Oscar Wilde pursued a life -- an art -- of pure uselessness. This was not because he objected to pragmatic pursuits, if kept in their proper place: "We can forgive a man for making a useful thing as long as he does not admire it. The only excuse for making a useless thing is that one admires it inten
"In the work of every American playwright at the end of the twentieth century, there are only two stages: before she or he has read Maria Irene Fornes -- and after."
Though Paula Vogel's words are a fitting tribute to this dramatist's sensitive works, it's not surprising if Fornes' name draws a b
Unfortunately, little is known about the personal life of Thomas Pynchon, the man behind such innovative texts as "The Crying of Lot 49" (1966) and "Gravity's Rainbow" (1973). Carefully guarding his privacy ever since the 1961 publication of his first novel, "V.," Pynchon has nevertheless dazzled cri
"Curiouser and curiouser!" was Alice's verdict on her adventures down the rabbit hole in Lewis Carroll's "Alice in Wonderland" (1865), a book that exposed the absurdity of adult conventions and manners above ground. Carroll (whose real name was Charles Lutwidge Dodgeson) was a pathologically shy math