December 18, 1994 |
Grandmothers, writes distinguished African-American poet Nikki Giovanni, "are a lot like spinach or asparagus or brussels sprouts: something good for us that we appreciate much more in reflection than in actuality." To encourage grandchildren in appreciating these figures of wisdom and immense influence now rather than later, Giovanni has edited an unusual anthology, GRAND MOTHERS: Poems, Reminiscences, and Short Stories About the Keepers of Our Traditions (Holt: $15.95, ages 11 and up).
February 13, 2011 |
The Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Carl Dennis is known for his quiet lyricism, and his latest, "Callings" (Penguin: $18 paper), is similarly contemplative and restrained. Yet beneath their reticent surface, these poems brim with big questions about vocation, regret, identity and other issues, as in "Outdoor Café": No book or paper, and no expectation A friend will be joining me later on. Just the silent acceptance of life As it flows in the talk around me. With its constant questioning of what might have been and what's been lost, "Callings" is an apt poetic companion in these uncertain and anxious economic times.
January 9, 2014 |
Amiri Baraka died Thursday after weeks of failing health, a family spokeperson confirmed. He was 79. A playwright, poet, critic and activist, Baraka was one of the most prominent and controversial African American voices in the world of American letters. He was born Everett LeRoi Jones on Oct. 7, 1934, in Newark, N.J. A gifted student, he graduated from high school two years early and went to college at New York University and Howard University. After serving in the Air Force for more than two years, Baraka -- then Jones -- was dishonorably discharged for reading communist texts.
January 29, 1995 |
I wish "Black Women in America: An History Encyclopedia" had been around when I was growing up. What little African-American history I was taught focused mostly on men--the three M's, mostly: Martin Luther King, Malcolm X, Marcus Garvey. The women I learned about were primarily white. This is not news. To be both female and black has always been a struggle against invisibility. I often think of the black feminist anthology edited by Patricia Bell-Scott, Gloria Hull and Barbara Smith, with the intricate title "All the Women Are White, All the Blacks are Men, but Some of Us Are Brave: Black Women Studies."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 13, 2009 |
Stephen E. Toulmin, a British-born philosopher and retired USC professor who created a model for evaluating the practical arguments that arise from daily life during a six-decade career that brought him prominence in several fields, has died. He was 87. Toulmin, who was the Henry R. Luce professor at the Center for Multiethnic and Transnational Studies, died Dec. 4 at USC University Hospital, said his son, Greg. The cause was pneumonia. The Oxford-trained theorist was best known for “The Uses of Argument,” published in 1958 and still in print, which set forth six criteria for building an effective argument.
July 19, 1993 |
The Los Angeles Festival has finalized its 1993 program schedule and this week will begin distributing its promotional brochure detailing highlights of the monthlong event. The celebration of African, African-American and Middle Eastern cultures begins Aug. 20 and continues through Sept. 19. In 1990, the festival's colorful but confusing brochure was virtually unreadable and the target of many complaints.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 12, 1997 |
Aside from the dozen scholarly tomes he's written, another thing brings USC professor Stephen Toulmin distinction in academia: where he lives. In a dorm. At age 74. What's more, the British-born philosopher and historian has a dining hall set aside one evening a week so he and fellow dorm residents can dine and chat in the intimate style of his days at Cambridge. It's not all highbrow talk over the spinach linguine. At the last dinner, he stood up to announce an upcoming whale watching trip.
November 11, 2003 |
The Holloway Park Veterans' Memorial, which will be formally dedicated today at 11 a.m. in West Hollywood, is considerably different from the plan that originally was chosen for construction in 1999. That scheme suggested a place of contemplative respite within the city. The final design, at the busy intersection of Santa Monica Boulevard and Holloway Drive, is anything but. What it has sacrificed in quietude, though, it has gained in simplicity.