Ten Years & Counting …
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SOS: It’s a Jungle Out There
(but we’re good with that)
If you haven’t seen Ragazine before, “Welcome.” If you have, then “Welcome back.” Either way, this issue’s collection of articles, images, poems, and stories won’t disappoint. From discourses on the politics of “Deep State,” to the art of Dorothea Rockburne and the photography of Ralph Gibson, to the poetry of John Smelcer illustrated by R. Crumb, to an exploration of the logging regions of Amazonian Brazil, to the “Moveable Feast” of Ernest Hemingway, there’s food for thought on every page.
As an independent e-zine, we compete with thousands of other zines, blogs and websites for your time and attention. And we really appreciate when we get it! Your page clicks, likes, tweets, retweets, pins and good old-fashioned word of mouth are key to growing Ragazine. And to keep us fueled for another ten years. We know not everyone is in a position to contribute financial support, but it’s an easy step, and free, to spread the word. You do that for us; we’ll keep doing “this” for you.
Thanks for reading …
Mike Foldes, Founder/Managing Editor
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Ralph Gibson: The modern master of monochrome photography, shares his thoughts on the medium and one of its greatest tools, the Leica MONO camera, used to produce the images in his new book, aptly titled, “MONO.” With Mike Foldes.
Dorothea Rockburne: One of the foremost abstract artists of the 20th Century — and now the 21st — talks about her inspiration, motivation, and “the work”. With Charles Hayes; photographs by Guenter Knop.
John Cage: This previously unpublished interview took place 30 years ago as part of a series Charles Hayes launched to identify key components of the creative processes, in particular factors inhibiting creative and artistic productivity. Cage and Rockburne were at Black Mountain College together in the ’50s, so it seemed purposeful to run her and Cage’s interviews “side by side” in the same issue. With Charles Hayes.
Paul B. Roth: Bitter Oleander Press stands as one of the guardians of independent book publishing. In an age when the small press industry and its plethora of startups struggles against giants of print and internet, Roth’s The Bitter Oleander journal continues to weather the storm. With Alan Britt.
On Location, France: Contributing editor Jean-Paul Gavard-Perret offers up two interviews, the first with Swiss-born artist Alexandra Navratil, and the second with Austrian Barbara Ellmerer. See what’s happening in their parts of the world.
Amazonian Water World by Robert “Bob” Walker: As creative nonfiction editor Prof. Leslie Heywood writes in Submission Guidelines, “Ragazine’s creative non-fiction section brings together the kind of writing I like most: grounded, compelling first-person narration set in a concrete time and place that reflects thematically some way on the human relation to the natural world and the ways we’ve transformed that world, and in the process, transformed ourselves.” Walker’s narrative on the effects of loggers and logging in Brazil’s Amazon region perfectly conforms to this ideal.
DEEP STATE: Two Views
In the twin posts of this Politics edition, Jim Palombo presents a provocative premise in his “Deep State” article. This is accompanied by a commentary from Henry Giroux who has his own take on the “deep state” concern. Coming from somewhat different perspectives, the two pieces provide engaging and informative thoughts on what should be considered a most disturbing situation.
ART: Two Moveable Feasts
FOOD, ART & HEMINGWAY: Artist, writer and Hemingway scholar Raul Villarreal writes about Hemingway’s love of food and place, especially as it relates to his life in Cuba, and his love for Finca Vigia, the great writer’s retreat near Havana. Villarreal’s article is followed by a summary of “The Moveable Feast” exhibit at the Therese A. Maloney Art Gallery at the College of St. Elizabeth in Morristown, N.J., curated by the author, Dr. Virginia Fabbri Butera, Ph.D. With galleries of art from the exhibit.
DARSHAN: Contributing music editor Fred Roberts reflects on the music and influence of “Darshan,” and the strange coincidence in meeting its creator, Patrick McMahon, in Cincinnati.
EVERLY BROTHERS: Music writer/Contributer Jeff Edstrom provides a 20-20 hindsight review of the unforgettable Everly Brothers reunion concert at Royal Albert Hall in London, in 1983.
