What happens to a person schooled in art, science and “ethical culture” who finds
himself a pacifist building an atomic bomb, a physicist exiled from science because
of his outspoken efforts to stop the madness, a New York Jew raising cattle and teaching
high school in the Colorado mountains? If you’re Frank Oppenheimer, you use what
you’ve learned from art and science and teaching and ranching to make up your own
Frank always wanted to create an ongoing series of events bringing together science, arts, politics, whatnot, and Categorically Not! is probably exactly what he had in mind.
So our September 13th Categorically Not! is dedicated to Frank, and our host KC Cole will talk about her new book, Something Incredibly Wonderful Happens: Frank Oppenheimer and the World He Made Up.
The world that artist Dan Mills made up may be even more ambitious: Curator and director
of the Samek Art Gallery at Bucknell University, Mills began his US Future States
Atlas in 2003 as a wry letter-
Mills’s creations, in the words of critic Richard Marcus, “provide insightful and intelligent commentary on American foreign policy and how truly ridiculous some of the rationale given for those previous actions has been."
His work will be on view at the gallery.
Finally, the world of Pulitzer Prize winning music critic Tim Page was is in many
ways a parallel universe to the one most of us inhabit—a universe he only understood
himself at age 45 when he was diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome. As a boy, he could
blithely recite the names and dates of all the United States’ presidents and their
wives in order (backward upon request), yet lacked the coordination to participate
in the simplest childhood games. He memorized vast portions of the World Book Encyclopedia
simply by skimming through its volumes, but was unable to pass elementary school
math and science. Yet it was perhaps because of rather than despite Asperger’s that
he was able to construct a prodigious writing career through his all-
Tim’s latest book, Parallel Play, is a hilarious and heartbreaking chronicle that revisits his early days through the prism of newfound clarity. The poignant story of lifelong search for answers, the book provides a unique perspective on Asperger's and the well of creativity that can spring forth as a result of the condition.
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