Archive for November, 2007

07w47:1 The Edwardians in Colour

by timothy. 0 Comments

I found this series on the weekend was astounded by it. Albert Khan’s archive of very early colour photographs from the first two decades of the 20th Century.

Related links below were previously on Goodreads (04w20:2; 04w22:1) and are of Charles Cushman’s archive and the images of Russia from the second decade of the 20th C.

Part 01 A Vision of the World

Part 02 Men of the World

Part 03 Europe on the Brink

Part 04 The Soldiers’ Story – The War

Part 05 The Civilians’ Story

The Empire That Was Russia

The Charles W. Cushman Photograph Collection

07w46:6 Movie Review: Blade Runner The Final Cut (1982; 2007)

by timothy. 0 Comments

Blade Runner: The Final Cut (2007)
1982: The first edition of Blade Runner is released on 25 June.

1992: The second edition ‘Director’s Cut‘ is released on 11 July. At the time I’m a student of history and as a pet project I’m trying to write a history of Earth from the vantage point of the year 2400. In order to conceptualize the 22nd Century, I look to Blade Runner, and the images found in magazines, which are promoting the release of the Director’s Cut. But I live in rural Nova Scotia and I only know one person in my class who’s even heard of Blade Runner.

1993: I’m in Toronto that March, and look for a copy of the movie to buy. It’s not in stores anywhere.

Which is to say, it took me a few years before I got to see it for the first time. And once I did, it wasn’t the story-line that mattered so much as the sets; for years I’ve watched this movie as a series of montages in fantastic settings, the story-line connecting the scenes seemingly incidental and not even that interesting.

1999: I watch the Director’s Cut for the first time, and I find the extreme letter-boxing distracting to the extant that makes it almost unwatchable. I had the chance to see it on the big screen that spring but decided a now forgotten ’round-table’ conversation on art-something at the Khyber was more important.

So I can’t remember when I first saw Blade Runner, but it was probably one of the CityTv broadcasts that they ran on New Year’s Eve/Day at midnight through the 1990s. Ten years ago, January 1 1998 at 12am I recorded this broadcast and brought the VHS tape to back to Halifax with me, where it quickly became wall-paper. Whenever it rained that year I would on returning to my small one bedroom basement apartment at the end of the day put in this copy and let in play in the background as I went about my work.

Later I found the Director’s Cut in the video store and rented it. I think that was the last time I watched the film straight through, sometime after its release in February 1999, and with memories of the voice over in mind, I had an its interpretive slant on the images. I found the Director’s Cut version was superior in its subtlety. This film, without Harrison Ford telling you what to think, invited you to consider it on your own terms.

At the time, Blade Runner was part of my extra curricular studies which also included the novels of William Gibson. For a time I was confused and thought I’d read somewhere that Blade Runner had influenced the writing of Neuromancer, (and later read that Gibson had actually been far more influenced by Alien, and imagined Neuromancer as a bit of background to that world). Given that the 21st Century was looming on us all in the late 90s, and my excitement at seeing that s-f time become real, Blade Runner and Gibson’s Sprawl Trilogy were part of a process of understanding what kind of world I’d spend the rest of my life in.

Walking up Spring Garden Road in 1999, and seeing the recently installed refurbished pay phones, I recognized their design as something ‘futuristic’ (a term that I hear less and less often these days) and something that would have looked fine in Blade Runner. There seemed to be an attempt to update our world to match the set design of 1980s s-f films, and given how such films then as now use the experimental work of industrial designers, this all made perfect sense. In that way, s-f films function as marketing for new designs. It seems to me that things like Blackberries and iPods are so successful since they were preceded by lengthy marketing campaigns in the form of s-f novels and films, so that when they arrived, we knew what they were, and had a good idea of what we could do with them.

Watching Blade Runner and reading Gibson’s Sprawl Trilogy was a way of prepping myself for the life I expected in Toronto, where I knew I’d end up. In fact, Gibson’s descriptions of the Sprawl always reminded me of Scarborough, so at first, experiencing mini-mall urban decay and franchise restaurants had the excitement of visiting a film-set from the future.

(I had the same experience when I visited Ottawa in early October 2000, just after Trudeau’s funeral, and the city reminded me of San Fransisco as seen in the Star Trek Voyager episode ‘Non Sequitur‘. Ottawa had not only cleaned itself up for the new century, but it was also a giant film set, constantly on our television screens hosting those actors of Parliamentary debate. Meeting someone by the Peace Flame, I looked down at the roses laid in honour of Trudeau’s memory, the flag above the Peace Tower at half-mast, as I’d seen in on television in the days before).

