Historical

Courageous quests: Keats, art and refugees

The great sensualist Romantic poet John Keats arrived in Rome in late 1820 with his friend, painter Joseph Severn This was not to be a grand tour of Italy in the typical sense. Amanda Frances Johnson  The Conversation Fortune did not smile on Keats’s lungs or his bank balance; one year later he was dead. Passionate letters from sweetheart Fanny Brawne lay unopened and were buried with him, as he requested, in the tranquil oasis of the English Cemetery in ... Read More »

Turkey’s Genocide Denial: Four Narratives

Turkey still denies the Armenian Genocide, during which 1.5 million Armenians perished. The Turkish state does not have just one policy or rhetoric concerning it. One could argue that there are four main narratives in Turkey concerning the genocide. Uzay Bulut  The Armenian Weekly Narrative One: We Did Not Slaughter Armenians; Armenians Slaughtered Us Accusing Armenians of being mass murderers and the actual perpetrators of genocide is a popular myth in Turkey. Last year, a public stage play that depicted ... Read More »

Lost Languages Discovered in One of the World’s Oldest Continuously Run Libraries

The centuries-old texts were erased, and then written over, by monks at Saint Catherine’s Monastery in Egypt Brigit Katz Smithsonian Saint Catherine’s Monastery, a sacred Christian site nestled in the shadow of Mount Sinai, is home to one of the world’s oldest continuously used libraries. Thousands of manuscripts and books are kept there – some of which contain hidden treasures. Now, as Jeff Farrell reports for the Independent, a team of researchers is using new technology to uncover texts that ... Read More »

The Hajj and the Struggle for Islamic Hegemony

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The ethnic Sunni-Shiite rift parallels the Saudi-Iranian political rift, the Wahhabi-Muslim Brotherhood ideological rift, and the historic rift between Turkey and Saudi Arabia. Lt. Col. (res.) Dr. Mordechai Kedar BESA Tensions over Islamic hegemony arising from these rifts are likely to come to a boil at the 2017 Hajj. Wednesday, August 23, 2017, is the first day of Zhu–l-Hijjat, the Muslim month in which two important events take place: the pilgrimage to Mecca, one of the most central ... Read More »

Ben Quilty: it’s time to acknowledge our colonial terrorism

For the past few days I have listened to people I admire and people I don’t, talk about the challenge of facing up to our colonial past. Ben Quilty The Age One comment that struck me the hardest on radio was that “none of Australia’s first Europeans were as bad as their Confederate counterparts in the United States”. John Batman is widely known as the founder of Melbourne. He makes the American Confederates look friendly. As a bounty hunter in ... Read More »

Rasmussen scrutinizes not only Hume and Smith’s personal relationship, but also the indispensable part that they played in shaping the Scottish Enlightenment.

Rasmussen scrutinizes not only Hume and Smith’s personal relationship, but also the indispensable part that they played in shaping the Scottish Enlightenment. Jacob Heilbrunn The National Interest Dennis C. Rasmussen, The Infidel and the Professor: David Hume, Adam Smith, and the Friendship that Shaped Modern Thought (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2017), 336 pp., $29.95. IN AUGUST 1776, a large crowd gathered in front of a grand neoclassical mausoleum. It was designed by Scotland’s greatest architect, Robert Adam, and stood on Calton Hill in ... Read More »

Turkey Uncensored: Will Turkey Succeed in Turning the Hagia Sophia Into a Mosque?

The Islamist Felicity Party (Turkish: Saadet Partisi) organized the “Great Jerusalem demonstration” on July 30 in Istanbul. This event attended by thousands of people who condemned Israel following the recent incidents on the Temple Mount. Uzay Bulut Philos Project The demo quickly turned into an anti-Israel and anti-Jew hate fest in which several Islamic activists delivered harsh speeches against the Jewish State. Mustafa Koylu, the head of the Cansuyu Association, said, “You have to do one thing so that those who do not see ... Read More »

1974: The second Turkish invasion and the betrayal of Cyprus

14 August marked the passage of 43 years since Turkey launched the second of its two invasions of the Republic of Cyprus. In contrast to the position when Turkey launched its first invasion on 20 July 1974, five days after an unlawful coup in Nicosia, Turkey had no pretext to justify its second invasion and the forcible transfers, deportations and other acts of ethnic cleansing which followed; both the junta in Athens and its short-lived puppet regime in Nicosia had ... Read More »

