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October 22, 1991 - Image 5

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1991-10-22

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'The Michigan Daily
dotes From
Jckr ro v~ci

RTS
Tuesday, October 22, 1991
Ishmael goes to court?
Presumed Innocent lawyer/author Scott Turow
says he's working on his own private Moby Dick

No Sell Out
The wait continues on the forth-
coming Ice Cube album, tentatively
titled Death Certificate. My anti-
cipation mounts, as the publicity rep
at Priority told me to wait another
month, and wouldn't kick out an
advance copy either. And then
there's this wave of detractors,
dropping that idea that Cube is gon-
na come wack. It gets drastic.
So why all the drama? Only be-
cause Cube is the most unpre-
dictable rapper in the world today.
He's a changeling, he's a metamor-
phic loop of static. In his own
words, "Ice Cube is a river of shit in
a battle/ Move like a snake when
I'm mad/ And then my tail rattle."
He'll win you over with an angry,
proud burst of intelligent lyrics,
then tell you to "get off my dick
nigga, and tell yo bitch to come
here." He's always a step ahead of
you.
When Cube emerged as the
spokesperson and main lyricist for
NWA, back in the crazy times of
"F--- Tha Police" and "I Aint Tha
1," he quickly became the most pop-
.ular voice on the scene. His applica-
tion of rage to the many problems
of the young urban Blackmale, from
police brutality to crass material-
ism, earned him praise from down
below and harsh criticisms from up
above. AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted
completed the self-invention that
Cube had started with his old part-
ners, and expanded his demographics
to a larger, more dependable audi-
ence.
Ice Cube was downright vola-
tile, expressing that a gangsta could
be intelligent and hard: "They say
we promote gangs and drugs/ You
wanna sweep a nigga like me up un-
der the rug/ Kickin shit called street
knowledge/ Why are more niggas in
the pen than in college?/ And be-
cause of that line, I might be your
cell-mate/ That's from the nigga ya
love to hate." In the Kill A Will EP,
he plays all sides of the situation,
bragging that he'll "make your
;brains hang out," then noting the
cost of the system: "Just because, I
didn't want to learn your grammar/
You say I'm better off in the slam-
mer." In his expansive grasp of
levels, from psychotic drug dealer
to street corner revolutionary, Ice
Cube became the voice of the young,
urban Blackman.
Yet, by the ambiguity of the Ice
Cube character, we seem to lose
'track of his relevance. He's so legit-
imized that we forget his constant
challenges to the status quo. While
he penned the rap that earned NWA
,a warning letter from the FBI, "F---
Tha Police," the rep goes to them,
not him. And even more surprising
challenges arise: even though Cube's
entire career has been maligned by
charges of sexism, it is his delibera-
tions that brought about the debut
of Yo-Yo, a strong, intelligent rap-
per who drops messages of female
self-determination and indepen-
dence.
Furthermore, Cube is determined
to make himself the nigga ya love to
hate on deeper levels, keeping the
cash flow from his platinum record
sales within the race and "kickin the
white man" out of his pockets. For a
parallel, as early as 1947, world
renowned singer and actor Paul Ro-
beson began to implement his po-
pular status with politics, speaking

on issues like war and socialism on
an international scale. For speaking
See GREEN, Page 7
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by Joseph Schreiber
C HICAGO - I expected Scott
Turow to be a busy man, but I didn't
realize exactly how busy until we
met in his law office, on the 77th
floor of the Sears Tower.
Turow's first two published no-
vels, Presumed Innocent and The
Burden of Proof, were hugely po-
pular with both critics and fans. The
former was made into a successful
movie, and the latter remains on the
paperback bestseller list. Turow
still takes the train into the city in
the morning and still goes to court,
balancing his practice, his writing
and his family life.
The state of Turow's office is
evidence of this ambitious balance.
Two dozen new hardcover crime
novels by such writers as George
Higgens and Vincent Bugliosi sit by
the window, which overlooks the
Chicago skyline. Displayed every-
where are photos of Turow's fa-
mily, his son's third birthday, his
daughter, his wife. And, of course,
there are the legal pads, documents
and diplomas indicating that this
man is still a serious and dedicated
litigator.
"You can't practice law any
other way," Turow says frankly. "I
think people find it astonishing that
I'm willing to do this, but you can't
practice law any other way. But I
don't want rigid rules for my life.
If I get tired of the practice of law,
I'll stop practicing law. Right now
I still find it exciting and rewar-
ding, emotionally and personally.
And I really find it hard to imagine
not being involved in the law, in
some way."
Turow graduated from Amherst
with a degree in creative writing. He
says that it was his writing that led
him in a roundabout way to an inter-
est in law.
"I was a lecturer in the creative

writing department at Stanford,"
Turow explains, "and I found the
writer's life a hard one - emotion-
ally, most of all. I was an ambitious
young man who did not, in the late
sixties and early seventies, recog-
nize that. Because, you know, am-
bition was not, as we would say
today, a politically correct sort of
emotion. But I wanted some kind of
attainment, and it didn't really seem