So to see Deckard eating noodles in 2007 is a different experience than seeing the same in Halifax in 1998, where chopstick joints were few and far between as they say. There was a Japanese restaurant on Argyle St but I was still too much of hick to understand the menu. Of course, after these years in the Toronto, Blade Runner just seems like a rainy night on Spadina, only more congested with archaic neon logos. Our bars aren’t filled with smoke and clay pipes, and while it probably will cost $1.25 to use a pay-phone in twelve years, the real Deckards by then are much more likely to use an old fourth generation iPhone.

As Gibson was saying over this past summer’s book-tour, even imagining a future in the first half of the 1980s was an act of optimism. I’m old enough to remember television stories about the Cold War and talk of Nuclear Winter. Blade Runner too offered a vision of the future, not quite post-apocalyptic but close, based loosely on Dick’s novel, which had projected a post-nuclear envirocide where ‘real’ animals were all but extinct. The novel’s Deckard dreamed of buying a ‘real’ goat as that society’s status symbol (as I recall, but I read the novel fifteen years ago). Now the movie has eclipsed the novel and the focus on artificial animals seems out of context, and we have a different understanding of artificiality. There’s enough GMO stuff around already that doesn’t seem any less ‘real’ to us, and the idea behind the Replicants is equally strange. Today it’s comprehensible as ‘Oh, there just genetically engineered humans with a four year life-span,’ which is a different play on 1982’s confusing ‘are they robots or something? How are they fake?’ And as we approach November 2019, it’s one time cyberpunk has become steampunk. Maybe our computers will accept voice commands by then, but we won’t have CRT-television set-top scanners at work printing out Polaroids of our 600+dpi zoom.

And it’s such scanning tech which has enabled this final cut version to come out. The original print was scanned at such an extremely high resolution that watching this version of Blade Runner is a new enough experience in itself – such clarity of image and level of detail was never seen before. This ‘restoration’ reminded me of that done on Michelangelo’s Sistine Ceiling – we live in an era of restoration, the grand updating to reflect cinema’s recorded vision, our imaginations inhabited by visions focused through Carl Zeiss lenses. Some critics then complained that the ‘brightening’ that occurred with the Michelangelo restoration destroyed the experience, while other welcomed the return to the ‘original’ condition.

Michelangelo’s Blade Runner: The Director’s Cut, circa 1970
Michelangelo’s Blade Runner: The Director’s Cut, circa 1970

Michelangelo’s Blade Runner: The Final Cut, circa 2000
Michelangelo’s Blade Runner: The Final Cut, circa 2000

Which is to say that the 21st Century experience of Michelangelo’s ceiling is different from that of the 19th, when the paintings were obscured by three centuries of candle-smoke and the like. And so with Blade Runner: in twelve years time, when it’s actually November 2019. undoubtedly this version of the film will be playing in theatres, and I most likely will find myself in front of the big screen once again, remembering both the time in 2007 when I saw it and the Halifax of twenty one years before. And if the film then still has any currency with the twenty-somethings of that world, what will their experience be of a quaint steam-punk movie depicting questionable dating practices (a forty something throwing a 20 year old girl up against the wall and telling her to say ‘kiss me’, followed the next day with a ‘do you love me?’ question), congested public spaces filled with cigarette smoke, and a level of visual detail lost on the earliest versions of the movie? Will copies of the original voice-over narrated film still be watched, or as ignored as the as murky as the reproductions of the Sistine Ceiling made in the 1960s? Treated, if anything, as historical curiosities, but not invitations to historical experience.

My sense is that Blade Runner is one of those rare works of art which is a master piece despite everything. One feels watching this that no one involved in the actual production had any idea they were making a masterpiece, and watching in straight through as I did, with the scenes visually clarified to highlight how they work together gives one the sense that the plot is kind of weak, in some places (as mentioned above with the romantic scenes) nonsensical, and that this film continues to work for the special effects alone. (It’s a silent movie originally provided with two voice-overs and now only one remains. Blade Runner is probably worth watching with Vangelis’ soundtrack alone). As a masterpiece it gets away from all intentions of its creators and that is one of the reasons it rewards viewing. No one knew what the fuck was going on with it or why, but it just works.

