By December 17, 2008 1 Comments Read More →

Eggheads Have Egg on Face

The poetry beat is getting more and more seedy. From The Independent (“Chinese ‘classical poem’ was brothel ad,” by Clifford Coonan):

There were red faces on the editorial board of one of Germany’s top scientific institutions, the Max Planck Institute, after it ran the text of a handbill for a Macau strip club on the front page of its latest journal. Editors had hoped to find an elegant Chinese poem to grace the cover of a special issue, focusing on China, of the MaxPlanckForschung journal, but instead of poetry they ran a text effectively proclaiming “Hot Housewives in action!” on the front of the third-quarter edition. Their “enchanting and coquettish performance” was highly recommended.

Scholars aren’t the only ones who fall prey to the “deeper levels of meaning, which are not immediately accessible to a non-native speaker,” that the Institute cited in its apology.

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About the Author:

Keir Graff is the editor of Booklist Online and the author of five books. His most recent is the middle-grade novel, The Other Felix.

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