Arlequino and I spent the Canadian Thanksgiving weekend in Chicago. No turkey dinner, no family get-together, but a superb couple of days together in a city I had not visited before. To make a good trip even better, the weather was amazing: temperatures in the high twenties and sunny. Everyone was walking around in sandals and short sleeves. A nice gift.
Although we had made the arrangements earlier, the timing of our trip was also fortuitous because we had two things to celebrate: I finished my paper for Women’s Work During the War 1939-1945 (watch this space for more details about that book when it’s published) and Arlequino got the hot-off-the-press copies of his new book.
But work never stops, even for long weekends. I spent my reading time reviewing the novel I will teach for the first time this week (and which I haven’t read for 20 years): Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe.
More exciting was going to the Chicago Art Institute and finding out that there was a special exhibit of posters from the Russian News Agency TASS. They were stunning. That’s the only word I can find to describe them. Designed to boost the moral of the Russians in the latter parts of the war, they are vivid, graphic, satirical, narrative, and full of emotion. Including hate. Including fear. Here’s a tumblr collection of images. Of special interest to me was this small part of the exhibit. Pictured here is the explanatory panel and two posters that deal with the Russian takeover of the Eastern zones.
After this we had to go and look at beautiful things.