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The Green Room, Winter 1988


ISSUE:  Winter 1988

Even though he died a quarter of a century ago this year (Nov.22, 1973), Oxbridge don C.S. Lewis remains a publishing phenomenon: his books now sell some 2,000,000 copies a year in Great Britain and this country. Moreover, of the 100 entries under Lewis’s name in Books In Print, 89 have copyright dates later than Lewis’s death. In addition, the items bearing the name C.S. Lewis include sweatshirts, coffee mugs, aprons, calendars and a coffee table book C.S. Lewis: Images of His World.

As Michael Nelson notes, the perennially popular Lewis was the most unprepossessing of men. He set little store by his reputation. Mr. Nelson’s essay on the life and works of C.S. Lewis is something of a departure from his usual appointed rounds. Rather than theology, science fiction, and children’s literature—all subjects of the versatile Lewis—Mr. Nelson has devoted his career to an examination of the art of the possible, namely, politics. An associate professor of political science at Vanderbilt University, he is an authority on the U.S. presidency and editor and co-author of The Presidency and the Political System, as well as The Elections of 1984.

It was 40 years ago this year that mounting friction between the Soviet Union and Western Allies resulted in withdrawal of the Soviets from joint governorship of Berlin and the split of the former German capital into two separate cities. Four decades ago this year, too, the Soviets began their blockade of West Berlin, one relieved by the vast Western airlift which eventually caused the Russians to relent. Yet, while the Berlin blockade and airlift are considered major milestones in the Cold War, Jean Edward Smith points out that “throughout 1945 and 1946, when relations between Washington and Moscow progressively deteriorated, cooperation between the U. S. military government in Germany and its Russian counterpart remained remarkably cordial. . . . In fact, General Lucius D. Clay, who was the U.S. military governor in Germany, believed that American policy-makers in Washington were being duped by hard-line British diplomats into taking unwarranted anti-Soviet positions.”

Jean Edward Smith is professor of political science at the University of Toronto. He is the author of The Defense of Berlin, Germany beyond the Wall, and the editor of The Papers of General Lucius D. Clay. His most recent work, The Constitution and American Foreign Policy, was published last year by the West Publishing Company.

A member of the English faculty at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Steve Yarbrough is appearing in VQR for the second time, but his latest story is a complete departure from his first story, which was set in Poland. The new story takes place in Mr. Yarbrough’s native state of Mississippi. Other stories by this Mississippian have appeared recently in several journals, including The Missouri Review, Crazyhorse, Kansas Quarterly, and South Dakota Review.

A poet as well as an essayist, David Kirby received the 1987 Brittingham Prize in Poetry for his collection Saving the Young Men of Vienna, which was published by Wisconsin. Mr. Kirby’s other awards include the Kansas Quarterly’s first prize in Poetry in 1983, the Southern Poetry Review’s Guy Owen Poetry Prize in 1985, and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship (1985—86). Mr. Kirby received his Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University in 1969 and currently teaches at Florida State University.

A member of the English Faculty at Duke University, James Applewhite is a prominent contemporary poet. His most recent books are Ode to the Chinaberry Tree and Other Poems, and Seas and Inland Journeys: Landscape and Consciousness from Wordsworth to Roethke, works published respectively by LSU and Georgia, both in 1985. His new book of poems, River Writing: An Eno Journal, will be published by Princeton this year.

Debra Bruce lives in Chicago and teaches at Northeastern Illinois University. Her second collection of poems, Sudden Hunger, is due out from Arkansas later this year.

Sidney Burris received his Ph.D. from the University of Virginia in 1987 and is currently a member of the English faculty at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. He has poems forthcoming in Poetry.

A resident of Tifton, Georgia, Daniel Corrie has had poems in The Indiana Review and National Forum, among other journals. He has completed a collection of poems and is working on a novel. He is a member of the faculty at Abraham Baldwin College.

