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Florence in Words

A Brief Visit to Taiwan

Misnamed: I didn’t “visit.” I attended and spoke at three-day conference in Taipei, joined a one-day bus tour, and went to a museum, the morning of my last day. Still, I learned two lessons. First, and something I really knew but ignored: never travel half-way around the world, where the time difference is 12 or 13 hours, for less than two weeks.  Read More 
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The Month of April Disappears Without Blogs

I thought I would write blogs as I moved from place to place in California, and so I carried my little Toyota with me. But the most I could do at the end of a day of talking, talking, talking, was to write a brief journal reporting on how tired I was or how I’d spent the day and evening talking. Or, when I was more tired that that, I wrote nothing. And the next morning was no use, for I rose in time to begin another schedule. Read More 
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Recovery and Renewal

Yes, it all felt wonderful the next morning, and I promised myself I would never get so “nervous” again. We’ll see, of course, but there was something about speaking on hallowed ground about the Dean who had saved me from my mother and the President who had changed my future despite my mother that was frightening, as though my mother was, herself, in the room. Silliness, I know. But I plan not to read those sections in California and Seattle. Read More 
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Blog or Journal

It’s the day when I’m to read from A Life in Motion at Hunter College’s Roosevelt House, the “campus” of my college years back in the mid- to late-nineteen-forties. And I’m incredibly nervous. I am taking deep breaths, and I am remembering the first time I spoke as a feminist back in 1969, from a manuscript called “Should Women Read Fiction?” when the venue was a Michigan university classroom filled with about 50 faculty members and graduate students. Those were the days when I had hives before I spoke, red rings around my wrists. This is more than 40 years later and at least I have no hives, only breathlessness. Read More 
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