Category Archives: Current Affairs

Getting away to Europe to write: an English confession

I had to get away from my desk. From the train window, on this nearly last day of April, the sun shone through a basin of mist somewhere in Essex.  Between glances through the thick window, the phrase ‘the ecstases … Continue reading

Posted in A Shoe Story, Art History, Cold War, Current Affairs, Europe, Philosophy and Philosophers, Who are you?, Writing | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

From the Life of a van Gogh critic: the debate over Diamat and the Run-in with Heidegger

The leading mid-20th century art critic Meyer Schapiro (1904-1996) was a funnel for the European ideas that rapidly modernized the American art scene between the wars. He was a superb commentator on van Gogh and Cézanne, and it was his … Continue reading

Posted in A Shoe Story, Art History, Current Affairs, New York Intellectuals, Philosophy and Philosophers, Things German | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Mrs Leyland and the Return of the Freudian Id

In Britain a 63-year-old woman described as a church-going mother who kept to herself appears to have killed herself after being found out posting abusive messages on Twitter to a couple whose three-year-old daughter was abducted seven years ago. The … Continue reading

Posted in Britain Today, Current Affairs, Philosophy and Philosophers, Who are you?, Writing | Tagged , ,

Greg Baxter’s Talent

The author of The Apartment (2012) and Munich Airport (2014) is a pointillist with words. He’s like the nineteenth-century painter Seurat conjuring a million dots into a picture of reality; except he’s a writer. His words are like pixels: amass … Continue reading

Posted in Current Affairs, Writing | Tagged , , , ,

Wind Farms are Not Ugly for a Modernist

It’s difficult to pronounce on things of beauty when you know philosophy has so much trouble with aesthetic judgements. A whole extended family within the tribe devote themselves to what common factors perceptions of beauty draw on and how personally … Continue reading

Posted in Art History, Britain Today, Current Affairs | Tagged , , , ,

Homage to a Small Town in Catalonia

The Catalan town I know and love is living through what the Spanish national press has named austericide. Five years ago I found a thriving market town beside the sea, relished by tourists as an unusual find except in dead … Continue reading

Posted in Current Affairs | Tagged , , ,

A Moment in Russian Self-Perception

At the Prague Press Forum, May 12-14 2013, Russian journalist Maria Eismont took questions about the situation of the Russian media, whose independence many in the West consider compromised by the Putin regime. She wasn’t willing to give a structured … Continue reading

Posted in Current Affairs, Philosophy and Philosophers, Russia | Tagged , , ,