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Fred Reinfeld: Opinions?



 
 
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  #1  
Old August 7th 03, 07:22 AM
LeModernCaveman
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Default Fred Reinfeld: Opinions?

?


  #2  
Old August 7th 03, 09:58 PM
Louis Blair
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Default Fred Reinfeld: Opinions?

Although his beginner books are often criticized, I have also
seen praise for his books on famous players. One hater
of Reinfeld posted a rec.games.chess.analysis note that
said:

"I'm into playing out games, and I've been playing
out some of Capa's game from Reinfeld's collection
today, and I've said more than once that I thought he
did a good job with that. I think he also did a good
job with 'Brilliancy Prize Games of the Chess Masters'."

William Hyde "strongly recommend"ed Reinfeld's book
about Tarrasch.

One often sees recommendations of "Reinfeld's '1001' books".

Also, there are those who think Winning Chess: How to
See Three Moves Ahead by Chernev and Reinfeld is "excellent".

Even Reinfeld's beginner books are not universally hated.
Someone, for example, once posted:

"I have 'The Complete Chess Player by Fred Reinfeld'
and Highly recomend it. It's 300 pages ($10.00),
and covers all the major areas. It's thorough without
being overwhelming."

My own opinion of The Complete Chessplayer is that it
seemed to me to be a reasonable beginner book. One
problem with it (in my opinion) is that it leaves
readers with the impression that they should study
all openings. I fear that many may have decided to
give up on chess after trying to get through Reinfeld's
five chapter presentation in that book. (Also, some
of the material on openings is, by now, quite dated.)
Other parts of the book seemed okay to me. Modern
beginner books are probably better, but also more
expensive. If one wants a general beginner book
and is willing to pay more money, something like
The Complete Idiot's Guide to Chess by Patrick
Wolff is surely a better choice than The Complete
Chessplayer.

Reinfeld's books are usually in the old style
descriptive notation, but at least one has been
converted to the modern notation.

"Reinfeld ... was a good but not great player, twice New
York State champion, for example, and capable of beating
the best on a good day." - Oxford Companion
  #3  
Old August 7th 03, 10:14 PM
Bruce Draney
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Default Fred Reinfeld: Opinions?

But the real question is, has Timothy Hanke ever said anything
contradictory of negative about Fred Reinfeld. Discuss amongst
yourselves.

Seriously, some of Reinfeld's books are decent, particularly the ones
about Capablanca and his collection of great games, some of which were
mentioned by other posters.

The biggest rap on Reinfeld was that for many years there were very few
chess instructional books published with an American author, so many
companies that were selling beginning chess sets or equipment would
include one of Reinfeld's basic chess instructional booklets with their
game to make it sell better.

Regardless of one's opinion of Reinfeld's standing among great players,
I know that he could definitely have kicked my ass in chess and would
still do so if he were alive today.

Best Regards,

Bruce
  #4  
Old August 7th 03, 10:34 PM
Fifiela
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Default Fred Reinfeld: Opinions?

The biggest rap on Reinfeld was that for many years there were very few
chess instructional books published with an American author, so many
companies that were selling beginning chess sets or equipment would
include one of Reinfeld's basic chess instructional booklets with their
game to make it sell better.

Seems to me that Reinfeld could teach general principles, pasasable openings
and basic endgames very well. I don't think he could teach (at least in book
form) how to understand, plan and play dynamic middle and early end-games. He
tended to treach these positions in a wooden style in his beginners books.

Silman's the guy who opened up the middle and early end game for a whole bunch
of us with his emphasis on creating and exploiting inbalanced positions.
  #5  
Old August 7th 03, 10:36 PM
Looney
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Default Fred Reinfeld: Opinions?

To me Fred Reinfeld democratized chess. His simple and forthright books for
beginners made the game accessible to the complete novice, giving them a
working familiarity to the game that would increase their enjoyment without
being so dense and overwritten that it scared them off. My first two
chessbooks were slim tomes of his, one with the basics of the game, and
another on tactics.

And I can't say enough about the "1001" books, but that they are a staple of
many, many a chessplayer's diet.

If anyone writing today reminds me of Reinfeld, it's Pandolfini. He too has
books that are winners and books that are uneven attempts at best. Many of
his best efforts successfully bring clarity to the young (in chess terms,
not necessarily age) chessplayer and increase their enjoyment of the game,
as well as prepare them for later, more detailed study.

I think Mr. Reinfeld is an important part of American chess history whose
contribution deserves to be honored and well-remembered.

--
Looney
----------------------------------------------------
http://www.patzersprogress.com


  #6  
Old August 8th 03, 05:35 PM
Kevin Croxen
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Default Fred Reinfeld: Opinions?

