At twenty-three, after leaving graduate school to pursue her dreams of becoming a poet, Joanna Rakoff moved to New York City and took a job as assistant to the storied literary agent for J. D. Salinger. She was tasked with answering Salinger’s voluminous fan mail.
Her memoir of that time is called: My Salinger Year.
A proposal from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation to force the closure of Indian Point during periods of the summer season to cut down on fish kills is the subject of public hearings Tuesday in Westchester County. Both sides say they want to protect the Hudson River, but the methods differ.
At the top of the conventional wisdom list is the assumption that if you do a play of William Shakespeare in an outdoor setting, you must choose a comedy or a romance. Under no circumstance should you do a tragedy outside.
Earlier this summer, a group of students from Utica College and a few other schools spent three weeks at an ancient archeological site in southern Albania. It was the most recent group to take part in an unlikely collaboration between the college and a national park in a little known part of the world.
Charles Darwin developed his evolutionary theories by looking at physical differences in Galapagos finches and fancy pigeons. Alfred Russell Wallace investigated a range of creatures in the Malay Archipelago. Laurel Braitman got her lessons closer to home—by watching her dog. Oliver snapped at flies that only he could see, ate Ziploc bags, towels, and cartons of eggs. He suffered debilitating separation anxiety, was prone to aggression, and may even have attempted suicide. Her experience with Oliver forced Laurel to acknowledge a form of continuity between humans and other animals that, first as a biology major and later as a PhD student at MIT, she’d never been taught in school. Nonhuman animals can lose their minds. And when they do, it often looks a lot like human mental illness.
Bob Dylan turned 73 this year, and his music has spawned more than a half-century of enjoyment, argument, scholarship, social change and bewilderment. Often, fan interest has crossed the line over to obsession unique to Dylan fans, many of whom think the meaning of life might be buried somewhere on Self Portrait.