I’m reminded here of Malcolm Gladwell’s ‘story telling problem‘: that when we are confronted with something new we may not have ready-at-hand language to describe how we think about it or how it makes us feel. This in turn can cause us to make simplistic decisions rather than go with more ambiguous and complicated ones. This is how I understand the motivation for the first version’s voice-over narration. It was felt that the film needed some language to orient the viewer. But because this movie is so much about it’s visuals, it should be thought of as a form of animated narrative painting, for which language is not necessary.

So why then record my thoughts on it as I have? Because when I come home from seeing it on the big screen again in November 2019, I’ll want to read this record of what I thought of seeing it in 2007. And for that matter, I might as well share.

Blade Runner: The Final Cut will be released on DVD (in a 2-disc or 5 disc set) on December 18th.

07w46:5 Classic Academic Bullshit

by timothy. 1 Comment

Worth quoting in full (after all, it is a press release) with emph mine:

What’s in a name? Initials linked to success, study shows (Link)

Do you like your name and initials? Most people do and, as past research has shown, sometimes we like them enough to influence other important behaviors. For example, Jack is more likely to move to Jacksonville and marry Jackie than is Philip who is more likely to move to Philadelphia and marry Phyllis. Scientists call this phenomenon the “name-letter effect” and argue that it is influential enough to encourage the pursuit of name-resembling life outcomes and partners.

However, if you like your name too much, you might be in trouble. Leif Nelson at the University of California, San Diego and colleague Joseph Simmons from Yale University, found that liking your own name sabotages success for people whose initials match negative performance labels.

In their first study, Nelson and Simmons investigated the effect of name resemblance on batters’ strikeouts. In baseball, strikeouts are recorded using the letter ‘K.’ After analyzing Major League Baseball players’ performance spanning 93 years, the researchers found that batters whose names began with ‘K’ struck out at a higher rate than the remaining batters. “Even Karl ‘Koley’ Kolseth would find a strikeout aversive, but he might find it a little less aversive than players who do not share his initials, and therefore he might avoid striking out less enthusiastically,” write the authors.

In a second study, the researchers investigated the phenomenon in academia. Letter grades are commonly used to measure students’ performance, with the letters ‘A,’ ‘B,’ ‘C’ and ‘D’ denoting different levels of performance. Nelson and Simmons reviewed 15 years of grade point averages (GPAs) for M.B.A. students graduating from a large private American university.

Students whose names began with ‘C’ or ‘D’ earned lower GPAs than students whose names began with ‘A’ or ‘B.’ Students with the initial ‘C’ or ‘D,’ presumably because of an unconscious fondness for these letters, were slightly less successful at achieving their conscious academic goals.

Interestingly, students with the initial ‘A’ or ‘B’ did not perform better than students whose initials were grade irrelevant. Therefore, having initials that match hard-to-achieve positive outcomes, like acing a test, may not necessarily cause an increase in performance. However, after analyzing law schools, the researchers found that as the quality of schools declined, so did the proportion of lawyers with name initials ‘A’ and ‘B.’

The researchers confirmed these findings in the laboratory with an anagram test. The result of the test confirmed that when people’s initials match negative performance outcomes, performance suffers. These results, appearing in the December issue of Psychological Science, provide striking evidence that unconscious wants can insidiously undermine conscious pursuits.


Author Contact: Leif Nelson

Psychological Science is ranked among the top 10 general psychology journals for impact by the Institute for Scientific Information. For a copy of the article “Moniker Maladies: When Names Sabotage Success” and access to other Psychological Science research findings, please contact Catherine West at (202) 783-2077 or

The Rady School of Management at UC San Diego educates global leaders for innovation-driven organizations. A professional school within one of the top-ranked institutions in the U.S. for higher education and research, the Rady School offers a Full-Time MBA program, a FlexMBA program for working professionals, undergraduate and executive education courses. Our lineage includes 16 Nobel Laureates (former and current faculty) and eight MacArthur Foundation award recipients. The Rady School at UC San Diego transforms innovators into business leaders.

Comments: I’m thankful that the author of this press-release took the time to explain letter grades to me, and thought it was interesting that students with initials ‘a’ and ‘b’ did not perform better than students with grade-irrelevant initials, which is only the entire rest of the alphabet. This alone seems to make such a correlation absurd.

The only reason I’d understand having the scale explained is to account for the international audience, but then again, this is written in English, so it’s not like there are a ton of Chinese out there who suddenly know about how North American grading works. For the Europeans, I imagine they’ve watched enough American movies and television to already be familiar with the system.

