When I Was a Child I Read Books: Essays Kindle Edition
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- Length: 225 pages
- Word Wise: Enabled
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Top Customer Reviews
And she shows enormous respect for both the New and Old Testament. There are close readings of various translations of the Bible, showing for example instances when charity is translated as love and reminding us of the incredible historic importance of making the Bible available in the local vernacular, a task which caused more than one translator to be killed by a jealous church.
Today in the western Christian world, and particularly in the United States to which the author largely addresses this book, words are a much devalued currency. Millions of words blabbing along daily, immediately replaced by another million. The result is an unavoidable cheapening of words, wherever we find them. The author uses a minimum of words in her essays. She is sparse, which in some cases results in an obliqueness.Read more ›
This is not a book for lazy readers. It is not a book for simple readers.
Robinson is thoughtful and compassionate and deep. She sees past the first obvious answer and the second obvious answer and offers explanations that are unexpected and which embrace all we bring to a book. She is spiritual without being dogmatic and she is kind without leaving truth behind.
A book I need to read again. More slowly next time.
Rating: Three-star (Recommended)
From the outset, Robinson makes clear (in beautifully-chiseled prose that's hard to resist quoting at length) her displeasure at some persistent features of our current American political and cultural lives, denouncing those who advocate the "return to traditional values" that "seems to mean, together with a bracing and punitive severity toward the vulnerable among us, the establishment of a kind of religious monoculture we have never had and our institutions have never encouraged." Instead, she urges on us "the character of generosity, and the largeness of spirit that has created and supported the best of our institutions and brought reform to the worst of them."
Typical of Robinson's wisdom are these trenchant observations, in "Imagination and Community," of the damage flowing from the "excitements that come with abandoning the constraints of moderation and reasonableness:"
"Those whose work it is to sustain the endless palaver of radio and television increasingly stimulate those excitements. No great wonder if they are bored, or if they suspect their audiences might be. But the effect of this marketing of rancor has unquestionably been to turn debate or controversy increasingly into a form of tribal warfare, harming the national community and risking always greater harm.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The author starts from her autobiography to write about almost everything: from religion to politics, to books and teachers. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Gonza
This is a really smart book. Intellectual candy! Ms. Robinson is a stout read, but pure joy.
If you love words and love to think, this is a wonderful intellectual treat!
Loved these intelligent essays with a point-of-view that could only be Marilyn Robinson's.Published 8 months ago by ohsuzannah