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Norman Shapiro

Norman R. Shapiro is a professor of romance languages and literatures at Wesleyan University and a widely published, award-winning translator of French poetry, theater, and fiction. His works include Four Farces by Georges Feydeau, Selected Poems from “Les Fleurs du Mal” of Baudelaire, One Hundred and One Poems by Paul Verlaine, The Fabulists French, and The Complete Fables of Jean de La Fontaine. He is a member of the Academy of American Poets.


The Sledgehammer Argument of General Massu

General Jacques Massu—whose surname is a homophone for massue (“sledgehammer”)—was one of the principals in the Algerian War (1954–1962), around whom the question of the legitimacy of torture raged. It’s never light-heartedly that we [...]

Family Scene

Mammá’s at her knitting The son’s at his war No need to ask herself what for It’s only fitting thinks mammá And papá what’s he at what’s he at papá? Papá’s at his business good bourgeois His wife’s at her knitting His son’ [...]