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March 15, 2001 - Image 13

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2001-03-15

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City of Light explored by U.S. journalist in 'Moon'

By Neil Pais
Daily Arts Writer
Throughout the centuries and
extending even into contemporary
times, Americans have always had a
peculiar fascination with French cul-
ture, even if only a subconscious one.
In the highly acclaimed travel mem-
oir "Paris to the Moon," journalist and
native New Yorker Adam Gopnik deft-

ly explores the various features of
Parisian society and shares with his
readers an intimate yet witty account
of his five years spent residing in the
world's capital of all things beautiful.
Split into short sections, each
addressing wholly different aspects of
Paris and its people, Gopnik's narra-
tions bring the City of Light to the
curious reader.
Gopnik briefly explains his early

allure with Paris, beginning with his
schooling in Francophone Montreal
and subsequently, adolescent excur-
sions to France with his family and
future wife Martha.
The remainder of the book is devot-
ed to cleverly narrating his everyday
experiences with the idiosyncrasies of
Parisian culture. Gopnik makes inter-
esting comparisons between French
and American life and accurately
describes many of the distinguishable
characteristics that define Paris; cap-
tured in the true style of a practiced
journalist, many of these tiny details
are often elusive to the casual observer
of French culture.
The memoir is not restricted to jour-
nalism, however. In fact, the narration
is amazingly tender and evocative.
Gopnik brings a more human feel to

Paris to
the M oon
Adam Gopnik
Grade: B+
Random House

each chapter in
an effort to
depict Paris as a
traveler's
dream, but also
as a city filled
with warmth
and constant
renewal.
Gopnik also
does an excel-
lent job juxta-
posing his fact-
filled accounts
with some of

I

IlIAD1HAHN
PLAY BEBE

the most intimate details of his per-
sonal life. What results from this is an
amazingly candid look at the author's
emotions as well as his intriguing
environment.
"Paris to the Moon" is quite a

1

Carims Kalmar, conductor
Hhlary Hahn, volin

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Just 20 years old and already one of the most
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Hilary will be signing CDs after each performance.

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Media Sponsors:

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Detroit native Regina Carter, voted #1 violinist in
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unique book; it is actually a compila-
tion of Gopnik's "Paris Journals'
written while a correspondent for The
New Yorker. Sometimes slightly dra-
matic and pretentious, the book still
illustrates quite effectively some of
the most complex elements of the
French psyche. It is at once refresh-
ingly philosophical, journalistic and
personal.
Upon reading "Paris to the Moon," it
isn't difficult to understand the praise
that it gets as one of the finest pieces of
travel writing to emerge in a while. A
colleague of Adam Gopnik remarked,
"The book begins as a piece of journal-
ism and ends up as literature."
The statement is certainly appropi-
ate; what starts as a shrewd cultural
essay concludes as a memoir filled
with adventure and discovery. "Paris
to the Moon" is surely recommended
for those interested in the inner work-
ings of a culture and its admirers.
Hey kids! Make your own
observational humor comedy
.. toutire! Jt fllin thevllnks!t;. ;
fey, it's to be here. Man, 1
was on the plane coming here, and
did you ever get stuck next to one of
those who wouldn't stop
? I mean, , -
- , just not stopping?!? I
called over the stewardess and asked
her if she could do anything about it,
and you know what she told me
m! (note.: ihe last
blank should be an exasperated repe-
tition cf the one preceding it) I tell
you, nobody gives a about ser-
ice anymoren en t tothe - the :
other day ad they made yie
my own No respect. (waitfvr
applause)
Post your routines on the f5rOIW0
(www.michigaudaiy~COmfOrUfl)
The winner will get a celebrity,
phot* fromi our vast archives!
A look at the
underside of U of M
www.universitysecrets.com
Food For Thought
Genocide in Vietnam I
In recent months,
Reuters News reported
that 200 Montagnards I
were severely beaten
and several were killed in
further clampdowns on
teVietnamese ethnic
minority.
Gary Lillie & Assoc., Realtors
www.garylillie.com

CAMPUS INFORMATION CENTERS
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CAMPBELL Symphony [World Premierel
CHADWICK Jhlee" from $ymphonlc Sketchs
"One of the most musical pianists of
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Bush ickets for UofM Students
Full-time colle a students with student 10 may purchase "rush" tickets
for as low as 10 one hour prior to concerts at the DS0 Box Office,
2711 Woodward Ave. Student subscriptions are also available for 50% off.
w wu

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