NEW YORK NY – If youre a fan of Hidden Figure

first_img NEW YORK, N.Y. – If you’re a fan of “Hidden Figures” and Margot Lee Shetterly’s story of three black female mathematicians’ contributions to the space program, you should thank in part the efforts of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.“We made a grant to Margot Lee Shetterly when she was unknown,” said Doron Weber, a vice-president and program director at the foundation and a winner this year of an honorary National Book Award. “First I had to find out if it was true, because it was such an amazing story. And the question after that was whether she had the chops to do it because she had never done a book before. She did, and she wrote a beautiful book.”On Tuesday, the National Book Foundation announced that Weber will be presented the Literarian Award during the National Books Award ceremony and benefit dinner on Nov. 14. The prize, to be presented by Shetterly, is given for “outstanding service to the American literary community.” Previous recipients include Maya Angelou, James Patterson and Lawrence Ferlinghetti.“At the National Book Foundation, we believe that the scope of literature is expansive; that it can and should open up entirely new worlds to its readers,” Lisa Lucas, executive director of the National Book Foundation, said in a statement. “Doron Weber is that principle in action. Firmly committed to the marriage of science and art, Weber has spent his career working to meet readers where they are, connecting them in creative ways to new ideas and modes of thinking.”Shetterly said in a statement that Weber was an “early and enthusiastic supporter” of “Hidden Figures” and praised the award as a “chance to shine a light on his work and to thank him and the Sloan Foundation for ensuring that science remains a part of our public life and our national conversation.”The Sloan Foundation was established in 1934 and is known for its support of education and science research. But for decades it has provided grants to a wide range of nonfiction titles through the program Weber oversees, the Public Understanding of Science, Technology and Economics, which has a mission to “bridge the ‘two cultures’ of science and the humanities to educate and engage the public.”In 2004, the Sloan Foundation received the National Science Board’s Public Service Award “for its innovative use of traditional media — books, radio, public television — and its pioneering efforts in theatre and commercial television and films to advance public understanding of science and technology.”Besides “Hidden Figures,” the basis for the acclaimed film of the same name, books supported by the foundation include Dava Sobel’s bestselling “Galileo’s Daughter: A Historical Memoir of Science, Faith and Love,” Richard Rhodes’ “Energy: A Human History” and Max Boot’s “War Made New.” The Sloan Foundation also has backed movies such as “The Man Who Knew Infinity” and “The Imitation Game” and theatrical productions such as Michael Frayn’s “Copenhagen” and David Auburn’s Pulitzer Prize-winning “Proof.”On Tuesday, the foundation praised the 63-year-old Weber for his “commitment to the accessibility of scientific histories and information, ensuring the availability of in-depth, significant stories that are intelligible to a broad readership.”During a recent telephone interview with The Associated Press, Weber said grants usually average around $50,000. He is an author himself, of the memoir of “Immortal Bird: A Family Memoir,” and says books are essential as resources and as “springboards.”“Books are the place where the deepest kind of work is done,” he said. “They uncover new knowledge and information and people can use that to develop into documentaries, plays, films and all kinds of other forms.” by Hillel Italie, The Associated Press Posted Sep 18, 2018 6:59 am PDT Last Updated Sep 18, 2018 at 7:40 am PDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Sloan Foundation programmer to receive honorary book awardlast_img read more

Review Frances Cone delivers dreampop with a purp

first_imgReview: Frances Cone delivers dreampop with a purpose Frances Cone, “Late Riser” (Living Daylight/Thirty Tigers)Frances Cone’s new album “Late Riser” is a brilliant work of modern melancholia that finds the sweet spot between soothing and soaring. Call it dreampop with a purpose.The band builds on the creative songwriting of Christina Cone, a classically trained pianist with a sweetly, breathy singing voice. She draws an assist on arrangements from Andrew Doherty, her partner and primary accompanist. A half-dozen other musicians contribute, but Cone and Doherty are the constants — and the band’s driving force.“Late Riser” was recorded in New York and Nashville, where Cone and Doherty moved recently. It’s tempting to hear the sensibilities of both places represented, though that may be reading too much into work that could comfortably emerge from either city’s vibrant alternative scene. Still, there’s an earthy kind of earnestness that keeps Cone’s urbane compositions from ranging too far out into space.Many of the songs set melodic piano and acoustic guitar above a pulsating bass or guitar line that lends urgency to Cone’s songs. She delivers them with intensity, whether on power ballads like “Wide Awake” or the mournfully majestic “Easy Love.”The soaring comes when Doherty and the others add harmony and the music modulates up, as it does on the shimmering “Arizona.”The pattern of crescendo may be mildly formulaic, but the effect remains anthemic and inspiring — and it succeeds again and again on this consistently powerful album, one that signals a band taking flight.Scott Stroud, The Associated Press AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email This cover image released by Living Daylight/Thirty Tigers shows “Late Riser,” by Frances Cone. (Living Daylight/Thirty Tigers via AP) by Scott Stroud, The Associated Press Posted Jan 25, 2019 9:11 am PDTlast_img read more