The BibleThe Meditations of Marcus AureliusEpictetus Aristotle’s EthicsAnalects of Confucius St Hilaire’s Le Bouddha et sa religion Wake’s Apostolic Fathers Thomas à Kempis’s Imitation of ChristConfessions of St. ...
“Do you enjoy watching people tear themselves apart?” an uncomprehending civilian asks one of the many divorce lawyers during the opening episode of The Split. It was obviously intended to be some sort of put down, but the question might have been better directed to the audience who, me included, were watching this drama mostly on the basis that they would indeed be enjoying watching people tear themselves apart; nothing wrong with it, either, and if it was good enough for Shakespeare then it’s good enough for BBC1.
This show is about two love affairs in one: Rodin's passion for the sculpture of ancient Greece, and his unswerving attachment to the British Museum and the Elgin Marbles, which he first visited in 1881, when he was 40. Have I really read these words in a public exhibition at the British Museum? Has the British Museum entered the 21st Century (our century) with a bang?
The death of the much loved television presenter Dale Winton at his home in London is being treated as “unexplained” by police. Police are making enquiries after the TV personality – who is famed for fronting game show series like Supermarket Sweep and the National Lottery’s In It To Win It – died at his home aged 62 on Wednesday. A spokesperson for the Metropolitan Police told The Independent they do not currently believe the death to be suspicious.
One way in, since you were asking, might be to find words to describe the particular brush strokes that Rose Wylie seems to use. There are few painters more arrestingly odd than Wylie, and it took a while for a big gallery to notice quite how pleasingly odd she was, and what it all amounted to. This is her second show at David Zwirner over in Mayfair, but her first wasn't much of a show at all, so you could call it her first without over-masticating the truth.
Javier Bardem has jumped to the defence of Woody Allen despite allegations the director assaulted his adopted daughter when she was a child. The actor, who starred in Allen's film Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2008), shunned criticism faced by the filmmaker telling French publication Paris Match he's “absolutely not” ashamed to have worked with him. “If there was evidence that Woody Allen was guilty, then yes, I would have stopped working with him, but I have doubts," People reports Bardem as saying.
Dale Winton, who has died aged 62, has been described by fellow celebrities as “kind and mischievous”, “such a gent” and “the perfect host”. Tributes poured in for the TV presenter known for fronting game show series like Supermarket Sweep and the National Lottery‘s In It To Win It. “It is with great sadness that we can confirm the passing of Dale Winton who died at home earlier today," he said in a statement.
Sir David Attenborough has heaped praise on the fact a species of plankton has been named in honour of the BBC’s Blue Planet series. Scientists at University College London (UCL) gave the honour to Sir David and the documentary team for the series which was dubbed "the first ever comprehensive series on the natural history of the world's oceans". It is thought to be the first time a species has been named after a TV show.
The Song of Achilles, Madeline Miller’s re-imagining of The Iliad that positioned the love story between Achilles and Patroclus centre stage, was both a bestseller and won the 2012 Orange Prize for Fiction. With this recipe for success in hand, it’s not surprising that Miller – who teaches high school Latin and Greek – has turned to the same model for her thrilling second novel, Circe, though this time it’s The Odyssey that provides the primary text. The powerful witch Circe, who waylays Odysseus and his men – turning the latter to pigs – on their long voyage home to Ithaca, is set free from the few meagre lines of text she’s afforded by Homer, and transformed here into the heroine of her own magnificent story.
The work of Brazilian painter and collagiste Beatriz Milhazes treads a fine line between the cerebral (and occasionally even visually austere) impulses of modernism, and the untutored, celebratory, colour-saturated excess of folk art as it spills in the direction of carnival. This new show, the first in London for a decade, brings together paintings, collage, sculpture, and a giant tapestry, 16m across, made at the Aubusson factory in France. Every painting in this show, Milhazes said, as her eyes wheeled around the gallery in a slightly intoxicated state of self-bewilderment, is a unique result of a mathematical dream.
A Pattern Language by Christopher Alexander et alThe Illustrated Flora of Britain and Northern Europe by Marjorie Blamey and Christopher Grey WilsonThe Discoverers by Daniel BoorstinThe Wheels of Commerce by Fernand BraudelCrowds and Power by Elias CanettiPrinting and the Mind of Man by John Carter and Percy MuirDancing in the Streets by Barbara EhrenreichRoll Jordan Roll by Eugene GenoveseMother Nature: A History of Mothers, Infants, and Natural Selection by Sarah HardyThe Face of Battle by John Keegan
“I don’t recall seeing him laugh, ever… his apparent inability to do so… is really very sad in a leader, and a little scary in a president,” writes James Comey, the FBI director fired by Donald Trump last May. In his damning new memoir and broadside against the president, he blasts him as a shabby Mafia don who, he thinks, quite possibly cavorted with urinating prostitutes in a Moscow hotel suite in 2013. A Higher Loyalty is peppered with bitchy asides about Comey's former boss, whom he paints as an insecure ignoramus baffled by words like “calligrapher” and who conducts important White House receptions like an episode of The Price Is Right. “I can be stubborn, prideful, overconfident and driven by ego,” Comey admits at the start of the book.
