens in hospital rooms—and that place at the edge—when we confront mortality. It is the rarest of glimpses into the world of patients, their families, healers, and those who struggle, like Zaner, to understand.
Conversations, Volume 1
Jorge Luis Borges and Osvaldo Ferrari Seagull Books, 2014 Library of Congress PQ7797.B635Z46713 2014 | Dewey Decimal 868.6209
Buddhism, love, Henry James, and the tango are just a few of the topics Jorge Luis Borges, Argentina’s master writer, and extraordinary conversationalist, discusses in the first volume of the remarkable new series, Conversations. The eighty-four-year-old blind man’s wit is unending and results in lively and insightful discussions that configure a loose autobiography of a subtle, teasing mind. Borges’s favorite concepts, such as time and dreaming, are touched upon, but these dialogues are not a true memoir, they are unrestricted conversations about life at present.
The Argentine short-story writer, essayist, poet and translator, contributed immensely to twentieth-century literature, and more specifically to the genres of magical realism and fantasy. As he progressively lost his sight—he became completely blind by the age of fifty-five—the darkness behind his eyelids held enchanting imagery that translated into rich symbolism in his work. The inner workings of his curious mind are seen vividly in his conversations with Ferrari, and there’s not a subject on which he doesn’t cast surprising new light. As in his tale “The Other,” where two Borgeses meet up on a bench beside the River Charles, this is a dialogue between a young poet and the elder teller of tales where all experience floats in a miracle that defies linear time.
Conversations, Volume 2
Jorge Luis Borges and Osvaldo Ferrari Seagull Books, 2015 Library of Congress PQ7797.B635Z46713 2014 | Dewey Decimal 868.6209
Recorded during Jorge Luis Borges’s final years, this second volume of his conversations with Osvaldo Ferrari provides a wide-ranging reflection on the life and work of Argentina’s master writer and favorite conversationalist. In Conversations: Volume 2, Borges and Ferrari engage in a dialogue that is both improvisational and frequently humorous as they touch on subjects as diverse as epic poetry, detective fiction, Buddhism, and the moon landing. With his signature wit, Borges offers insight into the philosophical basis of his stories and poems, his fascination with religious mysticism, and the idea of life as dream. He also dwells on more personal themes, including the influence of his mother and father on his intellectual development, his friendships, and living with blindness. These recollections are alive to the passage of history, whether in the changing landscape of Buenos Aires or a succession of political conflicts, leading Borges to contemplate what he describes as his “South American destiny.”
The recurrent theme of these conversations, however, is a life lived through books. Borges draws on the resources of a mental library that embraces world literature—ancient and modern. He recalls the works that were a constant presence in his memory and maps his changing attitudes to a highly personal canon. In the prologue to the volume, Borges celebrates dialogue and the transmission of culture across time and place. These conversations are a testimony to the supple ways that Borges explored his own relation to numerous traditions.
Praise for Borges
“Borges is arguably the great bridge between modernism and post-modernism in world literature.”—David Foster Wallace
“I wrote a poem this morning, and one of the themes of the poem is that languages are not equivalent, that each language is a new way of feeling the world.”—Jorge Luis Borges
Recorded during Borges’ final years, this third volume of his conversations with Osvaldo Ferrari offers a rare glimpse into the life and work of Argentina’s master writer and favorite conversationalist. In Conversations: Volume 3, Borges and Ferrari discuss subjects as diverse as film criticism, fantastic literature, science fiction, the Argentinian literary tradition, and the works of writers such as Bunyan, Wilde, Joyce, and Yeats, among others. With his signature wit, Borges converses on the philosophical basis of his writing, his travels, and his fascination with religious mysticism. He also ruminates on more personal themes, including the influence of his family on his intellectual development, his friendships, and living with blindness.
The recurrent theme of these conversations, however, is a life lived through books. Borges draws on the resources of a mental library that embraces world literature, both ancient and modern. He recalls the works that were a constant presence in his memory and maps his changing attitudes to a highly personal canon. These conversations are a testimony to the supple ways that Borges explored his own relation to numerous traditions—the conjunction of his life, his lucidity, and his imagination.
Conversations with American Novelists
Edited by Kay Bonetti, Greg Michalson, Speer Morgan, Jo Sapp, & Sam Stowers University of Missouri Press, 1997 Library of Congress PS379.C665 1997 | Dewey Decimal 813.5409
Readers of fine novels cherish the opportunity to hear their favorite novelists speak directly, without commentary or interpretation, about how their lives and concerns drive their fiction writing. For twenty years The Missouri Review has brought these readers some of the most compelling and thought- provoking literary interviews in print. In this collection of fifteen in-depth interviews with contemporary novelists, the authors discuss the style and themes of their work, their writing habits, their cultural and social backgrounds, and larger aesthetic issues with refreshing insight about themselves and their art.
Originally conducted for the American Audio Prose Library, the interviews were then edited for publication in The Missouri Review. Here they are reproduced with an introduction and with a brief biographical and bibliographical headnote for each writer. These candid interviews with some of our favorite novelists are sure to delight all readers.
Authors Interviewed in This Volume:
Louise Erdrich and Michael Dorris
John Edgar Wideman
Robb Forman Dew
Robert Olen Butler
At the age of eighty, one of the most influential yet reclusive intellectuals of the twentieth century consented to his first interviews in nearly thirty years. Hailed by Le Figaro as "an event," the resulting conversations between Claude Lévi-Strauss and Didier Eribon (a correspondent for Le Nouvel Observateur) reveal the great anthropologist speaking of his life and work with ease and humor.
Now available in English, the conversations are rich in Lévi-Strauss's candid appraisals of some of the best-known figures of the Parisian intelligentsia: surrealists André Breton and Max Ernst, with whom Lévi-Strauss shared a bohemian life in 1940s Manhattan; de Beauvoir, Sartre, and Camus, the stars of existentialism; Leiris, Foucault, Dumézil, Jacob, Lacan, and others. His long friendships with Jakobson and Merleau-Ponty are recalled, as well as his encounters with prominent figures in American anthropology: Lowie, Boas (who suddenly died in his chair beside Lévi-Strauss at a banquet at Columbia University), Benedict, Linton, Mead, and Kroeber.
Lévi-Strauss speaks frankly about how circumstances and his own inclinations, after his early fieldwork in Brazil, led him to embrace theoretical work. His straightforward answers to Eribon's penetrating questions—What is a myth? What is structuralism? Are you a philosopher?—clarify his intellectual motives and the development of his research; his influential role as an administrator, including the founding of the Laboratory of Social Anthropology and of the journal L'Homme; the course of his writings, from Elementary Structures of Kinship to The Jealous Potter; and his thoughts on the conduct of anthropology today.
Never before has Lévi-Strauss spoken so freely on so many aspects of his life: his initial failure to be elected to the Collège de France; his reaction to the events of May 1968; his regrets at not being a great investigative reporter or playwright; his deep identification with Wagner, Proust, and Rousseau. This is a rare opportunity to become acquainted with a great thinker in all his dimensions.
