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27. Proving

Robert B. Ray Indiana University Press ePub

Perhaps because Walden is such an obviously ambitious book with a determinedly elevated tone, Thoreau quickly acquired a reputation as a ponderous, humorless writer. After accusing Thoreau of “gutting” his works of anything that might make his readers laugh, Robert Louis Stevenson remarked that “he was not one of those authors who have learned … ‘to leave out the dullness’.” Writing in 1880, just eighteen years after Thoreau’s death, Stevenson was following the example of James Russell Lowell, who in 1865 had flatly declared that “Thoreau had no humor.” Emerson never mentioned Walden, even in his own journals. Although he accused Thoreau of lacking “a lyric facility and technical skill,” he preferred his friend’s poetry to his prose, which he thought marred by reflexive paradox. In the twentieth century, Leon Edel summarized the case against Thoreau, curtly declaring, “He was not a born writer.”

This last judgment, leveled at the author of at least one classic book and a two-million-word journal, now seems astonishingly off. We should remember, however, that several of Thoreau’s contemporaries demonstrated that prolificness does not inevitably signal talent: Margaret Fuller, William Ellery Channing, and Henry James Sr. all wrote at unembarrassed length without showing any natural affinity for literature. Thoreau, on the other hand, may have been one of those writers like Whitman or Neruda (but unlike T. S. Eliot) who need to write a lot in order to produce a small amount of first-rate work: even Walden’s greatest admirers have never made similar claims for the Week, The Maine Woods, or Cape Cod.

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23. [A Boolian Algebra with One Constant]

Peirce, Charles S. PDF



[A Boolian Algebra with One


MS 378: Winter 1880-81

Every logical notation hitherto proposed has an unnecessary number of signs. It is by means of this excess that the calculus is rendered easy to use and that a symmetrical development of the subject is rendered possible; at the same time, the number of primary formulae is thus greatly multiplied, those signifying facts of logic being very few in comparison with those which merely define the notation. I have thought that it might be curious to see the notation in which the number of signs should be reduced to a minimum; and with this view I have constructed the following. The apparatus of the

Boolian calculus consists of the signs, —, > (not used by Boole, but necessary to express particular propositions), -h, —, X, 1, 0; in place of these seven signs, I propose to use a single one.

I begin with the description of the notation for conditional or

'secondary' propositions. The different letters signify propositions.

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Medium 9781857547658

A Lance for Hire: Four Hundred Years of Don Quixote

Iain Bamforth Carcanet Press Ltd. PDF

A Lance for Hire

F H Y  D Q

Miguel de Unamuno called it ‘the Spanish Bible’; Don Quixote may not be holy writ, but like all great literature it describes us.

Cervantes steps out of Spain when its golden age had waned so rapidly as to seem ‘no more than an illusion’ and tarries in ours.

We, on the other hand, remain within its thousand pages and are unable to lift ourselves out of its rather plot-poor scenery to the vanishing point that would bring it wholly within our historical purview.

I mention the vanishing point advertantly, because Cervantes lived at a juncture in European history that had already witnessed not only the Iberian discovery of the globe in the search for precious metals and spices and the invention of the printing press in the Rhine Valley, but a ground-breaking shift in trade practices that would eventually to lead to the superseding of feudal Europe itself. The discovery of perspective in Florentine art and architecture accompanied the import of that dangerous cipher zero out of the east. Zero has no referent in nature; it exists only in the mind.

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9. Avant-Garde Authenticity: M. Vorobeichic’s Photographic Modernism and the East European Jew / Samuel Spinner

Gabriella Safran Indiana University Press ePub

M. Vorobeichic’s Photographic Modernism and the East European Jew


“. . . [it is] a kind of museum [bet osef] for all the evening shadows of the [Jewish] street—shadows that tremble on the border of the traditional past and the modern present.”1

