This Has Nothing To Do With Sonia Sotomayor

But it's awfully topical, given our current obsession with empathy (a subject that, funnily enough, never seized the nation's imagination during the Bush years). It's a quote from Concord Free Press editor-in-chief Stona Fitch, talking to The Washington Post's Ron Charles:

"If you can have empathy for a person made out of words, you can muster up empathy for your three-dimensional community."

As it happens, Fitch is speaking about the philosophy behind the nonprofit Concord Free Press' practice of giving its books away and requesting that readers, in effect, pay it forward. The notion is explained this way on the publisher's website: "All we ask of readers is that they make a voluntary donation to a charity or someone in need. And pass their book along so others can give. It's a new kind of publishing based on generosity."

But even out of context, Fitch's words about empathy are words to live by. There's a particular challenge in them, too, for bookish types who find it easy to feel for people on the page, whether they're fictional or real, yet have trouble translating that warmth into positive interactions with flesh-and-blood human beings. All of us have days like that; some of us lead lives like that, disappearing too entirely down the escape hatch that books open to us.
May 27, 2009 2:31 PM | | Comments (0)

Leave a comment


About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Critical Difference published on May 27, 2009 2:31 PM.

Chickens, Eggs, and Movie Audiences was the previous entry in this blog.

More B'way Shows, Fewer Customers: Woo-Hoo! is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

AJ Ads

AJ Blogs

AJBlogCentral | rss

About Last Night
Terry Teachout on the arts in New York City
Artful Manager
Andrew Taylor on the business of arts & culture
blog riley
rock culture approximately
critical difference
Laura Collins-Hughes on arts, culture and coverage
Richard Kessler on arts education
Douglas McLennan's blog
Dog Days
Dalouge Smith advocates for the Arts
Art from the American Outback
Life's a Pitch
For immediate release: the arts are marketable
Mind the Gap
No genre is the new genre
Performance Monkey
David Jays on theatre and dance
Plain English
Paul Levy measures the Angles
Real Clear Arts
Judith H. Dobrzynski on Culture
Rockwell Matters
John Rockwell on the arts
Straight Up |
Jan Herman - arts, media & culture with 'tude

Foot in Mouth
Apollinaire Scherr talks about dance
Seeing Things
Tobi Tobias on dance et al...

Jazz Beyond Jazz
Howard Mandel's freelance Urban Improvisation
Focus on New Orleans. Jazz and Other Sounds
Doug Ramsey on Jazz and other matters...

Out There
Jeff Weinstein's Cultural Mixology
Serious Popcorn
Martha Bayles on Film...

classical music
Creative Destruction
Fresh ideas on building arts communities
The Future of Classical Music?
Greg Sandow performs a book-in-progress
On the Record
Exploring Orchestras w/ Henry Fogel
Harvey Sachs on music, and various digressions
Bruce Brubaker on all things Piano
Kyle Gann on music after the fact
Greg Sandow on the future of Classical Music
Slipped Disc
Norman Lebrecht on Shifting Sound Worlds

Jerome Weeks on Books
Quick Study
Scott McLemee on books, ideas & trash-culture ephemera

Drama Queen
Wendy Rosenfield: covering drama, onstage and off
lies like truth
Chloe Veltman on how culture will save the world

Aesthetic Grounds
Public Art, Public Space
Another Bouncing Ball
Regina Hackett takes her Art To Go
John Perreault's art diary
Lee Rosenbaum's Cultural Commentary
Modern Art Notes
Tyler Green's modern & contemporary art blog
Creative Commons License
This weblog is licensed under a Creative Commons License.