One of the most idiosyncratic and charismatic musicians of the twentieth century, pianist Glenn Gould (1932–82) slouched at the piano from a sawed-down wooden stool, interpreting Bach, Beethoven, and Mozart at hastened tempos with pristine clarity. A strange genius and true eccentric, Gould was renowned not only for his musical gifts but also for his erratic behavior: he often hummed aloud during concerts and appeared in unpressed tails, fingerless gloves, and fur coats. In 1964, at the height of his controversial career, he abandoned the stage completely to focus instead on recording and writing.
Jonathan Cott, a prolific author and poet praised by Larry McMurtry as "the ideal interviewer," was one of the very few people to whom Gould ever granted an interview. Cott spoke with Gould in 1974 for Rolling Stone and published the transcripts in two long articles; after Gould's death, Cott gathered these interviews in Conversations with Glenn Gould, adding an introduction, a selection of photographs, a list of Gould's recorded repertoire, a filmography, and a listing of Gould's programs on radio and TV. A brilliant one-on-one in which Gould discusses his dislike of Mozart's piano sonatas, his partiality for composers such as Orlando Gibbons and Richard Strauss, and his admiration for the popular singer Petula Clark (and his dislike of the Beatles), among other topics, Conversations with Glenn Gould is considered by many, including the subject, to be the best interview Gould ever gave and one of his most remarkable performances.
For almost twenty years, Ilan Stavans—described by the Washington Post as "Latin America’s liveliest and boldest critic and most innovative cultural enthusiast"—has interviewed path-breaking intellectuals and artists in a wide range of media. As host of the critically acclaimed PBS series La Plaza, he interviews guests on pressing issues that affect the Western Hemisphere today, asking hard-hitting questions on immigration, religion, bilingualism, race, and democracy. This book collects for the first time in one volume Stavans’s most provocative and enlightening interviews with Hispanics from both sides of the Rio Grande.
Spontaneous and surprising, these conversations reflect Latino life in the United States in all its facets. Among the more than two dozen selections, Edward James Olmos talks about Hispanics in Hollywood; John Leguizamo describes how he shapes a stage show; author Richard Rodriguez reflects on his gang background; Esmeralda Santiago takes on the Puerto Rican stereotype; and Piri Thomas shares thoughts on the writing of Down These Mean Streets. "A conversation is a tango," writes Stavans, "for it takes two to dance it." Conversations with Ilan Stavans invites readers to catch the rhythm and enjoy these unique meetings of minds.
Sign language interpreter education is a relatively young field that is moving toward more theory-based and research-oriented approaches. The concept of sharing research, which is strongly encouraged in this academic community, inspired Christine Monikowski to develop a volume that collects and distills the best teaching practices of leading academics in the interpreting field.
In Conversations with Interpreter Educators, Monikowski assembles a group of 17 professors in the field of sign language interpretation. Through individual interviews conducted via Skype, Monikowski engages them in informal conversations about their teaching experiences and the professional publications that have influenced their teaching philosophies. She guides each conversation by asking these experts to share a scholarly publication that they assign to their students. They discuss the merits of the text and its role in the classroom, which serves to highlight the varying goals each professor sets for students. The complexity of the interpreting task, self-reflection, critical thinking, linguistics, backchannel feedback, and cultural understanding are a sampling of topics explored in these exchanges. Engaging and accessible, Monikowski’s conversations offer evidence-based practices that will inform and inspire her fellow educators.
"What is most impressive about this book is its intelligence, its sophistication, and its charm. . . . This book presents Piaget's work and his person better than anything else that I know about."—David Elkind, Tufts University
"The tone is one of constant movement from the most ordinary to the most abstruse. There are 14 conversations with 'le Patron,' some in 1969, some in 1975, and several more with co-workers in various fields. . . . In Mr. Bringuier's book, in a pleasant informal way, we see a sophisticated non-scientist exploring Piaget's domain with the master. Some of Piaget's best-known findings about children as explained along the way, but Mr. Bringuier has ways of bringing out the relation of this psychological work to the whole of Piaget's enterprise, and we get a good sense of the man and his work."—Howard E. Gruber, New York Times Book Review
Born in Panama in 1910, Maida Springer grew up in Harlem. While still a young girl she learned firsthand of the bleak employment options available to African American females of her time. After one employer closed his garment shop and ran off with the workers’ wages in the midst of the Depression, Springer joined Local 22 of the International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union.
This proved to be the first step in a remarkable advancement through the ranks of labor leadership positions that were typically dominated by white men. Ultimately, Springer became one of the AFL-CIO’s most important envoys to emerging African nations, earning her the nickname "Mama Maida" throughout that continent.
In this brilliantly edited collection of interviews, Yevette Richards allows Springer to tell her story in her own words. The result is a rare glimpse into the private struggles and thoughts behind one of the twentieth century’s most fascinating international labor leaders.
Conversations with Nelson Algren
H. E. F. Donohue and Nelson Algren University of Chicago Press, 2001 Library of Congress PS3501.L4625Z665 2001 | Dewey Decimal 813.52
In these frank and often devastating conversations Nelson Algren reveals himself with all the gruff humor, deflating insight, honesty, and critical brilliance that marked his career. Prodded by H. E. F. Donohue, Algren discusses everything from his childhood to his compulsion to write to his relationship with Simone de Beauvoir. The result is a masterful portrait of a rebel and a major American writer.
"Read this book if you want to understand me."—Pablo Picasso
Conversations with Picasso offers a remarkable vision of both Picasso and the entire artistic and intellectual milieu of wartime Paris, a vision provided by the gifted photographer and prolific author who spent the early portion of the 1940s photographing Picasso's work. Brassaï carefully and affectionately records each of his meetings and appointments with the great artist, building along the way a work of remarkable depth, intimate perspective, and great importance to anyone who truly wishes to understand Picasso and his world.
Conversations with Primo Levi
Ferdinando Camon Northwestern University Press, 1989 Library of Congress PQ4872.E8Z46313 1989 | Dewey Decimal 853.914
Beginning in 1982 and at intervals over the next four years Ferdinando Camon traveled to Turin for a series of meetings with Primo Levi. This book is the record of their dialogues. Levi spoke of the war, of anti-Semitism, of the camps, of German guilt, of Israel's emergence, and of his own extraordinary life and work. The give-and-take of the discussion, its tone, its lucidity, its intelligence, lift it well above the level and format of the usual journalistic interview with a celebrated author.
Knowing how to recognize the role data plays in our lives is critical to navigating today’s complex world. In this volume, you’ll find two kinds of professional development tools to support that growth. Part I contains pre-made professional development via links to webinars from the 2016 and 2017 4T Virtual Conference on Data Literacy, along with discussion questions and activities that can animate conversations around data in your school. Part II explores data “in the wild” with case studies pulled from the headlines, along with provocative discussion questions, professionals and students alike can explore multiple perspectives at play with Big Data, data privacy, personal data management, ethical data use, and citizen science.
