In print Blog Posts

Were 'Great Books' a great idea?

October 22, 2008
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The 54-volume Great Books of the Western World series, a set of books that sold more than a million copies in the 1950s and '60s, was:  a. an empowering, groundbreaking effort to bring brilliant writing to the masses. b. a sales stunt perpetrated by Encyclopedia...
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Success and Malcolm Gladwell

October 7, 2008
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One of the biggest sociological buzz books in recent years was Malcolm Gladwell's "The Tipping Point," in which the journalist looked at the root causes of popularity--what are the circumstances that lead to a sudden skyrocketing of awareness His next book,...
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Bible tour: For better or verse?

October 1, 2008
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Zondervan, one of the world's leading publishers of Bibles, announced that it will be printing a hand-written version, with more than 31,000 Americans performing the penmanship. It's being called Bible Across America and, yes, there's an RV involved. You can find the...
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In Cleveland, a critical clash

September 30, 2008
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Classical music fans, musicians, critics and administrators around the country are taking sides in a battle that's been raging in Cleveland. The situtation: After years of blasting Cleveland Orchestra music director Franz Welser-Most, Cleveland Plain Dealer music critic Donald Rosenberg has...
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The death of David Foster Wallace

September 19, 2008
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A few weeks back, in my A&E Season Preview in the print IBJ, I picked as one of the highlighted events David Foster Wallace's scheduled talk at Butler University. That won't be happening. The acclaimed writer, best known for his essays and...
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Col. Esserman at Start with Art

September 4, 2008
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Today's Start with Art luncheon at the Convention Center unofficially marks the start of the arts season in Indy. So were you there? If so, what did you think of Col Dean M. Esserman's talk? For those who weren't, Esserman--Chief of Police...
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You-review-it Monday

September 1, 2008
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I don't expect there to be many visitors here today--which I hope means you are enjoying the long weekend. Still, whether you are checking in Monday or Tuesday (or beyond), let me know what you've seen, read or experienced this weekend. As for...
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Short fiction in newspapers?

August 29, 2008
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Publishers Weekly reports that the Rocky Mountain News has decided to start publishing fiction in its newspaper. Specifically, original short stories. See story here. On the surface, fiction might seem no more out of place in a newspaper than comics or...
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Fringe review sparks discussion

August 28, 2008
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A brief review I posted here on Friday of the IndyFringe show "Peace on Terror" has generated some intense reaction. See the post and ongoing comments here. The conversation, led by someone involved in the show, has spilled over...
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Are crosswords anti-reading?

August 21, 2008
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Ron Rosenbaum at Slate.com seems think so. "What always gets to me," he writes, "is the self-congratulatory assumption on the part of puzzle people that their addiction to the useless habit somehow proves they are smarter or more literate than the...
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Confess: books you haven't read

July 23, 2008
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At England's Ways with Words literary festival, authors were asked to name books that they are ashamed to admit they haven't read. See story here. For me, that would be a long list, including "Catch-22," "Moby Dick," "Remembrance of Things...
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Dick Lugar makes The Onion

July 18, 2008
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A little light reading for the day, care of The Onion. It's the senator's first appearance in the satiric newspaper since this story in 2004. Enjoy. Just don't forward these as real news, please.
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Your summer reading list

July 11, 2008
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At the top of my reading pile right now is Doug Crandell's new novel "Hairdos of the Mildly Depressed." Crandell has Indiana roots, a big heart, and lots of talent and I'm looking forward to gliding into this one. It will...
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Att. shoppers: explicit material

July 2, 2008
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My just-over-the-cubicle-wall colleagues at Indiana Lawyer reported yesterday that Judge Sarah Evans Barker "threw out a new Indiana law requiring bookstores and other retailers to register with the state and pay a $250 fee if they want to sell...
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You-review-it Monday

June 30, 2008
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So did you visit the "On the Road" scroll at the IMA? Swing to "Swing" at American Cabaret Theatre? Try to understand the great Joe Cocker at Verizon Wireless Music Center? Let us know what A&E you experienced this weekend. For me, much...
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Meet Indiana's new poet laureate

June 27, 2008
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I know the suspense was killing you, so here's some relief. As of last week, Indiana has a new poet laureate. He's Norbert Krapf, a St. Joseph's College grad with an M.A. from Notre Dame. His name is on 21...
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A&E reviews, contests...and TV

June 13, 2008
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Welcome to Friday. I just wanted to alert you to a couple of things. First, we've added a new portal page to make it easy for you to find not just this blog, but also the A&E reviews from my column in the print...
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One for the books: Barden/Obama

May 8, 2008
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One of Indy’s most notable writers, Dan Barden, earned national acclaim for his book “John Wayne: a novel,” published in 1997 by Random House. He’s also penned essays for such publications as GQ and Details, teaches creative writing at Butler...
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Paying attention to the Pulitzers

April 8, 2008
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There's always lots of hype about the Academy Awards and the Grammys, but doesn't anyone care about the Pulitzer Prizes which were announced yesterday? Among this year's winners: Fiction: "The Brief Wonderous Life of Oscar Wao" by Junot Diaz Drama: "August: Osage...
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Who needs local movie critics?

April 1, 2008
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The New York Times today reports on the continued trend of newspapers ditching their film critics. Yes, we’ve discussed cuts in newspaper coverage of the arts here in the past — but this debate is a little different when it...
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A book by its cover

March 14, 2008
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On my long to-do list for this weekend is to dig into Barbara Shoup’s upcoming young adult novel “Everything You Want” (set for release in April from Flux books). Shoup is an Indiana writer with a stack of acclaimed books to...
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Another critic bites the dust

March 4, 2008
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The Los Angeles Times has decided it doesn’t need a full-time dance critic and so Lewis Segal is now out of a job. What does that matter to you? Well, it’s no secret that daily newspapers are placing less emphasis on arts...
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Reviews, previews, blogs, etc.

February 28, 2008
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While this blog has loads of readers (110,000 page visits in January.), I’ve found, anecdotally, that that number includes some who know little about IBJ’s other arts and entertainment coverage. So I thought I’d take today’s posting and give you a...
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The end of poetry?

February 13, 2008
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I have flexible hours here at IBJ due to the amount of evening and weekend A&E events I attend. One of the advantages of such a non-schedule is that at least twice a week I’m in the car at 9 a.m....
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The Kindle, bootleg movies, etc.

January 31, 2008
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A few technology and the arts stories for you forward-thinking readers: According to yesterday’s Publishers Weekly, Amazon.com has experienced better-than-expected sales of the temporarily-out-of-stock Kindle, the $399 electronic book gizmo it launched last November.More

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