Fifty years ago this week, students at Columbia shut down the university for seven days, in protest of plans to build a gymnasium in a nearby Harlem park, university links to the Vietnam War, and what they saw as Columbia’s generally unresponsive attitude to student concerns.
Today on Gotham, we begin a weeklong series featuring excerpts from a new collection of more than sixty essays, edited by Paul Cronin, reflecting on that moment. A Time to Stir reveals clearly the lingering passion and idealism of many strikers. But it also speaks to the complicated legacy of the uprising. If, for some, the events inspired a lifelong dedication to social causes, for others they signaled the beginning of a chaos that would soon engulf the left. Taken together, these reflections move beyond the standard account, presenting a more nuanced Rashoman-like portrait. We begin today with the remembrances of students (male, female, black, white, visiting, resident, pro, anti), carrying forward the approach with faculty, police officers, government servants, and "outside agitators," every day the rest of this week.
Copyright (c) 2018 Columbia University Press. Used by arrangement with the publisher. All rights reserved.
In the context of Indecent’s success, along with concurrent off-Broadway revival of God of Vengeance, Eddy Portnoy’s book Bad Rabbi is a timely excavation of the real-life, nonfictional, but perhaps sensationalized stories of sex, violence, misery, and depravity that characterized much of urban Jewish life in the first decades of the twentieth century. Mining the depths of Yiddish press, largely produced in New York City and Warsaw, Portnoy’s study hones in on the scoundrels, cheats, criminals, and gossipmongers of Jewish enclaves within the growing, cosmopolitan urban centers in the United States and Poland. At the center of Bad Rabbi is the flourishing Yiddish press and the dogged journalists who documented the daily lives of the “rabble” — the “downwardly mobile” Jews who, Portnoy claims, have been lost to a predominantly celebratory narrative of popular Jewish history.
This is an exclusive excerpt, adapted from the author's new book (released today!),
Dagger John: Archbishop John Hughes and the Making of Irish America, courtesy of Cornell University Press.
This is the first of three posts on the Trump patriarchs, adapted from the author's bestseller,
The Trumps: Three Builders and a President, courtesy of Simon & Schuster.
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