By turns wickedly funny and profoundly illuminating, Encounters and Reflections presents a captivating and unconventional portrait of the life and works of Seth Benardete. One of the leading scholars of ancient thought, Benardete here reflects on both the people he knew and the topics that fascinated him throughout his career in a series of candid, freewheeling conversations with Robert Berman, Ronna Burger, and Michael Davis.
The first part of the book discloses vignettes about fellow students, colleagues, and acquaintances of Benardete's who later became major figures in the academic and intellectual life of twentieth-century America. We glimpse the student days of Allan Bloom, Stanley Rosen, George Steiner, and we discover the life of the mind as lived by well-known scholars such as David Grene, Jacob Klein, and Benardete's mentor Leo Strauss. We also encounter a number of other learned, devoted, and sometimes eccentric luminaries, including T.S. Eliot, James Baldwin, Werner Jaeger, John Davidson Beazley, and Willard Quine. In the book's second part, Benardete reflects on his own intellectual growth and on his ever-evolving understanding of the texts and ideas he spent a lifetime studying. Revisiting some of his recurrent themes—among them eros and the beautiful, the city and the law, and the gods and the human soul—Benardete shares his views on thinkers such as Plato, Homer, and Heidegger, as well as the relations between philosophy and science and between Christianity and ancient Roman thought.
Engaging and informative, Encounters and Reflections brings Benardete's thought to life to enlighten and inspire a new generation of thinkers.
For nearly twenty years, the much-beloved music magazine Roctober has featured work by some of the best underground cartoonists, exhaustive examinations of made-up genres such as “robot rock,” and an ongoing exploration of everything Sammy Davis Jr. ever sang, said, or did. But the heart of the magazine has always been the lengthy conversations with overlooked or forgotten artists. Flying Saucers Rock ’n’ Roll gathers the most compelling of these interviews. Eccentric, important artists—including the rockabilly icon Billy Lee Riley, the jazz musician and activist Oscar Brown Jr., the “Outlaw Country” singer David Allan Coe, and the pioneer rock ’n’ roll group the Treniers—give the most in-depth interviews of their lengthy careers. Obscure musicians, such as the Armenian-language novelty artist Guy Chookoorian and the frustrated interstellar glam act Zolar X, reveal fascinating lives lived at rock’s margins. Roctober’s legendarily dedicated writers convey telling anecdotes in the fervent, captivating prose that has long been appreciated by music enthusiasts. Along with the entertaining interviews, Flying Saucers Rock ’n’ Roll features more than sixty images from the pages of Roctober and ten illustrations created for the book by the underground rock ’n’ roll artist King Merinuk.
Contributors Steve Albini Ben Austen Jake Austen John Battles Bosco Ken Burke Mike Maltese King Merinuk Ken Mottet Jonathan Poletti James Porter "Colonel" Dan Sorenson Jacqueline Stewart
The philosopher Patrick Suppes has developed a unique and influential approach to studying the foundations of science—he combines an understanding of the main principles of scientific theories in axiomatic terms and formal models with a hands-on approach. While moving the study of the philosophy of science out of the parlor and into the lab, he often comes up with original results from the psychology of learning to the theory of measurement and quantum mechanics. This book searches for a common thread in Suppes’s multifaceted work through a series of conversations with the man himself and illuminates many of the more challenging aspects of his philosophy.
The Historian behind the History brings together a collection of valuable interviews with prominent southern historians conducted over the course of a decade by graduate students in the University of Alabama’s history program for the journal Southern History. In the interviews, ten notable southern historians and mentors illuminate the state of historiography, their experiences in the profession, and their thoughts about graduate education and southern history.
The historians and their main topics include:
Richard J. M. Blackett on antebellum and African American history Dan T. Carter on Reconstruction, Civil Rights, and George Wallace Pete Daniel on the New Deal and the Cold War South Laura F. Edwards on the Early Republic, the Civil War, Reconstruction, and women’s history William W. Freehling on the antebellum South Gary W. Gallagher on the Civil War Glenda Elizabeth Gilmore on Jim Crow James M. McPherson on the Civil War Theodore Rosengarten on the Depression J. Mills Thornton III on the antebellum South
In his introduction, award-winning author and historian George C. Rable draws together the multifaceted themes of these interviews, offering a compelling overview of the nature of the field. Edited by Megan L. Bever and Scott A. Suarez, The Historian behind the History offers critical insights about the craft and professional life of the historian.
Some Hispanic Americans living today can recall a time when barrio or ranch life was marked by a simplicity and neighborliness that has vanished with progress. These thirteen first-person accounts of southern Arizona residents capture a spirit evocative of the Hispanic presence in the Southwest—whether in San Antonio, Santa Fe, Pueblo, or Los Angeles—while striking photographs reflect the grace and dignity of these indomitable individuals.
This collection of new interviews with twenty-five accomplished female composers substantially advances our knowledge of the work, experiences, compositional approaches, and musical intentions of a diverse group of creative individuals. With personal anecdotes and sometimes surprising intimacy and humor, these wide-ranging conversations represent the diversity of women composing music in the United States from the mid-twentieth century into the twenty-first. The composers work in a variety of genres including classical, jazz, multimedia, or collaborative forms for the stage, film, and video games. Their interviews illuminate questions about the status of women composers in America, the role of women in musical performance and education, the creative process and inspiration, the experiences and qualities that contemporary composers bring to their craft, and balancing creative and personal lives. Candidly sharing their experiences, advice, and views, these vibrant, thoughtful, and creative women open new perspectives on the prospects and possibilities of making music in a changing world.
“Meticulously researched, detailed and documented, this long awaited overview justly establishes Konitz as one of the most consistently brilliant, adventurous and original improvisers in the jazz tradition—a genius as rare as Bird himself.”
“Hamilton’s work may well mark the inception of a format new to writing on Western music, one which avoids both the self-aggrandizing of autobiography and the stylized subjectification of biography.”
“An extraordinary approach to a biography, with the man himself speaking for extended sessions. The main vibration I felt from Lee’s words was total honesty, almost to a fault. Konitz shows himself to be an acute observer of the scene, full of wisdom and deep musical insights, relevant to any historical period regardless of style. The asides by noted musicians are beautifully woven throughout the pages. I couldn’t put the book down—it is the definition of a living history.”
The preeminent altoist associated with the “cool” school of jazz, Lee Konitz was one of the few saxophonists of his generation to forge a unique sound independent of the influence of Charlie Parker. In the late 1940s, Konitz began his career with the Claude Thornhill band, during which time he came into contact with Miles Davis, with whom he would later work on the legendary Birth of the Cool sessions. Konitz is perhaps best known through his association with Lennie Tristano, under whose influence much of his sound evolved, and for his work with Stan Kenton and Warne Marsh. His recordings have ranged from cool bop to experimental improvisation and have appeared on such labels as Prestige, Atlantic, Verve, and Polydor.
Crafted out of numerous interviews between the author and his subject, the book offers a unique look at the story of Lee Konitz’s life and music, detailing Konitz’s own insights into his musical education and his experiences with such figures as Miles Davis, Stan Kenton, Warne Marsh, Lennie Tristano, Charles Mingus, Bud Powell, and Bill Evans.