Turks celebrate 1964 napalm bombing of Cyprus

Cyprus is Turkish, after all. Turks can do whatever they want there. They can even celebrate dropping napalm on Greeks and slaughtering them. Uzay Bulut Arutz Sheva On August 8, Muslim Turkish Cypriots and illegal settlers from Turkey celebrated the 53rd anniversary of Turkey’s napalm bombing of Greek Cypriot civilians in the Turkish-occupied enclave of Kokkina in Cyprus. Mustafa Akıncı, the president of the..In August 1964, Turkish warplanes dropped napalm bombs on Kokkina in the Tillyria peninsula, hitting residential areas ... Read More »

The ancient Japanese technique that rewires your brain to live in the present moment

The idea of trying to focus on one thing at a time can seem impossible for some people; and in fact, it is impossible for some people. Hack Spirit With more and more people suffering from attention deficit disorders, busy demands on their lives at work, more responsibilities than ever on the home front, and bills constantly piling up, it’s a wonder anyone can get anything done… Many people shell out thousands of dollars to work with career coaches and ... Read More »

Home Fire by Kamila Shamsie review – a contemporary reworking of Sophocles

The story of Antigone plays out in the modern world, in this Man Booker-longlisted exploration of the clash between society, family and religious faith Natalie Haynes The Guardian In Sophocles’s play Antigone a teenage girl is forced to choose between obeying the law of the land (her uncle, the king of Thebes, has forbidden the burial of a traitor) and religious law (the traitor is Antigone’s brother, Polynices, who has declared war on his city, and killed his own brother, ... Read More »

Watch The Exhilarating Full Trailer For A Hand-Painted Film About Van Gogh

Get a glimpse of the gorgeous upcoming biopic exploring Vincent van Gogh’s mysterious death. Priscilla Frank HuffPost What went on in the blazing imagination of iconic post-Impressionist painter Vincent van Gogh? A biopic seven years in the making attempts to offer a glimpse into the revolutionary artist’s beautiful mind using the medium he preferred: paint. Painter Dorota Kobiela and filmmaker Hugh Welchman are the guiding forces behind “Loving Vincent,” which is reportedly the first entirely hand-painted feature film ever made. ... Read More »

The Most Famous Museums in the World

If you’ve ever tried to snap a pic of the Mona Lisa at the Louvre, or lie under the blue whale at the American Museum of Natural History, then you know just how much people love museums. by Caitlin Morton Condé Nast Traveler But which of the world’s famed cultural spots are the most famous? Just ask the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA), an an international, nonprofit organization that ranks attractions by attendance every year in their Museum Index. The most ... Read More »

How to fight racism, or why we all need to mourn my aunt

My aunt was buried last Friday, the last of her generation in my family. We were not close but out of respect for her son, my cousin, I went along to the service. Jenna Price Brisbane Times Jewish services for the dead are Spartan yet comforting. There are no endless eulogies, just a brief summary of the facts as we know them. My aunt and her sister were marched to Ravensbruck sometime in 1943. I never knew much of the ... Read More »

‘Dunkirk’ and the West’s myopia about World War II

“Dunkirk,” the taut blockbuster by British-born filmmaker Christopher Nolan, is one of the runaway successes of the summer, grossing more than $300 million worldwide since its July 21 release. Ishaan Tharoor The Washington Post It depicts the harrowing May 1940 evacuation of the British Expeditionary Force, which had been trapped by the rampant Nazi military at the French port of Dunkerque.In their hour of desperate need, more than 300,000 British soldiers were rescued with the aid of a motley civilian flotilla of fishing ... Read More »

More than Myth: Ancient DNA Reveals Roots of 1st Greek Civilizations

The Minoans and Mycenaeans were the first advanced, literate civilizations to appear in Europe. They left archaeologists with a wealth of material to pore over: palaces, golden jewelry, wall paintings, writing (some of it still undeciphered) and, of course, burials, in what is today Greece. Megan Gannon LiveScience Now, new research on Bronze Age skeletons could shed light on the origins of the Minoan and Mycenaean people. The study of ancient DNA suggests that there is genetic continuity between the ... Read More »