Emdashes—Modern Times Between the Lines

The Basics:
About Emdashes | Email us

Before it moved to The New Yorker:
Ask the Librarians

Best of Emdashes: Hit Parade
A Web Comic: The Wavy Rule


I Want to Read Pauline Kael's Review of "Garp," As It Happens

Filed under: The Squib Report   Tagged:

Martin Schneider writes:

I recently established contact with a cousin of mine on the West Coast I barely know—I'm not entirely sure we've met even a single time. How did we make contact? Why, he tapped me on Facebook, of course! It's funny how family traits run kind of deep—he's a theater critic with a strong interest in classic and foreign movies; judging from certain references he's made just in the last couple of weeks (J. Hoberman, Proust, Jules et Jim), he's probably has more in common with me than 90% of the people I'd count as volitional friends.

So I wasn't entirely surprised when he recently linked to a friend of his, applauding his pilgrimage to 333 Central Park West, otherwise known as the former home of Pauline Kael. Kael doesn't get enough mention on Emdashes, but I know Emily and I both love her. Is this address widely known? I had never heard it before but I wouldn't be surprised if hard-core Kael fans are well aware of it. I may drop by myself!

Here's a pic, taken by Michal Oleszczyk:



I think I too will pilgrimage to 333 Central Park West next time I visit NYC. Is there a plaque marking the place where the most stylish, combative, brainy, intuitive, energetic, encyclopedic, writerly writer in New Yorker history lived? If not, there definitely should be. When I visit, I will imagine Kael as she walked up her front steps that historic night, October 14, 1972, fresh from viewing “Last Tango in Paris” at the New York Film Festival, still reeling from the film’s rich sensory impact, already starting to compose her great review, the one that prompted Mailer to later write, “Prophets of Baal, praise Kael!”

driedcharJuly 16, 2009

Hi there!

It’s Michal here, I took the photo you uploaded thanks to Chris’ link :-) Very happy to see more Kael fans out there! I got the address from David Denby, the current movie critic of “The New Yorker” and once a friend of Kael. I interviewed him this June about Kael, it was part of my research for a Ph.D. on her I’m writing. He used to be a frequent guest at 333 Central Park West until their famous falling out in 1971. Alas, there is no plaque or statue, and I think there definitely should be one. As I see it, it should be a real-life-sized brass statue of the diminutive Kael, bespectacled, with a notepad under her arm, making her way through the courtyard. I wonder if any people living in the building now were her neighbors, by the way.

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, it may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Thanks for waiting.)

2008 Webby Awards Official Honoree