Andy Hamilton is a jazz pianist and contributor to major jazz and contemporary music magazines. He teaches philosophy, and the history and aesthetics of jazz, at Durham University in the United Kingdom. He is also the author of the book Aesthetics and Music (Continuum 2007).
Joe Lovano is a Grammy Award–winning tenor saxophonist. His most recent album is Streams of Expression.
A Long Saturday: Conversations
George Steiner with Laure Adler University of Chicago Press, 2017 Library of Congress P85.S74A3 2017 | Dewey Decimal 410.92
George Steiner is one of the preeminent intellectuals of our time. The Washington Post has declared that no one else “writing on literature can match him as polymath and polyglot, and few can equal the verve and eloquence of his writing,” while the New York Times says of his works that “the erudition is almost as extraordinary as the prose: dense, knowing, allusive.” Reading in many languages, celebrating the survival of high culture in the face of modern barbarisms, Steiner probes the ethics of language and literature with unparalleled grace and authority. A Long Saturday offers intimate insight into the questions that have absorbed him throughout his career.
In a stimulating series of conversations, Steiner and journalist Laure Adler discuss a range of topics, including Steiner’s boyhood in Vienna and Paris, his education at the University of Chicago and Harvard, and his early years in academia. Books are a touchstone throughout, but Steiner and Adler’s conversations also range over music, chess, psychoanalysis, the place of Israel in Jewish life, and beyond. Blending thoughts on subjects of broad interest in the humanities—the issue of honoring Richard Wagner and Martin Heidegger in spite of their politics, or Virginia Woolf’s awareness of the novel as a multivocal form, for example—with personal reflections on life and family, Steiner demonstrates why he is considered one of today’s greatest minds. Revealing and exhilarating, A Long Saturday invites readers to pull up a chair and listen in on a conversation with a master.
Mission of Change is an oral history describing various types of change—political, social, cultural, and religious—as seen through the eyes of Father Astruc and Paul Dixon, non-Natives who dedicated their lives to working with the Yup’ik people. Their stories are framed by the an analytic history of regional changes, together with current anthropological theory on the nature of cultural change and the formation of cultural identity. The book presents a subtle and emotionally moving account of the region and the roles of two men, both of whom view issues from a Catholic perspective yet are closely attuned to and involved with changes in the Yup’ik community.
Although investigations of Hispanic popular culture were approached for decades as part of folklore studies, in recent years scholarly explorations—of lucha libre, telenovelas, comic strips, comedy, baseball, the novela rosa and the detective novel, sci-fi, even advertising—have multiplied. What has been lacking is an overarching canvas that offers context for these studies, focusing on the crucial, framing questions: What is Hispanic pop culture? How does it change over time and from region to region? What is the relationship between highbrow and popular culture in the Hispanic world? Does it make sense to approach the whole Hispanic world as homogenized when understanding Hispanic popular culture? What are the differences between nations, classes, ethnic groups, religious communities, and so on? And what distinguishes Hispanic popular culture in the United States?
In ¡Muy Pop!,Ilan Stavans and Frederick Luis Aldama carry on a sustained, free-flowing, book-length conversation about these questions and more, concentrating on a wide range of pop manifestations and analyzing them at length. In addition to making Hispanic popular culture visible to the first-time reader, ¡Muy Pop!sheds new light on the making and consuming of Hispanic pop culture for academics, specialists, and mainstream critics.
Cuban-American writers have been studied primarily within the context of Latino literature as a whole. Seeing a need to distinguish and define this unique literary perspective, Eduardo del Rio selected twelve important well-known authors and conducted interviews. He chose writers who were born in Cuba but have lived in the United States for a significant amount of time and whose works include themes he considers elemental to Cuban-American literature: identity, duality, memory, and exile. But rather than a cohesive, homogeneous group, these conversations unveiled a kaleidoscope of individuality, style, and motive. The authors’ bonds to Cuba inform their creative work in vastly different ways, and attempts to categorize their similarities only highlight the range of character and experience within this assemblage of talented writers.
From playwright Dolores Prida to author and literary critic Gustavo Pérez Firmat, these voices run the gamut of both genre and personality. In addition to the essential facts of literary accomplishment, the interviews include a wealth of insight into each writer’s history, motivations, concerns, and relationship to language. These personal details serve to humanize and illuminate the unique circumstances and realities that have shaped both the authors and their work.
What del Rio has ultimately brought together is a series of intimate sketches that will not only serve as an important reference for any discussion of the literature but will also help readers to develop for themselves a sense of what Cuban-American writing is, and what it is not.
From Walt Whitman forward, a century and a half of radical experimentation and bold speech by gay and lesbian poets has deeply influenced the American poetic voice. In Our Deep Gossip, Christopher Hennessy interviews eight gay men who are celebrated American poets and writers: Edward Field, John Ashbery, Richard Howard, Aaron Shurin, Dennis Cooper, Cyrus Cassells, Wayne Koestenbaum, and Kazim Ali. The interviews showcase the complex ways art and life intertwine, as the poets speak about their early lives, the friends and communities that shaped their work, the histories of gay writers before them, how sex and desire connect with artistic production, what coming out means to a writer, and much more.
While the conversations here cover almost every conceivable topic of interest to readers of poetry and poets themselves, the book is an especially important, poignant, far-reaching, and enduring document of what it means to be a gay artist in twentieth- and early twenty-first-century America.
Encompassing a range of disciplines—notably anthropology,
politics, history, comparative literature, and
philosophy—the unprecedented annual publication Late Editions exposes unsettling dilemmas and unprecedented
challenges facing cultural studies on the brink of the
twenty-first century. Successive volumes will appear
annually until the year 2000, each engaging the predicaments
of particular institutions, nations, and persons at this
point of social, cultural, and political change. The
project will test the limits of scholarly conventions by
finding new ways to expose cultural formations emerging from
the maturation or exhaustion of once-powerful ideas whose
validity is now deeply in question.
Perilous States, the first volume of Late Editions, presents conversations between American
scholars, most of whom are anthropologists, and individuals
situated amidst political and social upheaval. Pimarily but
not exclusively from Eastern Europe, the cast includes
Russian writers, Hungarian scientists and academics, Armenian
politicians, Siberian religious and medical leaders, a Gypsy
leader, a Polish poet, a French politician, and a white South
African musician who is a self-styled Zulu. Their voices
unite around themes of democracy, market economy, individual
rights, and the reawakened force of suppressed ethnic and
To obtain fresh perspectives on these cultural and social
transformations, the volumes will consist of in-depth
conversations, relayed in essay form, between scholars and
individuals in other cultures with whom they share
affinities. This novel approach blends the immediacy of
interviews, the objectivity of journalism, and the
intellectual rigor of scholarship.
Contributors to this volume are Marjorie Balzer, Sam
Beck, David B. Coplan, Michael M. J. Fischer, Nia Georges,
Bruce Grant, Douglas R. Holmes, Stella Gregorian, George E.
Marcus, Kathryn Milun, Eleni Papagaroufali, Paul Rabinow,
Julie Taylor, and Tom White.
