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The Green Room

ISSUE:  Winter 1995

Here’s a marvellous convenient place for our rehearsal.

If the United States remains “the only major economic power dogmatically committed to free market economics” warns Charles Maechling, Jr., it “will then find itself in recurring confrontations” with its trading partners all of whom are “jogging comfortably along with mixed state and free market economies and pragmatically managed trading relationships.” Mr. Maechling argues that the United States must cease to worship at the altar of “fundamentalist free market capitalism.”

Despite the honor of having been editor-in-chief of the Virginia Law Review in his last year at the University of Virginia Law School, Mr. Maechling (B.A. Yale 1941 & J.D. UVA 1949) has never been able to find career satisfaction “in the stultifying routine of a law office.” Instead his professional life has been divided almost equally between high-level politico-military assignments in the Pentagon and State Department and international law. A junior naval officer in World War II, he spent 10 months on the secretariat of the Joint Chiefs of Staff between tours of sea duty. In the Kennedy and Johnson administrations, he was the State Department’s director for internal defense and a staff director of National Security Council committees with Averell Harriman his immediate boss. Recently, Mr. Maechling has been a visiting fellow at Wolfson College, Cambridge University, lecturing on American foreign policy and “trying to explain, though not excuse, the iniquities of Vietnam and Iran-Contra.” His articles on foreign affairs have been published in professional journals and national newspapers and his latest contribution to VQR is the product of “recent exposure to European thinking in Brussels and Paris while a guest scholar at Brookings.”

Patriotism is a concept out of fashion in our multi-cultural society whose main concerns appear to be race, class, gender, and myself. Thus Leonard kriegel finds

America today “desperately in need of the kind of bonding patriotism provides.” The son of immigrant parents who came to this country in the 1920’s, Leonard Kriegel grew up in the Bronx during and after World War II. He remains a dedicated New Yorker even though he has traveled far and wide. Mr. Kriegel is the author of Falling Into Life (Norpoint 1991), a collection of autobiographical essays about living with the after effects of polio by which he was crippled at age 11. He has written six other books and is working on a novel and a collection of stories. He has been the recipient of three different Fulbrights to lecture abroad, and his essays have appeared in a variety of journals including Sewanee Review and American Scholar.

Although he is an editor by profession at W.W. Norton and Company, Starling lawrence has turned to writing fiction as well. His story “Butterflies” appeared in the summer issue of the Sewanee Review, and he is making his debut in this journal. He has a particular niche in American publishing history as well. He is the editor who several years ago discovered an English writer named Patrick O’Brien who has since become known to thousands of American readers as the author of the Aubrey/Maturin series. Indeed, so popular have Mr. O’Brien’s novels about the British Navy in the Napoleonic Wars become in this country that Norton now publishes a newsletter about them.

Although he has resided in China and Hong Kong with his English wife for several years now, Hardy C. Wilcoxon, Jr., has only recently became acquainted with Vietnam and he recounts his experiences there in his latest VQR essay. A graduate of Amherst and Yale University where he received his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in English, Mr. Wilcoxon is a former Ful-bright lecturer at the Beijing Foreign Studies University and is now a lecturer in English at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Elsa Lewin is the author of I, Anna, a novel which was published in the United States, Japan, England, France, and Germany, where it is being made into a feature film. She has also published a number of short stories and recendy won the short story prize in the Nassau Review. Dr. Lewin is a psychoanalyst in New York City and Great Neck, Long Island.

Richard Tillinghast has published poems recently in the Atlantic Monthly, the New Yorker, the Paris Review, and the Hudson Review. He has published three books of poetry with Wesleyan: Sleep Watch, The Knife and Other Poems, and Our Flag Was Still There. His fifth book, The Stonecutter’s Hand, was published by David R. Godine in late 1993. Mr. Tillinghast is a member of the Department of English Language and Literature at the University of Michigan.