Commented judge Sheree Renée Thomas on Speculative Fiction Contest runner-up Ely Azure’s “NEVER. GIVE. YOU. UP.”: “Moving but creepy adopted monster/baby/zombie? (I) don’t usually care for zombie tales, but this family’s attempt to adopt and become parents during a biological epidemic was compelling.”
Award-winning author Paul West’s “Hurled Into Eternity” achieves stark reality in the dark world of life in Warsaw during the Nazi occupation.
John Smelcer’s poem, THE BOOK OF GENESIS, REVISED FOR AMERICAN INDIAN HISTORY, appears with an illustration by R. Crumb from Crumb’s “The Book of Genesis Illustrated.” Smelcer’s poem “Genesis” has been taught in a course on genocide at the Open University of Israel. Completing the quadratic are poems from Adele Kenny, Dana Jaye Cadman and Martin Willitts, Jr.
Everyone needs a laugh, even though it might take a minute to figure out what’s funny. With this in mind, we trust you’ll enjoy the latest entry to our wry comedic offerings: Gou-gou World, the brainchild of artist Edmond Rinooy-Kan. Kan explains Gou-gou’s history best, and to start out, there’s a page with pix from Gou-gou’s latest adventures…
Walter Gurbo, whose Drawing Room panels appear on Ragazine’s Welcome Page, and sometimes appear on other pages, suggested a fund-raising contest where writers submit a flash fiction story to go along with one of his drawings. The entry fee is just five bucks. Winner takes home a third of the entry fees received for that issue. Submission guidelines appear on the “WRITING ROOM” post. The first contest illustration appears here (and there):
And while you’re looking through various articles in the zine, you’ll likely run across two other illustrators: Jonathan Kelham and Lynda Barretto. Enjoy the hunt.
BOOKS & REVIEWS:
Photo editor Chuck Haupt’s “the PHOTOGRAPHY spot” features “City of Shadows,” photographs from the Sydney, Australia, police department during a period in the city’s history when “select” men and women under arrest were routinely allowed to help compose their own “mug shots.” More than 2500 of these “special photographs” were taken between 1910 and 1930, providing the grist for this most unusual historical record. … And there are more ….
Barbara Rosenthal reviews A Dirt Road Hangs from the Sky, poems by Claudia Serea, and Cherise Wyneken reviews Jester, Grace Marie Graton’s latest book of poems. Miriam O’Neal reviews Mary Szybist’s award-winning Incarnadine; Diana Manole explores the poems of Flavia Cosma in On Paths Known to No One; and Grayson Del Faro reviews the novel by Rick Whitaker, An HONEST GHOST.
Artist/Author/Professor Steve Poleskie joins Ragazine as the contributing columnist of “Now & Then,” reflections on his life and career in the worlds of art and academe. Join Poleskie as he writes in a most engaging style about NYC gangsters, Andy Warhol, the Mercury Riders motorcycle gang, and more.
From the Edge: Bill Dixon allows recent life-changing experiences to color-in parts of his past, lending understanding to a father-son relationship perhaps stronger in retrospect than it was in life.
Galanty Tweets: The glib and popular sociologist shares recent reflections about life, love, hate and things between, in these, a collection of his recent favorite – and favorited – tweets.
Casual Observer: Mark Levy was one of the first contributors (and pro bono legal adviser) to Ragazine.cc. In this, Ragazine’s 2nd 10th Anniversary Issue, Levy cogitates on what a decade means, and brings it all to the table in his usual casual and empathetic fashion.
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Diamonds — and Not In the Rough:
As this issue’s cover attests, we’ve had a varied and colorful history graphically presented for the past five years by Ragazine‘s photography and contributing editor, Chuck Haupt. Chuck not only designs covers and edits “the PHOTOGRAPHY spot”, he also produces the art used in the email blasts we send out two or three times during the two months between issues.
A high-resolution poster of this issue’s “cover featuring covers” (V10N2) is our way of saying thanks for a contribution of US $30.00 or more. Includes shipping and handling in North America ($40.00 outside North America).
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