Monday, June 25, 2007

This Week in Reading June 24 - 30

There are three more Nobel prizewinners born this week, a poet, Czeslaw Milosz, a playwright, Luigi Pirandello, and a novelist, Pearl S. Buck, each leaning toward the serious but beloved by millions. George Orwell's coinage of "doublespeak" also reached millions both in its definition and in its use upon them. Yet besides Ambrose Bierce's biting cynicism, no humorists this week reached more Americans than George Abbott and Mel Brooks. George Abbott was the defining producer who play doctored many so-so funny Broadway scripts into laugh riot extravanganzas and made them successes. After Broadway saw years of dwindling and bored audiences Mel Brooks brought the concept of a big, solidly entertaining Broadway show back with his brilliant Producers by using the simple idea Abbott had believed in, "make 'em laugh."

This Week's Question: Who, among this week's author, created the phrase "social contract" and what does it mean to public libraries and the people who utilize them? (Essays accepted.)

Answer to Last Week's Question: On the first program of his new weekly series Bill Moyers Journal on April 27, 2007 Moyers interviewed Jon Stewart of Daily Show fame. You can still see the video or read the transcript at the archive. A group of Glendale area persons meets monthly at the Learning Center of the Glendale Central Library to choose a video from the previous month's programs to watch, discuss, and blog about locally and nationally. The last meeting of the Moyers Talkers was last Thursday and the next is Thursday, July 19. Everyone's view is welcome.

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