So wrote the prominent Hebrew and Yiddish writer Zalman Shneour in an introductory essay to Moyshe Vorobeichic’s 1931 photobook, Ein Ghetto im Osten. Wilna (A Ghetto in the East: Vilna; see figure 9.1).2 This book, containing both elaborate photomontages and “straight” photographs of the Jewish quarter of Vilna, was released in the Schaubücher series of the Orell Füssli Verlag of Zurich. Ein Ghetto im Osten was, like the rest of the Schaubücher, a small-format, mass-produced book of approximately sixty-five images. The series was an idiosyncratic combination of high and low culture, of avant-garde and straight photography. With titles like Befreites Wohnen (Living Free—on modern home architecture) and Technische Schönheit (Technical Beauty—with images of factories and machines), it was clearly hospitable to modernist themes and tropes. The Schaubücher series encompassed another popular theme of the period: popular ethnography.3 Such books, including Negertypen des Schwarzen Erdteils (Negro Types of the Dark Continent) and Nias: Die Insel der Götzen (Nias: Island of Idols), comprised a total of six of the Schaubücher.4 Ein Ghetto im Osten seems to fit in the latter category.5 East European Jews and the shtetls from which many of them came were popular subjects in the Jewish press and belles-lettres from the latter half of the nineteenth century onward. But the book foregoes the bland realism and prurient exoticism of the more generically popular series titles, embracing a striking avant-garde idiom that surpasses that of even those books on modernist themes. The book thus scrambles the dichotomy between realist and avant-garde, between high and low, that is represented by the other Schaubücher. More significantly, this tactic placed Vorobeichic at the center of a modernist approach to ethnography that had only just begun to take shape at large and, significantly, was unprecedented in the photographic representation of Eastern European Jews.6

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Peirce, Charles S. PDF


W R I T I N G S OF C H A R L E S S. P E I R C E , 1879-1884

[Note on the Algebra g^ ]

P 188: American Journal of Mathematics

4 (1881): 132

In relative form, i = A:A,j = A:B, k = B:A, I = B: B. This algebra exhibits the general system of relationship of individual relatives, as is shown in my paper in the ninth volume of the Memoirs of the

American Academy of Arts and Sciences. In a space of four dimensions, a vector may be determined by means of its rectangular projections on two planes such that every line in the one is perpendicular to every line in the other. Call these planes the A-plane and the

B-plane, and let v be any vector. Then, iv is the projection of v upon the A-plane, and Iv is its projection upon the 5-plane. Let each direction in the A -plane be considered as to correspond to a direction in the B- plane in such a way that the angle between two directions in the A-plane is equal to the angle between the corresponding directions in the B-plane. Then, jv is that vector in the A-plane which corresponds to the projection of v upon the B-plane, and kv is that vector in the B- plane which corresponds to the projection of v upon the A-plane.

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Medium 9781855752696

3. Magic Wishes and the Self Explorationsof Children: Five Children and It

Margaret Rustin Karnac Books ePub

E. Nesbit’s Five Children and It and its two later sequels (The Pheonix and the Carpet and The Story of the Amulet) are early and influential examples of a whole genre of fiction for children. This is the genre of stories about holidays, which take a family of children out of their everyday environment, away from the daily experiences and constraints of school, and often away from their parents too. With the wider experience of annual summer holidays among the middle classes and, later on, among most of the population, child readers are prepared by the initial setting of such stories to read about adventures: a world of strange places and people, and days or even weeks in which to play freely as stray events and the imagination suggest. These stories often evoke the distinct emotional rhythm of a holiday - the first excitement, the explorations of new places, deep immersion in a self-contained world of play, and a final sadness and reflectiveness as the holiday comes to an end. This distinctive framing, with its clearly-marked beginning and ending, and its location out of normal time and space, allows these stories to be shaped by the imaginative or internal experience of the children they create, since the routines of the everyday world can be ignored or taken up just as the writer wishes. The intense emotions often aroused by holidays also become important themes in the best of this writing, and have to be dealt with somehow even in the worst. The experience of a holiday can be elaborated into a metaphor of ‘internal experience’ or of space for emotional development, speaking to and moving the child (and adult) reader through this latent depth of meaning.

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Medium 9780253012814

X “Flu or Something”

Larry Lockridge Indiana University Press ePub

In late October, 1947, Ernest had a new bicycle and needed instruction. His mother told him that his father wasn’t well and mustn’t be disturbed. The Manistee cottage was subdued. The man who always sat at the typewriter and sang while doing dishes was replaced by someone always lying down or slowly shuffling around. He was no longer impervious to our routine skirmishes and yelps—he was fragile. Soft-spoken before, his voice was now flat.

During the months in Manistee, Ernest, Jeanne, and I had already sensed this was a preoccupied man doing his necessary work. We hadn’t heard about fathers who had hours to spend horsing around with their kids. Maybe we instinctively wished for more, but what attentions we got seemed enough, and he was always there.

A neighbor, Mrs. Hubble, was our baby-sitter and leader of the local Loyal Temperance Legion, who complimented our parents for always coming home sober. Hearing her tributes to the Legion, Ernest had decided he wanted to join it. His parents said okay, so he was supposed to give a memorized speech before the adult membership. When the day came he had told his father he felt too nervous, and “he said that I didn’t have to—that we could just go for a walk in the dunes, and that’s what we did.”

