Telling It Like It Is
TheTLS (Times Literary Supplement)
by george.berridge@the-tls.co.uk
21h ago
Richard Smyth remembers the equanimity and attentiveness of Ronald Blythe, who died this month at 100; and Mary C. Flannery considers the enduring appeal of Alison, the Wife of Bath. The post Telling It Like It Is appeared first on TLS ..read more
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January 2023
TheTLS (Times Literary Supplement)
by pablo.scheffer@the-tls.co.uk
2d ago
In January, Geoffrey Robertson KC explained how Russian oligarchs abuse British law to limit free speech; Katherine Gunn reassessed the canonical status of Katherine Mansfield; Gabriel Roberts showed what literature can teach us about biodiversity loss; Ari Shavit considered Benjamin Netanyahu’s bleak vision of Israel; Nicola Shulman examined the Hamlet in Prince Harry. Here are some highlights from the month: A town called Sue: How Russian oligarchs use British courts to close down investigative journalism Netanyahu in his own words: A divisive politician’s harsh philosophy of survival Findin ..read more
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Crossword 1461
TheTLS (Times Literary Supplement)
by george.berridge@the-tls.co.uk
2d ago
A PDF of this crossword can be found here The post Crossword 1461 appeared first on TLS ..read more
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In this week’s TLS
TheTLS (Times Literary Supplement)
by george.berridge@the-tls.co.uk
2d ago
“The case of a poet trying his hand at the novel is, sadly, rather frequent”, wrote Filippo Donini in the TLS in 1973. “Here we have, for once, a novelist suddenly turning poet: let us praise him and thank him as he deserves.” Donini was not reviewing a collection of poems; he was reviewing the novel Le città invisibili (Invisible Cities) by Italo Calvino, with its “beautiful formal speeches” delivered by Marco Polo, “a nostalgic explorer who knows that all cities are alike, but none as beautiful as Venice”. Precision was extremely important to Calvino, as Tim Parks makes clear this week in hi ..read more
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Sex, drugs and chilango
TheTLS (Times Literary Supplement)
by pablo.scheffer@the-tls.co.uk
2d ago
Y tu mamá también is now such an iconic film that it’s assumed everyone understands the title. (For those who don’t, one of the protagonists is listing his sexual conquests: “and your mum, too”, is the clincher.) Remarkably, this was one of only twenty-one films made in Mexico in 2000. Its success helped to increase that number tenfold by 2019. Director Alfonso Cuarón and cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki, old school friends and long-time collaborators, are Hollywood royalty now. Protagonists Gael García Bernal and Diego Luna became international stars. Yet the cast and crew still regard the fi ..read more
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Taxis and suitcases
TheTLS (Times Literary Supplement)
by pablo.scheffer@the-tls.co.uk
2d ago
In “The Suitcase”, the first story in Meron Hadero’s debut collection, A Down Home Meal for These Difficult Times, the protagonist’s Ethiopian relatives argue over which of them should get to include gifts to their relations in the United States in an already overweight suitcase that the protagonist has brought on her visit expressly for this purpose. “An empty suitcase”, Hadero writes, “opened up a rare direct link between two worlds.” Both worlds – the US and Ethiopia – are at the heart of the fifteen stories that comprise this precisely written and thoughtfully constructed collection. The U ..read more
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Patience zero
TheTLS (Times Literary Supplement)
by pablo.scheffer@the-tls.co.uk
2d ago
Michael Stein’s Accidental Kindness is several kinds of book at once. It’s a memoir of sorts: Stein reflects on several situations in which, as a primary care physician, he felt that he had failed in kindness towards one patient or another. On one occasion his frustration with a less than compliant patient expressed itself in a cruel comment; another time, he didn’t wholly respect the wishes of a dying man to be allowed to die. These episodes were so troubling that, eventually, he took a month off from his practice to investigate their circumstances (their etiology, one might say). But despite ..read more
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Spiritual anaesthesia
TheTLS (Times Literary Supplement)
by pablo.scheffer@the-tls.co.uk
2d ago
Three and a half years after a shocking discovery, my heart remained stubbornly broken. Self-help websites were not short of advice: go out, travel, meet new people, throw yourself into work, take up new hobbies. All logical enough, but each suggestion felt almost impossible to put into practice. It was a situation almost guaranteed to cause self-destruction, and I was on the brink of that when A Gift of Joy and Hope came through the letterbox. I needed all the joy and hope I could get, so was keen to discover what the gift contained. The book is a collection of about 180 extracts from the add ..read more
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Flaming pigs
TheTLS (Times Literary Supplement)
by pablo.scheffer@the-tls.co.uk
2d ago
Adrienne Mayor’s Greek Fire, Poison Arrows, and Scorpion Bombs, now in an expanded second edition, is a thought-provoking exploration of how biological and chemical weapons were used in the ancient world. Its main focus is on the Mediterranean and Near East, but Mayor also includes examples from the Indian subcontinent and China, drawing interesting comparisons between the different (and similar) techniques used in different societies for transforming the natural world into deadly weapons. There is plenty here on the lethal ways to use poisonous plants such as wolfsbane and hellebore, as well ..read more
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Light and shadows
TheTLS (Times Literary Supplement)
by pablo.scheffer@the-tls.co.uk
2d ago
Kiki, “Queen of Montparnasse” (born, rather more prosaically, Alice Prin), grew up in poverty with her grandmother in Châtillon-sur-Seine, in the Côte d’Or department, and was sent to Paris at the age of thirteen to help her mother earn a living. Her straitened circumstances improved when, a few years later, she began to frequent La Rotonde, a café on the Boulevard du Montparnasse. Here she met and modelled for artists such as Serge Mendjisky, Moïse Kisling, Jules Pascin and Tsuguharu Foujita: “The painters adopted me. End of sad times”, she later wrote. She also sang in cafés and nightclubs ..read more
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