I am writing this Special Tulane Talk just to say hello since the regular Tulane Talk is on summer break.
I hope you are enjoying the summer and taking some well-deserved time with your family and friends before we start a new semester. Each summer I review with my colleagues the accomplishments and challenges of the prior year, establish institutional and individual goals for the current year and clear from my desk long neglected items left over from the Spring semester (I apologize for my procrastination).
I am also using this time to catch up on my reading and writing. I am always hesitant to recommend books to anyone but I just finished two delightful works of fiction, which some of you might find enjoyable. The first is The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa. The story is set in Japan and it is absolutely charming, poignant and educational, especially for those with an interest in mathematics. The second book is The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga. This book won the Man Booker Prize for Fiction in 2008. It is a provocative, insightful and irreverent narrative about life in India from the perspective of someone from the lower level of the caste system.
I also want to thank those of you who, on occasion, recommend books to me. I often follow up on many of these suggestions, including the two mentioned above. Even though early American history and biographies are my primary areas of pleasure reading, there is nothing like a wonderfully written piece of fiction.
Enjoy the remainder of the summer, stay safe and please know how appreciative I am of your commitment to and hard work on behalf of the university and community. I look forward to my meetings with many of you this fall.
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