A fascinating thing about this which I hadn't been aware of from my previous exposure to it is that is was one of Steinbecks's format/genre experiment...moreA fascinating thing about this which I hadn't been aware of from my previous exposure to it is that is was one of Steinbecks's format/genre experiments. In this work, Steinbeck created a new genre: the play/novelette. '"The work I am doing now," he wrote to his agents in April 1936, "is neither a novel nor a play but it is a kind of playable novel. Written in novel form but so scened and set that it can be played as it stands. It wouldn't be like other plays since it does not follow the formal acts but uses the chapters for curtains. Descriptions can be used for stage directions... Plays are hard to read so this will make both a novel and play as it stands." Anticipating postmodernists, Steinbeck was to declare wtih greater and greater frequency in the late 1930s and '40s that the novel was dead, whereas theater was "waking up," was fresh and challenging.' And in fact, he sent it to his publishers in late summer of 1936; it was published on February 25, 1937 (for $2 per copy); was a Book-of-the-Month Club selection in March; was performed as written by Theater Union of San Francisco with an opening on May 21, 1937; then performed as a modified version at Music Box Theater in New York opening November 23, 1937; and released as a film in 1939. It was very controversial, banned in Australia in 1940; one of the most frequently banned books by school board over the years. '"The first few pages so nauseated me," wrote the reviewer for 'The Catholic World,' "That I couldn't bear to keep it in my room over night."' "Morbid and degenerate" content was why another showing of it was condemned. And the reason for all the hoo-ha? The truth of it. The hopelessness and loneliness of the group of people Steinbeck gives life to - the landless white male agricultural workers of the 1930's. Also, he used actual dialect which was still new back then. Included in the dialect is racist language in use back then, as his characters would not have been honest without it. Probably some bannings were due simply to the use of the 'n' word, although most programs that use it now include context for that which is a response to it that contains the intended respect while also containing discussion that can be so useful to unlearning racism. Another interesting content item about race is a momentary scene in which a white woman brings to the attention of a black man her ability to get him lynched. It's brutal, and then it's over and the action continues and it fades into unimportance - all of which serves as a reminder of our shared history festering with racism; and how far we as a country have come. (i'm adding that scene to quotes for this book). It's a very quick read for all that, and very enjoyable actually just for the intensity of description. This felt to me like one of those quick-action films, only the super-short scenes are ones you create in your own mind, as written by Steinbeck. Somehow he packs in vivid visual content and well-drawn characters in an almost poetically pithy writing style. Highly recommend.(less)
I'm realizing now as I read through the synopsis - one of our local theaters - Penumbra - an awesome black theater - did a production called Gospel at...moreI'm realizing now as I read through the synopsis - one of our local theaters - Penumbra - an awesome black theater - did a production called Gospel at Colonus that invovled this story. I saw it and it was just amazing, mostly musically. I remember the gouging of the eyes and just that pinnacle of pain. Ok, now I'm all set to read with daughter's english class..
My edition is different, but doesn't seem to have an ISBN #, so oh well. It's got the Oedipus Plays of Sophocles - Oedipus the King, Oedipus at Colonus, and Antigone. By Plume. Translation by Paul Roche.
Ok, my daughter zipped through this already and is done with it, completely done, and there were no conversations in this case. It was fascinating to dip into it briefly, but to do it justice would take more time than I have right now. So, for now I'm marking it as past, rather than current. Will explore/read more another day.(less)
My edition is different - it has the cover based on shots from the film, and is titled 'slumdog millionaire', but it's not the shooting script, it sho...moreMy edition is different - it has the cover based on shots from the film, and is titled 'slumdog millionaire', but it's not the shooting script, it shows also 'originally published as q&a'.
Anyway, am fascinated by this whole thing, the book, the film, the reality portrayed. What the point of the book was (by one interview, was about English acquisition in India, and the potential effect of that on a person's life), how that relates to the film (Ram knows English by the time of the quiz show - but how? As the way in which he learned it in the book was not in the film. But also, by then the film is in English, so it kind of confuses that part...), how either/both relate to reality in India.
This is a book of great photographs paired to quotes. Printed in 1970, it is clearly constructed from the mindset of 'men do, women are seen & fel...moreThis is a book of great photographs paired to quotes. Printed in 1970, it is clearly constructed from the mindset of 'men do, women are seen & felt & experienced.. then they become mothers and thereby sacred' - the dichotomies are actually quite severe (both between women and men and between mothers and non-mothers. I think it was something I always just understood to be 'before' the Women's Movement.
Ok, now here are some actual quotes:
'Men always want to be a women's first love; women have a more subtle instinct: what they like is to be a man's last romance.' Oscar Wilde
'Flirting: Attention with Intention.' Max O'Reill
'Not to go to the theater is like making one's toilet without a mirror.' Arthur Schopenhauer
'History is philosophy teaching by examples.' Dionysius of Halicarnassus
'There's only one pretty child in the world, and every mother has it.' Chinese proverb (with *great* photo, perfect for that)
'There mustn't be any more war. It disturbs too many people.' 1917 - An old French peasant woman to Aristide Briand.
