Wisconsin People & Ideas – Spring 2020 | wisconsinacademy.org
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Wisconsin People & Ideas – Spring 2020

In this issue: During the pandemic, an appeal to the better angels of our nature by Academy executive Jane Elder and a rumination on gathering wood by editor Jason A. Smith. Justin Kern takes us across Wisconsin in search of cosmic encounters while Jude Genereaux profiles WOJB—the voice of the northwoods. While we couldn't show their work in the gallery due to the closing of Overture Center, artists Lois Bielefeld and Comfort Wasikhongo share works that reflect our current cultural moment in surprising ways. Stellar short stories by Nikki Kallio and Michael Hopkins round out a literary section of the magazine filled with some of the best contemporary poetry from across the state.
NEW FEATURE: Download a PDF of this issue.

Volume: 
66
Issue Number: 
2

Over the past few months our lives have taken a dramatic turn as vague concerns about the novel coronavirus shifted to the realization that we were facing a full-blown global pandemic.

Photo showing a pile of wood.

All of the ash trees in my neighborhood are coming down. 

The main building of the Modine-Benstead Observatory houses a 16-inch telescope, observation deck, library, and meeting room. Photo by Justin Kern.

Eight times a year the Racine Astronomical Society invites the public to view the skies through two intricate telescopes housed at the Modine-Benstead Observatory.

The 100,000 watt transmitter at WOJB broadcasts up to 80 miles. Photo courtesy of WOJB.

EDITOR'S NOTE: A Facebook message from Robert Albee, one of the early founders and organizers of WOJB–FM, brought to our attention a few errors and some elements of the radio station’s history that were missing from this article.

We’re absolutely on board with social distancing during the coronavirus pandemic. Even so, having to cancel our upcoming exhibitions is a major disappointment.

The voices were never voices, but more like the memory of sound—an echo off cavernous, sweating walls.

Dr. Merton gave Shelby Aronowitz bad news. The pain in her knee was osteosarcoma. They would have to amputate.

Kim Blaeser's latest collection of poems

In Copper Yearning, poet Kimberly Blaeser fills the pages with light, lore, and love.

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