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Published in Paperback by Princeton Univ Pr (18 September, 1995)
Authors: Jolande Jacobi, Norbert Guterman, and Paracelsus
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Paracelsian Primer
Overall, this is a decent effort. The long introductory essay puts Paracelsus' life and works in perspective. And the many wood-block reprints from the general period are interesting--if a bit distracting, since they are interpolations not drawn by Paracelsus himself and not appearing in the original works. But certainly, after hearing so much about Paracelsus from various readings in alchemy (including Jung, who wrote the Preface here), I quite enjoyed reading Paracelsus himself. The downside is that this primer is composed of short paragraphs plucked from all of Paracelsus' published works, shorn of context, then thrust into juxtaposition with whatever else the editor thought fit into the same category. So the readings are jumpy, paragraph by paragraph leaping amongst all 13 or so of Paracelsus' collected works. Many of the most interesting subjects are not covered at all or only thinly, including Paracelsus views on astrology, alchemy, magic and medicine. And much of it is given over to his (largely Christian) theological speculations--even tho' no one reads Paracelsus for his theology. All in all, this primer will whet your appetite for something more substantial. Personally, I can't wait to get a copy of "Archicoxes of Magic" or the A.E. Waite collection. But this book will point you in the right direction.

The Little Universe
The main thread of Paracelsus' theology is that man is the "Little Universe" while the Universe is the "Great Being." To Paracelsus, however, this is not just a passing thought or a nice philosophy, but one to be explored, understood, and lived every day.

This selction of works gives a basic overview of Paracelsus' writing and thought in a comprehensive, yet, fairly easy to digest compendium. Edited by Jolande Jocobi for the Princeton "Mythos Series" does a wonderful job splicing together many of Paracelsus' works together in a rather cohesive and streamlined format. The subjects range from the creation of the universe to the practice of the physician to alchemy and art in general. If one is looking for a specific aspect of Paracelsus, this may not be the book to get, however, if one just wants to read or get a trace of his writings, then there is no better book to buy.

The writing is somewhat archaic, however, if one takes the time to understand what is written in the first couple of pages, then one can appreciate the point of view Paracelsus is coming from. In another way of saying this, according to Paracelsus, God and Man are intricately united and there is nothing on this Earth or the Universe that can separate the two. From this understanding Paracelsus stems all his other experiences and revelations.

The introduction by Jacobi is a fairly extensive biography of Phillipus Aureolus Theophrastus Bombastus von Hoenheim called Paracelsus (which means "beyond celsus"). Throughout the book are many engravings from various artists from his books or other various books that pertain to the topic at hand. As stated, the book offers a wide variety of subjects for the reader to chew from which may make this book limited in range as it is a book of "Selected Writings", however, I believe if one is beginning to look into the works of Paracelsus, this might be the best place to start.

this is an overview of everything paracelsus thought about. he thought a lot. that is what hes known for. so this antholgy probably spreads itself a little thin, right? yes, now that you mention it. it doesnt contain any of his alchelmical texts or his texts on magic or his texts on you understand? i myself was expecting a few alchemical texts or something. instead, it takes exerpts from nearly all of his writings and weaves them together show you how morality relates to medicine, magic, cosmology, alchemy... and delivers it all in clear language along with 150 great medieval illustrations, wood cuts, engravings and whatnots all very nice. a good starting point. but just keep in mind that it lacks actual complete texts. have i made myself clear? barely huh? well pull yourself together. its a great book and it will leave you wanting more.

Burning Lights: A Unique Double Portrait of Russia
Published in Paperback by Schocken Books (1988)
Authors: Bella Chagall, Marc Chagall, and Norbert Guterman
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This book was penetrating and witty, giving a portrait of pre-war Vitebsk that makes the reader feel transported back to that time and location. Sweet without being cloying, the memoir bursts from the pages as if Bella were in front of you, holding a conversation with you.

enchanting child's-eye memoir of Russian Jewish life
With illustrations by her husband Marc, Bella Chagall's memoir comes from the poignant brush strokes of childhood, focusing on Jewish holidays and family life. If you are curious about the life your immigrant forebears left behind, this will satisfy. I highly recommend it.

Russian Fairy Tales
Published in Paperback by Random House (Merchandising) (1976)
Authors: A. N. Afanas'ev, Alexandre Alexeieff, and Norbert Guterman
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What a fun book!
Fairy tales get us into the psyche of a culture. Americans see themselves as Paul Bunyan and Johnny Appelseed, conquoring the frontier. This book introduces us to the Russian psyche. It shows us how they look at things--the world, society, life, family, and government.

Some of the stroies are charming, such as the fabel of the Turnip and the Honey-pot. Other stories made absolutley no sense. But I had fun trying to crack these weird nuts.

I enjoyed the translation. It is not as energetic as Seamus Heaney, or J. B. Phillipws, but it is readable, athough you realize that you are reading a translation.

C. S. Lewis, in his preface to "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe," mentions that as children we read fairy tales, then we outgow them. Then, as adults, we come back to these stories and read them with different eyes. I had that experince with this book.

Great collection-loses something in the translation
Afanasyev has assembled an absolutely wondeful collection of Russian folktales, animal tales and even epics. The stories are great to read, but there are a lot of them. I felt like something may have been lost in the translation, and tht's the only reason i didn't give this book a five.

