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Alan W. Powers

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Member: AlanWPowers

CollectionsBooks I've authored (3), Your library (88), Currently reading (1), All collections (92)

Reviews88 reviews

TagsPoliticians Naked but effective in Africa (1), dependent on tailors but ineffective in UK (and US) (1), Islam vs Zoroastrianism (1), Productive Slaves in Rome vs Eunuch guards in Persia (1), Consiglio dei Dieci (1), Christianity (1), Funeral Customs (1), Veronese (1), Tintoretto (1), Hieronymus Bosch (1) — see all tags

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About meThe only thing Alan W Powers shares with Dr. Seuss is their place of birth, Springfield MA. Powers has worked as a harmless drudge, a college teacher of composition and Shakespeare, in Minnesota and Massachusetts. He has written a guest Safire "Head over Googles," and appeared in two poetry films, Keats and his Nightingale and A Loaded Gun. He has been interviewed on Italian TV and radio, and American radio. As a jazz trombonist on the bench, he wrote jazz tunes based on British and American birdsong, the subject of his first popular book. With the ears of a spy, he has written verse monologs based on scandalous overheard conversations. Despite several articles on Shakespeare (and law), his lifework turns out to be translations and a biography of Giordano Bruno, who was sent to the Inquisition by one bad student evaluation. A sceptic on education reform, he says, "Good teachers get fired; great teachers, killed--Socrates, Christ, Giordano Bruno."

About my libraryApparent chaos, but minutely--if subconsciously-- organized by book size and frequency or value. Hence a nearly complete 19C Twain is prominent, though I haven't read in it for two decades; a shelf of Loeb Latin plus half a dozen Oxford Latin above a shelf of French. A bookcase of Italian and a shelf of Russian, in another room. As for English Lit, my ostensible subject, I have several editions of Chaucer, Shakespeare, 17C English poets, most of Dickens, half of Updike, all of Austen, Dickinson, and Saul Bellow, complete poems and plays of WBY, TS Eliot, and several of my mentors' books: Leonard Unger, A MacLeish, LL Lipking, Tony Molho, Marge Garber, Sander Gilman, Thomas Greene, Theodore Baird, Armour Craig, Richard Cody, William Pritchard, Annabel Patterson, Jean D'Amato Thomas. But most of "my" library is at the British Library, Biblioteca Nazionale Napoletana, Biblioteca Marciana (Venezia), Biblioteca Communale Milanese, Rockefeller and John Hay and Annmarie Brown Libraries (Brown University), the Folger Library and nearby Library of Congress, the Treasure Room at Harvard Law School, the Houghton and the Widener, Cornell's Olin Library and Agricultural College Library, Princeton's Firestone, the Middlebury College and Breadloaf Davison Libraries, the Williams College Library, the U Minnesota Library, and first but not least, the Robert Frost Library at Amherst College.



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Member sinceMay 3, 2012

Currently readingMrs Ames (The Bloomsbury Group) by E. F. Benson

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Obviously not, since only Englishmen are humans.
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How very interesting! I had not noticed this! Satire is one of my favorite genres of literature! Thank you for pointing this out to me :)
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Hmm.. I see. Don't know what happened.
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Thanks for your comments on Paradise Lost and Olivier's Henry V. I had heard that quote about Milton being of the "devil's party." I'd agree it's much harder to make vivid completely good characters versus evil--although I do think flawed heroes can be made more fascinating than either--a lot of Shakespeare's characters coming to mind. I've seen both Olivier's and Branagh's Henry V, and actually like both. I'd agree Branagh's is much darker, but for me that's part of the fascination in such a different read. It's been a long time since I've seen their films--but I remember Olivier's film as being more full-throated patriotic, as befits a British film made in the midst of World War II. Branagh I think managed to be subtly anti-war--as befits a more cynical post-Vietnam War age.
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