Monday, 18 October 2021


The Romantic period was largely a reaction against the ideology of the Enlightenment period that dominated much of European philosophy, politics, and art from the mid-17th century until the close of the 18th century.  Whereas Enlightenment thinkers valued logic, reason, and rationality, Romantics valued emotion, passion, and individuality. Chris Baldick provides the following description: “Rejecting the ordered rationality of the Enlightenment as mechanical, impersonal, and artificial, the Romantics turned to the emotional directness of personal experience and to the boundlessness of individual imagination and aspiration.” Read here.

Friday, 1 October 2021

Saturday, 11 September 2021


“On this day … 20 years (September 10th) ago, 246 people went to sleep in preparation for their morning flights. 2,606 people went to sleep in preparation for work in the morning. 343 firefighters went to sleep in preparation for their morning shift. 60 police officers went to sleep in preparation for morning patrol. 8 paramedics went to sleep in preparation for the morning shift. None of them saw past 10:00 am Sept 11, 2001. In one single moment life may never be the same. As you live and enjoy the breaths you take today and tonight before you go to sleep in preparation for your life tomorrow, kiss the ones you love, snuggle a little tighter, and never take one second of your life for granted.”

Thursday, 9 September 2021


If you are in the mood for a "they don't make movies like that anymore" movie, meaning soapy melodrama with enough glamorous glow to keep you from thinking too hard, then "The Last Letter From Your Lover" might do the trick. Read here.

Monday, 6 September 2021


When I go to Afghanistan, I realize I've been spared, due to a random genetic lottery, by being born to people who had the means to get out. Every time I go to Afghanistan I am haunted by that.

Khaled Hosseini

Wednesday, 1 September 2021


"Departing summer hath assumed
An aspect tenderly illumed,
The gentlest look of spring;
That calls from yonder leafy shade
Unfaded, yet prepared to fade,
A timely carolling."
William Wordsworth

Sunday, 22 August 2021


The Peaky Blinders aren’t common criminals. They are a family - a clan. They have their own style and manners, and their own code of honor. They call themselves Peaky Blinders, a gang that is dangerous but respected. They play against the law, but that might just be the only way to survive in these cruel times.  Read here.

Sunday, 1 August 2021


“The summer night is like a perfection of thought.”                                                                                                                           Wallace Stevens

Monday, 26 July 2021


BBC One's A Suitable Boy, based on Vikram Seth's bestseller, explores post-partition India's cultural norms as well as combining satire with romance.
When writing it, former Oxford English Literature student Seth was inspired by Jane Austen, particularly Elizabeth Bennet, and he portrayed similar qualities in Lata: charm, quick wit and independence (not to mention their overbearing mothers).
Here you can read the novel online.

"An immensely enjoyable novel which describes with unhurried pace the panorama of India ... Everything appears familiar to us, yet in fact it is newly minted by a master artist."
Hindustan Times

Thursday, 1 July 2021


"Live in each season as it passes: breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit."
Henry David Thoreau

Saturday, 26 June 2021


"A really remarkable picture of the reality, as well as the prosperity, of northern industrial life, and an interesting examination of changing social conscience".
Joanna Trollope

Elizabeth Gaskell's compassionate, richly dramatic novel features one of the most original and fully-rounded female characters in Victorian fiction, Margaret Hale. It shows how, forced to move from the country to an industrial northern town, she develops a passionate sense of social justice, and a turbulent relationship with mill-owner John Thornton. North and South depicts a young woman discovering herself, in a nuanced portrayal of what divides people, and what brings them together.  Read here.