Author Topic: In the New Yorker...  (Read 487371 times)

Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #930 on: July 11, 2014, 07:29:51 pm »
I'm sort of geocentric that way.  :-\

Is there a word that means "focused on one's own continent or hemisphere"? Isn't that what you really mean?

Sort of. I'm actually focused on my own culture, I think.

Well, that word would be ethnocentric, wouldn't it?
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #931 on: July 12, 2014, 09:27:06 am »
Speaking of culture, there must have been something that allowed 33 miners to all survive almost two MONTHS underground in a small refuge in a mine. That's why I found the article interesting. I would assume that after a couple of weeks they would start attacking each other. But according to this story they didn't even have much of any disagreements. And on the surface, I would think the rescuers would give up the search after a certain period of time. The big unknown in the story was how they persevered to the end, and I think the author did get to the bottom of it. When you are faced with your impending mortality, the mettle of your soul is proven.
May 2019 be better for us all.

Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #932 on: July 12, 2014, 10:39:45 am »
Speaking of culture, there must have been something that allowed 33 miners to all survive almost two MONTHS underground in a small refuge in a mine. That's why I found the article interesting. I would assume that after a couple of weeks they would start attacking each other. But according to this story they didn't even have much of any disagreements. And on the surface, I would think the rescuers would give up the search after a certain period of time. The big unknown in the story was how they persevered to the end, and I think the author did get to the bottom of it. When you are faced with your impending mortality, the mettle of your soul is proven.

Well, they were underground for 69 days--about ten weeks--but they were out of touch with the surface for about three weeks. People survive in jail for a lot longer than that, and I would think it made some difference once they were in contact with the surface and food and other things could be passed down to them. It seems to me this is one failing of the article, it doesn't really go into what it was like for them after the rescuers made contact with them and they waited for the escape shaft to be drilled. Surely it made some difference. Surely it was difficult to wait for that shaft to be drilled, but surely it wasn't like it was during those first three weeks.

Edit to Add: Tell you what, it occurs to me that this is the sort of New Yorker story that ends up as a full-length book. I won't be surprised at all to see this one as a book. Perhaps the book will address what I see as the shortcomings of the magazine article.
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #933 on: July 13, 2014, 10:47:56 am »
In the June 23 issue I'm reading "The Disruption Machine" by Jill LePore; she reviews Clayton M. Christensen's 1997 book The Innovator's Dilemma, and the industry of disruptive innovation it has spawned. Two of his handpicked case studies are Morrison-Knudsen and Time, Inc. He blames MK's embrace of the mass transit business line for destroying the company, when, as I recall, it was the mismanagement and corruption of MK's leader at the time, William Agee. Christensen doesn't mention anything about Agee's infamous mis-leadership of the company.

Time, Inc. failed in its foray into new-media with the Pathfinder portal. I was involved in a company that invested hundreds of thousands into development of a "portal" which is just a glorified web site. Such facades failed because there was little or no content to make it worthwhile to access and navigate through their elaborate and counter-intuitive structures. LePore concludes that disruptive innovation for its own sake is merely a gimmick and I agree with her. I'm all for innovation, but it is not the goal in itself, it is merely a tool.
May 2019 be better for us all.

Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #934 on: July 13, 2014, 01:51:39 pm »
LePore concludes that disruptive innovation for its own sake is merely a gimmick and I agree with her. I'm all for innovation, but it is not the goal in itself, it is merely a tool.

She really picks that theory apart, doesn't she?
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #935 on: July 14, 2014, 01:31:43 pm »
Well, I wasn't going to read Emily Nussbaum on Orange Is the New Black (July 7 & 14), but it was worth it for her quotation from the show:

"A lot of people are stupid and still live full, productive lives."
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #936 on: July 16, 2014, 01:19:22 pm »
I wasn't going to read Peter Schjeldahl on the Jeff Koons retrospective, but I'm just about out of anything in the magazine that interests me as I wait for the next issue. However, in the end I'm glad I read the piece for this wonderful pun:

"We might justly term the present Mammon-driven era in contemporary art the Koons Age."

 ;D

Actually, it's always kind of interesting to read that somebody from York, Pennsylvania, could become an internationally famous--some might say notorious--artist.
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #937 on: July 21, 2014, 01:41:05 pm »
Today I finished Rachel Aviv's July 21 article about the test cheating scandal in Atlanta, and I must say I'm not the least bit upset about it because it just seems to me that when you base everything in education on test scores, something like the Atlanta scandal is just waiting to happen. I actually feel sorry for the teachers caught up in it. But then, I think Aviv's article was written in a way to evoke sympathy for the teachers.

I've also gone on to start Louis Menand's article on "The Sex Amendment." I had a bit of a laugh. In his sermon yesterday, our rector made reference to the rather nasty and racist exchange between Frederick Douglass and Susan B. Anthony back in 1869; now I think I know where he got it: from Menand's article.  ;D

David Remnick was on the Today show this morning. He doesn't look anything like I imagined he would look. I figured he would wear eyeglasses.
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #938 on: July 23, 2014, 09:52:22 am »
I'm reading Aviv's article too. It's really eye-opening. I must be naive...hard to believe those teachers and the principal engaged in such bald-faced cheating!

But meanwhile the new issue came and I devoured Elizabeth Kolbert's article on the Paleo fad: Stone Soup.
May 2019 be better for us all.

Offline serious crayons

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #939 on: July 24, 2014, 09:53:47 am »
Does everybody here know that the New Yorker on Monday removed the paywall on its archives for the next three months?

Of course, we subscribers can look through its archives anytime, but I almost never do that unless I'm really desperate to look up a story because I find their archive access very user unfriendly. This makes it easier. (Though I still hate having to read by pushing around an image of a magazine page rather than scrolling through a regular html-type page, and I hate not being able to print out longer pieces.)

Here are a couple of places with lists of suggestions of articles to read.

http://www.slate.com/blogs/browbeat/2014/07/22/new_yorker_online_free_for_three_months_what_should_you_read.html

http://longform.org/posts/our-25-favorite-unlocked-new-yorker-articles

I know many people are excited about big names (David Grann! Seymour Hersch! John McPhee! Janet Malcolm!) or big topics, but I myself plan to reread Larissa MacFarquhar's 2001 profile of movie producer Brian Grazer. For whatever reason, that article, which I read purely by chance in an idle moment -- it came out a month after 9/11, so it was hardly the most pressing subject at the time -- has stuck with me all these years. Whenever I see Grazer's name on a movie or TV show my interest is slightly piqued and I'm more likely to watch it. (Luckily, Grazer's projects are usually pretty good -- he produces Ron Howard's movies, among other things.) Now I'm going to go back and find out what made that profile so influential. (http://archives.newyorker.com/?i=2001-10-15#folio=176, in case anyone else is interested.)