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Monthly Archive for January, 2012

Steve Reich, “WTC 9/11”

Here is a link to the first movement from Steve Reich‘s composition “WTC 9/11.” The music is performed by the Kronos Quartet with recorded voices from 9/11. The photograph shown in the video (below, left) was to appear on the cover of the album, but a new cover (below, right) was selected after many objected to […]

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Anselm Kiefer

 

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September

Dear all, I have chosen to talk about the short story September because I found it outstandingly good and creative. The idea of temporal foothold that brings us from an extremely violent moment of the 9/11 to a kind of Woody Allen New York love story (It just made me think about Annie Hall) was […]

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Perspective

The day and its events incite the same feelings in everyone.  September 11, 2001 is remembered as being painful, overwhelmingly sad, and hopeless.  In spite of everyone feeling the same way about 9/11 – no one short of those who caused it would see the day’s events as joyous or happy – the degree of […]

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Once Upon a Time

It is amazing when things that happen in your life, things you discuss, things you read, or things you learn seem to connect perfectly with each other. After reading Twilight of the Superheroes by Eisenberg, for instance, I was immediately able to relate it to an experience I’d just had–a reading experience. I recently read a […]

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Passive Reflection

Throughout much of Deborah Eisenberg’s “Twilight of the Superheroes,” one of the main characters, Nathaniel, is working on a superhero of his own. Nathaniel’s superhero “Passivityman” has an unconventional choice of superpowers and seems to be more or less a reflection of Nathaniel than anything supernatural. Passivityman and Nathaniel share similar attitudes toward their lives and the world. […]

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Feelings in Humans and Animals

Do dogs have to fight sadness as tirelessly as humans do? They seem less involved with retrospect, less involved in dread and anticipation. Animals other than humans appear to be having a more profound experience of the present. But who’s to say? Clearly their feelings are intense, and maybe grief and anxiety darken all their days. Maybe that’s […]

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A relationship without contact

In an instant, in a geographical point of nothing-time, neurons fire and two people make contact, leaving behind the invisible imprints of fried bacon, of French poets, of rumpled bed-sheets. Outside if this geometric instant, the window for 8J passes a man’s desk at four hundred sixty-six miles per hour. It keeps going. ~Anna Kovatcheva’s […]

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Rainy Days, Bad Pasta, and 9/11

Ana Kovatcheva writes a short story that is about 9/11 by not being about 9/11 at all. Instead it’s a story of what should have been, what could have been if not for the sudden collision between building and plane. September is the love story between Joshua, an insurance worker, and Isabelle. The story travels […]

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The Next Target

Their three elder sons, Nathaniel’s brothers, fulfilled Rose and Isaac’s deepest hopes by turning out to be blindingly inconspicous. The boys were so reliable and had so few characterestics it was hard to imagine what anyone could think up to kill them for. They were Jewish, of course, but even Rose and Isaac understood that […]

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Nice Costume

Reading Deborah Eisenberg’s “Twilight of the Superheroes,” I initially considered the story’s title to be a reference to the general crumbling of the idealistic concept of superheroes in the wake of 9/11.  As I became better acquainted with the characters in the story, however, and when the title became a subject of class discussion, it […]

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Stating the Obvious?

Deborah Eisenburg’s “Twilight of the Superheros” touches on various aspects of life, particularly life before and after 9/11. I want to take a look at the very beginning of the story. The relevancy and purpose of the content on the first three pages was in question during the round-table discussion. The passage highlights the anticipation, […]

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September

This story didn’t seem to be about 9/11 to me. It used 9/11 as a medium through which to make a point about the structure of reality – specifically time. The story doesn’t investigate the repercussions of the nonexistence of a relationship, but rather the existence of an infinity in every instant of time; like a […]

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Twilight of the Superheroes

I was struck by Eisenberg’s implication that the 9/11 attack is equivalent to other catastrophes that have historically brought down powerful empires. In the scene on page 40 where Lucien recalls his school days with Miss Mueller, he is aware that the Roman empire is represented not only by statues, buildings, and legacies such as […]

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Artistic Responses to 9/11

The chart below originally appeared in New York magazine as a part of its “Encyclopedia of 9/11.” You might find it helpful as you begin to explore potential topics for those oral reports not on the required texts. (Click on the image below to enlarge it.)  

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Convergences

  The image at the far left is by the painter Velázquez; it’s a depiction (c.1650) of Mars, the Roman god of war. Next to this image is a photograph by Joel Meyerowitz of a welder working in the wreckage of the World Trade Center after the 9/11 attacks. These images appear in the first chapter of […]

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