'Suppose you go to war, you cannot fight always; and when, after much loss on both sides, and no gain on either, you cease fighting, the identical old questions as to terms of intercourse are again upon you.' Abraham Lincoln.
'Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear.' -Mark Twain (with a photo of a women holding a candle and forging bravely into the darkness, so that's something).
'There are no fools so troubling as those who have wit.' La Rochefoucauld (and the photo is great, the feet of someone sitting cross-legged, and the uppermost foot has a loafer-type shoe, where the sole is separated from the rest of the shoe in front... and the front part (the gap between the two) has a nice row of paper teeth inserted.. looks like the shoe is laughing.)(less)
Seems like potentially the perfect antidote to my current conundrum of hard-to-read Great Literature ala my daughter's class, and tedious Mom-sourced...moreSeems like potentially the perfect antidote to my current conundrum of hard-to-read Great Literature ala my daughter's class, and tedious Mom-sourced current novels..
And starts out engagingly interestingly!
I've wanted to get around to this for so long, am very excited! ---- Finished 2/26/10: This book deserves a really excellent review. Unfortunately, my time is overcommitted right now especially, and am going through a transition as well. Plus, I just want to re-read it instead of writing anything about it right now!
So, rather than doing any misc paragraphs right now, I think I'll start something in Word and see if it becomes anything good enough to include.
Until then, I'll just list some of my favorite aspects of this: Multiple points of view Day-to-day life details Intimacy details Self-identity construction insets in which a character's life is explored fully, fascinating lots of political content feels true India
If anyone (in the US) is thinking about 'living simply', this book is a great starting point. Middle-class in India can entail a very, very modest lifestyle by US standards. And a couple times in the book, a character feels bad about the luxury around them. Only, they're talking about a towel, or a mattress. This book is great for really getting a serious glimpse at how others - others who are just as real, just as whole, just as smart, just as good, etc.. etc.. - live with much, much less. My extensive clutter looks very different to me now.(less)
Here's a list: 1903: Theodore Roosevelt 'You can not improve on it, leave it as it is' 1933: FDR 'the only thing we have to fear is fear itself' 1939: G...moreHere's a list: 1903: Theodore Roosevelt 'You can not improve on it, leave it as it is' 1933: FDR 'the only thing we have to fear is fear itself' 1939: Gehrig 'luckiest man on the face of the earth' 1940: Churchill 'blood, toil, tears and sweat' 1945: MacArthur 'the entire world is quietly at peace' 1945: Einstein 'war is won, but peace is not' 1948: Eleanor Roosevelt 'international magna carta of all men everywhere' 1963: JFK 'ich bin ein berliner' 1963: MLK, Jr 'I have a dream' 1964: Goldwater 'extremism in defense of liberty is no vice' 1968: Bobby Kennedy 'some men see things as they are ....' 1974: Barbara Jordan 'my faith in the constitution...' 1979: Sadat 'let there be no more wars' 1984: Cuomo 'there is despair, Mr. President' 1986: Reagan - address after Challenge disaster 1989: Tenzin Gyatso, 14th Dalai Lamai 'a universal responsibility' 1993: Rabin 'enough of blood and tears. enough' 1997: eulogy for Princess Diana 1941, 2001: FDR & GWB - days of infamy(less)
Sheila Dhar (1929–2001) obtained her MA in English from Boston University. The passion of her life was Hindustani classical music, whic...more from wikipedia:
Sheila Dhar (1929–2001) obtained her MA in English from Boston University. The passion of her life was Hindustani classical music, which she performed and wrote about with much insight and wit. She served on the board of the Sangeet Natak Akademi and was advisor for music to the Indian Council of Cultural Relations.
Married to the economist P. N. Dhar, she also had occasion to observe the workings of India’s bureaucracy and political leaders.(less)
I was assigned this during my later (of only a few years) German language class.. read it and re-read it and re-read it. To have such a play as this b...moreI was assigned this during my later (of only a few years) German language class.. read it and re-read it and re-read it. To have such a play as this be used for such a purpose is - some would say - twisted; but we contextualized it and it was great. I really have a fondness for it, both for itself and for the journey that I went through with it. It's basically that one piece of German literature which I actually understand - in German! A treasure..(less)
I really liked this, it's another of my favorites of hers. The descriptions of some of the interactions are so immediate and real, they still stay wit...moreI really liked this, it's another of my favorites of hers. The descriptions of some of the interactions are so immediate and real, they still stay with me. Like when there is news the she wants to tell her partner, but she wants to do it privately, and he keeps saying (in a room with people around): "Just tell me!" There's struggle and conflict, but also a certain pervading quiet joy that is very reassuring.(less)
We caught this at a store around the time or soon after my daughter was learning about the Underground Railroad in school - so was excellent. The pict...moreWe caught this at a store around the time or soon after my daughter was learning about the Underground Railroad in school - so was excellent. The pictures are awesome, and I believe this one has allusions to the African-American theme of flying out of safety. It's a poignant mix of powerful/powerlessness; fear and safety; grief and joy. Highly recommend.(less)