What are the roots that clutch, what branches grow Out of this stony rubbish? Son of man, You cannot say, or guess, for you know only A heap of broken images, where the sun beats, And the dead trees give no shelter, the cricket no relief, And the dry stone no sound of water … Continue reading Eliot’s Waste Land and the crisis of artistic value
Before Jacob Zuma resigned the presidency last Thursday, South Africa was in the news for an altogether less promising reason. The British journalist Katie Hopkins went there two weeks ago, saying it was time to bring to the world’s attention the ongoing murder of white farmers. She and her supporters claim the mainstream media have ignored the subject, because … Continue reading Please, Katie Hopkins and co, keep your culture wars out of South Africa
First published online by Apollo Magazine on 17 August 2017 Today we can’t help but see the Weimar Republic in terms of its tragic denouement: the rise of Hitler and all that followed. But for those living there, the present was already insecure, often brutal, and as the historian Eric Hobsbawm would later recall, ‘unbelievably … Continue reading Portraying A Nation: Germany 1919-33 (Review)
“Opinions,” Walter Benjamin wrote, “are to the gigantic apparatus of social life what oil is to machines. No one goes up to an engine and douses it in machine oil; one applies a little to the hidden spindles and joints one has to know.” Those defending free speech today may recoil from this advice. … Continue reading Does Free Speech Need Boundaries to Survive?