Editorial

FROM THE EDITORS DESK

 

            A few years ago I supported a relative who had to cope with the cruel after effects of a "stroke", relearning how to read, write and talk. Anyone who has personally experienced a similar incident is surely familiar with the fact that the progress in such cases is painstakingly slow and desperately frustrating. In such a case it is only hope for a better future which provides the "warrior" with the strength and zest to continue. Lacking a clear vision of the future, one of the "inventions" I developed at the time was to look back from time to time and compare the situation to the point of departure. In such a way, she was able to perceive the tremendous progression that had already been made, feel satisfied and hope for a brighter future.

 

            In these hard yet pleasant times, when the 50th volume of Architecture of Israel lies before you the reader, I want to share a little of what goes on in my editors mind, since the first volume was published in 1988.

 

            In fact, we have written fifty editorials, and some four hundred other articles, including no less than 2,000 items dealing with the environment you sleep in, wake up into, dress in and go to work - or to the unemployment office, in case you dont. This was all achieved without any financial support or "flirtation", which would have prevented a reasonable amount of constructive criticism.

 

            Emotionally, I find it hard not to tell you how jealous I am of Yair (Tommy and Shulamits son), who is free to write about every subject matter in the world as long as he mentions "his wife, may she live", or of Esther who can afford to write about every exhibition (which should not have existed) six times, as in every "editorial" supplement to "Architecture and Design", exempt from any obligation to quality, as their readers automatically receive them and as such are "excused" from reading them. I find it hard to describe the meaning of the term "deadline", to those who are not in the publication field, - not a case of finished (a project) and going to relax - but rather something which repeats itself in a brutal and constant ritual, unrelenting even during your overseas vacation, compelling your companion to see every new building and exhibition (which was not worth the visit).

 

            One is always dependent on the "situation", which for some reason, harms particularly the "branch" you are seated upon, yet you should at all times maintain a high quality of work conveying business as usual, even if everyone around you is in a financial crisis, when all contracts are broken and payments are delayed by thirty, sixty or ninety days or paid in twelve installments.

 

            In this type of situation I always find myself reminded of the English author Charles Dickens, who wrote "Hard Times" at the beginning of the 19th century, and not in vain. From Dickens I learnt that even if times are rough, one must not neglect the aesthetics of life. The novel "Hard Times" was published in periodical editions of the "Household Words" journal, which Dickens himself edited. The main plot centers round Coketown, where most of its inhabitants belong to the luckless working class. Though quite beyond reason, Dickens chose not to criticize the exploiting Victorian society, but rather Coketowns right to be ugly, dirty and boring.

 

            I completed my arduous architectural studies at Bartlett in London, and Dickens was my model for keeping deadlines. His father was an unsuccessful government clerk who was thrown into prison over an unpaid debt, and little Charles was forced to support his family by sticking labels on bottles by the age of twelve. To conclude, in the eighteen years that followed Hard Times, he published no less than nine full-length novels, edited and produced a number of journals and wrote hundreds of articles on various topics. And this is certainly an encouraging example even in hard times.

 

P.S. I never actually met Dickens or Josiah Bounderby, but rather liked the poetic manner through which he conveyed his social ideals.

 

            Dr. Ami Ran

 

A few years ago I supported a relative who had to cope with the cruel after effects of a "stroke", relearning how to read, write and talk. Anyone who has personally experienced a similar incident is surely familiar with the fact that the progress in such cases is painstakingly slow and desperately frustrating. In such a case it is only hope for a better future which provides the "warrior" with the strength and zest to continue. Lacking a clear vision of the future, one of the "inventions" I developed at the time was to look back from time to time and compare the situation to the point of departure. In such a way, she was able to perceive the tremendous progression that had already been made, feel satisfied and hope for a brighter future.

 

            In these hard yet pleasant times, when the 50th volume of Architecture of Israel lies before you the reader, I want to share a little of what goes on in my editors mind, since the first volume was published in 1988.

 

            In fact, we have written fifty editorials, and some four hundred other articles, including no less than 2,000 items dealing with the environment you sleep in, wake up into, dress in and go to work - or to the unemployment office, in case you dont. This was all achieved without any financial support or "flirtation", which would have prevented a reasonable amount of constructive criticism.

 

            Emotionally, I find it hard not to tell you how jealous I am of Yair (Tommy and Shulamits son), who is free to write about every subject matter in the world as long as he mentions "his wife, may she live", or of Esther who can afford to write about every exhibition (which should not have existed) six times, as in every "editorial" supplement to "Architecture and Design", exempt from any obligation to quality, as their readers automatically receive them and as such are "excused" from reading them. I find it hard to describe the meaning of the term "deadline", to those who are not in the publication field, - not a case of finished (a project) and going to relax - but rather something which repeats itself in a brutal and constant ritual, unrelenting even during your overseas vacation, compelling your companion to see every new building and exhibition (which was not worth the visit).

 

            One is always dependent on the "situation", which for some reason, harms particularly the "branch" you are seated upon, yet you should at all times maintain a high quality of work conveying business as usual, even if everyone around you is in a financial crisis, when all contracts are broken and payments are delayed by thirty, sixty or ninety days or paid in twelve installments.

 

            In this type of situation I always find myself reminded of the English author Charles Dickens, who wrote "Hard Times" at the beginning of the 19th century, and not in vain. From Dickens I learnt that even if times are rough, one must not neglect the aesthetics of life. The novel "Hard Times" was published in periodical editions of the "Household Words" journal, which Dickens himself edited. The main plot centers round Coketown, where most of its inhabitants belong to the luckless working class. Though quite beyond reason, Dickens chose not to criticize the exploiting Victorian society, but rather Coketowns right to be ugly, dirty and boring.

 

            I completed my arduous architectural studies at Bartlett in London, and Dickens was my model for keeping deadlines. His father was an unsuccessful government clerk who was thrown into prison over an unpaid debt, and little Charles was forced to support his family by sticking labels on bottles by the age of twelve. To conclude, in the eighteen years that followed Hard Times, he published no less than nine full-length novels, edited and produced a number of journals and wrote hundreds of articles on various topics. And this is certainly an encouraging example even in hard times.

 

P.S. I never actually met Dickens or Josiah Bounderby, but rather liked the poetic manner through which he conveyed his social ideals.

 

            Dr. Ami Ran





חזרה לגליון 50    back to issue 50