Norman Cousins: hero for our times

(Canscene) — I have but few heroes but for certain one of them is the late Norman Cousins.

This great American liberal thinker and doer was born in 1915 and electing for a career in journalism took over editorship of The Saturday Review of Literature when he was 27 years of age. It was a well meaning weekly magazine with a circulation of 60,000.

Cousins changed the name to Saturday Review and included in-depth reviews of art exhibitions, musical performances, films and original essays, raising the magazine’s circulation to an all-time high of 650,000.

The Improbable Triumvirate is Cousins’ record of the most significant year in his life. After the 1963 Cuban missile crisis, President John F. Kennedy, Pope John Twenty Third and Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev agreed that Cousins was the person to begin a communications link between the Vatican, the Kremlin and the White House.

Cousins worked tirelessly to get the three to sign a test ban agreement. Had it not been for the death of a president and a pope and the eventual replacement of Khrushchev, who knows what more might have been achieved?

I noticed The Improbable Triumvirate is still available via the various book services such as Amazon and Indigo.

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