February 17, 2015

Over vacation, my brother read me a great passage from Joshua Ferris’ latest novel, To Rise Again at a Decent Hour. In it (pasted below – it’s worth looking at), a neurotic dentist in NYC ponders the psychology of perspective. I’ve tried to remember the passage as we sit, sun-starved, wondering when this winter will… Read More

An Arab & a Jew Walk Into a Cafe OR How Reading Creates Space For Dialogue

August 11, 2014

How is one, as a teacher (like myself) or as a parent, supposed to teach teenagers and children how to converse, if the adults around them don’t model it themselves?  My cousin asked me the other day: “What’s the point of reading books – as opposed to watching movies or reading newspaper / magazine articles?”… Read More

Betrayed by C.S. Lewis OR Why We Read

September 7, 2013

When I first started Book Dumpling in May, I received a lovely email from a former babysitter named Ilana: She wrote to me about how – when I was four – I used to categorize books by my bedside in little piles indicative of how much I liked them. In response to this anecdote: ‘That… Read More