Is the argument then that the increased ‘slightly less’ performance of the world’s Cynthia Donaldsons, Charles Davies’, Duncan Camerons is based partially on their names? So you’re saying that the reason Albert Burns got an 80, whereas David Connors got a 78 is because of their names?! Is this is why Cory Doctorow believes in ‘anti-copyright policies’!?

And this from a school that considers itself an educator of global leaders! No wonder the world is so fucked up. For one thing, such a study takes for granted a measurement of success which is itself a social construction dating back a century and out-of-step with the needs of present society. For example I imagine that to graduate with top marks from an MBA school you’d need to do rather poorly in the ethics department, especially environmental ethics. Failing the Humanities would also help, since at no point should you consider your employees as human beings desiring to live full lives. They must be refered to as ‘human resources’ (which would have served as a perfectly adequate term for slavery). Their natural desire to be as richly compensated as your gang at the top of the hierarchy must be kept in check and exploited for ‘superior job performance’.

The fact that they felt the need to explain to us the letter-grade system seems to be evidence of an inability to imagine another, from which the ethical disasters of capitalism naturally follow. Further, the awarding of the marks leading to grades is mostly arbitrary, and dependent on many factors, including the fact that teachers are as biased as any other human being. So Connor gets 77 while James gets 80 because the teacher likes James more and gave a slightly higher mark to his answers over Connor, who doesn’t say a lot in class.

This study is trying to suggest that Connor, Cory, Charles, Cynthia, Duncan, David, etc, have an ‘unconscious attachment’ to their initials and are thus sabotaging their ‘success’ in order to see it written on their tests as a reward counterbalancing the anguish of feeling like a failure. Not to mention the subsequent mockery from the class’ ‘successful’ students (a mockery which is ‘unconsciously’ endorsed by the teacher since schools are supposed to help establish the pecking order, so that the authors of this press-release and study get sorted by high grades into university; then onto Masters and PHD programs and are then able to conduct such stupid studies open to such easy mockery).

As for the quoted baseball example, it is equally absurd and subject to the same critique offered above.

In my arbitrary grading system, based on my measurements of success, this study gets an F. Or, no, no, I’ll make the system so that L and N are the lowest grades, and J isn’t much higher, to make it fit with Leif Nelson’s and Joseph Simmons’ thesis.

07w46:4 Public Interest

by timothy. 1 Comment

From today’s Mediascout, by Rishi Hargovan:

The Globe fronts and the Star goes inside with a court ruling that could substantially increase freedom of the press in Canada. In a unanimous, precedent-setting ruling, the Ontario Court of Appeal established “benefiting the public interest” as a defence against defamation charges. The ruling, which only applies in Ontario, introduces a principle that will help the media report controversial allegations when it is in the public interest to do so. Currently, journalists and media outlets often censor themselves, hesitating to publish material they honestly believe to be true solely because they fear a lawsuit. No matter how strong the story, litigation is costly and it is difficult to prove such facts to the standards of the courts—where there is zero room for error. Now the standard would be that journalists would have not have to prove that they were right, only that they were acting responsibly. The Globe quotes Justice Robert Sharpe: “…[W]here a media defendant can show that it acted in accordance with the standards of responsible journalism in publishing a story that the public was entitled to hear, it has a defence, even if it got some of its facts wrong.”

Adopted in other major common law countries around the world, the ruling marks the first time a Canadian court has taken this approach and increases the likelihood courts in other Canadian jurisdictions will follow suit. The impact will likely be a greater propensity to publish and air controversial stories of public import, the Globe’s lawyer Peter Jacobsen told the paper. In a peculiar twist, the Star reports, the paper involved in this specific case, the Citizen, cannot take advantage of the new defence. The legal system’s emphasis on finality in proceedings would make it unfair to re-open the trial and let the paper go back and use the defence. The court, however, did not go as far media organizations would have liked. The media had argued in court for defamation to require evidence of malice to be proven—a difficult element to prove.

Also, from the CNW Group:

Attention News Editors:
Another Prime Minister, The Hon. Stephen Harper is noted in default in a Libel action, as well as the Hon. Tony Clement, Governor General Michaelle Jean, Morris Rosenberg, the Deputy Minister of Health, three of his staff and others BELLEVILLE, ON, Nov. 14 /CNW Telbec/ – Trueman Tuck and his company, Freedom of Choice in Health Care Inc., sued the above noted parties November 15, 2006 for $1,050,000 and the Department of Justice lawyers handling the matter failed to file a defense.

