Cox explores human interaction
By RONA KOBELL
"I don't love you anymore," Wil-
liam told his wife Molly one after-
noon as they sat together in the den.
We, as readers, don't know Molly or
William, but we know the impact of
that terrifying phrase.
AuthorElizabeth Cox is also aware
of its impact, which is why she leads
into her novel "The Ragged Way
People Fall Out of Love" with that
very sentence. Her captivating title
begins to tell the story of a family that
splits apart and how love relation-
ships endure painful separations.
"This is a story about how love
goes on -- for the children, for the
parents - in the midst of people
breaking apart," Cox said. As amother
of two, Cox adds that she focuses
more on children and their love rela-
tionships because "when the family
breaks apart, that's where my sympa-
The children in the novel are in-
deed courageous and perceptive. Be-
fore William leaves home, his 16-
year-old son, Joe, asks him, "What's
the matter with you andmom?" When
William dodges the question, Joe at-
tempts to mitigate his father's guilt by
saying "lots of my friends' parents
have split" as he casually sticks a
fishing rod back into the stream.
Cox's portrayal of children as
strong, resilient characters further
establishes her theory that people need
courage to love. "It takes more cour-
age to love someone than people
know," Cox said. "The difficulty is
that we're not taught that we need the
courage. These children have it."
As the story continues, the reader
meets other characters in the family,
and other developments surface. No
matter how many new familial en-
tanglements arise, the first line ech-
oes in the reader's ear with a frighten-
ing familiarity. Thirteen pages after
Molly hears those words for the first
time, she cannot separate herself from
their meaning. " 'I don't love you'
kept coming intoMolly's mind. 'Any-
more' came in separately sometimes.
Just that word, alone, like a song that
makes you think of the whole thing, a
refrain played in so many ways."
Cox believes that the familiarity
of this theme and its repetition causes
readers to identify with Molly, bridg-
ing the gap between fictitious charac-
ters and real emotions. "When some-
thing hurts you like this, it haunts you.
I feel as if the first line ["I don't love
you anymore"] is entering Molly's
mind again and again, as it might
enter our minds."
Cox remains loyal to the family
and human interaction theme in her
first novel, "Familiar Ground." In this
story, an elderly man processes the
details of his brother's violent death
and forgives himself along the way.
Cox, who recently remarried, remains
deeply attached to her own family
members, who inspired the compos-
ite characters in her novels.
While most of her novels are set in
the southern United States, Cox hopes
that her stories will appeal to all audi-
ences. A native of North Carolina,
Cox moonlights in Ann Arbor as a
visiting professor fora graduate-level
creative writing course. She will be-
gin teaching at Duke University in
Cox currently resides in Boston,
where she is working on a new novel
and collection of short stories. Al-
though she has partially completed
these works, she cannot disclose their
outcomes. "I write books without an
idea of what's going to happen," she
explained. "It's a matter of discovery,
ELIZABETH COX readsfrom her
work at Rackham Amphitheatre, S
p.m., Thursday 21.
"The Pope and the Witch" will be playing at Arena Theater.
Pope' stuns Catholics
By ROBIN BARRY
This weekend Basement Arts opens its season with "The Pope and The
Witch," a highly controversial comedy, written by Dario Fo. It's described as
hilarious slap-stick in which anything can happen and does. This play pokes
fun at the Pope, the Vatican and the rest of the Catholic hierarchy. It shows how
out of touch these public figures are with today's issues.
"However," the director, Joe Gold tells us, "It does not make fun of the
Catholic religion, only the hypocrisies and backwards beliefs of these author-
*ty figures." This play doesn't hold back. Within the course of the action, some
pretty outrageous things happen. The plot revolves around a press conference
the Pope tries to call. He then gets stage fright and goes into convulsions. In
trying to remedy his affliction, his colleagues end up calling in the question-
able character, Alisa Donadoni, a 'healer,' who was raised by witch doctors.
There are also some wild assassination attempts on the Pope's life. One of
these attempts misses the Pope and accidentally ends up taking out his parakeet
instead. The Pope also ends up taking heroin, and making a complete bumbling
fool of himself. "What's cool about this play," Gold explained, "Is that it's not
preachy, it relates it's message through humor in a way that anyone can
"The Pope and The Witch," deals with some very current issues. It was
written only four years ago, and translated into English just last year. It looks
at subjects like, abortion, birth control and drug rehabilitation.
