North America

Drawing the Line

Throughout history humans have responded
to a profound need to translate the experience of life into marks, signs, and
symbols onto an infinitely varied number
surfaces, using an equally varied number
of tools and materials, ranging from compressed
charcoal on a cave wall to a rod
of gold on specially coated parchment.
The medium of drawing has chronicled
the history of humankind—a rich and varied tapestry comprised of countless
interwoven threads, each one bearing the
mark of an individual in relation to a series
of larger wholes. For the novice, the
act of drawing can prove irresistible: give
someone a pencil and a sheet of blank paper,
and they will likely leave their “mark.”
For the accomplished draftsman, drawing provides the satisfying experience not only
of exercising a well-honed skill, but also of
giving eloquent form to a vision.

Craft Revisited

Today’s Western economic structure, based on technology and services, is radically different from the one that existed before industrialization and has resulted in many of the economic crises that face us in the early 21st century. The control of goods has been concentrated in the hands of a few large corporations, rather than distributed throughout the community of small, independent businesses. The production of goods by corporate manufacturing, through modern machinery and technology, has displaced the labor force, separated the mind from the production process, depersonalized and devalued the act of manual skill, and enslaved us to a system of forced consumption. The consequences of these manufacturing practices have had profound effects on us and on our communities.

Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas

This article examines the Dr. Suess story, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” in its use of secular Christmas symbols and reasons that that is the reason for its popularity as a story told during the Christmas season.