Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - March 21, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta
Thursday, March 21, 1974 THE LETHBRIDQE HERALD 5 Reorientation of urban life needed II None of the great poets, critics and socialists who were hostile to the destruction of rural communities and yeoman farming in the 18th and 19th centuries hated the city. No civilized person could hate the city. Is not the city the fruit of man's best endeavors and the home of human culture? Is it not the community where people realize their aspirations in all the arts and sciences most fully? And it could never be forgotten that it was the city which was both home and symbol of those strands of European civilization which we associate with Jerusalem, Athens, Rome. The sensitive person hates, not the city but the hideous substitute for it. The city, at its best in human history, has been the fruit of many centuries of BERRY'S WORLD human civilization and its quality depends on the worth of the beliefs and principles which mainly govern the lives of those men who build and develop them. Many names of good and great cities are familiar to us: Florence, Siena, Amsterdam, Paris, Edinburgh, Vienna, Venice; names like these haunt us and many of these cities still have something of their historic and esthetic personality left to inspire and educate the receptive traveller and provide a truly civilized home the inhabitant. Cities are unities in which all the greatest expression of men's thought and feelings is found. And at least in a physical form the character of a city is shown in its architecture. No civilized person today hates the city. But every "Yessir' The Dutch were ahead of their By Peter Hunt, local writer civilized person must be alienated from the urban conglomeration which has come to be called a city. "Standardized chaos" is what Lewis Mumford calls the monotonous towers which make polluted canyons of city streets, and it is this sterile, filing-cabinet version of city development which has come to replace black, industrial cities like Leeds, Manchester, Belfast and the many other coketowns of the earlier stage of industrialism. Everywhere, in fairly new cities any community character and artistic value is sacrificed to commercial gain. The ethos of the system is profit; the shape of the city is determined by that ethos. Thus, centralism of financial services, government, management and employment, together with speculation in land, sucks up population and power into the urban sprawl commonly and fittingly known as megalopolis. While the urban centre focuses power in the vast towers of high finance and bureaucratic management it also becomes a place for daily work and speculation but not for living. Long ago suburbia grew to make cities much less compact, but today, besides the older type suburbia from which commuters travel to their jobs, the fringe-dwelling population spreads cities ever more widely, and so the city loses whatever integration it may have had. Neighborhoods disappear, or grow elsewhere, and the face of the city is constantly changing as speculation and high-rise profiteering take over. The basic determinant of the land itself, becomes a mere object of investment and speculation. In the midst of this fetish of site-values and vertical expansion, the automobile dominates the access and exit; it is truly king, demanding ever more road space, bringing historical and beautiful works of architecture crashing down, filling the canyons with various deadly poisons and noise. Yet crazily enough, the automobile holds up rather than improves free movement in the complicated and chaotic tangle of technological congestion. And as urban centres inflate, so does the economy bound up with them. In older historic cities commercial change foolishly called is rapidly devastating formerly beautiful surroundings. Every great European city knows this vandalism. Even in London and Paris, cities which have retained much of charm and value, places where neighbourhood mingled with grandeur, centres of great cultural significance for the world, the conservationist fights, without much success, against the "developer" whose barbarism is rivalled only by the stupidity with which he parrots the word "progress." Money-making determines the shape of cities old and new. Every native of a great city knows what Harry Bruce felt when he returned to Toronto, an experience he describes in a recent article in Saturday Night, "The Monster That Ate Toronto." Having spent some time in that city during periodic visits, this writer has seen how rapid and drastic cancerous change can be. Only two years ago, whole neighborhoods and vistas existed which today are but memories. And the disease of decadence spreads into every street. Two years ago, it was Yonge Street that had all the Book reviews Alcoholic future "Recovery" by John Berryman (Farrow, Straus and Giroux, distributed by Doubleday Canada Ltd., 254 The temptation to be judg- The.Lethbridge Herald think YOUR NEWS QUIZ PART I NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL Give yourself 10 points for each correct answer. 