Citizens of Canada are getting used to this type of above the Rule of Law arrogance by the Prime Ministers of Canada.

Trueman Tuck filed the lawsuit to stop what he alleges are false allegations of e-coli contamination of a product that Trueman Tuck and his company sell. Trueman Tuck alleges that the criminal investigative federal officials working in the Health Canada Inspectorate regularly create bogus allegations of harm that have no probable scientific cause.

Trueman Tuck also criticized the Conservative Government, including the Prime Minister for their total failure since taking office to investigate the well documented cases of malicious, unlawful and out of jurisdiction attacks on dietary food supplement small family businesses by the local officials of Health Canada and the total failure of the Managers, Director Generals, ADMs, DMs and responsible Ministers to investigate and intervene.

Complaints have been made to various federal oversight committees, the Cabinet, the Senate, the Governor-General and the Queen personally without any response.

The Defendants were noted in default and a requisition for default judgment has been filed with the Picton, Ontario Superior Court.

For further information: Trueman Tuck, (613) 771-1797,,

07w46:3 Chomsky

by timothy. 0 Comments

Charlie Rose, 9 June 2006

Charlie Rose, 20 November 2003

Chomsky weighs in on 9/11 Conspiracy Theories |

Chomsky on Academic Freedom
(More audio clips from the academic freedom conference organized in support of Norman Finkelstein here. Another highlight is the speech by Tony Judt)

07w41-45 Roundup

by timothy. 0 Comments

Goodreads Roundup for the past month or so

Dear Readers – Within the past month I began using Feedburner to deliver the RSS feed, and Feedburner offers the option of having the content delivered via email. Thus, the email list isn’t dead, it’s just now done automatically through Feedburner. If you’d like to continue to receive individual Goodreasds postings in your inbox, then re-subscribe at this link:

You’ll receive some confirmation emails and then you’ll be good to go.
Note: this doesn’t apply to people who’ve subscribed since October 18th, since you’re already on the new system.

In the meantime, here is the roundup of what I’ve posted for the past month.

In other news, I once again got hit with excess charges due to exceeding my bandwidth limits. I looked into switching hosts to get a better deal, but in the end it didn’t seem worth it. Bandwidth is just expensive, and there’s no real way of getting around that. I’ll just stop offering so many mp3 files. Afterall, Goodreads is an altruistic project, not a masochistic one, and so if in the future you find dead links to past mp3 files, you’ll know why. If you’re desperate to hear the file, send me an email.- Timothy

4. MC B-Rabbit
From Robot Chicken; Bugs Bunny and Elmer Fudd in claymation 3-D, reenacting the climatic scene from 8 Mile

1. Conceptual Terrorism
The Onion replaces the word ‘art’ with ‘terrorism’: ‘According to a 2007 CIA executive summary, the terrorists responsible for masterminding the attack are likely hiding somewhere in Berlin’s vast labyrinth of cafés. […] “I’m no expert, but I know terrorism when I see it,” said Kathy Atwood, a Hyde Park mother of four. “Where is the devastating loss of life and massive destruction of infrastructure? This doesn’t move me to run for my life at all.” She added: “Real terrorism takes years of training and meticulous planning. My 6-year-old kid can make Jell-O.”‘

2. The Rage of the Creative Class
This article gave me this year’s occasion for future-shock. I read it as if it were 1983, and it had been beamed back in time with an intro that said: Here is an article from the year 2007, describing the future New York city and something called ‘blogging’. Apparently in the future, young adults will be totally pissed off and screwed. This is what awaits you when you grow up … dystopia! PS, the Loto numbers for November 19th 1983 are 4 14 16 30 33 38 22.

3. Hollywood’s Devices
An article on the hip cell-phones of Hollywood and their semiotics.

4. 19 October 2007
On the movie Death of a President.

5. Richard Rorty Selections
Two articles I was happy to find online to share, as I’d found them in his 1999 book, Philosophy and Social Hope. The Humanistic Intellectual (1989) I found to be an excellent manifesto for the type of activity I see myself engaged in, as well as having an accurate prediction that round about the year 2010, ‘the brightest new Ph.D.’s in English that year will be people who never want to hear the terms “binary opposition” or “hegemonic discourse” again as long as they live.’ Fraternity Reigns is a vision from the year 2096 of what kind of society the United States could aim for – one in which a concept of fraternity is dominant (common, Rorty argues, in America’s 19th Century).