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7 Pregnancy and Childbirth: A Girl

Vladimir Nalivkin Indiana University Press ePub

THERE ARE MANY REASONS for a Sart woman to rejoice over pregnancy, especially her first. First of all, according to tradition, a husband almost never allows a young bride to leave the courtyard until she gives birth to the first child. Second, both religion and the folk mind agree that progeny is one of the best rewards for human virtue.1 For the same reason, an infertile woman who bears no children hears reprimands and complaints at every step from her husband for the lack of progeny. Being called unfruitful is almost as bad as being called unclean. There are many cases of women trying to hide their infertility by persuading everyone that they are pregnant, but the fetus became stuck inside and they cannot get pregnant again. Such stories about the imaginary fetus stuck inside are rather frequent. We have been addressed many times for advice on what to do with this stuck fetus and what should be done to get rid of it. At the same time, it was only rarely that we would hear complaints about too many children or the difficulty of raising them. Sarts say that a home with children is a bazaar (lively); without children, a mazar (depressing). We have encountered only one case of infanticide, and it was surrounded by exceptional circumstances. A disabled mother, who was born without feet, gave birth to a girl. Lacking the ability to move herself or to ask someone to take care of the newborn, she strangled the child out of despair. Cases of extreme fertility are not rare. More than once we met old women who had fifteen to seventeen children throughout their marriage.

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25. [On Associative Algebras]

Peirce, Charles S. PDF

Associative Algebras, 1880-81


[On Associative Algebras7

MS 381: Winter 1880-81

To ascertain of what associative algebras having a limited number of linearly independent units it is true that if pq = p'q then p = p' unless q =0 and if pq = pq' then q — q' unless p = 0.

I regard V~^ as being a unit linearly independent of 1. My father in his work on linear associative algebra takes the opposite view but

I shall be able to avail myself of certain propositions proved by him; and I commence by restating these propositions with the proofs.

The first is his §40 that in every linear associative algebra there is at least one idempotent or one nilpotent expression. If A be any expression in such an algebra there must be some equation

2 (a Am) = 0

where the am's are scalars. Collect all the terms except the last into one expression BA. Then the equation becomes

BA + a


(B + fl^A111 -0

(B + a1) B = 0

(-B/a1)² = – B/a1 so that

– B / a1 is idempotent unless B² = 0.

The next proposition I propose to borrow from my father is contained in his §41. If i2 = i and i A - B then i B - B and i (A - B) = 0.

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27. [Unequivocal Division of Finites]

Peirce, Charles S. PDF


Division of Finites, 1880-81

/Unequivocal Division of Finites7

MS 383: Winter 1880-81

We have begun the inquiry into algebras in which the division of finites is unequivocal that is in which

Ifp^p' q^pq' then pq^p'q pq^pq'

Ifp^p' q^pq' then pq^p'q pq^pq'

Ifp^p' q^pq' then pq^

Ifp^p' q^pq' then pq^p'q pq^pq'


We have found that every expression in such an algebra is resolvable in one way and one only into a sum of two parts, the first of which is an ordinary number and the second such that its square is an ordinary negative number. Of course either of these parts may disappear.

An ordinary number we call a scalar

A quantity whose square is negative we call a vector

A quantity whose square is — 1 we call a unit vector

That scalar which subtracted from the quantity q yields a vector remainder we call the scalar of q. The vector remainder we call the vector of q. That positive quantity the negative of whose square is the square of the vector v we call the tensor or modulus of v.

Our next step is to prove that the vector part of the product of two vectors is linearly independent of these vectors and of unity.

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Johnson, Owen V. Indiana University Press ePub

Century-old physician interviewed by Ernie: Likes his pipe and the news, and is becoming fond of highballs; he knows most folks are crazy

EVANSVILLE, Ind.—Gentility is a characteristic that is hard to describe. I don’t know whether people are born with it, or whether it can be acquired. But if I could reach up into a tree, and pick off a characteristic for myself, I would pick gentility.

I am talking like this because I have just spent the afternoon in a home here, talking with three of the most genteel people I have ever met.

One is an old, old man, the oldest in Evansville. He will be 100 in September. Another is his daughter, a woman of middle age. The third is his grand-daughter, in her 30’s. The three live together in a fine old house.

I never knew it was possible to talk with a man 100 years old and enjoy it. I mean talk normally, discuss things, make jokes, talk about the present as you would talk with someone your own age.

This old man is Dr. C. P. Bacon. I talked with him for two hours. There was not an “old man’s phrase” in his entire conversation. He is an aristocratic, well-to-do retired physician—courteous, understanding, sharp-minded. He doesn’t look nor act a century old. He has the sense of humor of a man 70 years younger. He “gets” everything.

