Monthly Archives: May 2013

Moonwalking with Einstein

Maybe I’ll post something about each book I’ve read.  First up: Moonwalking with Einstein by Joshua Foer.  A journalist covers a memory competition, gets talked into competing in the next year’s competition, and becomes the reigning American memory champion.  This is an entertaining introduction to the ancients’ memory techniques, centered on the concept of the “memory palace”.

The great modern books on ancient and medieval memory are:

The three ancient sources are:

Piety, ritual, and divine incarnation: then and now

Learning how to behave toward the gods, in daily piety and ritual, and how to negotiate the incursions of the divine into the human—from interpreting oracles and portents to facing the presence of a god in disguise or in epiphany—all of this tests and defines what it is to be human. –Ralph J. Hexter, A Guide to the Odyssey: A Commentary on the English Translation of Robert Fitzgerald.