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Northwest Review - May 2004

  • Issue Number: Volume 42 Number 2
  • Published Date: May 2004

I find it impossible not to love – or at least admire – Northwest Review for allocating an entire white page to this epigraph by Leonard Bernstein: “Our response to violence will be to make music more intensely, more beautifully and more devotedly than before.” Two of the literary pieces that most directly follow that lead appear in the magazine’s category, Essays and Hybrid Forms. “Notes on Uranium Weapons and Kitsch” (George Gessert) decries the sale of war as entertainment by juxtaposing such politically expedient terms as “smart bombs” and “depleted uranium” with clauses like this: “Some kitsch is ineptly crafted ‘bad’ art, but today the rule is impressive technical skill. Hundred-thousand-dollar fashion ads are like Andrew Wyeth paintings: their high craftsmanship and aesthetic finish project vast authority.” A more traditionally structured essay, “Gringolandia” by Leah Halper, tells of one woman’s yearning to love her homeland while repudiating its aggressions in Latin America. Fiction offerings include Stephanie Harrison’s innovative quartet of short-shorts, single-sentence celebrations of dashes, colons and semi-colons. One is a heartful meditation on a phrase one utters so often and spontaneously that it comes to define oneself. – LKB

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Review Posted on May 31, 2004

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