Sunday, 5 June 2022
Widely known for his dystopian novel Fahrenheit 451 (1953), Ray Bradbury died on 5 June 2012. He was an American author best known for his highly imaginative short stories and novels that blend a poetic style, nostalgia for childhood, social criticism, and an awareness of the hazards of runaway technology.
Thursday, 19 May 2022
Wednesday, 11 May 2022
I dreamed kind Jesus fouled the big-gun gears;
And caused a permanent stoppage in all bolts;
And buckled with a smile Mausers and Colts;
And rusted every bayonet with His tears.
And there were no more bombs, of ours or Theirs,
Not even an old flint-lock, not even a pikel.
But God was vexed, and gave all power to Michael;
And when I woke he'd seen to our repairs.
Wilfred Owen [1893-1918] was a remarkable young man. When he died he was just 25 years old, but his poetry has proved enduring and influential and is among the best known in the English language. He left behind a unique testament to the horrific impact of the First World War on an entire generation of young people.
Here you can find a text analysis of this poem.
Friday, 8 April 2022
Thursday, 31 March 2022
Wednesday, 30 March 2022
Monday, 28 March 2022
King Lear is one of Shakespeare’s greatest tragedies; indeed, some critics have considered it greatest. It is certainly one of the bleakest. The plot and subplot deftly weave together the principal themes of the play, which include reason, madness, blindness of various kinds, and – perhaps most crucially of all – the relationship between a father and his children. Read here.
Lear, the aging king of Britain, decides to step down from the throne and divide his kingdom evenly among his three daughters. First, however, he puts his daughters through a test, asking each to tell him how much she loves him. Goneril and Regan, Lear’s older daughters, give their father flattering answers. But Cordelia, Lear’s youngest and favorite daughter, remains silent, saying that she has no words to describe how much she loves her father. Lear flies into a rage and disowns Cordelia. The king of France, who has courted Cordelia, says that he still wants to marry her even without her land, and she accompanies him to France without her father’s blessing. Read here.
Sunday, 27 March 2022
Monday, 21 March 2022
Sunday, 20 March 2022
The history of English drama began with the elaboration of the ecclesiastical (related to the Church) liturgy (series of rites to be followed in any public worship) in catechistical dialogues.
The plays that survive from the Middle Ages were written for street performances, services in churches and monasteries, entertainment in great halls and outdoor stages, but never for theatres as such.
There was a great variety of performances: cycle plays about biblical history, the so-called morality plays about how to be saved, liturgical plays celebrating important Christian holidays, plays about saints and miracles, and town pageants.