Monthly Archives: April 2013

Upon the Anniversary of My Son’s Death

Remembering my son’s death brings to mind a beautiful elegy by John Dryden.

Posted in Dryden (John) | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Answer the Door, the Truth Is Knocking

Willa Cather and Lucille Clifton were quoted in our end-of-the-year awards ceremony last week.

Posted in Cather (Willa), Clifton (Lucille) | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Dare to Be Happy, Dare to Pray

Mary Oliver finds hope even for those weighed down by the thorn of depression.

Posted in Oliver (Mary) | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Hope Springs Eternal in the NFL Draft

The NFL draft perfectly exemplifies Alexander Pope’s passage about hope.

Posted in Pope (Alexander) | Tagged , , , , | Comments closed

Jane Austen, Mistress of Manipulation

A new political science text shows that Jane Austen has a shrewd understanding of game theory.

Posted in Austen (Jane) | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Bush’s Legacy: “Setting Aside 9-11…”

Conservative defenses of Bush’s record on counter-terrorism–“setting aside 9-11…” –call for Jane Austen’s exquisite irony.

Posted in Austen (Jane), Wilmot (John) | 3 Comments

Taking a Break from Politics

Sometimes, like Mr. Hardcastle in “She Stoops to Conquer,” one needs a break from the world’s news.

Posted in Fielding (Henry), Goldsmith (Oliver) | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

A Light Exists in Spring

Emily Dickinson captures magical light of spring–and its transience.

Posted in Dickinson (Emily) | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Is Atwood’s Dystopia Coming True?

With the rise in state legislatures passing anti-abortion legislation, Atwood’s “Handmaid’s Tale” seems more relevant than ever.

Posted in Atwood (Margaret) | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments


  • Literature is as vital to our lives as food and shelter. Stories and poems help us work through the challenges we face, from everyday irritations to loneliness, heartache, and death. Literature is meant to mix it up with life. This website explores how it does so.

    Please feel free to e-mail me [rrbates (at) smcm (dot) edu]. I would be honored to hear your thoughts and questions about literature.

  • Sign up for weekly newsletter

    Your email will not be shared or sold.
    * = required field

    powered by MailChimp!