Rosemarie Tichler and Barry Jay Kaplan take us behind the scenes in conversations with thirteen of today’s most distinguished playwrights, including Tony Kushner, John Guare, Wallace Shawn, Suzan-Lori Parks, David Henry Hwang, and Sarah Ruhl. To familiarize the reader with the world of each playwright, Tichler and Kaplan introduce us to the environments in which the work happens, conducting their interviews in the playwright’s home, a dark theater, or a coffee shop. Topics of conversation range from the playwrights’ earliest memories of the theater to finding their unique voices, and from their working relationships with directors, actors, and designers to their involvement in the purely commercial aspects of their profession. Taken together, these conversations constitute a collectively taught master class in the art and craft of writing for the stage.
Among students and aficionados of contemporary literature, the work of Latina and Latino poets holds a particular fascination. Through works imbued with fire and passion, these writers have kindled new enthusiasm in their compatriots and admiration in non-Latino readers. This book brings together recent interviews with fifteen Latino/a poets, a cross-section of Chicano, Puerto Rican, and Cuban voices who discuss not only their work but also related issues that help define their place in American literature. Each talks at length about the craft of his or her poetry—both the influences and the process behind it—and takes a stand on social and political issues affecting Latinos across the United States.
The interviews feature both established writers published as early as the 1960s and emerging artists, each of whom has enjoyed success in other literary forms also. As Bruce Dick's insightful questions reveal, the key threads linking these writers are their connections to their families and communities and their concern for civil rights—believing like Chicana writer Pat Mora that "the work of the poet is for the people." The interviews also reveal diversity among and within the three communities, from Victor Hernández Cruz, who traces Latino collective identity to Africa and claims that all Latinos are "swimming in olive oil," to Cuban writer Gustavo Perez Firmat, who considers nationality more important than ethnicity and says that "the term Latino erases [his] nationality."
The dialogues also offer new insights on the place of Chicano/a writings in the U.S.-Mexico borderlands, on the Puerto Rican/Nuyorican establishment, and on the anti-Castro stand of Cuban-born poets. As these writers answer questions about their work, background, ethnic identity, and political ideology, they provide a wealth of biographical, intellectual, and literary material collected here for the first time. A Poet's Truth is a provocative and revealing book that not only conveys the fire of these writers' passions but also sheds important light on a whole literary movement.
Sandra María Esteves
Victor Hernández Cruz
Carolina Hospital and Carlos Medina
Judith Ortiz Cofer
Gustavo Pérez Firmat
Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Sometimes playful, always provocative, Professions is a collection of searching and candid conversations--ranging from dialogues to tongue-in-cheek diatribes--on the issues that face literary and cultural critics today.
This volume bares professional concerns, relationships, ambitions, and insecurities about working in academe. Professions provides hard-to-get insider information for students contemplating an academic career. It also challenges professional scholars to retrieve the intellectual curiosity that drew them to scholarship in the first place while demonstrating how disagreement on controversial issues can be conducted with respect, good humor, and an open mind.
Jane Tompkins and Gerald Graff
John McGowan and Regenia Gagnier
James Phelan and James Kincaid
Marjorie Perloff and Robert von Hallberg
Judith Jackson Fossett and Kevin Gaines
Dennis W. Allen and Judith Roof
Niko Pfund, Gordon Hutner, and Martha Banta
Geoffrey Galt Harpham
Donald E. Hall and Susan S. Lanser
J. Hillis Miller, Herbert Lindenberger, Sandra Gilbert, Bonnie Zimmerman, Nellie Y. McKay, and Elaine Marks
For thousands of years, political leaders have unified communities by aligning them against common enemies. However, today more than ever, the search for “common” enemies results in anything but unanimity. Scapegoats like Saddam Hussein, for example, led to a stark polarization in the United States. Renowned neuropsychiatrist and psychologist Jean-Michel Oughourlian proposes that the only authentic enemy is the one responsible for both everyday frustrations and global dangers, such as climate change—ourselves. Oughourlian, who pioneered an “interdividual” psychology with René Girard, reveals how all people are bound together in a dynamic, contingent process of imitation, and shows that the same patterns of irrational mimetic desire that bring individuals together and push them apart also explain the behavior of nations.
Racism. Is it alive and well and living on college campuses across the United States? Is it a factor in high dropout rates and other crises affecting minority college students, and if so, how? Are controversial programs of affirmative action proving to be a solution--or are they part of the problem?
Here are some insights into the hot issues sparking debate over equal opportunity and American education. In these pages, through the use of a fictional character, author Jay Rochlin presents more than forty very real African American and Mexican American men and women who struggled to earn degrees at a large, nationally recognized university in the west. Their goals, their gains, and their disappointments echo the experiences of millions of others around the country during much of the twentieth century. Perhaps most important, their true stories will provide inspiration to the many young people who wonder whether pursuing the dream of a college education is possible for them.
Readers will warm to the words of Carlos Vélez-Ibáñez, learning as a toddler from his father that the university represented toda la sabiduría del mundo,"all the wisdom in the world." Their hearts will go out to young Laura Banks, barred as a black woman from a "whites only" pool and the swimming class required for her degree in physical education. In the face of open hostility and closed doors, these students and many others persevered. When they were shunned by Anglo social clubs, they created their own. When they were assigned "back of the room" seating because of discrimination, they rose above it. And when their ultimate goal--graduation--was threatened by racism, they fought it.
Looking back, many in the book remember coming from poor families who nonetheless considered themselves middle class and, as such, simply expected their children to go to college. This family support--bolstered by the students' own drive, ambition, and sense of responsibility--seemed to be pivotal to their success. Thus the book comes out strongly on the side of critical race theorists, who emphasize individual effort as a means of combating racism and personal narratives as a way of analyzing the complex issue.
These pages are filled with the voices of everyday men and women. Their language is straightforward and from the heart. Their message is timely, in the midst of current debates over race, class, and affirmative action. And their words--for American education and for the country as a whole--carry force and meaning guaranteed to reach far into the future.
Thomas Hauser is well known to readers as Muhammad Ali's biographer and for his recording of the contemporary boxing scene. But Hauser began his writing career in the political arena as the author of Missing, a novel later made into an AcademyAward-winning film starring Jack Lemmon and Sissy Spacek. He has written books on subjects as diverse as public education, moral values, and Chernobyl, and his articles have appeared in publications ranging from the New Yorker to Penthouse. Reflections brings together all of Hauser's articles on subjects other than sports. The book begins with a never-published essay on the Beatles. It then takes readers on a remarkable journey that moves from an exploration of racism, religion, and other hot-button political issues to personal memories and reflections on the origins of Santa Claus and the Tiffany box. Combining personal memories with issue-oriented commentary, Reflections creates a portrait of some of the most remarkable people and most compelling issues of our time.
“The historian,” wrote E. L. Doctorow, “will tell you what happened. The novelist will tell you what it felt like.” This book sees Peter Hennessy and Robert Shepard combine both approaches with the art of the interviewer, a craft at once sensitive and probing.
