Reviews

The question of what it means to be a Jewish American writer has as many answers as it does authors. Consider Isaac Bashevis Singer, then Cynthia Ozick; Bernard Malamud juxtaposed with Philip Roth; or Rebecca Goldstein and Allegra Goodman: magisterial, demotic, irreverent, earnest, schticky, obsessed, feminist …

Poets, Randall Jarrell quipped, are in the beginning hypotheses, in the middle facts, and in the end values. He meant (I think) that when you start writing seriously, or start publishing, you cannot, by definition, have a style that other readers recognize.

Rough Trade is a bricks-and-mortar store that stayed open during a fallow period of record buying to maintain a vital role in music consumers’ lives. The shop, off Brick Lane in East London, now functions as a prime organizer of musical genres–not simply by slotting CDs and vinyl albums …

To navigate James Baldwin’s enduring interest in novelistic adaptations is to live through a wide spectrum of emotions. In his 1976 movie-going memoir-cum-essay The Devil Finds Work, he notes feeling haunted by They Won’t Forget (1937), a movie based on the American novelist Ward Greene’s Death in the Deep South.

Martha Nussbaum on Our Political Crisis

Feisal G. Mohamed

Experiences we have while reading a book can indelibly mark our response to it. I first flipped through the pages of Martha Nussbaum’s Monarchy of Fear while taking an Uber to the airport.

As Giorgio Bassani (1916–2000) began writing in the late 1940s, Europe was reeling from World War II. Among those most confused and stricken by it were writers and artists, for whom the Nazis’ defeat and their gradually uncovered atrocities spelled an intellectual crisis.

Don Paterson’s new prose work is learned, intensely reflective, shot through with illuminating perceptions–and sometimes baffling and sometimes maddening. To be all of these, as well as crotchety and cavalier, it has to be at least substantial  .   .   .

The world of opera, both in its plots and in its singers’ personal histories, is filled with tales of women oppressed and exploited by men. “Vissi d’arte, vissi d’amore” (Thus to art, thus to love), as Tosca despairingly sings in Puccini’s great aria.

According to a statement cited by The New York Times, Donna de Salvo, chief curator of the Whitney Museum of American Art, has made explicit her aim in organizing the new retrospective of the work of the artist Andy Warhol on view until 31 March 2019: “To humanize Warhol and get people to actually look at what he made is not as easy as it might sound.”

What do we make of the end?

            The beginning is easy, nothing more American. A simple white Dutch church, founded 1767, built 1801, First Reformed, just as it said on the title card. We see a hand writing, hear a voice speaking.