Al Filreis

Don't sign petitions

Harry Truman, in a speech at Detroit's 250th anniversary celebration, as quoted in the New York Times on July 29, 1951:

Neither us nor them, part 2

A few days ago I commented on John Yau's attack on Eliot Weinberger's anthology American Poetry Since 1950: Innovators and Outsiders. Toward the end of that entry I mentioned that the review didn't have about it the left-right contentiousness of many other lit-crit squabbles of the day (late '80s/early 90s).

The class that taught itself

In the spring of '96 I taught a course called "The Literature of Community", a seminar in which all the memb

Drucker, Atget, Boltanski, et alia

For Lingua Franca's "Breakthrough Books" feature back in January of 2000, I wrote this paragraph on Marjorie Perloff's Poetry on & off the Page: Essays for Emergent Occasions (Northwestern University Press). What can one do in a paragraph?

Pattern recognition circa 2003

By the age of 28, Ray Kurzweil had invented a print-to-speech reading machine for the blind that caught the attention of Stevie Wonder.