Reflections collects transcripts of the best interviews from the BBC Radio 4 series Reflections with Peter Hennessy, a show on which the British political elite have spoken candidly about their careers and the moments that came to define their political lives. Supplementing the interviews are short biographies and profiles of the interviewees, allowing readers a fuller picture of each speaker’s background and professional trajectory. This revealing book includes conversations with political heavyweights such as former prime minister John Major; former foreign secretaries Margaret Beckett, David Owen, and Jack Straw; Labour Party leader Neil Kinnock; Liberal Party leader David Steel; and chancellor of exchequer Nigel Lawson. In addition, Reflections presents interviews with leading women, including Shirley Williams and Clare Short, who spent years at the forefront of their parties in Westminster.
The latest volume in the popular Haus Curiosities series, Reflections offers valuable insights from some of today’s most influential political figures.
Accompanying the acclaimed BBC Radio 4 program, Reflections features interviews with twelve of Britain’s most influential political figures from the last twenty years. Presented by Peter Hennessy, one of the UK’s most renowned historians, each interview not only offers an honest and frank assessment of a political career, but also acts as a biography filled with fresh insights and moments of new revelation. From one of the longest-serving Prime Ministers and three of the Conservative leaders who stood against him, to dominant figures of late Thatcherism, stalwarts of successive New Labour cabinets, and leaders of the Liberal Democrats, Hennessy brings his characteristic style to each encounter. The politicians included in this volume are: Tony Blair, Michael Heseltine, Vince Cable, Margaret Hodge, William Hague, Harriet Harman, Michael Howard, Paddy Ashdown, Sayeeda Warsi, David Blunkett, Iain Duncan Smith and Kenneth Baker.
Wallace Stegner, a major American novelist and conservationist, is interviewed by Etulain, a renowned Western scholar, in a series of discussions. Originally published in 1983 and entitled Conversations with Wallace Stegner on Western History and Literature, this book is the ultimate Stegner interview. New foreword by Stewart Udall.
Steve Lacy: Conversations
Jason Weiss, ed. Duke University Press, 2006 Library of Congress ML419.L22S84 2006 | Dewey Decimal 788.72165092
Steve Lacy: Conversations is a collection of thirty-four interviews with the innovative saxophonist and jazz composer. Lacy (1934–2004), a pioneer in making the soprano saxophone a contemporary jazz instrument, was a prolific performer and composer, with hundreds of recordings to his name.
This volume brings together interviews that appeared in a variety of magazines between 1959 and 2004. Conducted by writers, critics, musicians, visual artists, a philosopher, and an architect, the interviews indicate the evolution of Lacy’s extraordinary career and thought. Lacy began playing the soprano saxophone at sixteen, and was soon performing with Dixieland musicians much older than he. By nineteen he was playing with the pianist Cecil Taylor, who ignited his interest in the avant-garde. He eventually became the foremost proponent of Thelonious Monk’s music. Lacy played with a broad range of musicians, including Monk and Gil Evans, and led his own bands. A voracious reader and the recipient of a MacArthur “genius” grant, Lacy was particularly known for setting to music literary texts—such as the Tao Te Ching, and the work of poets including Samuel Beckett, Robert Creeley, and Taslima Nasrin—as well as for collaborating with painters and dancers in multimedia projects.
Lacy lived in Paris from 1970 until 2002, and his music and ideas reflect a decades-long cross-pollination of cultures. Half of the interviews in this collection originally appeared in French sources and were translated specifically for this book. Jason Weiss provides a general introduction, as well as short introductions to each of the interviews and to the selection of Lacy’s own brief writings that appears at the end of the book. The volume also includes three song scores, a selected discography of Lacy’s recordings, and many photos from the personal collection of his wife and longtime collaborator, Irene Aebi.
Interviews by: Derek Bailey, Franck Bergerot, Yves Bouliane, Etienne Brunet, Philippe Carles, Brian Case, Garth W. Caylor Jr., John Corbett, Christoph Cox, Alex Dutilh, Lee Friedlander, Maria Friedlander, Isabelle Galloni d'Istria, Christian Gauffre, Raymond Gervais, Paul Gros-Claude, Alain-René Hardy, Ed Hazell, Alain Kirili, Mel Martin, Franck Médioni, Xavier Prévost, Philippe Quinsac, Ben Ratliff, Gérard Rouy, Kirk Silsbee, Roberto Terlizzi, Jason Weiss
Adam Smith, asserting the common humanity of the street porter and the philosopher, articulated the classical economists' model of social interactions as exchanges among equals. This model had largely fallen out of favor until, recently, a number of scholars in the avant-garde of economic thought rediscovered it and rechristened it "analytical egalitarianism." In this volume, Sandra J. Peart and David M. Levy bring together an impressive array of authors to explore the ramifications of this analytical ideal and to discuss the ways in which an egalitarian theory of individuality can enable economists to reconcile ideas from opposite ends of the political spectrum.
"The analytical egalitarianism project that Peart and Levy have advanced has come to occupy a prominent place in the current agenda of historians of economic thought."
---Ross Emmett, Associate Professor of Economics and Co-Director of the Michigan Center for Innovation and Economic Prosperity, Michigan State University
"These essays and dialogs from the Summer Institute would make Adam Smith, economist and moral philosopher, proud."
---J. Daniel Hammond, Hultquist Family Professor of Economics, Wake Forest University
With essays by:
James M. Buchanan, Alfred Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences recipient (1985) and Professor Emeritus, George Mason University and Virginia Polytechnic and State University
Juan Pablo Couyoumdijian, Universidad del Desearrollo, Chile
Tyler Cowen, George Mason University
Eric Crampton, University of Canterbury, New Zealand
Andrew Farrant, Dickinson College
Samuel Hollander, Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto
M. Ali Khan, Johns Hopkins University
Thomas Leonard, Princeton University
Deirdre McCloskey, University of Illinois, Chicago
Leonidas Montes, Dean of School of Government, Universidad Adolfo Ibañez, Chile
Maria Pia Paganelli, Yeshiva University and New York University
Warren J. Samuels, Professor Emeritus, Michigan State University
Eric Schliesser, VENI post-doctoral research fellow, Leiden University, and University of Amsterdam
Gordon Tullock, George Mason University
Sandra J. Peart is Dean of the Jepson School of Leadership Studies, University of Richmond, Virginia.
David M. Levy is Professor of Economics at George Mason University (GMU) and Research Associate at the Center for Study of Public Choice at GMU.
They are Co-Directors of George Mason University's Summer Institute for the Preservation of the History of Economics.
In Symbolic Violence Michael Burawoy brings Pierre Bourdieu into an extended debate with Marxism—a tradition Bourdieu ostensibly avoided. While Bourdieu's expansive body of work stands as a critique of Marx's inadequate account of cultural domination, Burawoy shows how Bourdieu's eschewal and rejection of Marxism led him to miss out on a number of productive theoretical engagements. In eleven “conversations,” Burawoy outlines the intellectual and biographical parallels and divergences between Bourdieu and the work of preeminent Marxist thinkers. Among many topics, Burawoy examines Bourdieu's appropriation and silencing of Beauvoir and her theory of masculine domination; the commonalities as well as differences in Bourdieu's and Fanon's thought on colonialism and revolution; the extent to which Gramsci's theory of hegemony aligns with Bourdieu's notion of symbolic violence; and both how Freire and Bourdieu understood education as the site of oppression. In showing how Bourdieu has more in common with these thinkers than Bourdieu himself cared to admit, Burawoy offers a critical assessment of Bourdieu's work that illuminates its paradoxes and reaffirms its significance for the twenty-first century.
