Commentaries - November 2007

It's all relative, indeed

Here is Vardi Kahana's 1992 photograph of her aunts, all Holocaust survivors.

Where are you now, Bill Ringler?

In the The Chronicle of Higher Education for November 9, there's an article about young academics who feel like frauds. Here's the link to John Gravois's piece. When this phenomenon was seriously studied, it was found that about 70 percent of people from all walks of life — men and women — have felt like impostors for at least some part of their careers.

There's even a web site for the syndrome.

Celan set to music

John Zorn approached Dan Kaufman to write something for his Tzadik label, the two quickly discovered their shared admiration for the work of Romanian Jewish poet Paul Celan. The result is Force of Light, Kaufman's eight-song homage to the remarkable, troubled poet.

New writing modes derive from duress

Pretty much as soon as html had been perfected I was teaching it to my students — or, rather, making them go out and learn it.