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The Threepenny Review

The Threepenny Review Summer 2019

The Threepenny Review is a well-regarded quarterly of the arts and society which has been published since 1980. Every issue contains excellent essays, stories, poems, and memoirs, plus beautiful black-and-white photographs. Its regular writers include six Nobel Prizewinners and four U.S. Poet Laureates; recent issues featured writing by Wendell Berry, Geoff Dyer, Louise Glück, Greil Marcus, Javier Marías, Adam Phillips, and Kay Ryan.

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United States
The Threepenny Review
4 Issues

in this issue

3 min

Margaret Adams is a writer and clinician. Her stories and essays have appeared in Joyland Magazine, The Pinch Journal, and Blue Mesa Review. Jesús Carrasco received the European Prize for Literature in 2016; his debut novel, Out in the Open, has been translated into twenty-five languages. Margaret Jull Costa, his translator, has recently published a translation of Ana Luisa’s poetry collection What’s in a Name with New Directions. Dan Chariton is a writer based in Los Angeles. His first job after graduating from college was working as a personal assistant to Ricky Jay. Dounia Choukri’s poetry and fiction have recently appeared in The O. Henry Prize Stories 2018, The Cincinnati Review, and Chicago Quarterly Review. T. J. Clark’s book Heaven on Earth: Painting and the Life to Come came out last fall. Christopher Craig teaches literature…

12 min
table talk

THE HOUSE I grew up in was full of books, even though hardly anyone in the house read books. My father was a teacher in a state school, and my mother had a full-time job bringing up their six children. To supplement my father’s meager salary, my parents would spend their evenings binding books. This was a time when people bought books in separate installments, or fascicles, at the village store, and when they had the complete set, they would return them so that they could be made into books. Each Friday, my father would collect these fascicles in his Renault 4 and take them home to be worked on during the week, at the same time delivering the books that he and my mother had bound the previous week. I…

1 min
once i shared a wall with god

I could hear Him vacuuming lateat night (who does that?).He was constantly rearranging furniture,opening and closing drawerssliding hangers in the closet,banging things around. I never really heard His voicebecause He lived alone.Occasionally, just the deep rumbleof Him clearing His throat. It’s not His fault, I told myself.The walls are thin. These floorscrack at every step. The roomsare echo chambers. I can adjust. In the mornings, it was silent.God liked sleeping in.But at night, I cursed the worlduntil I finally had to confront Him. I thought about leaving a letter,to spare us both the awkwardconversation, but I wanted tomake sure He understood. I’ll be nice, I said, as I rang His bell,but if it keeps on happening,I’ll have to tell the landlord. Nervous as I was, I wantedGod to know He’d been a bad neighbor,that He had…

1 min
photo credits

The eighteen Roman Vishniac images in this issue are all copyrighted by Mara Vishniac Kohn and appear here courtesy of the International Center of Photography, the Photographers’ Gallery, and the Jewish Museum of London. Below are captions for each photo, listed by page. Front Cover: Customers waiting in line at a butcher’s counter during wartime rationing, New York, 1941–44. 3: Wife of Nat Gutman, a porter, Warsaw, ca. 1935–38. 4: Window washer balancing on a ladder, Berlin, mid-1930s. 7: Boy standing on a mountain of rubble, Berlin, 1947. 9: Ernst Kaufmann, center, and unidentified Zionist youths learning construction techniques in a quarry, Werkdorp Nieuwesluis, The Netherlands, 1938–39. 10: Drawer of freshly farmed eggs at a training farm for German-Jewish youth hoping to emigrate to Palestine, Brandenburg, Germany, ca. 1938. 13: Burlesque dancer entertaining servicemen and other patrons…

1 min
thanks to our donors

The Threepenny Review is supported by Hunter College, the Bernard Osher Foundation, the Campizondo Foundation, the Rosenthal Family Foundation, the Seattle Foundation, and the George Lichter Family Fund. Our writer payments are underwritten by our Writers’ Circle, which includes Robert Bauer, Richard V. Clayton, Susan Knapp, Eunice & Jay Panetta, Robert Redford, Neal Rosenthal & Kerry Madigan, Alice Sebold, and Pablo Woodward. Many other generous individuals who help support the magazine are listed annually in the spring issue. Our heartfelt thanks to all!…

1 min
a note on the artworks

Roman Vishniac, whose photographs are featured in this issue, was born in 1897 in a dacha just outside St. Petersburg and grew up in Moscow. His parents were well-to-do Russian Jews—the father an umbrella manufacturer, the mother a diamond heiress—and in 1918, mainly to escape anti-Semitism, they moved to Berlin. It was in that city that Vishniac, who soon followed his parents into exile, met and married his first wife, Luta Bagg. In 1940, Roman, Luta, and their two children, Mara and Wolf, moved to New York to escape the Nazis, and Vishniac lived there for the rest of his life, dying in 1990 at the age of ninety-two. Though he produced many thousands of photographs in the course of his long career (the negatives of which are currently housed at…