Music can move us in ways that reach beyond discursive speech. That does not mean that notes have no relation to words. Music is not a literal language, but it is more than a metaphorical one. The . . . . Continue Reading »
Richard Rodriguez has been an occasional companion of mine for more than thirty years, since the publication of Hunger of Memory in 1982. I feel I know him well enough, in part because so much of his . . . . Continue Reading »
She was known as “the Little Piano Girl” from East Liberty, Pittsburgh, and grew up to be one of the first ladies of jazz. But the story of Mary Lou Williams, from child prodigy to . . . . Continue Reading »
“What makes this team special?” a reporter asked University of Virginia basketball coach Tony Bennett after his Cavaliers beat Syracuse to sew up the Atlantic Coast Conference championship. It was a typical sports-journalistic question, but Bennett’s answer wasn’t typical. “Humility,” Bennett instantly replied, then looked down and waited for the next question.
Before we worried about the effect of the digital word on the printed word, we worried about the effect of writing on speech. This debate, as old as Plato’s Phaedrus, is kept alive by Page Meets . . . . Continue Reading »
“You see too deeply into things to be able to laugh nicely,” wrote fairy tale author and art critic John Ruskin to his friend, George MacDonald, in 1863. Ruskin was referring to the . . . . Continue Reading »
Recently, Fox and National Geographic aired a follow-up to Carl Sagan’s Cosmos hosted by science popularizer, Neil deGrasse Tyson. With this new series, Tyson hopes to inspire a new generation to wonder at and study the universe. The show is certainly well produced and fascinating, though it is not without its controversies.
I’ve always been caught by words. Lines of poetry, in particular, have shown up on the doorstep of my memory, been invited in for fellowship, and never left. Take Shakespeare’s . . . . Continue Reading »
Attention all First Things readers in greater Pittsburgh: Loyal reader Bill Stickman would like to organize a ROFTERs (Readers of First Things) group to meet each month to discuss articles in the . . . . Continue Reading »
“Street artyou mean vandalism? No, thank you.” That was the response of a friend when I invited him to join me at the Museum of the City of New York for their recent exhibit, . . . . Continue Reading »