It's An Ill Wind Introduction Early Days Education Circa 1941–59 Graduate School, 1959–6 Toronto, 1963–95 Travel Some Conclusions An Addendum Notes References

Ricardo Afterword: A Memoir Continued


  1. One must admit to being flattered by such an invitation. Here I am reminded of a report from a colleague a while ago that one of my students had referred to me either as a ‘great’ or as a ‘good’ man, he could not recall which. My response at that time was that into which category one would best like to fall depends on one’s age, so that I still preferred the first. It has now become (almost) a matter of indifference.
  2. The formal rationale offered is lest one might break off a branch from a tree, an act proscribed by Torah law (the law as derived by the Rabbis from the biblical texts on the basis of complex hermeneutical rules). But this it seems to me is a fiction, designed to link all rabbinical interventions to the Pentateuch; the essential logic is to prevent behaviour that would damage the spirit or character of the Sabbath. This example can serve as template: swimming, for example, is forbidden for analogous reasons.
  3. Strictly speaking, the restrictions apply only after confirmation (at the age of thirteen for boys) but it was apparently perceived to be never too young to learn.
  4. There were other quorums. One was organized by the Sassoon family of Bombay. But this was to us another world.
  5. See Altmann 1973. Another scholar, of the following century, who is sympathetic to me in this regard, is Heinrich Graetz ([1891] 1974).
  6. I am interested to find a recent confirmation of this suspicion in Papineau 1995.
  7. For a history of the department, see Drummond 1983.
  8. For a memorial evaluation, see Hollander 1981 [essay 3].
  9. The notion of a single-term requirement – a Canadian term is considerably shorter than a US semester – was rather casually floated. But in my opinion serious treatment of our subject would be impossible in anything much less than a Canadian academic year.
  10. On the matter of time in this context see the brief but instructive comments by Ephraim Kleiman (1994) and Ismar Schorsch (1994).
  11. At the Gateshead academy the nineteenth-century ‘watchmaker’ argument was used to support the notion of Creation (just short of 6,000 years ago). Fortunately, neither this nor other features of the belief system took centre stage.
  12. The best account known to me is by Jonathan Lynn (1994, chapter 19).
  13. The worst may be over in this age of financial constraint, but only to be replaced by a new threat from a perspective on knowledge not in terms of education but as means – we are back to the ‘welding syndrome’.
  14. Two examples of interventions which tighten rather than loosen the reins will be found in note 2.
  15. I should also add a note on my Toronto career which so much preoccupied me in the memoir. In the summer of 1996 faculty members in my age group were offered the proverbial golden handshake on agreeing to early retirement. I signed a futures contract to leave at the end of the 1997–8 academic year. And I acted wisely and with prescience; for my graduate course, that had flourished for years generating a number of wonderful doctoral candidates, no longer has students thus undermining my raison d’?tre at this institution.
  16. The issue turns on the biblical injunction: ‘These you may eat of all that are in the waters: all that have fins and scales may you eat. And whatsoever has not fins and scales you may not eat; it is unclean for you’ (Deutronomy XIV. 9–10; also Leviticus XI. 9–10, 12). Questions arise because of the uncharacteristic scales of the European turbot (Scophthalmus maximus or Psetta maximus). Other varieties of turbot are permitted by all branches of orthodoxy.
  17. I thank Professor Judah Sanders of Concordia University (a Letchworth cousin) for bringing this episode to my attention.
  18. The following comments draw upon an address – an after-dinner address – which I gave to the conference on Time and Economics held at Glendon College (Toronto) in June 1996.
  19. The dire consequences for those who do not toe the party line may also be illustrated from literary theory (Anon. 1995: 30–3).