1 Britain's coal miners ended their strike and returned to work. True or False? Clashes between Egypt, Syria) Heights. Israel and (CHOOSE ONE: were reported in the Golan said that Solzhenitsyn slow international co- of tensions. Soviet Communist Party leader exiled Soviet author Aleksandr should not be allowed o operation and relaxatiu a-Nikolai Podgorn- b-Leonid Brezhnc c-Yevgeny Yevtushen.-. 4 John Bassett Jr., pr-siuent of Toronto North- men of the (CHOCS K ONE: World, National) Football League, said he doesn't think the gov- ernment can prevent his team from playing in Canada. 5 The cost of living rose per cent in Canada in 1973, the biggest jump in 22 years. a-5.1 b-9.1 c-16.1 PART II WORDS IN THE NEWS Take 4 points for each word that you can match with its correct meaning. 1.....shuttle 2.....shunt 3.....coalition 4.....collusion 5.....colloquy a-move to one side b-travel back and forth frequently c-union of persons or parties d-conversation, con- ference e-secret agreement for wrongful purposes PART IV PICTURE QUIZ 5 POINTS Urban Affairs Minister said 1974 housing programs will focus on cities with low vacancy rates. HOW DO YOU RATE? 91 le 100 TOP SCORE! to 90 points 71 to 80 ponttj Good. 61 to 70 Fair. 60 or Undei? Htrmf FAMILY DISCUSSION QUESTION Should motorists be retired to wear safety belts 7 Why or why not? PART III NAMES IN THE NEWS Take 5 points for names that you can correctly match with the clues. 1.....Grace Maclnnis 2.....Idi Amin 3.....Anwar Sadat a-President, Israel b-Ottawa figure skater c-President, Uganda 4.....Lynn Nightingale Egypt Katzir 318-74 e-NDP consumer affairs critic VEC, Inc. STUDENTS Practice Examination! Valuable Reference Material for Exams. ANSWERS ON REVERSE PAGE mental has to be resisted by the non-alcoholic in assessing the tragic element of John Berryman, known primarily as a poet and university lecturer, started, in 1970, to write his almost biographical novel about the disease called alcoholism. His succumbing to the ravages of the disease in January 1972 prevented him from completing the book. His publishers felt that even without the final pruning and polishing which Berryman would have wanted to give it, the story ought to be put into print. Berryman claimed not to have been writing as a member of Alcoholics Anonymous, perhaps because, in spite of many attempts, he never seemed able to really catch on to the 12 AA steps to sobriety. One senses, however, that he wanted somehow to pay tribute to the organization whose members so frequently went more than the second mile with him. His story centres around Dr. Alan patient in a hospital for alcoholics. Through his experiences in the hospital the reader meets the' medical staff and the other patients who came from all walks of life, trying as Alan did. to find a way out of the condition in which they had become entrapped. In group therapy sessions with qua- lified counsellors one encounters almost more of human suffering and distress than can be assimilated. There have been instances of successful treatment for alcoholism through Alcoholics Anonymous but for Dr. Severance there wasn't much cause for celebration. The story is a depressing one. Recovery from alcoholism is seen as a possible but distressingly remote objective. John Berry-man's death coming before the completion of the story could be labelled symbolic of the outcome for many alcohol addicts. One can only weep for the thousands of alcoholics whose future is just that bleak. The forward in the book was written by Saul Bellow, noted novelist and special friend of John Berryman. ELSPETH WALKER Books in brief "Hawaii" by James Siers. (Fitzhenry and Whiteside Ltd, 132 pages. A beautiful collection of color King George V for his services to music. He was the first Canadian to be knighted for services to music; the first Canadian to be granted a Doctor of Music degree from Oxford University; the first Canadian elected a Fellow of the Royal College of Music and the first Canadian orchestra conductor to be taken seriously outside of his own country. Edward Johnson's career began in 1888 when he stood on top of a picnic table and sang "Annie Rooney." In 1914, after many years of study, he was asked to sing in "Parsifal" at the La Scalla Opera House in Milan, Italy, the first performance of this opera outside of Germany. He returned to New York and signed a contract with the Chicago Opera Company in 1919 with the stipulation that he not appear as Edoardo di Giovanni, but under his English name, Edward Johnson. The public's memory proved short and although he