Archive for the ‘Libraries & Archives’ Category

Veterans Day 2017, in Memory
of Uncles in World War II

They weren’t even uncles when they went to fight in Europe and the Pacific during World War II, three of my mother’s four brothers—Stan, and the twins Joe and John. When I was born, in 1947, the war had been over for a mere two years. In all that time, I cannot recall ever having [...]

The Killing Did Not End There:
50 Years after the Detroit Riot

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Detroit riot, or, depending on your point of view, the Detroit rebellion of 1967. At that time, I was living in Romeo, then a farming community north of the city, and working for the summer at Sears Roebuck in Roseville, a suburb. When news of the riot [...]

Recommended: “The Innocents,”
An Extraordinary Film Achievement

During the winter of 1945, a young French intern working with a branch of the Red Cross is on a mission to care for and repatriate French survivors of the German concentration camps in Poland. A Polish nun arrives at the Red Cross hospital and begs for help. At the convent, the doctor discovers several [...]

Recommended Viewing: Chopin’s Love Life,
or Lack Thereof, on Display

With Hugh Grant playing Frederick Chopin, Impromptu seems an unlikely film to be, as some critics have called it, the best film ever made based on the notorious writer George Sand and her pursuit of the Polish-French composer whose attitude toward amour bewildered and frustrated her, according to this telling. Set in 1830s Paris, the [...]

Recommended: Thomas Swick’s
The Joys of Travel

Ever since he gave us Unquiet Days: At Home in Poland seventeen years ago, seasoned travel writer Thomas Swick has made certain that Poland figures prominently in his work. Published in 2016 by Skyhorse Publishing, The Joys of Travel: And Stories That Illumiate Them contains some of the most perceptive writing about contemporary Poland since [...]