The playwright left instructions in the script entitling the director to update
and adapt the piece for its audience. The action of this piece, therefore, takes
place in 1993. Gold said that he tried to bring this production closer to today's
Gold said that the reason he chose this piece was because of its intimacy
with the audience. The Arena Theater is small and only makes room for a
imited number, so the audience will be very close to the action.
Gold described the production as having an ensemble feel. "There are nine
actors and a lot of double casting, the actors are very involved with the action
of the play." He said that this involvement is helping the actors fine-tune the
comedy. Gold explained, "We still do a lot of fooling around with the script
and the action of the play, we take out something that's funny and replace it
with something else that's hilarious."
Joe Gold is a senior BFA theater student. This is the second play he's
directed with Basement Arts. His first one was, "A Hopeful Interview With
Satan." Joe has also performed in many productions.
Basement Arts does 10 student shows a term. Gold said Basement Arts
*upplied important experience to everyone involved. "It gives students the
chance to put on experimental pieces that otherwise, might not be seen."
Gold's production of "The Pope and The Witch" is a great example of this. It
guarantees a million laughs. This crazy farce should be a lot of fun.
THE POPE AND THE WITCH will be presented October 21 at 5p.m., 22 at
5 and 10:30p.m., and 23 at 2p.m. at the Arena Theater in the Frieze
Building. Admission is free. For more information or to reserve seats call
Joe Gold 930-2597.
Artist's collages surprise A
By KARIN SKAGGS
Be prepared to be surprised by Hannah Hoch's strange
world of magazine cut-outs. Human heads find them-
selves stuck to bodies of babies and dogs, large, luscious
lips shout from a puny face, and a dwarfed body is
overpowered by a head of half woman, half monkey. Yet
behind these frightening and humorous juxtapositions is
the artist, Hannah Hoch, who defined collage in the early
20th century, and in turn opened the doors to an entirely
new medium in modern art.
Hoch's work is on view at the Museum of Art in
"Hannah Hoch: Collages," an exhibition which spans her
Hannah Hochs: Collages
University Museum ofArt
Through November 28, 1993
inexhaustible playfulness with the mediuim over a period
of four decades. These images of fragmented bodies and
mythic animal-men actually stem from the foundations of
the Berlin Dada in 1918.
Hoch was the only woman of a group of artists,
architects and thespians actively rebelling against the
First World War. They protested the growing nationalistic
pride of their country: hatred between nations supported
by the bourgeois society who supposedly encouraged art
and thought. Irrational images and ironic laughter per-
petuated the Berlin Dada group, who sought to explore the
hypocrisy of German society.
Collage, or photomontage, became the most direct
means for this group of social rebels to create complex,
politically loaded images. Because they collected scraps
from everyday life in magazines, newspaper clippings, or
advertisements, the medium was cheap and universal.
Hoch wrote that collage meant "cutting things up, reas-
sembling them, sticking them together and inducing for-
eign elements - in other words, alienation" - an apt
definition from the artist who defined the medium.
Her collages at the Museum of Art demonstrate much
more than just areplacement of disparate images; they are
imbued with the chaos and randomness that the Dadaists
embraced, at once critical of society, mass media and
ideals of femininity.
Female beauty is questioned in "Made for a Party" of
1926. An oversized head is carefully spliced onto a smaller
body of a woman seated in a leotard and tights. Cropped
just above the nose, the head signifies the feminine, with
its dominating lipsticked mouth of pearly white teeth.
Spiral-like fragments creep down the edges of the face,
suggesting ringlets of hair, and echoing the curves of the
female figure. An eye stares out from the bottom left
corner, perhaps symbolizing the male gaze upon these
elements of typical femininity. Jumping between the
fragmented, fetishized body, the smiling mouth and the
invasive eye, the viewer becomes a part of this intrusive
Certain works are politically-pointed, such as "Heads
of State," 1919. This early collage mocks two govern-
ment officials, the Reich's president and defense minister,
presenting them in bathing suits against pastel colors. The
background is delicately textured, created by repeatedly
ironing over scraps of material.
