Sunday, June 24, 2012

George Rosen, born 23 June, 1910

George Rosen, born 23 June 1910

my father wore many hats; he was a physician with a specialty in Ears, Nose and Throat; he was a sociologist, earning his doctorate at Columbia University, during WWII, even though he was in the army, serving in intelligence. And his third graduate degree was a Masters in Public Health. He was an historian of medicine, writing seminal works in that field and which he taught at Yale University. Before teaching at Yale, he taught at Columbia's School of Public Health, a field which he knew first hand, having been a New York City health officer "on the beat", as well as directing offices and initiatives which he developed or assisted in developing for the Health Department. He also gained experience at HIP, where he was charged with overseeing Public Health Education. He worked tirelessly as editor of various journals, (for example, The American Journal of Public Health), held offices in national organizations in the history of medicine and in public health and wrote books, articles, reviews, and editorials. Among the books he translated fromGerman into English was "Man in Structure and Function," by Fritz Kahn. George Rosen, whose name appears on his birth certificate as Joseph, was an extraordinary individual ( a view a child can hold of their parent) whose curiosity about the world shaped my attitudes and helped me become an historian who looks beyond the boundaries of the my field . My father was a loving parent who helped my brother and myself develop our interests: the visual arts was the gift he gave to both of us. Each of us learned how to draw, thanks to his great skill in painting. Knowledge and practice were lessons learned from him. And integral to his success and enjoyment of life was his wife, my mother, Beate Brigitta Caspari-Rosen. She stood by his side throughout his brief but full life.

GR teaching at Columbia School of Public Health
Drawing of GR , 1950s, by me (susan joan rosen)
My father's desk as he left it when he went to Europe in summer 1977. He had laid out the folders and books which he intended to use upon his return
GR giving a radio program while he was in the Armed Forces
GR in his anatomical gown in Berlin. Handwritten on the back of the photograph: "Wearing my dissection coat known as präpories-mantel [misspellings? are mine] or kittel in German. Will send a better one [meaning photo] next time."

Thursday, June 14, 2012

what remains after life ceases

I am lost in darkness: I can no longer fly. I am dead.

how I died. I was flying into the light and green was before me, I thought, but I was deceived. Man had tricked me. Once when young my mother had said: "beware my little one. Man has devised a substance that is luminous and creates the appearance of our trees, of sky and clouds of flowers and all nature, but it is deceitful; if you fly into it it will cripple or kill you. It is called glass, in English. Beware little one." The day life ended for me all was glorious and life was pleasure. And then it was no more. I felt great pain , dropped to earth and then the gods were merciful. I am no more but my being is now decomposing yet my self will fly still in a world like the one I left but better; it will be without man and deceit will not exist."

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

a rose: fading yet glorious

regenerative spheres and tears of sorrow

tying oneself up in knots or suicide

I do not understand why the reed turns upon itself and causes its own death. Is it a coping mechanism? The act appears to be so unnatural, more human then what we think a plant would do. Why? Or do I misunderstand what I observe. Folding its broad leaves, turning at right angles, cutting its leaves into strands that then wrap around the other parts, finally causing death.