Turow has become a celebrity no-
velist and something of a brand
name (a cartoon in his office shows a
disgruntled judge scolding an attor-
ney below the bench: "I don't care
how Scott Turow does it. This is
how you do it.") How does a family
and a law practice affect his role as
America's favorite court reporter?
"There's a certain stress of ha-
ving your children see you at the
word processor," Turow says, "and
their natural impulse is to say, 'Dad,
can you do this? Dad, can you do
that?' And you're saying to your-
self, hopefully not out loud, but
you're still saying, 'Go away. I want
to finish this sentence."'"
"One of my perceptions when I
started working was, 'God, it is hard
to be a man in this society,"' Turow
adds, pausing to think. "The achieve-
ment ethic is not as thoroughly ab-
sorbed for women. So a woman doe-
sn't feel necessarily, 'I've got to be a
roaring success in the world in order
to be a woman'... Let's say she's a
single mom, she's working, she's
keeping the family together, she's
doing a hell of a job. But she doesn't
feel the same stress, necessarily,
that I think a lot of men do. Because
it's a sort of male identification, to
knock the world on its heels. That
may not be good... there's sense of
the world tugging men out of the
bosom of their family."
Turow writes with no per-
manent schedule, sometimes ske-
tching out ideas on the train into the
See TUROW, Page 7

Page 5
We've got the USO,
but alas no Bob Hope
by Liz Patton
Aaron Copland, the grandfather of modern American music, passed
away last year, but his spirit will be present tonight with the University
Symphony Orchestra. The USO, directed by Professor Gustav Meier, pre-
sents Copland's monumental Symphony No. 3 tonight, along with
Gluck's overture to the opera Iphegenie en Aulide (led by Meier's
student Cindy Egolf-Sham Rao) and Alexander Yossifov's Pagdne the
Sorceress (Ricardo Averbach).
Though originally from Switzerland, Copland's quintessentially
American symphony poses no difficulty for the conductor. "I was in his
class (at Tanglewood) as a young student," recalls Meier. "He was very
visible during my student days." In the '30s, American composers such as
Barber and Schuman had begun to write symphonies with a newly discov-
ered sense of national pride, but Copland hesitated to pursue this trend.
It was not until after World War II, explains Meier, that Copland
decided that he wanted to make a strong statement about his view of
society, the world and the war, through a symphonic work. Sensitive to
social issues of the time, he moved away from abstract, inaccessible
musical techniques to a style with more immediate popular appeal, often
through the use of folk tunes or folk-like melodies. One such piece is the
Fanfare for the Common Man (1942), consisting of simple chords and a
bold, memorable melody. A few years later, Copland used the Fanfare in
his Third Symphony, constructing the entire fourth movement around it.
For the past 12 summers, Meier has been on the faculty at
Tanglewood, and he stays in the same barn that Copland used, a building
designed by the renowned artist Alexander Calder. "So I feel very close
to Copland," says Meier. "I feel sure that he will go down in history as
the greatest American composer."
Pagdne the Sorceress, by the Bulgarian composer Yossifov, is also na-
tionalist in tone. Scored for strings, two pianos and percussion, the piece
is from a one-act ballet with six symphonic numbers. The story is based
on the legendary Bulgarian folk heroine Paghne, a beautiful girl who can
see the future, practicing sorcery to punish the bad and reward the good.
Folklore and folk music has been very important in the development
of national music in Eastern Europe, lending a unique identity that di-
vorces it from the Western music tradition. Working within the legacy
of Smetana, Dvo' ik and Bartbk, Yossifov uses the rhythms of folk
dances, with their quick changes in metrical patterns, and melodies based
on old church modes. While he was living in Bulgaria, studying the
country's rich folklore and learning the language, Averbach met
Yossifov, who is well-known in Eastern Europe. "People respect him a
See USO, Page 7

iurow

to be coming from my writing. I
also had a sense of what was good,
and I couldn't satisfy it. I had a
tremendous ambition that what I
write be really good. I was just kind
of pulling at myself, like if I
squeezed my heart hard enough,
something terrific would emerge.
Well, you can't write that way. I
really was driving myself crazy."
It was, finally, the legal issues
within his first, unpublished novel,
The Way Things Are, that intro-
duced to Turow the notion of going
to law school. At Harvard Law he
wrote One L, a non-fiction account
of the first year of law school.
Now, 15 years and two books later,

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