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The Virginia Quarterly Review - Spring 2004

  • Image: Image
  • Issue Number: Volume 80 Number 2
  • Published Date: Spring 2004

VQR gets the award for the most evocative juxtaposition this spring — illustrator Eric Wight's blond, broad-shouldered "Escapist," from Michael Chabon's comic book story ("The Origin of the Escapist") practically leaps off the cover, heavy chains broken and loose in his hands, locks flying, white teeth gleaming, and then the first entry in the magazine, Carleton J. Phillip's "Capturing Saddam." (And 200 pages later, when we encounter an exquisite painting of a soldier in battle at Mt. Fuji, from Deborah Parker's "New Perspectives on Japanese Prints," spear and grimace facing right, where the Escapist faced left, we begin to think editor Ted Genoways is either very lucky or a genius). VQR is a museum inside a magazine or a magazine inside a museum, and the whole issue is a glorious set of juxtapositions as startling as the first one. And just as in any fine museum, one visit won't suffice. It could take the entire three months between issues to get through this one before the next arrives. There is new work here from essayists, fiction writers, and poets whose names are as powerful as the image of the Escapist (E.L. Doctorow, Robert Bly). But, if you only have time to stop and appreciate some of these masterpieces, don't overlook Greg Rappleye's poem "The Salt Cairn" or Jane Jacob's "Credentialing vs. Education." [The Virginia Quarterly Review, One West Range, PO Box 400223, Charlottesville, VA 22904-4223. E-mail: . Single issue $7. http://www.virginia/edu/vqr] – SR

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Review Posted on May 31, 2004

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