Margaret Sullivan

The New York Times announced today that its new public editor will for the first time be a woman. Margaret Sullivan, the editor of the Buffalo News, will take over for Arthur S. Brisbane. Part of the problem with the way the job is conceived can be seen in Sullivan’s statement to the press, in which she says that she sees the position as offering, “a chance to listen to readers, to respond, to learn and to write, always thoughtfully and also in real time.” The trouble here is with the obsessive focus on readers and their opinions.

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Two for the Road and Accident—very chic, clever, skillful and with the very latest in color and time-and-memory techniques—give us the La Notte view of marriage. Boredom, desperation, resignation. Both Frederic Raphael, who wrote Two for the Road as an original screenplay for Stanely Donen, and Harold Pinter, who adapted the Nicholas Mosley novel Accident for Joseph Losey, get a laugh with the same gag: men so self-centered that they don't remember the existence of their own daughters—Caroline in one, Francesa in the other. Great minds travel in the same TV channel?

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