A huge collection
What the Grimm Brothers did for fairy tales in Germany, Afanas'ev did for Russia. Over the course of his lifetime(1826-1871), he collected countless of these wonderful little stories from common folk, just as the Grimms did. This collection contains stories of adventure and enchantment, animal fables and more. Included are stories of Vasilissa and Baba Yaga, the witch whose house was built on chicken feet, and the famous story of the giant turnip. There's even some stories about vampires. But be prepared, this book is huge! And every bit of it distinctly Russian.

The Eighth Day of the Week (European Classics)
Published in Paperback by Northwestern University Press (1900)
Authors: Marek Hlasko, Norbert Guterman, and Marek Hasko
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So much promise ...
I am curious if the author titled this book "The Eighth Day" based on the Catholic/Christian reference to Sunday as the eighth day, the day of recreation. Be that as it may, the book has many merits - e.g. the way it makes the oppressive atmosphere tangible "only with difficulty could she get the damp air into her lungs". The atmosphere is filled with disappointment, drunkeness, violence, self-pity and self-loathing. A few pages into the novel, I fully expected it to be good, maybe very good.

Unfortunately, as the main character Agnieszka breaks in her own way, the plot fails ... there has not been sufficient psychological change to motivate the change in behavior.

As an anti-Communist piece of Polish literature, the book is interesting; as a universal piece of humanity under repression it fails. I suspect, however, that the author's talent may have (or will) produced better works.

Warsaw, the gray gray city
Without knowing much about Polish writer Marek Hlasko, a reader of this novel could pretty much guess that he was born and raised under the gray curtain of Stalinism. Throughout this short novel that covers a 3-day period in rainy cold Warsaw, we glean nothing but despair and cynicism every step of the way. The story begins with the two main characters arguing on the banks of the Vistula on a "filthy day in May," a telling-enough detail: can anyone ever recall the month of May being described as "filthy?" (Perhaps it is in a figurative sense for anyone bred under Soviet communism: their month of May opened with the traditional May Day celebrations). Our heroine, Agnieszka, is arguing with her boyfriend Piotr because he wants to make love with her for the first time right then and there on the riverbank since "there is no place on earth for lovers to go." Both Agnies and Piotr live in overcrowded tenements in true commmunist fashion, rubbing elbows with dispirted people everywhere. Agnies' mother is a bitter, hateful invalid, her father a prematurely aging man already focused on his own death. Her younger brother, Grzegorz, is also prematurely old and a defeated, cynical idealist. Her old brother, Zawadzki, is one of the few persons in the story holding onto any hope and keeps plugging away daily at his job as a laborer and says "I want to believe in people." Agnies herself is jaded yet hopeful. She still believes in love & romance, is at odds with her home environment and keeps studying away for a degree in philosphy at university. What she craves most of all, she tells Piotr, is "peace and quiet." We seem to get to know Piotr the least. We know that he was in the armed forces and served time in prison for some type of political "crime." The thread of the story shows how each character looks forward to Sunday, the 7th day of the week, for one reason for another. Agnies' father is to go on a much-anticipated fishing trip; Grzegorz's girlfriend is to give her decision whether to accept his proposal of marriage and Zawadzki anticipates a visit to his fiance on that day as well. True to the cynicism thru-out the story, nothing comes through on Sunday for any of them. Sunday dawns a sleeting, cold day no good for fishing or trips to see girlfriends. Perhaps the title of the book stems from these characters' desperate need for yet one more day in the week to achieve what they so desire? Sunday turns out to be a horrendous day--you must read what happens to everyone! When Monday morning finally dawns, and everyone falls back into their routine, gray existences. Piotr and Angies part ways, true to his earlier conviction that "This is the 90th century. If Romeo and Juliet lived in Warsaw in 1956, they would never have met." Probably the sum of 8th Day can be read in Grzegorz's "Cynicism is the sole morality" but check out the last line in the book where Agnies' father is standing at the front door and remarks "I wish it were Sunday." Translator Guterman did an upstanding job with this work, preserving the dozens of philosophical gems Hlasko packs onto every page.

No illusions, but still alive
Poland in the 60's.Characters drawned as with no illusions, a boy always drunken not to remember the present and the lack of love and understanding, his sister the only one who has sparkles of faith in the possibilities of humane changes, but at the end breaks down. On the background the system, the lack of morality that becames going over morality and only a try in surviving, no hope in joy. Everything seems to collapse, but at last Poland will remain the same, forever, for only humane beings will fall in dust, the spirit of the country'll remain the same, stifling and atrophying. The country survives because feeds on his inhabithans, on their blood and hopes.Hlasko recreates the disillusion himself lived, and died too early to realize that was right in his prophecy.

The Anchor Book of French Quotations: With English Translations
Published in Paperback by Doubleday (1990)
Authors: Norbert Guterman and Norman Guterman
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The Anchor Book of Latin Quotations: With English Translations
Published in Paperback by Anchor (1990)
Authors: Norbert Guterman and Norman Guterman
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A Diary in the Strict Sense of the Term
Published in Paperback by Stanford Univ Pr (1989)
Authors: Bronislaw Malinowski, Norbert Guterman, and Raymond Firth
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Road to the ocean
Published in Unknown Binding by ()
Authors: Leonid Leonov and Norbert Guterman
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