Category: Great Questions

A Review of Christian Wiman’s Spiritual Autobiography

In his review of Christian Wiman’s spiritual autobiography, My Bright Abyss: Meditation of a Modern Believer, Jay Parini discusses Wiman’s emphasis on the importance of faith to a critic. Here is an extract: It strikes me that criticism—systemic reflection on texts, even on life itself—has lost its urgency during the past 30 years or more, […]

Oscar Wilde in America

In his review of Roy Morris Jr.’s Declaring His Genius: Oscar Wilde in North America, Justin Beplate discusses Oscar Wilde’s trip to America, and the lasting effect that it had on his writing and personality. Here is an excerpt: Wilde’s reception in America was uneven. If some were bemused by the colourful paraphernalia of aestheticism, others […]

Writers’ Reasons For Reading

Here is where these great writers get their zest for reading: “Every man who knows how to read has it in his power to magnify himself, to multiply the ways in which he exists, to make his life full, significant, and interesting.” Aldous Huxley “Reading a book is like re-writing it for yourself. You bring […]

Criticism of ‘Jane Austen, Game Theorist’

Relating to CC202′s study of Jane Austen’s work is an article from Slate, in which Adelle Waldman gives her amusing criticism of a recent book that discusses Austen’s insight into human behavior. Here is an extract: Austen, it seems, has something to tell us. And not only us English majors. Mathematicians. Game theorists. Serious thinkers. Even […]

Annual Poetry Reading: Poetry’s Distant Voice

The Core presents a “set of two poems, which are the same poem” as phrased by Zachary Bos, one of the respected speakers at the Annual Poetry Reading this year on April 16th. The theme of the reading was “Poetry’s Distant Voice”, and here is Zachary Bos’ contribution: From The Book of Hours I, 36 MacDiarmid, […]

Boston: Forever Changed

Former US Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky, who teaches here at BU, shares his reaction to the Boston Marathon bombings: Out of town, watching the horror on a screen, in a familiar place on a familiar occasion, I thought first of my daughter, who works at Mass. General, and my daughter-in-law, who was in Copley Square […]

Maximal Meaning in Minimal Space: the History of Punctuation

The Core presents the original English version of an article that was published in the April 2013 issue of Hiatus, la revue. Here is an extract: Punctuation, as any dictionary will tell you, consists of the marks that dance around the letters of a text to mark clauses, sentences and inflection. What, though, is minimal punctuation? Is it in […]

Times Higher Education – “Creative Writing”

The Core presents an interesting feature from Times Higher Education, in which they offer their insight on what the causes, and possible consequences, of the rise of “creative writing” may be. Here is a sample: Despite the speed and apparent smoothness with which creative writing has become incorporated into English departments, or (especially in the US) as a […]

Discoveries Lecture Series Presents: Pricing Looks, Pricing Gender

Fashion modeling is one of a handful of occupations in which women routinely earn more than men, commanding wage premiums up to 75 percent. But why—and at what cost? Assistant Professor of Sociology Ashley Mears will lead us through an exploration of the economics of the modeling industry, drawing on ethnographic data from within the […]