Daily Archives: May 10, 2019

WHAT IS OBSCENE?

WHAT IS OBSCENE?

By Randy Ford

What is obscene? As a Christian, a writer, a human being , a man, me, WHAT IS OBSCENE is something I have wrestled with for a very long time. As a boy it was something, I struggled with when I first saw magazines of nearly naked women on a drug store news rack, took one, slipped it under my coat, and walked out of the store without paying for the magazine. I then found a place, any place, where I could look at all of the nearly naked women without getting caught. I then threw the dirty magazine away. This became a habit until I was finally caught by a drug store owner.

Then came along porn. And then looking at porn became my secret. I secretly went to porn sites on my computer for a very long time. I don’t know why I stopped. Perhaps it bored me. Still it could become a desire.

Then I became a writer and my wrestling over what is obscene continued. Today I don’t look at porn. I have no desire to.

Take my name: Randy Ford. In most places it is totally acceptable. However randy is an English word, perfectly acceptable English word meaning horny and to some people it is funny, and perhaps to some people it would be considered obscene.

Bluntness Throughout the Ages

A series of books my wife gave me was Thomas Cahill’s THE HINGES OF HISTORY: HOW THE IRISH SAVED CIVILIZATION, THE GIFTS OF THE JEWS, and SAILING THE WINE-DARK SEA. Why do the GREEKS MATTER? Why do we study them?

The books were an eye-opener for me, having what I thought was a pretty good grasp of Greek Civilization (specifically Greek Drama) and the Old Testament (I even wrote an poem-opera called Testament in which I mixed modern-day references with the old. To some degree Cahill does the same thing.) Gee, people back then celebrated their sexuality; and it was done in the open, as part of their drama and religion. Male performers were naked and some accentuated their erections; before they paraded into amphitheaters they displayed their penises on the streets in a way that some of us would classify as pornographic. (I take responsibility for this interpretation of Cahill because I am now going on memory.) References like this, about genitals and about displaying them and using them, can be found throughout the books. (The bluntness of this caught my attention in much the same way as when a fellow writer recently reduced living to “eating, sleeping, and fucking.” Throughout the ages, the vulva wasn’t left out.) This openness was one of the things that surprised me in all three books. I’m afraid this says more about me than Mr. Cahill or the Greeks or the Sumerians or even the Hebrews.   Just as obscene is.

The question for me is when did the sanitizing begin. Is it just me? I seem to be drawn to those places in the books in much the same way as I once looked for and underlined the “good” passages in PEYTON PLACE or first looked for the words “fuck you” near the end of THE CATCHER IN THE RYE.   Everything in THE HINGES OF HISTORY series doesn’t revolve around sexuality. And though classical bluntness may to the modern ear seem crude, there was much more in the series that I had missed in my education.

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THE DALLAS THEATER CENTER

THE DALLAS THEATER CENTER

About DTC                                                                                    y

One of the leading regional theaters in the country, Dallas Theater Center (DTC) performs to an audience of more than 90,000 North Texas residents annually. Founded in 1959, DTC is now a resident company of the AT&T Performing Arts Center and presents its mainstage season at the Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre in the Dallas Arts District. DTC also presents at its original home, the Kalita Humphreys Theater, the only freestanding theater designed and built by Frank Lloyd Wright. DTC engages, entertains and inspires a diverse community by creating experiences that stimulate new ways of thinking and living by consistently producing plays, educational programs and community initiatives that are of the highest quality and reach the broadest possible constituency.

Our Mission

Dallas Theater Center will engage, entertain, and inspire our diverse community by creating experiences that stimulate new ways of thinking and living. We will do this by consistently producing plays, educational programs, and other initiatives that are of the highest quality and reach the broadest possible constituency.
Our Vision
Dallas Theater Center will be recognized, both locally and nationally, as a top-tier arts organization, as a cultural destination for Dallas and the surrounding region, and as a collaborative artistic force that values diversity and practices inclusion.
Our Values
The following values, which support our mission and vision, will guide our programmatic, financial, and other choices and will be at the center of all our decisions:
Artistic Excellence
We believe in creating theater, learning experiences, and associated programs that are consistently of the highest quality and that reflect the breadth and depth of theatrical art. In so doing, we will engage, entertain, educate, and inspire our patrons.
Operational Excellence
We are committed to the highest standards in our governance, management, and operational practices. We believe in developing an engaged, informed Board of Trustees, an experienced and accomplished staff, and a working environment that attracts trustees, staff, volunteers, and local and national artists of the highest caliber.
Financial Health
We believe in financial stability and will operate Dallas Theater Center in a financially responsible manner, with our goal being that the projected expenses for each year will be balanced with the projected revenue for that year. We will secure and maintain the human, financial, and other resources necessary to support long-term stability and excellence. We will engender community confidence, trust, and support and will be worthy of corporate, foundation, government, and individual investment that increases over time.
Collaboration and Inclusion
We believe that collaboration with the community we serve is central to our purpose and that our best results can be achieved when we partner with others in our community, including arts organizations, educational institutions, governmental agencies, and other groups.
We will operate Dallas Theater Center as a public forum, supporting interaction that engages our community, introduces new ways of thinking, and inspires new perspectives in those we serve. We will be inclusive of diverse peoples, ideas, cultures, and traditions and, by so doing, will enrich our work and our relationships with others.
Our commitment to collaboration and inclusion will also be evidenced by our respect for our trustees, staff, volunteers, and artists, all of whose input and experience will positively shape our working environment and our operating perspective.
Effective Utilization of Resources
We accept our responsibility to be good stewards of the resources entrusted to us and to make wise and efficient use of those resources. We will hold those resources in the public trust and will be prudent in using them for their intended purpose. We will operate Dallas Theater Center as a valued community asset and for purposes that are consistent with our mission and in keeping with sound business practices.
 Randy Ford receive his master degree from the Dallas Theater Center, which was then part of Trinity University San Antonio.
KEEP GOING