R Lee Ermey, a former Marine who made a career in Hollywood playing hard-nosed military men like Gunnery Sgt. Hartman in Stanley Kubrick's "Full Metal Jacket," has died. Ermey's longtime manager Bill Rogin says he died Sunday morning from pneumonia-related complications. Rage, rage against the dying of the light," Modine wrote, quoting the Dylan Thomas poem.
New York can be frightening just by its size and number of people, or it can be exhilarating for the same reasons. Dutch photographer Richard Koek was compelled to come to New York. Many photographers have to travel in order to be able to photograph.
Such is the sublime achievement of Famalam (street slang for close friends and family, I believe), and its all-black cast. Thus, although I have never knowingly watched a Nollywood movie, the absurdly low production values and abysmal moral values of the Nigerian entertainment industry are sent up reliably every week, courtesy of the Famalam team’s “Fantastic Egusi” studios, which specialises in gaudy graphics and clankingly unconvincing green screen effects. This week’s Egusi production is a knock-off Game of Thrones adventure entitled “Medieval Kingdom of Kingdoms”, and stars “Babatunde Warrington as Icy John”, “Abiola de la Fufu as Kalypso”, “Folarin Soyinka Oyenusi James as tiny Worm” and , er some sort of wolfman thing.
Richard Morgan is an award-winning British street and social documentary photographer. After receiving a PhD from University College London School of Slavonic and East European Studies, and prompted by the Brexit vote in June 2016, Morgan moved to the “heart of Europe”. Shot predominantly on black-and-white film, Morgan’s photographs are characterised by their humour and sadness, by their split-second contradictions and ambivalence.
A 3,000-year-old Egyptian text is being reassessed as one of the first records of a powerful man being accused pf sexual assault. The script, known as Papyrus Salt 124, outlines a list of alleged indiscretions by an important artisan called Paneb, who lived in Thebes in about 1200BC. Paneb was the chief foreman in a community of artisans who built royal tombs in the ancient city.
Scene is a play that doesn’t beat around the bush. It’s an honest and emotional look at the lives of two queer women, Ayo and Flo, in an interracial relationship, and all the difficulties that throws up in a society where black people still experience racism. Scene was written by Lola Olufemi and Martha Krish, and the authenticity of writers who have experience of their characters’ struggles comes across on stage.
“I can sometimes conceive of my childhood as a long journey towards the one-syllable noun I could properly own: Rose,” writes Rose Tremain, explaining that she answered to “Rosie” until she was 20. Rosie: Scenes from a Vanished Life is exactly what the title suggests: no comprehensive autobiography of the celebrated novelist’s life, nor the story of her formation of a young writer (though footnotes do explain the real-life origins of some of her fictional characters, episodes and settings), but rather often dream-like vignettes of a girl – and a world – that no longer exists. Holidays, however, were spent at Linkenholt, her grandparents’ large, gabled manor house in Hampshire, a rural “paradise” for young Rosie and her sister Jo.
London’s East End has come a long way since David Granick, an amateur photographer born and bred in Stepney, decided to unpack his Kodak and snap photos of everyday life. Granick’s photographs offer a glimpse into the backstreets of Whitechapel, Mile End, Aldgate and the Docklands, all scarred with blitz-induced dereliction yet hazy in summer sunlight. Granick lived in East London up to his death in 1980 and handed over his collection of Kodachrome slides, all in full picturesque colour, to Tower Hamlets Local History Library.
Few writers wield italics in speech with quite the same poetic charge as David Mamet. Like smoking slugs from a Tommy gun they amply pepper the chewy dialogue of his new crime thriller, Chicago, the playwright and screenwriter’s first novel in two decades. Mike Hodge is a former First World War fighter pilot and a reporter on the Chicago Tribune whose beat covers the rival sides of town governed by Al Capone and Dion O’Banion’s Irish Mafia.
Tracey’s back. This morning she’s posing for a gaggle of snap-happy photographers, all kneeling in obeisance, inside Barlow’s great Victorian train shed at St Pancras International station. She prinks at her piled up auburn hair. She stands up on a little bar to increase her height somewhat. She sets her face in that snarly, wonky, slightly combative look of hers. Two more minutes, she calls. One more minute! Thirty seconds!
Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life by William FinneganThe Girl on the Train by Paula HawkinsH Is for Hawk by Helen MacdonaldSeveneves by Neal StephensonThe Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead
To recap, this three-part series concerned itself with a family being torn apart, and the inevitable traumas inflicted on all concerned – mum (Paula Malcolmson), abandoned dad (Christopher Eccleston) and the kids – and even on some people not particularly concerned.