Talking Leadership presents an impressive and thought-provoking look at variation and commonality in the lives and leadership approaches of some of today's outstanding women, whose fields range from philanthropy to politics, and from business to academia. Regardless of their different backgrounds and areas of expertise, these women are united in a commitment to positive change - change that includes improving women's lives and options.
This book encourages readers to expand their definition of who a "leader" is and can be. In addition to occupants of formal positions on the upper rungs of major institutions, it urges the inclusion of those whose ability to influence and move people is expressed through teaching, writing, or taking action in arenas-whether local or global-that include neighborhood communities and even family households. The women in Talking Leadership were selected not only for their impressive achievements but for their willingness to offer candid and thoughtful assessments of their experiences in leadership - the costs as well as the rewards, the strategies that worked and those that failed.
Well beyond the undeniable pleasures of personal details and entertaining anecdotes, these conversations capture for readers a variety of images, experiences, approaches, strategies, and insights about what it is like to be a woman and a major leader at the close of the 20th century. Many of these women are "firsts" in their fields, and each is aware that she occupies space in her work life in which her womanhood sets her apart - more often in more uncomfortable ways than comfortable ones. On the eve of a new millenium, the book presents an image of how far women have come in leadership, and how far they have to go.
Mary S. Hartman is a University Professor and Director of the Institute for Women's Leadership at Douglass College, Rutgers University. She is a former dean of Douglass College.
The leaders featured in this book
Peggy Antrobus - prize-winning economist and founding director of the Women and Development Unit at the University of the West Indies.
Susan Berresford - first woman president of the Ford Foundation.
Mildred Dresselhaus - first tenured woman faculty member in the engineering school at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science; 1990 National Medal of Science winner.
Antonia Hernandez - President and General Counsel of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, the most influential civil rights and advocacy organization for Latinos and Latinas in the U. S.
bell hooks - distinguished professor of English, City University, New York; author of numerous books, including Sisters of the Yam: Black Women and Self Recovery and Ain't I a Woman: Black Women and Feminism.
Lois Juliber - Executive Vice President and chief of operations for developing markets at Colgate-Palmolive Company.
Karen Nussbaum - Director, Working Women's Department, the first women's unit within the AFL-CIO; former director of the U.S. Women's Bureau; founder of "9 to 5."
Jacqueline Pitanguy - former president of Brazil's National Council for Women's Rights; director of a women's advocacy organization; holder of Brazil's highest decoration from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Anna Quindlen - Pulitzer-prize winning journalist, best-selling author, and social critic; only the third woman in New York Times history to write a regular column for the Op-Ed page.
Nafis Sadik - Executive director, United Nations Population Fund; the first woman to head a major United Nations program.
Patricia Schroeder - twenty-four-year Democratic Congresswoman; President and C.E.O., Association of American Publishers.
Ruth Simmons - first African American and third woman president of Smith College.
Christine Todd Whitman - First woman governor of New Jersey.
Whether we love it, hate it, or use it just to pass the time, most adults in the United States are watching more television than ever, up to four hours a day by some estimates. Our devotion to commercial television gives it unprecedented power in our lives.
Advertisers and television executives want us to spend as much time as we can in front of our sets, for it is access to our brains that they buy and sell. Yet the most important effect of television may be one that no one intends-accelerated destruction of the natural environment.
Consuming Environments explores how, with its portrayal of a world of simulated abundance, television has nurtured a culture of consumerism and overconsumption. The average person in the US consumers more than twice the grain and ten times the oil of a citizen of Brazil or Indonesia. And people in less industrialized countries suffer while their resources while their resources are commandeered to support comfortable lifestyles in richer nations.
Using detailed examples illustrated with images from actual commercials, news broadcasts, and television shows, and authors demonstrate how ads and programs are put together in complex way s to manipulate viewers, and they offer specific ways to counteract the effects of TV and overconsumption's assault on the environment.
What is it like to be a scientist at the end of the twentieth century? How have shifts in power and in assumptions about knowledge affected scientific practice? Who are the people behind the new technologies, and how do they address the difficult moral and professional issues during a time of global change? Techno-Scientific Imaginaries explores these and other important questions at the approach of the new millennium.
In these penetrating essays, twenty-four distinguished contributors from a broad range of fields present the voices of the scientists themselves—through interviews, conversations, and memoirs. We hear from Lithuanian physicists who discuss science after Communism and their own fantasies about what Western science is; a Japanese-American woman struggling with her ambivalence over designing nuclear weapons; political activists in India who examine relations among science, environmental politics, and government ideology in the aftermath of the Bhopal disaster; and many others, including biologists, physicians, corporate researchers, and scientists working with virtual reality and other cutting-edge technologies.
The contributors to this volume are Mario Biagioli, Maria E. Carson, Gary Lee Downey, Joseph Dumit, Michael M. J. Fischer, Mary-Jo DelVecchio Good, Hugh Gusterson, Diana L. L. Hill, James Holston, Herbert C. Hoover, Jr., Gudrun Klein, Leszek Koczanowicz, Irene Kuter, Kim Laughlin, Rita Linggood, George E. Marcus, Kathryn Milun, Livia Polanyi, Christopher Pound, Simon Powell, Paul Rabinow, Kathleen Stewart, Allucquere Rosanne Stone, and Sharon Traweek.
Winner of the 1990 Western States Book Award for Creative Nonfiction,The Telling Distance evokes the yearning expanses of our southwestern deserts and finds them full of sensuous marvels, erratic life forms, eccentric fellow travelers, dry humor, and surprise. In prose that revels in paradox, it reveals desert distances to be doubly telling: they both magnify our spirit and have incomparable tales to tell.
Although his contributions to philosophy are revered and his writings have been collected, Eric Voegelin’s persona will inevitably fade with the memories of those who knew him. This book preserves the human element of Voegelin by capturing those valuable personal recollections.
Barry Cooper and Jodi Bruhn conducted intensive interviews with Voegelin’s wife, his closest friends, and his first-generation students—many of whom have since passed on—in order to bring to print everything important about his life and personality. American scholars will especially appreciate the glimpses provided by Voegelin’s German colleagues into his life in Munich, as well as the thoughts of his students in Vienna. Reflections of people such as Paul Caringella, Bruno Schlesinger, and Heinz Barazon capture Voegelin’s greatness and shortcomings alike and also shed new light on his philosophical quest for truth.