Other images seem to explore the shock value of
displaced features. "Half Caste," 1924, presents a woman's
Collage, or photomontage, became
the most direct means for this
group of social rebels to create
complex, politically loaded images.
face of non-European origin. The image twists into a doll-
like mask by one simple alteration: smaller, dark red,
female lips are placed slightly askew on the original
image. Both amusing and disturbing, the woman's face
takes on an unnaturally ponderous expression. Hoch's
rearrangement of parts continues in "Children" of 1925.
This image is seriously funny - a baby's face has been
spliced and rearranged with huge, puffy eyes and a scream-
ing mouth. This image confirms a person's darkest night-
mares of babysitting or childbearing.
It seems that much of H6ch's intention is to leave her
images up for interpretation. The viewer is persuaded to
respond, encouraged to draw upon his or her personal
collage of images and memory to devise a meaning for the
works. A personal, self-conscious interaction with H(ch's
collages is possible in this comprehensive exhibit..
"Hannah Hbch: Collages" remains on view at the
Museum of Art until November 28.
Tonight is the second-to-last
night to catch "Time Indefinite" at
the Michigan Theater. The docu-
mentary marks Boston area film-
maker Ross McElwee's follow-up
to his art house hit "Sherman's
March." Made with the same
Michael Moore tapped into in
"Roger & Me," yet thankfully be-
reft of any profound political in-
dictments, "Time" is a quirky, hi-
larious project that manages to both
glorify and, at the same time, poke
fun at the American South. Exam-
ining the demographical gamut with
a wonderful consistency, the pic-
ture has a jumpy, home-made feel
that realizes itself well within its
rural, honest setting. "Time Indefi-
nite" will play tonight at 7:00 and
Saturday at 7:10 at the Michigan
Art as Perception
"Rudolph Arnheim: A Life In
Art," a documentary from Califor-
nia State-Long Beach about the life
and career of University Art School
professor Rudolph Arnheim will be
shown this afternoon at 4:15 p.m. in
the Marsh Room located in the
Frieze Building. The documentary
film, sponsored by the Communi-
cations Department, focuses on
Arnheim's groundbreaking theories
on the psychology of perception. In
presenting his argument, Arnheim,
who has penned such academic fa-
vorites as "Film As Art," deals pri-
marily with his book "The Power of
eworking of 'Dangerous Liaisons' scorches
By DAN O'DONNELL
"Quartet," Heiner Muller's re-
working of "Dangerous Liaisons,"
entertains with more than a few unex-
pected and stunning twists. The drama
is set in an air raid shelter after World
ar II1, but set in the style of the
Trench Baroque period.
Simon Ha, directorof last season's
smash hit "Yankee Dawg You Die,"
is golden. The staging, lighting and
choreography was all fantastic. To
The Performance Network
tober 15, 1993
call the set "sparse" would be a trav-
esty; it was nothing less than concise.
Every light, sound and moving
prop met the actors' performances
1991, and Milan Kundera's "Jacques
and His Master," 1989), playing the
character of Merteuil for a moment.
The leads, Pettit and veteran regional
actor Mark Randemacher, traded roles
several times in the course of the play.
The actors shifted and fused roles so
seamlessly. Both lead's performances
were captivating. My eyes were wa-
tering in their every monologue be-
cause I dared not blink for fear I'd
miss something. Their performances
Sex and Death, Power and Plea-
sure, Sadism and Masochism, Poetry
and the Obscene: Muller's Quartet
takes us on the gray razor's edge of
ambiguity. If you've read some Mar-
quis de Sade then this play will bring
"Philosophy in the Bedroom" to mind,
modern literature fan or prescriber,
you may just love Quartet.
This play runs through October
Quartet is playing at the
Performance Network Thursdays,
Fridays, and Saturdays at 8p.m.,
and Sundays at 7 p.m. Tickets are
$10 general admission, $7 students!
seniors, (don't forget!) Pay-What-
TheCUnversity of \lichiga0
Career Planning Placement
Plan to attend...
L AW DAY
Wednesday, October 20, 1993
10:00 am - 2:00 pm
*Meet with admissions officers from US law schools
*Investigate employment options available to
*ather information on lawrelateri camns
Sex and Death. Power
Order your college ring NOW.