RIP Morton Cohen, 1921-2017

It is with great sadness we report that our beloved Morton Cohen passed away on June 12. A founding member of our Society, his contributions to Carrollian scholarship cannot be overstated, but a partial list follows. Morton Norton Cohen was born in Calgary, Canada, and grew up on the North Shore of Boston. He was educated at Tufts College and Columbia University, and became a Professor of English at City College of New York and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York as well as teaching at West Virginia, Syracuse, and Rutgers Universities; a Fellow of Christ Church, Oxford, and a member of the Royal Society of Literature. The Modern Language Association set up the biennial Morton N. Cohen Award for a Distinguished Edition of Letters in 1989. Aside from his books on Carroll, he also produced significant works on Rudyard Kipling and Rider Haggard. For many years, Dr. Cohen “triangulated,” as he called it, spending the academic year in New York, the summers in London, and whenever possible winter periods in Puerto Rico. His warm and genial presence at our meetings will be sorely missed.

The New York Times published an obituary online on July 4, a date that would please him (being the 155th anniversary of the boat trip up the Isis), written by Richard Sandomir, husband of our own Patt Griffin. The article appeared in print the next day.

Partial Bibliography

  • The Letters of Lewis Carroll, Oxford, 1979 (with Roger Lancelyn Green)
  • Lewis Carroll and the Kitchins, Argosy Bookstore, 1980
  • Lewis Carroll and the House of Macmillan, Cambridge , 1987
  • Lewis Carroll, Photographer of Children: Four Nude Studies, Clarkson N. Potter/Crown, 1988
  • Lewis Carroll: Interviews and Recollections, University of Iowa, 1989
  • Lewis Carroll: A Biography, Macmillan, 1995
  • Reflections in a Looking Glass: A Centennial Celebration of Lewis Carroll, Photographer, Aperture, 1998
  • Lewis Carroll and His Illustrators: Collaborations and Correspondence, 1865–1898, 2003 (with Edward Wakeling)
  • (His introductions to various books, and academic articles, are too voluminous to list.)
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Cosmic Kids Yoga

Leaving aside the ironies of a YouTube channel devoted to yoga and meditation, episodes of British personality Jaime’s popular channel “Cosmic Kids Yoga” takes on various themes (Star Wars, Frozen, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, etc.) to encourage children to practice spiritual disciplines. It was inevitable that one was based on Alice in Wonderland.

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Alice in Punktuation

Who needs words? Chicago artist Nicholas Rougeux‘s Between the Words project is “an exploration of visual rhythm of punctuation in well-known literary works. All letters, numbers, spaces, and line breaks were removed from entire texts of classic stories like Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Moby Dick, and Pride and Prejudice—leaving only the punctuation in one continuous line of symbols in the order they appear in texts, [which] was arranged in a spiral, starting at the top center, with markings for each chapter and a classic illustration at the center.”

Alice and the other posters come in various sizes (from 4 x 6 to 40 x 60 inches) and papers, which can be ordered through Zazzle.

It is certainly a unique way of looking at the classic text.

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Disney Alice (1951) in One Shot!

Recognize the image at left? Jason Shulman captures the entire duration of a movie in a single image with his series Photographs of Films. This one is the 1951 Disney film of Alice in Wonderland!

Other examples are on The Guardian‘s website, which notes, “Pointing his camera at a screen and making an ultra-long exposure of the film as it plays through, each scene from a movie is overlaid on top on another until they dissolve into an impressionistic blur – but with faint distinguishing features remaining. ‘There are roughly 130,000 frames in a 90-minute film and every frame of each film is recorded in these photographs,’ Shulman says.”

New large-scale versions of the works were part of the Photo London festival in May, and were shown at Cob Gallery, London, in June.

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A Is for Alice

Katia Fiorentino of London has posted a nice Alice Alphabet on Behance.

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Alicia Anotada

Ediciones Akal of Argentina, Spain, and Mexico has just published a Spanish edition of The Annotated Alice: 150th Anniversary Deluxe Edition, translated by Francisco Torres Oliver.

ISBN 978-84-460-4368-3.

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Alice in a Palace

The Castle of St-Maurice in St-Maurice, Switzerland, is having an exhibition of Alice illustrations that runs from April 7 to November 12, 2017. Some are from published books, but there is a “preamble” of original art from students of EPAC, the Swiss school of comic and game art.

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Beware This Jabberwock!

Madame Alexander has outdone herself, producing the scariest Jabberwock (which she refers to as a “Jabberwocky”) ever seen. Available everywhere.

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Gathering4Gardner Talk

The talk by Mark Burstein and Jim Gardner given at the 2016 Gathering4Gardner has been posted to their YouTube channel. It was a shortened version of Mark’s “What IS It about Alice” talk, with extended emphasis on how the 150th Anniversary Deluxe Edition of The Annotated Alice came into being.

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Leonardo Review of Spring Meeting

Leonardo magazine posted a fine review of our spring meeting by Amy Ione. It will probably be in their print issue in six months or so.

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