By descending progressively further into the past, the book takes readers deeper into the essence of Voegelin as reminiscences become more dramatic. Ranging widely from America back to Germany—with recollections of Gestapo intimidation and eventual emigration—the accounts interweave episodes of pathos, humor, fear, rivalry, and ambition. We witness Voegelin’s persistent and partly self-imposed communication problems and impatience with administrative duties, his respect for prudent political actors and public servants, and his genuine affection not only for his colleagues and best students but also for diligent secretaries and empathetic nurses. Through these recollections, key elements of his personality repeatedly emerge: his intelligence, optimism, and integrity, combined with an acute perception of the significance of his work.
This is the most revealing and comprehensive biographical work yet available on a man known to be captivating as a thinker—and now shown to be equally fascinating as a human being. His own publications attest to his mind and methods; Voegelin Recollected provides a deeper understanding of the man himself.
With her distinctive, impassioned voice and familiar felicity of language, Terry Tempest Williams talks about wilderness and wildlife, place and eroticism, art and literature, democracy and politics, family and heritage, Mormonism and religion, writing and creativity, and other subjects that engage her agile mind—in a set of interviews gathered and introduced by Michael Austin to represent the span of her career as a naturalist, author, and activist.
There is a tendency to regard African literature as a homogenous product. Certainly it is true that African writers have created a vibrant, modern literature. Nevertheless, they come from specific societies and reflect vastly differing worlds.
Wanasema attempts to show some of the many faces of African literature. Dramatists, poets and novelists speak in these pages. They write in French, English, Portuguese, Arabic and indigenous languages. Some are Christian; others are Muslim. A variety of subjects are discussed, including the status of women, history, religion, politics, dress and education.
Taken together, the interviews in Wanasema suggest that Western students of Africa would do well to learn the languages of Africa. They suggest, too, taht there is a need to investigate further the relationship between Islamic North Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa, and finally, that oral literature continues to be a vast marketplace for scholars. This book should interest African Studies specialists, of course, but also those whose concerns include literature, history and contemporary events in the non-Western world generally.
The Whales, They Give Themselves is an intimate life history of Harry Brower, Sr. (1924-1992), an Inupiaq whaling captain, artisan, and community leader from Barrow, Alaska. In a life that spanned the profound cultural and economic changes of the twentieth century, Brower's vast knowledge of the natural world made him an essential contributor to the Native and scientific communities of the North. His desire to share his insights with future generations resulted in a series of conversations with friend and oral historian Karen Brewster, who weaves Harry's stories with cultural and historical background into this innovative and collaborative oral biography.
Brower was deeply committed to Native culture, and his life history is a moving expression of the Inupiaq way of life. He was also influential in traditionally non-Native arenas in which Native and non-Native values sometimes collided. Acting as a mediator between Inupiaq whalers and non-Native scientists, Brower communicated a vast understanding of bowhead whales and whaling that became the basis for a scientific research program and helped protect Inupiaq subsistence whaling. He was a central architect of the Arctic Slope Regional Corporation boundaries, and served for over twenty years as a consultant to scientists at the Naval Arctic Research Laboratory. Brower's role in this collaborative research serves as one of the earliest and best examples of how scientists and Native experts can work together to advance knowledge. Such approaches are now promoted by researchers around the world.
The Whales, They Give Themselves not only conveys Brower's life story, but also is a cross-cultural journey of wisdom and friendship. Whereas academic oral historians once strove to erase the presence of the interviewer in the name of objectivity, Brewster recognizes the influence her specific relationship with Brower had on the way he narrated his life. This volume is a major contribution to our understanding of northern peoples, and a testament to the immense value of collaborative oral history.
David Graeber is not only one of today’s most important living thinkers, but also one of the most influential. He is also one of the very few engaged intellectuals who has a proven track record of effective militancy on a world scale, and his impact on the international left cannot be overstated.
Graeber has offered up perhaps the most credible path for exiting capitalism—as much through his writing about debt, bureaucracy, or “bullshit jobs” as through his crucial involvement in the Occupy Wall Street movement, which led to his more-or-less involuntary exile from the American academy. In short, What is Anarchism? presents a series of interviews with a first-rate intellectual, a veritable modern hero on the order of Julian Assange, Edward Snowden, Linus Torvald, Aaron Swartz, and Elon Musk.
Interviewers Mehdi Belhaj Kacem and Assia Turquier-Zauberman ask Graeber not only about the history of anarchy, but also about its contemporary relevance and future. Their conversation also explores the ties between anthropology and anarchism, and the traces of its DNA in the Occupy Wall Street and Yellow Vest movements. Finally, Graeber discusses the meaning of anarchist ethics—not only in the political realm, but also in terms of art, love, sexuality, and more. With astonishing humor, verve, and erudition, this book redefines the contours of what could be (in the words of Peter Kropotkin) “anarchist morality” today.
In What We Made, Tom Finkelpearl examines the activist, participatory, coauthored aesthetic experiences being created in contemporary art. He suggests social cooperation as a meaningful way to think about this work and provides a framework for understanding its emergence and acceptance. In a series of fifteen conversations, artists comment on their experiences working cooperatively, joined at times by colleagues from related fields, including social policy, architecture, art history, urban planning, and new media. Issues discussed include the experiences of working in public and of working with museums and libraries, opportunities for social change, the lines between education and art, spirituality, collaborative opportunities made available by new media, and the elusive criteria for evaluating cooperative art. Finkelpearl engages the art historians Grant Kester and Claire Bishop in conversation on the challenges of writing critically about this work and the aesthetic status of the dialogical encounter. He also interviews the often overlooked co-creators of cooperative art, "expert participants" who have worked with artists. In his conclusion, Finkelpearl argues that pragmatism offers a useful critical platform for understanding the experiential nature of social cooperation, and he brings pragmatism to bear in a discussion of Houston's Project Row Houses.
Interviewees. Naomi Beckwith, Claire Bishop, Tania Bruguera, Brett Cook, Teddy Cruz, Jay Dykeman, Wendy Ewald, Sondra Farganis, Harrell Fletcher, David Henry, Gregg Horowitz, Grant Kester, Mierle Laderman Ukeles, Pedro Lasch, Rick Lowe, Daniel Martinez, Lee Mingwei, Jonah Peretti, Ernesto Pujol, Evan Roth, Ethan Seltzer, and Mark Stern
In this lively series of conversations with writer Michel Treguer, René Girard revisits the major concepts of mimetic theory and explores science, democracy, and the nature of God and freedom. Girard affirms that “our unprecedented present is incomprehensible without Christianity.” Globalization has unified the world, yet civil war and terrorism persist despite free trade and economic growth. Because of mimetic desire and the rivalry it generates, asserts Girard, “whether we’re talking about marriage, friendship, professional relationships, issues with neighbors or matters of national unity, human relations are always under threat.” Literary masters including Marivaux, Dostoevsky, and Joyce understood this, as did archaic religion, which warded off violence with blood sacrifice. Christianity brought a new understanding of sacrifice, giving rise not only to modern rationality and science but also to a fragile system that is, in Girard’s words, “always teetering between a new golden age and a destructive apocalypse.” Treguer, a skeptic of mimetic theory, wonders: “Is what he’s telling me true...or is it just a nice story, a way of looking at things?” In response, Girard makes a compelling case for his theory.