In article , Looney wrote:
To me Fred Reinfeld democratized chess. His simple and forthright books for
beginners made the game accessible to the complete novice, giving them a
working familiarity to the game that would increase their enjoyment without
being so dense and overwritten that it scared them off. My first two
chessbooks were slim tomes of his, one with the basics of the game, and
another on tactics.

And I can't say enough about the "1001" books, but that they are a staple of
many, many a chessplayer's diet.

If anyone writing today reminds me of Reinfeld, it's Pandolfini. He too has
books that are winners and books that are uneven attempts at best. Many of
his best efforts successfully bring clarity to the young (in chess terms,
not necessarily age) chessplayer and increase their enjoyment of the game,
as well as prepare them for later, more detailed study.

I think Mr. Reinfeld is an important part of American chess history whose
contribution deserves to be honored and well-remembered.




I certainly agree with you as to the important place that Reinfeld held
and continues to hold in American chess.

In my opinion, the big difference between Reinfeld and Pandolfini was that
Reinfeld peaked around 2600 USCF and about no. 6 in the US rankings of the
time. Or nearly two full rating classes stronger than Pandolfini.
Reinfeld's annotated collections of Capablanca, Nimzovich, Botvinnik,
Keres, and especially Tarrasch; as well as the works he wrote jointly with
Fine, such as the Lasker collection and the Alekhine-Bogoljubov 1934 match
book, remain insightful and instructive today not only because Reinfeld
was a good teacher and clear writer, but also because in practical terms
he was himself a very strong master.

And this doesn't take into account the collections he edited, e.g.
Marshall's "My 50 Years" or is reputed to have ghost-written, i.e.
"Reshevsky on Chess". Nor does this take into account his prolific output
on topics other than chess.

In any event, I imagine that in 50 years there will still be quite a few
Reinfeld chess books in print, whether in the original notation or
alebraicized, both from his games collections and his instructional texts
(and even hack beginner books). I confess I can't imagine what single work
of Pandolfini's might survive in print in 50 years. Maybe somebody else
has some better notion of this.

--Kevin
  #7  
Old August 8th 03, 07:58 PM
Looney
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Default Fred Reinfeld: Opinions?


"Kevin Croxen" wrote in message
u...
In article , Looney

wrote:
To me Fred Reinfeld democratized chess. His simple and forthright books

for
beginners made the game accessible to the complete novice, giving them a
working familiarity to the game that would increase their enjoyment

without
being so dense and overwritten that it scared them off. My first two
chessbooks were slim tomes of his, one with the basics of the game, and
another on tactics.

And I can't say enough about the "1001" books, but that they are a

staple of
many, many a chessplayer's diet.

If anyone writing today reminds me of Reinfeld, it's Pandolfini. He too

has
books that are winners and books that are uneven attempts at best. Many

of
his best efforts successfully bring clarity to the young (in chess

terms,
not necessarily age) chessplayer and increase their enjoyment of the

game,
as well as prepare them for later, more detailed study.

I think Mr. Reinfeld is an important part of American chess history

whose
contribution deserves to be honored and well-remembered.




I certainly agree with you as to the important place that Reinfeld held
and continues to hold in American chess.

In my opinion, the big difference between Reinfeld and Pandolfini was that
Reinfeld peaked around 2600 USCF and about no. 6 in the US rankings of the
time. Or nearly two full rating classes stronger than Pandolfini.
Reinfeld's annotated collections of Capablanca, Nimzovich, Botvinnik,
Keres, and especially Tarrasch; as well as the works he wrote jointly with
Fine, such as the Lasker collection and the Alekhine-Bogoljubov 1934 match
book, remain insightful and instructive today not only because Reinfeld
was a good teacher and clear writer, but also because in practical terms
he was himself a very strong master.

And this doesn't take into account the collections he edited, e.g.
Marshall's "My 50 Years" or is reputed to have ghost-written, i.e.
"Reshevsky on Chess". Nor does this take into account his prolific output
on topics other than chess.

In any event, I imagine that in 50 years there will still be quite a few
Reinfeld chess books in print, whether in the original notation or
alebraicized, both from his games collections and his instructional texts
(and even hack beginner books). I confess I can't imagine what single work
of Pandolfini's might survive in print in 50 years. Maybe somebody else
has some better notion of this.


I would say I agree with most of what you say here. I think that some of
Pandolfini's basic books will remain beginner staples, like his Pandolfini's
Endgame Course, Beginning Chess, and perhaps his Chessercize books, if only
because they are accessible and already popular. My favorite book of his is
Power Mates, which I would recommend to anyone as simply a well-annotated
set of master games. What is, to me, the nice feature of this format is
that the mating sequence is left off of end of the game, leaving you to
figure it out, then check the back of the book for the solution. A bit of a
schtick, I know, but it's like taking some of the chess puzzles out of
Reinfeld's book and following along the game to see first how the position
arose before putting your mind to the puzzle.

--
Looney
----------------------------------------------------
http://www.patzersprogress.com


 




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