Class Correspondent

Roberta B. Cohen, who retired about a year ago from her psychoanalysis practice, reports she spends a lot of time reading books, including “some fiction and some Buddhism stuff.” She adds, “It seems a lot of minor health problems awaited retirement, when I have more time to deal with them. The result is that I’m just as busy as I was before, which I mostly don’t mind. I love reading Class Notes about my classmates. It feels as though our time together was very recent.” Lucille Gruber, who plays harpsichord, spent her 82nd year studying the Goldberg Variations of J.S. Bach, one of the composer’s most significant keyboard works, which she is recording for YouTube. She writes, “It is certainly one of the most demanding works in the harpsichord repertoire, and I have devoted myself to finding the best way to bring the third variation to life.” Lucille and her husband are still active in New York life, attending theater, music and museum events. They plan to be in France this summer. She adds, “Each time a classmate and I are in communication, it brings back a flood of wonderful memories of our youth and our castle, and the simplicity of our fledgling college campus, whose faculty was among the greatest at any university in America. Thank you, Brandeis, for my great start in life.” John Howard writes, “Whatever ‘dotage’ means, they must be talking about some other guy. I have been lucky. My health is good. I keep busy, and I find a lot of things fascinating in this evolving, ever more digitally sophisticated world.” Over the past few years, John has gotten two grants from Humanities New York, one for a four-week workshop on James Baldwin, the other for a four-week workshop on growing and aging. Working with graduates of the Purchase College film program, John made a short documentary called “In Search of Justice,” which was selected for exhibition at a Milan film festival. He also has a book coming out this year: “Poor Joshua: The DeShaney Case and Child Abuse in America,” published by the State University of New York Press. Adele Levine, P’79, goes to the gym twice a week, belongs to two book groups and takes two classes through Washington University’s Lifelong Learning program. Herb Lewis and his wife, Francie Smith Saposnik, live happily in Madison, Wisconsin, which he reports is a city with four seasons, a great university and plenty to do. Francie retired recently after more than 35 years as director of senior services at Jewish Social Services of Madison. Herb retired from teaching at the University of Wisconsin-Madison but continues to be an active anthropologist. In April, he “defended” his book “In Defense of Anthropology” at an event in the British Museum that was sponsored by the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland. Herb and Francie have six children and 14 grandchildren. Vivian Sless Marks swims five mornings a week and loves to bake at least once a week. She and her husband, Gerald, are enjoying their first great-granddaughter, Ava, and are eager to discover if Ava has inherited their musician genes. Elaine Ostroff, P’80, received an honorary degree from Middlebury College at its commencement exercise in May. The award honors her creation of the Universal Design Education Project and her embrace of universal design as a social justice issue. Naima Wallenrod Prevots made presentations at the Harriman Institute at Columbia University and at Scripps College, in Claremont, California. The first was based on her work in cultural diplomacy, the second on her work on material in the Library of Congress. In the fall, she was a witness at a former student’s wedding at the Hotel de Ville on the Grand Place in Brussels, Belgium — “an amazing medieval setting,” she writes. A conference organized by Columbia University on Rh-disease prophylaxis referenced David Zimmerman’s 1973 book, “Rh: The Intimate History of a Disease and Its Conquest.” The book discusses the development of RhoGAM, a drug that prevents women from becoming sensitive to the Rh factor during pregnancy and saves thousands of lives each year.

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