Arts & Literature
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Tillinghast, Richard: W.B. Yeats, “The labyrinth of another’s being”

The New Criterion, Nov. 1997 THE VEILS surrounding the twentieth century’s greatest poet, William Butler Yeats, come in such degrees of thickness and coloration that we shall probably never see the man plain. The title of one of the first major critical studies, Yeats: The Μan and the Masks, by Richard Ellmann, addressed the questions of disguise and shifting identities-questions that have continued to engage commentators. Yeats’s early work planted so persuasively in readers’ minds a picture of the dreamer swathed in the mists of the Celtic Twilight that the conflicting reality of him as a man of the world, a shrewd man of business keenly aware of cash flow, has come as a surprise and even a betrayal of some readers’ images of him. Yeats went to his grave a convinced occultist and believer in the spirit world. Recent biography reveals that this mystic was also skillful at self-promotion,...

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Tarkovsky, Andrei: Sculpting in Time

Translated by Kitty Hunter-Blair, University of Texas Press, 1987. Today it seems to me far more important to talk not so much about art in general or the function of cinema in particular, as about life itself; for the artist who is not conscious of its meaning is unlikely to be capable of making any coherent statement in the language of his own art. I have therefore decided to complete this book with some brief reflections on the problems of our time as they confront me now; on those aspects of them that seem to me fundamental, with a bearing beyond the present moment, to the meaning of our existence. In order to define my own tasks, not only as an artist but, above all, as a person, I found myself having to look at the general state of our civilisation and the personal responsibility of every individual as participant...

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Royal, Robert: Τhe other Camus

The Wilson Quarterly, Autumn 1995, Washington, D.C. Albert Camus died in literature’s most stunning car crash on January 4, 1960; he had lived in two very different worlds. One extended into the highest reaches of French intellectual and political life and brought him fame and honors, including the 1957 Nobel Prize for literature. The other was that of the lower-class European workers in the Belcourt quarter of Algiers where Camus was reared, a world of “poverty and sunlight.” Even the details of his death reflected his movement between these two worlds. Returning from a vacation in the south of France with Michel Gallimard, scion of the prestigious Parisian publishing family, Camus died instantly when Gallimard lost control of his Facel Vega and struck a tree. (Gallimard died several days later.) Camus’s body, accompanied by only a few family members and close friends, was taken back to the cemetery at Lourmarin,...

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Quincey, Thomas De: Goethe Then and Now

Extracts from the 8th edition (1852-1860) of Encyclopaedia Britannica It now remains to say a few words by way of summing up his pretensions as a man, and his intellectual power in the age to which he belonged. His rank and value as a moral being are so plain as to be legible to him who runs. Everybody must feel that his temperament and constitutional tendency was of that happy quality, the animal so nicely balanced with the intellectual, that with any ordinary measure of prosperity he could not be otherwise than a good man. . . . Yet at the same time we cannot disguise from ourselves that the moral temperament of Goethe was one which demanded prosperity: had he been called to face great afflictions, singular temptations, or a billowy and agitated course of life, our belief is that his nature would have been found unequal to the...

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Portillo, Luis: Unamuno’s Last Lecture

Horizon review, December 1941 ‘Unamuno died suddenly, as one who dies in war. Against whom? Perhaps against himself; and also, although many may not believe it, against the men who sold Spain and betrayed his people. Against the people itself? I have never believed that and never shall believe it.’ Antonio Machado, Notas de Actualidad, Madrid February 1937. ‘Some maintained, during those frantic days, their independence of mind. From the human point of view, it is a consolation; from the Spanish point of view, a hope.’ Manuel Azana, Prologue to La Velada en Benkarlo, Paris, May 1939. The Ceremonial Hall in the University of Salamanca is a spacious chamber, used only on formal occasions, solemn, austere, the walls hung with tapestries. Through the huge windows enters a shimmering flood of iridescent light which deepens the amber glow of the century-old plinth stones. This was the setting. The play was enacted...

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Chesterton, G. K.: Famous Paintings

From The Chesterton Review, Febr-May 1997 The statement that the work of the Old Masters can be effective for popular education is not such a platitude as it will at first appear. It is both more disputable and more true than it seems. For the truth is that the great art of the past can be used for this purpose where a great many other methods now generally adopted are quite clumsy and futile. Something of this utility is shared by the plays of Shakespeare; and by no other agency I know except the paintings of such men as Titian and Leonardo. To explain this peculiar kind of public value one must understand one of the deepest of the differences, and perhaps diseases, of our time. It was the mark of the art of the past, especially the art of the Renaissance, that the great man was a man. He...

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Michelangelo: A document and two letters on his work in San Pietro, Rome

Excerpts from his own Letters and Papers translated and edited by Robert W. Carden, London 1913 Contract for the Pieta Die VII mensis augusti, 1498 Be it known and manifest to all who shall read this present writing that the Most Reverend Cardinal did San Dionisio has agreed that Mestro Michelangelo, statuary of Florence, that the said Maestro shall at his own proper costs make a Pieta of marble; that is to say, a draped figure of the Virgin Mary with the dead Christ in her arms, the figures being life-size, for the sum of four hundred and fifty gold ducats in papal gold (in or papali ), to be finished within the term of one year from the beginning of the work. And the Most Reverend Cardinal promises to pay the money in the manner following: that is to say, imprimis, he promises to pay the sum of one...

