Sunday, May 9, 2021

How has Amazon affected America? And other letters to the editor


to the Editor:

Moira Donegan Review “The Barbizon: The Hotel That Set Women’s Free” (April 4) brings back memories. In 1963, when I was a debutant from Dougal College, my father allowed me to go to New York – only when I lived in Barbizon.

Reference letters were required, preferably from a clergy member, and I remember my mother asking why the same Renoir print appeared above the small bed in each room shown to us. Women, even young female guests, and even one’s father were not allowed into the room. The only celebrity residents I knew of were Joan Crawford’s daughters. Each morning, I moved from 63rd and Lexington to the Rockefeller Center in the Time and Life Building to work as a secretary in an advertising agency. Only the young were copywriter trainees.

Lynn Agni
Towson, Md.

to the Editor:

I was one of those aspiring women who was referenced in Donagan’s review of “The Barbizon”. I moved to the hotel in 1980 at my Tail End, a young California bent on pursuing a career in magazines (I eventually worked at Seventeen, Madomoselle, and Self).

I remember this, not freshly, for older women walking down the halls in their nightgowns and the dullness of the whole place. Apparently, I missed the Grace Kelly-esque heyday of it. I spent my time reading “Sophie’s Choice” and trying to save myself from falling by swimming in the basement pool of Barbizon. Within a few weeks I moved to the YWCA, where, come to think, they were not good either.

Dariyan Aller
Los angeles

to the Editor:

In his book “Fulfillment”, Alec McGillis follows a premeditated – and inaccurate – narrative about Amazon’s impact on the American economy at the expense of facts. Xiaowei Wang Review (April 4), like the book, somehow casts Amazon in the role of a villain, ignoring the fact that Amazon is a positive force in the American economy, creating more than 400,000 needed jobs last year alone.

The truth is that Amazon has helped raise communities in this country with industry-leading salaries and benefits – including wages of at least $ 15 per hour – and to keep employees safe and distributed to our communities Invested billions in Kovid-related initiatives. We have invested more than $ 350 billion in the United States over the past decade, and have created millions of jobs through our investments and using AWS to help small businesses and entrepreneurs run distribution companies, build Alexa skills, or sell in our stores. Has created In fact, about 60 percent of all physical product sales in our stores are from small businesses.

Jay carney
Seattle

The author is the senior vice president of global corporate affairs at Amazon.

to the Editor:

Despite the proverb, the comparison is not necessarily inevitable. They can be helpful and illuminating. But i’m afraid Essay by ben libman Modernism (28 March) confirms this. I have absolutely no idea why anyone would want to be resurrected, let alone subscribe to one of Virginia Wolf’s worst moments when he wrote about “self-taught workmen” writing “Uleys” Disgracefully wrote a classist comment. That comment should be allowed to die in peace. But making it the basis for an argument is indeed misguided. There is certainly a way to admire the 1925 narratives without putting down great modernist works of 1922 such as “Ulysses” and “The West Land”.

In calling those works, “ultimately reticent” is not serving anyone, or critical literary criticism, to echo Wolf. If just to say that modernity in literature was founded in the 1920s, and not just in 1922, when those two exceptionally powerful and important works came to the fore, why not just say that?

Certainly this is true, as Leibman cites scholar Mark McGurl: Hemingway’s stories were exceptionally important in the teaching of fiction-writing in creative writing programs. But why is it necessary to deny the influence of “Ulysses” and “The Waste Land” to make the point (now quite familiar)? Certainly we can happily appreciate all these works and the effect they make.

Richard steer
Chicago

The author is Emeritus Professor of English at the University of Chicago.



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