Tom Hurwitz
Friends of mine, on hearing of my Learning Project, told me that a friend of theirs had a family of fascinating and accomplished people, and it was through that person that I contacted Tom Hurwitz for this interview.

I don't really know Tom, his work, or his family, though I'm not surprised that our grandparents both emigrated from Eastern Europe and brought with them a similar activism. Quoting from Tom's web-page:

"Tom Hurwitz is one of our country’s most honored documentary cinematographers. Winner of two Emmy Awards, and a Sundance Award for Best Cinematography, Hurwitz has photographed films that have won four academy awards and several more nominations…"

"Apart from his film career and his time with family, Hurwitz functions as a seminary-trained liturgist, and a verger at New York’s Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine."

Interview Excerpts
Read the full interview :
"My high school English teacher… was a "bachelor"… He had all of the conflict of a person who hasn’t full realized, hasn’t allowed his inner self, hasn’t allowed the sexuality to come out, and a lot of that came in to the intensity of his teaching. We fought like cats and dogs, and he opened all of literature. It was just incredible…"

"There’s a certain kind of loving severity in the teaching experience that I find most gratifying. Teachers that I remember, going back, who really gave me a lot, were both severe and loving, even if they didn’t show it too much. You could tell that they loved their subject and they loved the work that you did on their subject…"

"I never took a film class. I took one film class which I wound up teaching because I’d already done a film by the time I got to be taking that class… I had a mixed time in school, I certainly hated it as much as I loved it, but I did love it, and I did love the kind of learning that one does in school, and I don’t know how else to get it…

"You had said that you wanted to find out what motivated people, and I’ve thought about that, and I don’t think I can tell you one thing that motivates me, but certainly love motivates me, and also anger motivates me – all my life – and hope motivates me. Love, anger, and hope…"

Tom Hurwitz, Home Page
Patrick Henry College, Home Page
God's Next Army, watch online at Documentary Wire
The Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine, Home Page
Copyright © 2010, Lincoln Stoller. All rights reserved.