6. Dors Lessing Selection
An extensive excerpt from Lessing’s introduction to The Golden Notebook.

7. Chasing Transcendence: The Self
Audio of a mediocre lecture, recorded at U of T.

1. Fuck the Young, eh?
It’s not only New York that’s screwing it’s young people; the same is true in cities all over North America (all over the West in general?) Vancouver is young-without-a-ton-of-money unfriendly, and in Toronto, the can-lit scene is still dominated by has-beens. Complaining about the Giller prize, Stephen Marche writes: ‘The danger is that the Giller, like the CBC, will become just another institution for boomer self-congratulation’.

2. Dasher
A Google video presentation on an alternative text-input system.

3. The Cruelty of Kitakyushu’s bureaucrats
People in Japan starve to death because welfare is treated as a shameful. Letting someone starve to death to uphold a social norm apparently is not.

4. A comparison between USA & Japan
Immanuel Wallerstein’s Commentary on how the US lags behind other nations in terms of broadband access.

5. The Schøyen Collection
‘The Schøyen Collection comprises most types of manuscripts from the whole world spanning over 5000 years. It is the largest private manuscript collection formed in the 20th century. […] The present website comprises a selection of digital descriptions of manuscripts with sample images from The Schøyen Collection. The whole collection comprises about 13,600 manuscripts and inscribed objects, of which about 720 are available on the present website. The selection, descriptions and digitalisation are the responsibility of the owner of The Schøyen Collection.’

1. The Alternative History of Martin Heidegger
An extensive excerpt from Richard Rorty’s 1990 essay ‘Another Possible World’ republished in Philosophy and Social Hope. He argues and tries to show that although in our world, Heidegger was a Nazi, things could have been different (and that overall, this shouldn’t diminish his work. As Rorty said in a 1999 bio-documentary on Heidegger, ‘There are a lot of cases of bad men writing interesting books and Heidegger is just a spectacular case of that sort. He stumbled into a situation that he didn’t have the character to get himself out of, and for the rest of history he’s always going to be stuck in the trap in which he mired himself’).

2. Richard Florida on Toronto
His article in the Globe & Mail, with Leah McLaren’s gushing and reader comments.

3. The Wander Years
David Brooks writes in the New York Times: ‘There used to be four common life phases: childhood, adolescence, adulthood and old age. Now, there are at least six: childhood, adolescence, odyssey, adulthood, active retirement and old age. Of the new ones, the least understood is odyssey, the decade of wandering that frequently occurs between adolescence and adulthood. […] Young people grow up in tightly structured childhoods, Wuthnow observes, but then graduate into a world characterized by uncertainty, diversity, searching and tinkering. Old success recipes don’t apply, new norms have not been established and everything seems to give way to a less permanent version of itself.’

4. Twelve Thousand Nine Hundred Years Ago
One day a long time ago a comet exploded over North America and killed everything. Thankfully the Bush Administration wasn’t around to declare a war on comets and use the subsequent chicken-little fears to create a police state to limit protest and consolidate power.

5. Dave Hickey
Sheila Heti’s great interview with Dave Hickey.

1. Charles Taylor on the Secular
Charles Taylor recently published A Secular Age and it has been discussed on the recently launched blog The Immanent Frame. In this posting, Taylor responds to some of the cautious yet sycophantic critiques.

2. Barack Obama, or this week’s most popular article on the net
Andrew Sullivan on Barack Obama, a must read. What I especially appreciated about this article was Sullivan’s arguments that Obama offers an alternative to the poison politics of the baby-boomers.

3. Dante’s Heaven and Canadian November
A link to the CBC Radio 1 Tapestry podcast audio, a conversation about Dante’s Paradiso, introduced by my thoughts on the reading of Dorris Lessing’s Massey Lectures and our predilection for violence.

4. Neitzsche, Heidegger, Sartre Documentaries
In 1999 the BBC broadcast three documentaries on the three philosophers, and they can now be found on Google Video.

5. Norman Mailer 1923-2007
Norman Mailer and I shared our birthday. Eighteen months ago, inspired by his having said things I’d never heard before, I wrote that when he died I’d consider it a diminishment of humanity. Humanity is thus diminished.

I want to begin posting individual reviews of whatever from now on. To establish this, I reposted previous reviews of Mr. Mee, the shows of Darren O’Donnell and Zin Taylor last March, and the book version of Children of Men. There are others in the back-pages I plan to repost this way, but they can wait.

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