Reading the World


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Angkarn Kalayanapong (1926-2012)

Renowned Thai poet Angkarn Kalayanapong passed away today in Bangkok at the age of 86. Born in Nakhon Si Thammarat in 1926, Angkarn challenged traditional Thai poetic conventions in his groundbreaking poems. While initially criticized by the cultural and literary establishment, he was finally recognized as a leading voice in contemporary Thai poetics, and was honored […]

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A poem for thought: Anastasia and Sandman, by Larry Levis

Anastasia and Sandman   The brow of a horse in that moment when The horse is drinking water so deeply from a trough It seems to inhale the water, is holy. I refuse to explain. When the horse had gone the water in the trough, All through the empty summer, Went on reflecting clouds & […]

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A poem for thought: Daybreak, by Liu Xiaobo

for Xia over the tall ashen wall, between the sound of vegetables being chopped daybreak’s bound, severed, dissipated by a paralysis of spirit what is the difference between the light and the darkness that seems to surface through my eyes’ apertures, from my seat of rust I can’t tell if it’s the glint of chains […]

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To return 2 million baht, or not to…

In yesterday’s Bangkok Post Editorial, the writers asked this intriguing question: “Is honesty still the best policy or has moral integrity lost its meaning in today’s money-mad, consumer-driven society?” The Editors then go on to explore the case of two women in Nakhon Nayok who returned 2 million baht that had wrongly been credited to their […]

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A poem for thought: “Beautiful Ohio” by James Wright

Beautiful Ohio Those old Winnebago men Knew what they were singing. All summer long and all alone, I had found a way To sit on a railroad tie Above the sewer main. It spilled a shining waterfall out of a pipe Somebody had gouged through the slanted earth. Sixteen thousand and five hundred more or […]

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Discovered: the “God Particle”

You’ve likely caught wind of the exciting announcement that two teams of scientists believe they have discovered the long-theorized Higgs Boson, or “God Particle.” If the research withstands scrutiny, and is upheld in future research, the discovery lends credence to the half-century old Standard Model in Physics. For a good summary of what this all […]

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Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby

In case “one of the greatest novels of the 20th century” doesn’t catch your curiosity about The Great Gatsby… In December 2012, Baz Luhrmann (director of Romeo + Juliet and Moulin Rouge) will release his adaptation of The Great Gatsby, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan, and Spiderman, I mean, Tobey Maguire. The trailer for the film was […]

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Example of Blog Post: Independent Reading

I have a stack of books I want to read this summer (everything from science fiction to poetry to economics text), but the first one that I’m digging into is Griftopia, by Matt Taibbi. I love the subtitle for the book: “a story of bankers, politicians, and the most audacious power grab in history.” I’ve only […]

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Example of Blog Post: Fitzgerald’s sentences

I’ve been thinking about F. Scott Fitzgerald’s sentences, and how they force you to slow down as a reader. Maybe you can understand the action or plot by reading quickly (though sometimes this isn’t the case), but you certainly can’t understand the larger meaning he is exploring. Take this sentence for instance, on the first […]

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Example of Blog Post: Bradbury’s metaphors

From the opening pages of Bradbury’s novel, it is clear to the reader that metaphors and similes will be essential in understanding the story. The creation of vivid imagery (both literal and figurative imagery) is a key tool that Bradbury uses to help us experience his fictional world. On the first page, the hose for Montag’s flame thrower is […]

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