R  A  L  P  H
  The Review of Arts, Literature, Philosophy and the Humanities 
Volume XVII, Number 4 --- Early Fall, 1999

The Conventions of Star Trek,
Complete Plans for Building Medieval Furniture, and
People and Their Dogs

Beethoven: The Philosophy of Music
"I have just recently bought a toy cellular phone which plays the big theme
from the last movement of Beethoven's Ninth when you press the # key.
Pressing other keys generate rings, dings, beeps, assorted tones, and even
a little gremlin voice which says G'bye and hangs up.
I use my toy cellphone on the bus when all the other passengers receive calls
on their real cellphones, probably from each other."

Singing Lessons
"If you want to give yourself some Judy Collins overload,
you can put Amazing Grace on your player,
and get down on your knees, in the Oval Office,
with The Prez. (Hillary's out of town.)"

Great Reviews of the Past
A Field Guide to American Windmills
"We have names like The Dandy, Everlasting, Favorite,
Boss Vaneless, Sandwich-Perkins, Fouk's Accelerating Air Motor,
Parson's Colorado Wind Engine, The Iron Screw,
and Aquarius the Water Bearer."

RALPH'S Top Ten Books of the Season,
Warm Smiles from Cold Mountain, and
The Art of Bill Traylor

Beautiful Summer at Camp Alton
"In my five years at Camp Alton, I grappled with the question
as to how Hitler could have exterminated the Jews of Europe,
when Jews in America could outdo the Hitler jüngen
with Camp Alton. "

Free Fall
"Philip was from outside, from the villas.
He was pale, physically an extreme coward
and he seemed to us to have a mind
like a damp box of matches."

Joseph Stalin and the New Russian Monarchy
Part I
"In many ways Stalin, tiny, cautious, insecure, cruel,
nocturnal and endlessly suspicious, seems a figure out of
Suctonius' Lives of the Caesars rather than out of modern politics. "

Part II
"The U.S.S.R. ceased to be a society which
imprisoned and killed its citizens on a uniquely massive scale.
Indeed, by the 1980s it had a distinctly smaller proportion of its inhabitants
in jail than the U.S.A. (268 prisoners per 100,000 population against 426 per 100,000, in the U.S.A.)."

We're Brave Only When We Have Choices
"Hope, the article said.
He has hope.
They --- the family, his friends, the reporter ---
don't know what the word means."

You Know What Work Is
"You know what work is --- if you're
old enough to read this you know what
work is, although you may not do it.
Forget you."

The Ballad of Hans and Jenny
"To love Jenny was like
going around eating an apple in the rain.
It was being in the fields and discovering that
the cherries were ripening like the dawn."

Beautiful Summer at Camp Alton,
How Eric Hobsbawm Missed the Boat about Russia,
And a Discussion about the Various Flapjaws
Who Work as Reviewers for RALPH

This will lead you back through previous issues of RALPH
(at least as far back as Winter, 1994 - 1995.)

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Titles, authors, and publishers
of all books reviewed in RALPH ---
arranged chronologically.
1995    1996    1997    1998
1999 (Early)    1999 (Late)


T H E  F A C T S
Submitting Books
The best way to get books to RALPH for review.
Submitting Reviews
Suggestions for would-be reviewers --- and payment schedule.
RALPH didn't spring full-blown from the brows of the gods:
 We've been around (in different guises) for over twenty-five years. 
The Fessenden Fund
Other activities of RALPH's godparents, including
Mho & Mho Works

Ralph R. Doister, Editor-In-Chief
Post Office Box 16719
San Diego CA 92176


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