Woody and Soon-Yi Source: Wikimedia Commons Woody Allen’s new memoir, Apropos of Nothing, is the book that almost wasn’t published—his first publisher canceled it—and that many people say they don’t want to read. Interestingly, having nearly been denied publication, much of this book consists of denials. Purporting to be about nothing, the book brims with information about everything, from Woody’s long, improbably successful life to his two sudden descents into tabloid news. The first eruption began several decades ago when, late in his 13-year relationship with Mia Farrow, she discovered an affair between the then 54-year-old Woody and her 21-year-old adopted Korean daughter, Soon-Yi Previn. She retaliated by accusing him of sexually abusing the pair’s 7-year old adopted daughter, Dylan Farrow. The second explosion burst into the dawn of the #Me Too era, attracting a new, bigger, and more believing audience, when Mia, the now-adult Dylan, and Mia and Woody's … [Read more...] about Woody Allen’s “Apropos of Nothing”
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In his memoir, Woody writes that he grew up enjoying women. But he says he strove to enhance his dating appeal by belatedly educating himself in literature, art, and philosophy . His early successes in gag writing, stand-up comedy, and filmmaking made many beautiful, accomplished women available to him. But the psychoanalytic maven (who helped popularize psychotherapy from the 1950s on) denies having had insight into clear warning signs of incompatibility with the women in his life. He wed his first wife, Harlene, when he was starting his rapid career rise, while she was beginning college. But Woody says he was blind to their clashing lifestyles. He denies having realized that his gorgeous second wife, Louise Lasser, had serious emotional problems. Woody's pleas of Not Guilty crescendo about halfway through his book, when he discusses his long, non-live-in, unwed relationship with the beautiful, sophisticated Mia Farrow. He again denies having noticed many … [Read more...] about Woody Allen’s Apropos of Nothing: A Legacy
Wednesday’s Presidential Inauguration was unprecedented for many reasons; the occurrence during a global pandemic requiring distancing and mask-wearing, the heightened security after a Capitol invasion two weeks prior, and more. With most viewers watching the event from home, there was a new kind of communal experience, with many relying upon the internet to communicate in real-time as the historic ceremony unfolded. After all the stress of the preceding year, the event brought forth vivid emotions for many. The swearing-in of the first-ever woman Vice President—and the first woman of color to boot in an Executive Office—brought on tears for many who have seen how difficult it is to break through glass ceilings. And the inauguration of President Biden signaled, to some, hope that America could start to heal from the divisive rhetoric of recent times and unify against the painful common enemies of COVID-19 , racism , and economic disparity. In the midst of this collective … [Read more...] about The Healing Hilarity of the Bernie Meme
“You’re on mute” might be the Zoom quote of the year, but on Slack — at least around lunchtime — it seems to be: “Grabbing a quick bite.” That was the daily refrain I heard from colleagues at Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business, where I edit the school’s alumni magazine, after we started working remotely in March. And while we were all very busy doing very important jobs, it’s not like we were developing a coronavirus vaccine. Was our work really so urgent that we couldn’t afford to take more than a few minutes for the midday meal? And why were we all “grabbing” our lunches? Were we afraid that if we loosened our grip, someone might snatch them out of our hands? This is how downtime feels in general these days: snatched away. While working from home has eliminated our commutes and given us the freedom to work in our pajamas, it’s also blurred the lines between work and life — and deprived us of the ability to leave the office behind, physically or mentally. A … [Read more...] about Where Did Our Lunch Breaks Go?
It’s doubtless fitting that the opening of Woody Allen’s latest film, Irrational Man, nearly coincided with the anniversary of my first year as a Psychology Today blogger. Last year, in Woody–Mia Redux , I wrote about how, twenty-two years after I covered their bitter custody fight for this magazine, I'd largely sympathized with Mia Farrow. At the hearing's end, I felt so disillusioned by testimony about Woody Allen's reported lack of regard for most of Mia's adopted children, his over-involvement with their one young, jointly adopted daughter, Dylan, and the morally unseemliness of his wooing (and later wedding,) Mia's older, adopted South Korean daughter, Soon-Yi, I'd vowed never to attend another film of his. But as a life-long Woody Allen fan, my resolution lasted less than a year. I soon found my way back into movie theaters where again, I could not help laughing at, and enjoying - even if, on a somewhat different, diminished level - the film maker's cinematic wit and … [Read more...] about Woody, Again – Irrational Man