had been a matinee idol in New York just 10 years' earlier, he was now forgotten. In 1935 he was appointed general manager of the Metropolitan Opera Association which he held for 15 years. Wilfrid Pelletier, born in 1896, became part of his family's orchestra af a very early age. After studying in Paris he landed a job as a "second string" conductor with the Met and in 1922 got his first chance as a full conductor conducting always popular with audiences. Then followed the Packard Hour, the Firestone Program and the Ford Hour and others. When he returned to Montreal in 1935 after 18 years' absence he formed an orchestra named "Concerts Symphoniques de Montreal" or the Montreal Symphony, as well as continuing to conduct regularly for the Metropolitan Opera Association. He earned the title of "the musical godfather of Canadian music." He was chosen to direct the Conservatory of Music and Dramatic Art in Quebec founded in 1943. He believed that musical training, as good, or better than anywhere in the world should be available in Canada. Healey Willan, born in England, is Canada's greatest composer by adoption. He was fascinated by church music at the early age of four. In 1913 he was named head of the theory department of the Toronto Conservatory, acting as examiner for the university and serving as university organist. He served as president of the Canadian College of Organists for two periods. He wrote the Symphony of D. Minor, the first complete symphony ever written in Canada and was judged most prolific Canadian composer. He was asked to write one of the Homage Anthems for the coronation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth VI, a distinction never before conferred on anyone living outside of England. CHRIS STEWART ANDY RUSSELL Beautiful reference book "Game Birds of North America" by Leonard Lee Rue III, paintings by Douglas Allen. Jr. (Outdoor Life and Harper Rowe, 490 pages, price Every once in a while a real jewel of a book comes to hand and this is one of them: a book concerned with the game birds of North America of great interest to sportsmen, bird watchers and photographers alike. It is well organized and written as well as being very practical altogether a beautiful book. There are 25 pages of fine paintings showing various waterfowl and upland birds, as well as some termed "nuisance birds." Leonard Lee Rue enjoys a world-wide reputation as an outstanding photographer, writer and naturalist. His photos and articles have appeared in 250 publications and his book output can only be termed massive with nine previously published nature books to his credit. For anyone interested in wild birds this book is more than something to read and enjoy: it is a work to be put on the reference shelf and worn out with repeated use. It contains a world of valuable information. The paintings by themselves are worth the price, for they are beautifully executed and arranged to show the comparisons of feather coloration and patterns. The photos are also excellent. The whole book is like a capsulated literary and artistic tour of marshes and uplands. There is only one discordant note in this book, and that is the section titled "nuisance birds." In this section Lee Rue lists four species and describes them in great detail: the crow, magpie, starling and great horned owl. Of the four only one fits this cateogry and that is the imported starling. The remaining three are part of our wildlife eco- logy; a built-in balancing factor with more beneficial values than those that can be termed a nuisance. As a matter of fact, in his candid and well balanced comments on the various habits of these birds, he largely contradicts the "nuisance" category. He is the first nature writer encountered in my experience to recognize (he magpie as a "'tick bird" by describing its habit of picking swollen ticks off the larger herbivores such as wild sheep and deer. This is something I have observed many times, and while the magpie does on occasion enlarge and deepen skin abrasions caused by ticks, it is obviously a tick controlling factor and just as obviously of some comfort to its animal host. lie also tells of the great homed owl's preference for skunks something that completely overbalances this big bird's inroads into upland game bird populations, lor the skunk is an inveterate and habitual nest robber. Like many people, he describes the owl's habit of leaving a large portion of the breast meat of pheasants and other captured birds as a waste. Truly, such leftovers arc never wasted in nature, for they are always consumed by something and thus become a part of the environment! food chain and ecological pattern. But this criticism is in no way condemning but only mention of something curiously contradictory in the outlook of a man most obviously one of the world's great nature obserwrs and researchers.