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McKillop, Alan D.: Goethe and literary criticism

Goethe and literary criticism GOETHE is the supreme example in modern literature of the genius whose works are so many aspects of a rich and dramatic personal career. It is sometimes said that Boswell’s Life is Johnson’s greatest work, Lockhart’s Life Scott’s greatest work, but Goethe was his own Boswell, his own Lockhart, and how much more besides! His oft-quoted remark that his works were “fragments of a great confession” points us to the biography behind the poetry, and the abundant evidence we have for every phase of his life has enabled scholars to place each fragment in its context. The present discussion is concerned, necessarily in a very hasty way, with the literary part of this context, with the poet’s attitude toward the literature which meant most to him. But we cannot separate the literature from the life. Occasionally, indeed, a great spirit keeps to his books. Such a...

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"Καλησπέρα σας κύριε Σεφέρη"

«Ο Σεφέρης εκεί, άλλοτε σκοτεινός, άλλοτε ευανάγνωστος διέτρεχε τα χρόνια, πιο πολύ στα δύσκολα, πιο αραιά στα εύκολα, σύντροφος στα κουπιά. Πάντοτε όμως, ένας οικείος άγνωστος. Πώς θα ήταν, αναρωτήθηκα, αν άνοιγα μια κουβέντα μαζί του; Να του ζητήσω να μας πει για τη Σμύρνη, το φευγιό για την Αθήνα, την ποίηση, τη διχασμένη του καρδιά, για την πολιτική, την Κύπρο που λάτρεψε, τον Θεόφιλο και τον Μακρυγιάννη, τη μουσική, την Μαρώ, το γυρισμό του ξενιτεμένου, τον ελληνισμό στον οποίον πίστεψε τόσο πολύ;»



εκδ. ΠΟΤΑΜΟΣ, Αθήνα 2000

Ας προσέξουμε τη μελαγχολική διαπίστωση του Κωνσταντίνου Καραμανλή -διεθνώς αναγνωρισμένου μεγάλου Ευρωπαίου- για την έλλειψη προσωπικοτήτων που θα έδιναν πάλι όραμα και ορμή στο ευρωπαϊκό γίγνεσθαι. Λίγες μέρες προτού πεθάνει μου είχε πει: «Σου έχω πει από πολύν καιρό και το επαναλαμβάνω, δεν πάει καλά η Ευρώπη!.. Έχει χάσει τον δυναμισμό της, την πίστη στον εαυτό της. Της έλειψε η θέληση για μια πραγματική πολιτική ένωση. Την ένωση που θα την καθιστούσε ικανή να διαδραματίσει σπουδαίο ρόλο σ’ ολόκληρο τον κόσμο. Προς το συμφέρον όλου του κόσμου. Κατατρίβεται με πολλά και αποφεύγει το βασικό: να διαμορφώσει στερεούς θεσμούς που θα υπηρετούν ένα μεγάλο όραμα. Έχασε τις ευκαιρίες που της παρουσιάστηκαν. Όσο εξαπλώνεται χωρίς γερά θεμέλια, τόσο αδυνατίζει και παραπαίει. Και ρωτώ: Πού βλέπεις σήμερα ηγέτες εμπνευσμένους από την Ευρωπαϊκή Ιδέα, έτοιμους να αγωνισθούν με συνέπεια για την πραγμάτωσή της; Πρόθυμους έστω να περιστείλουν κάπως τις εθνικές σκοπιμότητες και τους οικονομικούς ανταγωνισμούς; http://www.potamos.com.gr/



Με αφορμή κουβέντες των «μεγάλων» για έναν κόσμο που σχετικώς πρόσφατα είχε καταποντισθεί και που αυτοί είχαν γνωρίσει, γεννήθηκε σε ένα πεντάχρονο παιδί ένα αίσθημα, μισό περιέργεια και μισό νοσταλγία, για τη Μικρά Ασία των δικών του από την πλευρά της μητέρας του. Περνώντας από τα ακούσματα στα βιβλία και τα οικογενειακά χαρτιά, η γνώση για τις μικρασιατικές του ρίζες έγινε με τον καιρό πιο στέρεη και πήγε στον χρόνο πιο βαθιά, ώσπου στα δεκαεννέα του αξιώθηκε την πρώτη επίσκεψη στην άλλη πλευρά του Αιγαίου.




23,32€ 20,99€

Το βιβλίο Οι Δολοφόνοι της Μνήμηςτου μεγάλου ιστορικού και ελληνιστή Πιέρ Βιντάλ-Νακέ, αποτελεί την πιο ολοκληρωμένη απάντηση στους αρνητές του Ολοκαυτώματος. Αποτελείται από πέντε δοκίμια, που αποσυναρμολογούν τους μηχανισμούς του ψεύδους και βοηθούν τον αναγνώστη να καταλάβει πώς μια τέτοια εκτροπή, όπως η άρνηση της χιτλερικής γενοκτονίας, είδε το φως της μέρας και απέκτησε δημοσιότητα, παρά τα σαθρά «επιχειρήματα» των αρνητών.