Sunday, April 20, 2014 Nisan 20, 5774
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When I was growing up back in the late 1950s and '60s, modernism -- and not the ubiquitous post-modernism that was spawned by the excesses and political shenanigans of the 1960s -- was the foundation of the temple where we literary types worshipped. And at the center of that temple stood Gertrude Stein, doyenne of a Paris salon that included...
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Coming amid the intense worldwide focus on the 40th anniversary of the Six-Day War, which has also proven to be a time of renewed friction between the United States and Russia, an Israeli husband-and-wife research team has offered up a theory contending that it was the Soviet Union -- and not the Arabs or Israelis -- who engineered the 1967...
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How an anticipated work fails to meet expectations
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There is nothing more disappointing for a critic than to look forward with anticipation to reading a book -- especially one with an intriguing concept by an admired writer -- only to find that it falls far short of expectations. Such has been the case with Room for Doubt by Wendy Lesser, founder and editor of the adventurous, California-based literary...
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Who would have thought it possible? The photographer who has given us some of the greatest paeans to beauty and relaxation -- to the joys of summer -- as well as a deep sense of place in American life has now given us the greatest tribute to one of the country's most resonant tragedies. Joel Meyerowitz, who made his name...
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A dance critic never sidesteps her many other interests
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What sort of criteria can be used to measure the success of a book? I'm not talking about any sort of obtuse critical theories, but about the tools that everyday devoted readers use to evaluate what they've just read. High on any list would have to be pleasure, which comes in assorted flavors: love of plot, character, style. Though these...
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