Monthly Archives: January 2011

Goin’ Down Slow

This is a brilliant song and performance. In 2011, in person, I will see at least one thing this memorable.

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Naomi Klein

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José María Vitier

Havana, sea and salt. Cuba has the best music.

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Rosemary Geisdorfer Feal

The President of the Modern Language Association wrote a good letter on the situation of foreign languages in general and at SUNY-Albany in particular. It is on pp. 4-5 of the Winter 2010 MLA Newsletter, and it has a bibliography including Catherine Porter’s “Presidential Address: English Is Not Enough” (PMLA 125.3 [2010]: 546-55), which I would like to read. A version of Feal’s column also appeared in the CHE on 12 November 2010.

Some notes for our struggles are:

+ it is absurd to give students access to elementary and intermediate foreign language courses and not advanced courses on linguistics, literature, culture, and media taught in these languages;
+ if we are to be committed to diversity, pluralism, and a global world then we need foreign languages;
+ advanced courses in foreign languages support the PhD in English;
+ the humanities are incomplete without advanced study and research in languages other than English, and the mission of higher education is seriously compromised without this.

Feal’s wording is vivid and it is difficult not to simply quote her in toto, here and in some administrative documents I am composing.

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Perlas de J. M. Aznar

This was made in 2007 so it is just a little old, but it is very funny.

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Viva Jujuy

We had the first day of class, and it was like this. Long live my province, our painted hills, my dove. My home in New Granada; my home in California, my home anywhere in New Spain. Brown-skinned woman, do not separate yourself from the list of those I love.

My most fascinating new student is a domestic employee and prison guard originally from Salta, Argentina; amazingly, I was aware of this before he spoke.

I knew I would do a Ph.D. in languages the moment I first heard that there were also languages written in characters. I do not know how to write in characters yet, but I can write in two alphabets.

When the Emeritus Professor took us to Madrid, I could see the voyage had been undertaken for me, although this had not been intentional. I will know how to write in characters one day.

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The Embrace

John Berger on Rembrandt.

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