Tag Archives: Russia

Rilke: a poet’s death

Nicolas Roberto Robles Badajoz, Spain   Figure 1. A portrait of Rilke painted two years after his death by Leonid Pasternak Public domain Rose, oh reiner widerspruch, lust, Niemandes schlaf zu sein under soviel lidern Rose, o pure contradiction, desire, to be no one’s sleep beneath so many lids. Rainer Maria Rilke, epitaph. On December […]

A Cold War Vaccine: Albert Sabin, Russia, and the oral polio vaccine

James L. Franklin Chicago, Illinois, United States   Albert Sabin (second from left) and Mikhail Chumakov (third from left). Credit: Courtesy Hauck Center for the Albert B. Sabin Archives, Henry R. Winkler Center for the History of the Health Professions, University of Cincinnati Libraries. Fair Use. In the midst of the 2020 Covid–19 pandemic, when […]

Mustard: history of the yellow seed

Carol Sherman Chicago, Illinois, United States   Figure 1. The Sign from the Mustard Museum. Photo taken by Douglas R. Siefken, August 15th, 2019. Provided for this article. The National Mustard Museum in Middleton Wisconsin1 describes itself as having over 5,600 mustards. They originate from all fifty states of the United States and from more […]

Notes from writing a character with a bleeding disorder

Nicole Hebdon Buffalo, New York, United States   “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.” –Ernest Hemingway. Photograph by Suzy Hazelwood. Taken from pexels.com I have read two books that feature characters with bleeding disorders. The first was a used paperback with a neon green and […]

Citizen Zinsser: portrait of a Renaissance man

Philip R. Liebson In the September 16, 1940 issue of TIME Magazine an intriguing obituary was found: After a patient wait, death came last week to Hans Zinsser, bacteriologist, physician, philosopher, poet, ironist, historian, raconteur. At 61, he died of chronic leukemia, a slow-moving, mysterious disease of the blood for which there is no known […]

Cultural warfare: investigating childbirth practices in “Doctor Zhivago”

Stephanie S. Colello New York, United States   Caption: “Stalin’s tenderness to our future children shines!” I was fortunate to spend a year studying the transformation of Russian childbirth practices through the lens of Russian literature—an endeavor that at first glance may seem farfetched. However, I quickly realized that no birth scene is written as […]