- Cognative Dissonance
Philologysounded to melike dull linguistichistory. Butonce enrolled Igrew enthralled withvowelshifts, regionalrhoticity, Indo-European roots.
I loved mostthe mysteries. Sharedancestry, consanguineousmeaning, hidden amongnear disparate letters [End Page 75] (ossify and ostracize,bully and brother,invite and violence,talent and translate and retaliate).
My favoritequestion on thefinal examination:tell how you willuse in lifewhat you learned in this class.
I wrote about when Oritcame to visit. As she left shetripped over heracquired tongue, thanking mefor my hostility.
Hostility and hospitalityguest and hosthostage and hotelhospital and xenophobia—each shoot grownfrom the single rootfor stranger. [End Page 76]
The grim truth ofGrimm's Law. WheneverOrit's native Israelagain eruptsin hostilities, Ithink of brothers and bullies,ostracisms ossifiedagainst shared ancestry.The old consanguineous pushand pull, a commontalent for retaliationtranslating intoan invitationto violence. [End Page 77]
Lois Leveen is a recovering academic who lives, writes, and makes art in Portland, Oregon. She credits feminism and Judaism with teaching her both to question the world and seek to improve it. Read her advice column "The Shmethicist" on the ethical food blog The Jew and the Carrot (jcarrot.org), and her humor blog at macaronimaniac.blogspot.com.