April 30, 2006
Dan Neil's column about the value of getting an English degree ("Eat This Book," 800 Words, April 9) was a welcome change from the usual celebrity fare. I got my English Lit sheepskin from the talented faculty at Cal State Los Angeles, and I regard it as a moving force in my life. Anyone intimately connected to the "Norton Anthology of English Literature" knows that poems can express a wealth of feelings where more prosaic language fails. Like water through espresso beans, carefully chosen words filter through to the dregs of life, stimulating us and lifting our spirits.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 19, 2009 |
Alfred Appel Jr., 75, a Northwestern University English professor who was a leading expert on Russian American author Vladimir Nabokov and a scholar of modern art and jazz, died of heart failure May 2 at a hospital in Evanston, Ill., according to his daughter Karen Oshman. As a Cornell University undergraduate, Appel studied under Nabokov and in 1970 produced one of his best-known works, "The Annotated Lolita." The book laid out the layers of literary references and word play in Nabokov's story of a middle-aged man's obsession with a young girl, and helped push a novel some had condemned as obscene squarely into the literary canon, said Samuel Hynes, professor emeritus of literature at Princeton University.
February 12, 1989 |
Call it, if you like, the Battle of the Two Margarets: Drabble took the field first, with the 1985 fifth edition of "The Oxford Companion to English Literature"; enter now Atwood, with the late 1988 first edition of "The Cambridge Guide to Literature in English." Actually, Margaret Atwood only contributes the foreword to the Cambridge book, which has been edited by Ian Ousby; Margaret Drabble is Oxford's Ousby. But call it the Battle of the Two Margarets anyway. Now then, which Margaret wins?
March 20, 2004
In "Nobody Likes a Brainiac" (Opinion, March 14), Jo Scott-Coe correctly identifies a central problem among the plethora plaguing education in America. The underlying anti-intellectualism one encounters in American culture has found an insidious nest, bizarrely, in the education system itself. Fear of excellence and a distrust of accomplishment are twin debilitations in this process. I am fortunate to teach in a marvelous public school setting: the Hamilton Humanities Magnet in the L.A. Unified School District.
April 10, 2010
'The justice in the bow tie' April 20, 1920: Born John Paul Stevens in Chicago, the youngest of four sons to a successful hotel owner. 1941: Graduates Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Chicago with a bachelor's degree in English literature. June 7, 1942: Marries Elizabeth Jane Sheeren; they have four children (John Joseph, Kathryn, Elizabeth Jane and Susan Roberta). 1942: Begins three years of service in the U.S. Naval Reserve, earning a Bronze Star as a code-breaker.