A Mosaicist

  … Proust had never been able to finish any work of fiction because he lacked the story and point of view. He had at last found his structure, one that was to prove ideal…

Notice What You Notice

Primo Levi:  I never stopped recording the world and people around me, so much that I still have an unbelievably detailed image of them. I had an intense wish to understand, I was constantly pervaded…

With Gratitude for Harold Bloom

In 1994 I purchased Harold Bloom’s The Western Canon after I had taken a leave of absence from my doctoral program in Religion and Society at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley.   Bloom  offered…

Dirda on Proust

Dear CK Michael Dirda is one of my favorite bibliophiles. I have several of his books, which, like Mustich‘s tome, I regularly browse in utmost delight. This morning in his Bound to Please, I came…

Becoming a Mensch

Alan Morinis,  Climbing Jacob’s Ladder: One Man’s Journey  to Rediscover a Jewish Spiritual TraditionTrumpeter, 2002 Alan Morinis  offers an engaging account of how  he came to  re-order his life according to the Jewish practice of…

A Paradise for Perusers

I have given away four copies of James Mustich’s chef d’oeuvre, 1,000 Books to Read before You Die: A Life-Changing List, before I bought and kept one for myself. I became acquainted with Mr. Mustich…

People

If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts…

Correspondents

Proximity by Martín Zaldivar Hi Mark, … The last two years have been rough. New York City can be a very lonely place, and I miss my good friends, as well as the calmness of…