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One Popular Culture and the Politics of Memory

Alvin H. Rosenfeld Indiana University Press ePub

Most people willingly deceive themselves with a doubly false faith: they believe in eternal memory (of men, things, deeds, peoples) and in rectification (of deeds, errors, sins, injustice). Both are sham. The truth lies at the opposite end of the scale: everything will be forgotten and nothing will be rectified. All rectification (both vengeance and forgiveness) will be taken over by oblivion. No one will rectify wrongs; all wrongs will be forgotten.


We say “Holocaust” as if there were an established consensus on the full range of historical meanings and associations that this term is meant to designate. In fact, no such consensus exists. The image of the Holocaust is a changing one, and just how it is changing, who is changing it, and what the consequences of such change may be are matters that need to be carefully and continually pondered. Such reflection will be undertaken here on the basis of the following assumptions:


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Medium 9780874216349

The Transformative Power of Art: An Interview with Terry Tempest Williams Michael Toms, New Dimensions Radio Show, 2000

Michael Austin Utah State University Press ePub

We live in the midst of the sacred and the profane, light and darkness, conscious and unconscious, life and death, visible and invisible worlds sometimes meshing, sometimes colliding, always moving us towards the mystery, ever deeper. And we wonder as we wander. This is our journey on this edition of New Dimensions, as we explore the relevance of a 15th-century artistic masterpiece to the world and time we presently inhabit with our guest, Terry Tempest Williams.

Terry Tempest Williams, former Naturalist-in-Residence of the Utah Museum of Natural History, is the recipient of a Lannan Literary Fellowship and a Guggenheim Fellowship. She’s the author of Refuge, An Unspoken Hunger, Desert Quartet, and Leap. Join us for the next hour as we explore the wilderness world and the wondrous world of Terry Tempest Williams. My name is Michael Toms; I’ll be your host. Welcome to New Dimensions.


Michael Toms, “The Transformative Power of Art,” New Dimensions radio interview, June 29, 2000, program 2821. Produced by New Dimensions World Broadcasting Network. Used by permission.

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Johnson, Owen V. Indiana University Press ePub

Four bold men pass in review, one thrilling, one sad, one
puzzling and the other—was Doctor Brinkley

WASHINGTON—Four very bold men have been goose-stepping it across the pages in front of my leisurely eyes this past week. They are:

Peter DePaolo, the racing driver; John R. Brinkley, the goat gland doctor; Haw Tabor, the fantastic Colorado metal king; and William Randolph Hearst, the poor little rich boy.

About each of these men I have read a biography. It was a varied experience. These four had nothing in common—except boldness. But even that one bond knits a close society, for boldness is not squandered among us.

Peter DePaolo’s book is an autobiography. He wrote it himself. It is called “Wall Smacker.” It is not especially well written, but it is certainly not badly written.

DePaolo is an American-born Italian. He dreamed up following in the footsteps of his famous racing uncle, Ralph DePalma. And he did. DePaolo won at Indianapolis in 1925.

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1. The Voice of a Native Informer: Salomon Maimon Describes Life in Polish Lithuania / Liliane Weissberg

Gabriella Safran Indiana University Press ePub

Salomon Maimon Describes Life in Polish Lithuania


The discipline of ethnography, writing—graphein—about ethnicity as scholarly endeavor, is an invention of the late eighteenth century, when descriptions of peoples, their customs, and their cultures began to flourish. Of course, travel accounts of foreign lands and their populations existed earlier, as well as descriptions of foreign customs and lifestyles, but it was only in the late eighteenth century that these texts were viewed as “scientific,” as part of a scholarly discipline, or Wissenschaft.

Early scientific literature in this field was mostly written in German. The historian Gerhard Friedrich Müller took part in the second Kamchatka Expedition (1733–1743) and issued descriptions of various peoples and tribes.1 His account may be the first detailed description of a foreign encounter cast for a reading public at home. August Ludwig von Schlözer published his Vorstellung einer Universalgeschichte (Introduction to Universal History) in 1772, and his colleague at the University of Göttingen, Johann Christoph Gatterer, translated his genealogical knowledge into his own version of world history.2 Both authors aimed to expand historical and geographical knowledge by turning to the East. While Müller still sought to describe peoples, or engage in “Völker-Beschreibung” (1740),3 these scholars began to coin terms that would name the emerging discipline and separate it from the already existing field of history. The new research would be named ethnographia (1767–1771), Völkerkunde (1771–1775), or ethnologia (1781–1783).4

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