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BETSY MARTIN POET

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PAUL BAKER AND INTEGRATION OF ABILITIES

Paul Baker and the Integration of Abilities Hardcover –  

About the Author


More about the author

Robert Flynn
 Biography

Robert Flynn, professor emeritus, Trinity University and a native of Chillicothe, Texas, is the author of fourteen books. Nine novels: North To Yesterday; In the House of the Lord; The Sounds of Rescue, The Signs of Hope; Wanderer Springs, The Last Klick, The Devils Tiger, co-authored with the late Dan Klepper, Tie-Fast Country, Echos of Glory.and his most recent Jade:Outlaw. His dramatic adaptation of Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying was the United States entry at the Theater of Nations in Paris in l964 and won a Special Jury Award. He is also the author of a two-part documentary, “A Cowboy Legacy” shown on ABC-TV; a nonfiction narrative, A Personal War in Vietnam, an oral history, When I was Just Your Age, and a memoir, Burying the Farm.

Also, three story collections, Seasonal Rain, Living With The Hyenas, Slouching Toward Zion, and a collection of essays, Growing Up a Sullen Baptist. He is co-editor of Paul Baker and the Integration of Abilities.

North to Yesterday received awards from the Texas Institute of Letters and the National Cowboy Hall of Fame, and was named one of the Best Books of the Year by the New York Times. Seasonal Rain, was co-winner of the Texas Literary Festival Award. Wanderer Springs received a Spur Award from Western Writers of America. Living With the Hyenas received a Western Heritage Award from the National Cowboy Hall of Fame. Echoes of Glory received a Spur Award from Western Writers of America. Flynn’s work has been translated into German, Spanish, Dutch, Afrikaans, Malayalam, Arabic, Tamil, Hindi, Kanada, and Vietnamese. Flynn is a member of The Texas Institute of Letters, The Writers Guild of America, Marine Corps Combat Correspondents Associate, and P.E.N. In 1998, he received the “Distinguished Achievement Award” from the Texas Institute of Letters. (See Flynn’s Blog.)

Robert Flynn is a native of Chillicothe, Texas, the best known Chillicothe outside of Ohio, Missouri and Illinois, despite its size. Chillicothe is so small there’s only one Baptist Church. Chillicothe is so small you have to go to Quanah to have a coincidence. Chillicothe is fairly bursting with truth and beauty and at an early age Flynn set out to find it.

His life and work could be described as ‘The Search for Morals, Ethics, Religion, or at least a good story in Texas and lesser known parts of the world’.

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Cecile Guidote Alvarez (Theater Philippines) – WikiPeaceWomen

Cecile Guidote Alvarez (Philippines)


“I envision a world free from poverty, pollution, ignorance, injustice. This must be done through culture so that it is peaceful. We have to develop minds and hearts that care and share.”

Cecile Guidote Alvarez (born 1943) founded the Philippine Educational Theater Association (Peta), a pioneering theater group that honed creative artists and audiences through children’s, college, and community theater. For 38 years, Peta has depicted social issues through original Filipino plays, using the language of the masses and alternative theater spaces. Today, as Executive Director of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, Cecile has been described as a “cultural caregiver”.

Cecile Guidote Alvarez has served the Filipino public for years through the arts as a theater artist, producer, director and founder of cultural movements. As a 16-year-old talent of the Paulinian Players Guild, she was tapped to join the Ateneo Summer Graduate School Theater, where she was exposed to a theater workshop with disabled children at the National Orthopedic Hospital. Seeing the children emerge from hopelessness to confidence, Cecile discovered the power of the arts to transform the marginalized youth into creative individuals. At 18, Cecile directed the award-winning TV series, “Teenagers”, which tackled problems of the youth. From this early exposure to theater arts, Cecile envisioned a theater not just for entertainment, but also as a significant social venue that could articulate the aspirations of the Filipino people. From 1964 to 1967, she pursued graduate studies at the State University of New York and the Trinity University in Texas. She returned to the country in 1967 with her graduate thesis entitled “Prospectus for a National Theater” which envisioned a Philippine national theater movement. This became the basis for the Philippine Educational Theater Association (Peta) that Cecile founded and directed in 1967. For 38 years, Peta has honed creative artists who made successful careers in the Philippine theater and movie industry. The pioneering theater movement has regional chapters involving children’s theater, college theater, community theater and traditional arts. Currently, as Executive Director of the National Commission for Culture and Arts, Cecile continues her lifetime commitment of “cultural care giving” by providing free arts training to street children, the disabled and indigenous youth. Cecile attests that “the arts are a peaceful and powerful means of transmitting values.”

Philippine Educational Theater Association (Peta) Movement for a Free Philippines International Alliance of Concerned Artists for Human Rights and Peace (ACAHRP)

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