Julia Just has been the recipient of a Virginia Center for the Creative Arts fellowship and Barnard College’s Amy Loveman award for poetry. She is appearing in VQR for the first time. She is a resident of New York City, where she is on the editorial staff of The New Yorker.

Robert Hill Long’s poem is from a recent collection, The Power to Die, published by Cleveland State University. He has had recent poems appearing in Poetry, and Kenyan Review.

Pittsburgh published Kathleen Norris’s second book of poems, The Middle of the World, in 1981. A resident of South Dakota, she has had recent poems in Agni Review, Parnassus, and Poetry in Review.

Perhaps the most prolific writer on the American literary scene today, Joyce Carol Oates encompasses all fields, including sports. As her agent, Gertrude Bregman, recently commented, “we, too, can’t understand how she does it all. After writing her book On Boxing . . . she covered the Tyson-Berbick fight in Las Vegas for Life Magazine— and recently the Tyson-Smith fight for The Village Voice.” Her latest novel is You Must Remember This, published by Dutton last year.

Paul Roazen received both his B.A. and Ph.D. degrees from Harvard University, where, in his words, “Louis Hartz was the greatest teacher I ever had.” Mr. Roazen describes why Hartz was such a great teacher in his essay. Mr. Roazen is a professor of social and political science at York University in Toronto. His latest book, Helene Deutsch: A Psychoanalyst’s Life, was published in 1985.

Corinne Demas Bliss is the author of The Same River Twice, a novel (Atheneum), and Daffodils or the Death of Love, a collection of short stories (Missouri). Her short stories have appeared in such publications as Esquire, Mademoiselle, McCall’s, and the Michigan Quarterly Review, where she received the Lawrence Foundation Prize for the best story published in that journal in 1985.

Bibliolater James Axtell acquired his love of books while an undergraduate at Yale, where he received his B.A. degree in 1963. He later was a member of Trinity College, Cambridge and received a Ph.D. from that venerable English institution in 1967. Mr. Axtell is the William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Humanities at the College of William and Mary.

Dr. Lockhart B. McGuire is the Julian R. Beckwith Professor of Medicine in the department of cardiology at the University of Virginia, where he received his M.D. degree in 1957. Dr. McGuire is a former president of the Albemarle County Medical Society and the author of numerous articles and studies pertaining to heart disease.

Philip L. Merkel is working on a history of corporate law in the 19th century and is a member of the law faculty at Western State University in Fullerton, California, where he recently underwent his first harrowing experience of an earthquake.

Norman A. Graebner is the Edward R. Stettinius Professor of Modern American History Emeritus at the University of Virginia. He is serving as a visiting historian this year both at Virginia Military Institute and the College of William and Mary. His many books include New Isolationism, Core Diplomacy, and American Diplomatic History Before 1900.

Richard Guy Wilson is an associate professor of architectural history at the University of Virginia and one of America’s foremost authorities on the noted architect Stanford White.

Emily Couric is a regular contributor to The National Law Journal and The American Bar Association Journal. A graduate of Smith College, she is completing a book about famous trial lawyers to be published this year by Houghton Mifflin.

A published poet himself, Robert Schultz is a member of the English department at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. He recently completed a study on Ezra Pound, and has a book of poems tentatively titled The Magnitude of the Possible, which he recently submitted to Wesleyan for consideration. Mr. Schultz has a Ph.D. in English from Cornell.

THE VIRGINIA QUARTERLY REVIEWStaige D.BlackfordEditorGregoryOrrPoetry Consultant

Advisory EditorsW. W. AbbotJ.C. LevensonKenneth W. ThompsonNathan A. Scott, Jr.G. Edward WhiteRoger ShattuckBarbara E. Murphy, Business Manager

A National Journal of Literature and Discussion published since 1925 in January, April, July, and October. Individual subscriptions $15.00 one year, $22.00 two years, $30.00 three years; Institutions $22.00 one year, $30.00 two years, $50.00 three years. Outside U.S. (individual and institution) add $3.00 per year. Single copies $5.00 each. Title page and annual index available in November.

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