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Awards for poetry, Mary Oliver currently teaches at Sweet Briar College in Virginia. Her new collection, White Pine, has just been published as has her A Poetry Handbook, both being issued by Harcourt, Brace.

Linda Pastan is a frequent contributor to VQR, and her latest collection, An Early Afterlife, is due out this year from W.W. Norton.

Renate Wood is the author of Raised Underground (Carnegie Mellon 1991) and a chapbook. She is on the faculty of the M.F.A. Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College, North Carolina and lives with her husband in Boulder, Colorado.

Dorothy Moseley Sutton teaches at Eastern Kentucky State University in Richmond, Kentucky. Recent poems of hers have appeared in Prairie Schooner and the Connecticut Review.

A lifelong Detroiter, Michael Lauchlan has worked as a builder, photographer, and teacher. He received his M.F.A. in creative writing from Warren Wilson College in July 1990 and subsequently received the AWP Intro Award.

A native of Cuba, Dionisio D. Martinez now lives in Tampa, Florida. He received a Whiting Writers’ Award in 1993 and his third book, Bad Alchemy, from which his VQR poem is taken, will appear this year from W.W. Norton.

Brooks Haxton’s latest collection, The Sun At Night, will be published this year by Knopf. He teaches at Syracuse University.

Bethany Pray graduated from the Warren Wilson M.F.A. Program in 1988 and earlier received a B.A. degree from Williams College from which she graduated in 1985. She is a recipient of an Academy of American Poets Prize and a two-year arts fellowship called the Hubbard Hutchinson Fellowship.

Although he has resided in Orlando, Florida since 1986, Stephen Becker has lived in China, France, New York state, Massachusetts, and the British Virgin Islands. He has been a surveyor for the U.S. Geological Survey in Alaska and an editor at Dell Books. He has taught at Brandeis University, Bennington College, the Ohio Writers’ Workshop, and the University of Central Florida. He is the author of 11 novels including The Chinese Bandit and A Rendezvous in Haiti and two works of non-fiction, Comic Art in America and Marshall Field III. He is also an accomplished translator of such novels as Romain Gary’s The Colors of the Day and Andre Schwartz-Bart’s The Last of the Just.

Wanda Crawford’s work has appeared in WIND/Literary Review, Appalachian Heritage, The Arts Journal, and Mountain Living. She left college teaching in order to have time to write and now makes her living as a secretary with the Art Department of West Carolina University in Cullowhee, North Carolina.

Colette Russelle Brooks was born in Seattle, Washington and now lives in New York City. Her literary essays have appeared in journals such as Partisan Review, the Georgia Review, and the Southwest Review. She teaches writing at Harvard University and is currendy working on a book about life in America.

Edwin M. Yoder won the Pulitzer Prize for editorial writing while serving as editorial page editor of the late Washington Evening Star. He is now a syndicated columnist and has also completed a biography of Washington pundit, Joseph Alsop, being published by North Carolina, which seems fitting since Mr. Yoder is both a native of that state and a graduate of its foremost university.

Daniel S. Whitaker received his Ph.D. in Spanish from the University of Wisconsin and is now a member of the Spanish Department at California State University in San Bernardino. He is an authority on 18th and 19th-century Spanish literature.

One of the nation’s most prolific biographers of 20th-century literary figures, jeffrey Meyers authored a life of F. Scott Fitzgerald which was published last year and has a new biography of the critic Edmund Wilson due out this year.

Robert H. Brinkmeyer, Jr. is Professor of American Literature and Southern Studies at the University of Mississippi in Oxford. He is the author of three books, Three Catholic Writers of the Modern South, The Art and Vision of Flannery O’Connor, and Katherine Anne Porter’s Artistic Development: Primitivism, Traditionalism and Totalitarianism.

Andrew Burstein teaches history at Whitman College in eastern Washington state. He is the author of Life Follows My Pen: A Portrait of the Inner Jefferson due out from the University Press of Virginia this year.

Sanford Pinsker is a professor of English at Franklin & Marshall College and a frequent contributor to this journal.


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