"Each fragment, a point of view, almost fits into the culture of poetry — slivers that reflect an opinion, judgment, or taste. Her remarks come from the iconography of reading and teaching classics as the basis for truth-telling. Each thought is, of course, a tip of the iceberg, and when read carefully, develops new consciousness. It all starts with Brann’s pointed! point of view, and then deepens and broadens to greater expanse.
What interests me in these 40 chapters (each titled with BIG IDEAS: “Beauty,” “Death,” “God,” “Identity,” “Work,” “Writing,” etc.) is the portrait of a woman who’s vigorously sharing the inner workings of her mind. What a generous thing.
I enjoy most the unpredictability, humor, and thought-bait. Just when we achieve a sort of balance, Brann may introduce another contour. There’s care and risk in telling everything of what one thinks, and courage, too, because this writer is a translator for others on matters of great literature, society’s foibles, human conduct, and contemporary manners.
Every page is a series of diversified topics. Brann keeps her own professional accomplishments undercover, but her out-of-the-ordinary approach in writing (read her thoughts on teaching, bureaucracy, colleges, and education) proves she’s paid her dues well enough to set existing ideas on edge. Being a great listener in life makes her a great responder.
Each aphorism is a tiny well-framed picture which at once observes and questions the world’s workings with its accumulated intellectual pleasures, beauties, and quirks."
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