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Reading, Looking, Listening, . . . Questioning
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By您好, yangyang Geng   Memory heals the scars of time. Photography documents the wounds. — Michael Ignatieff[1] It requires constant vigilance to see people as they are. — Olive Pierce    The Portraits of the Jefferson Park Housing Project in Cambridge and No Easy Roses Olive Pierce was born in Chicago, Illinois in 1925 and […]

Article
Categories: William Eaton, ZiLL | 3 Comments
view of Alberto Burri’s Cretto di Gibellina, Sicily

Beauty is a form of genius—is higher, indeed, than genius, as it needs no explanation. — Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray   I Robert Smithson’s Mirrors and Shelly Sand (images above) is a long, low, floor-lying crest of sand (approximately 30 feet by 5 feet), which is divided in equal parts by 50 […]

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Kamel Daoud, Algerian novelist and journalist

Well just look at all the other Musas in this dive, one by one, and imagine—as I do—how they could have survived a shot fired in bright sunlight or how they managed never to cross paths with that writer of yours or, in a word, how they’ve managed to not be dead yet. — The […]

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Stanching the Flow   By Martin Green   The emergence of immigration as a major issue worldwide and especially in the presidential campaign—thanks to Donald Trump’s vociferous attack on alleged rapists, drug dealers, and other criminals sneaking across the southern border, to say nothing of the threat posed by terrorists hiding among Moslem refugees—is not, […]

Article
Categories: William Eaton | 1 Comment
Philip Guston, "Aggressor," 1978, private collection

Why do we think Guston made paintings like these? This becomes a question, too, about how we are compelled, how we respond.   By William Eaton   I think every good painter here in New York really paints a self-portrait. I think a painter has two choices: he paints the world or himself. And I […]

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Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, Sacrificio di Isacco (The Sacrifice of Isaac), 1603. In the collection of the Uffizi Gallery, Florence.

Twenty-Three Ways (and Counting) of Looking at the Bible By Martin Green Review of Reading Genesis: Beginnings, edited by Beth Kissileff (Bloomsbury/T&T Clark, 2016)   Beth Kissileff’s recent anthology Reading Genesis: Beginnings presents twenty-three ways of looking at the first book of the Hebrew Bible. Well, perhaps not twenty-three distinct ways of reading Scripture, but […]

Review
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Exhibition image for Jewface, Yiddish Dialect Songs of Tin Pan Alley, YIVO Institute for Jewish Research - detail from larger image

Mock Yiddish and Ethnic Parody in the Vaudeville Melting-Pot     While weary critiques of Blackface, Yellowface and Redface have become almost a Halloween tradition in their own right, “Jewface” in popular music has largely been forgotten.[1]). However, this past spring, the Center for Jewish History in New York City hosted an exhibit by the […]

ZiLL
The Ballerina and the Bull, Adbusters poster - Occupy Wall Street

Allowing the full Influx of the World Artistry mitigates disaster and keeps us alive. I mean both the artistry of the world and our individual artistry in responding to it. It’s a balancing act, a ballet on the back of a dancing bull. Artistry, incoming and outgoing, from the world and from us, gives us […]

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Photo of third suicide bomber behind Stade de France blasts - photo released by French police, 22 Nov 2015 - AFP; Getty Images

. . . though that cause was, I believe, one of the worst for which a people ever fought, and one for which there was the least excuse. I do not question, however, the sincerity of the great mass of those who were opposed to us. — U.S. Grant, writing, years later, about the Confederate […]

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Categories: Ed Mooney, ZiR | Add a Comment

          These are preliminary notes on a tension between philosophy and friendship. They are prompted by two texts I encountered nearly in conjunction, within the passage of just a few days. The first is a remarkable passage from  Moby Dick where Ishmael, the narrator whose name echoes the Biblical figure cast […]

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  A comparison with a shaggy dog tale—with “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County”—may help us appreciate and begin to think about an “elusive passage” in Plato’s Symposium. In Twain’s text, the narrator goes seeking news of the Reverend Leonidas W. Smiley and ends up hearing stories about an inveterate gambler named Jim Smiley. […]

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Frank Kermode, August 2000, photo by Charlie MacDonald

  A comparison with a shaggy dog tale—with “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County”—may help us appreciate and begin to think about an “elusive passage” in Plato’s Symposium. In Twain’s text, the narrator goes seeking news of the Reverend Leonidas W. Smiley and ends up hearing stories about an inveterate gambler named Jim Smiley. […]

Essay

June 14, 2018

The time that takes place in stories compared to the time that we actually live is radically abbreviated. It briskly sweeps aside all the commonplace moments that make up the long stretch of toilsome time and focuses instead on the interesting and compelling. With a mere section break or a simple transitional phrase, days, months, and whole years are disposed of as if they had no significance at all. “Then time passed slowly until the day arrived when….” A lot of important living is hidden in such a phrase. From the moment-to-moment flow of time, the storyteller lifts out only those narr...

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Categories: Essay | Add a Comment
Frank Kermode, August 2000, photo by Charlie MacDonald

  A comparison with a shaggy dog tale—with “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County”—may help us appreciate and begin to think about an “elusive passage” in Plato’s Symposium. In Twain’s text, the narrator goes seeking news of the Reverend Leonidas W. Smiley and ends up hearing stories about an inveterate gambler named Jim Smiley. […]

Essay

May 11, 2018

Using personal essay, literary reference, and journalistic voice, the article plants itself on our existential doorstep while illuminating Barnes' novel one more time. Very strong. Thanks.

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Categories: Essay | Add a Comment
Frank Kermode, August 2000, photo by Charlie MacDonald

  A comparison with a shaggy dog tale—with “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County”—may help us appreciate and begin to think about an “elusive passage” in Plato’s Symposium. In Twain’s text, the narrator goes seeking news of the Reverend Leonidas W. Smiley and ends up hearing stories about an inveterate gambler named Jim Smiley. […]

Essay

May 10, 2018

"When these new memories suddenly came upon me … time had been placed in reverse. As if, for that moment, the river ran upstream." Stolen from Barnes's book for my poem "From the Vale for a Soul Making". Great book to write about.

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