Category Archives: Uncategorized

Morsel: Spark

I don’t know anyone named Muriel, but I want to.  My primary association with the name is from reading Muriel Spark’s novel The Prime of Miss Jane Brodie, then seeing the film, made marvelous by the young Maggie Smith.  I’m … Continue reading

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The Cave

I recently read Plato’s Republic where he describes his ideal society by speaking through Socrates and in a way personal criticism of his beliefs. Based on his metaphorical and fictional society, all learning begins in a cave. This cave prevents … Continue reading

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Emily Dickinson and Bread

To continue with Shenandoah’s apparent and impromptu Emily Dickinson theme this week (see our most recent Poem of the Week, Dickinson’s “To Tell the Beauty Would Decrease,” here: https://shenandoahliterary.org/blog/2017/10/to-tell-the-beauty-would-decrease/), I thought it only appropriate to talk gluten. Dickinson herself was, … Continue reading

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Redeeming Dickens

Whenever people find out that I’m an English major, their first question is almost always, “Oh, what’s your favorite book?”  Glossing over the fact that regardless of one’s major or career field, everyone ought to have a favorite book, I … Continue reading

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Political Lessons of Water in the Tao Te Ching

Professor Gray is a political philosophy professor at Washington and Lee University. In this post, he briefly explains the significance of water in the writings of Lao Tzu who was the founder of Taoism. Taoism advocates humility and religious piety. … Continue reading

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What to Do When You’re Not on the List

This is the standard race and ethnicity checklist that everyone has probably had to fill out, on one official document or another:   Race /Ethnicity (circle one): American Indian or Alaska Native Asian Black or African American Hispanic or Latino … Continue reading

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Byron and Bruce Wayne

When I was a kid, I was obsessed with Batman. Oh, who am I kidding, saying “when I was a kid?” Heck, I’ve been a fan of the black-clad comic book vigilante my entire life, and I would be lying … Continue reading

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Why F. Scott Fitzgerald Would Have Loved La La Land

It’s a bold claim, to be sure. But I hold that F. Scott Fitzgerald would have loved La La Land, – and not simply because the movie pays homage to jazz. Scott Fitzgerald is forever immortalized as one of the … Continue reading

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Use of the Grotesque

I recently spent a Friday evening babysitting two 7-year-old girls. While their parents enjoyed a night out on the town, we settled down on a corner of the plush toy-room carpet to play a bit, before showers and bed. I … Continue reading

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Ten Thousand Knocks

As I was recently browsing through the literary journal Ploughshares, I stumbled across a story called “Ten Thousand Knocks” about a young man named Kei. His first job in the ‘real world’ is to ensure tenants pay their rent on … Continue reading

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