Author Archives: tom


I vowed not to purchase any books during 2010, and thus far it’s proved to be liberating. I don’t only mean this in terms of the re-discovered time freed from leisurely browsing (on- and off-line) and unspent dollars of course, but more significantly in terms of the erection of boundaries and its surprising effects. We […]

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Public Service Announcement

Slavoj Žižek was featured on BBC Radio 3’s Night Waves recently. Sadly, the programme is no longer available to listen again. However, you can still access the 13 minute interview with Rana Mitter via the Radio 3 “Arts & Ideas” podcast. Alternatively, you can download the episode directly from here. Our favourite Slovene is featured […]

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Ben Kingsley on the BBC

I need your help. Ben Kingsley was interviewed on the BBC Programme HardTalk sometime during 1999. The link to the programme is here. Kingsley recounted an episode that took place while filming (Schindler’s List?) in Poland, when he and members of the film crew found themselves in a bar. While in the bar, they were […]

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This is not a joke

I’m having some trouble with my library. This country’s high humidity – the diurnal range is in the high 90s (early mornings) to around 60% (late afternoons), while the mean is around is 84% practically all year round – poses a challenge in maintaining books in their desired condition. Off-the-shelf dehumidifiers don’t help. I searched […]

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Stanley Cavell, David Harvey

Berkeley has a site which profiles Stanley Cavell (“A philosopher goes to the movies: conversation with Stanley Cavell”, located here); it is one of the stronger parts of an uneven series entitled Conversations with History. Stimulating, and equally engaging, is David Harvey’s video lecture series Reading Marx’s Capital – 13 classes / lectures, each approximating […]

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That thing’s blocking my view

[It] is going to be big, bold and beautiful. It will be big standing at a towering height of 178 metres, bold in concept, designed by renowned architect Dr Kisho Kurokawa, and a beautiful architectural piece That’s what a Very Important Man (VIM) once said. Aforementioned VIM then proceeds to draw parallels between this “beautiful […]

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a day in Munich

The old adage holds that the journey home is the best – sweetest, shortest, slowest, swiftest. Tonight’s journey – via München and Amsterdam – will be all that, of course. After a week away from home, the past 2 days have been different. There is a sense of heightened awareness of what is going on, […]

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four days in Brussels

A walk down the deserted Boulevard Adolphe Max, pass ill-fitting, now out of place hotels, leads to the local Waterstone’s, populated exclusively by English-language titles but manned by multilingual staff keen to impress their knowledge upon we Sunday strays. The entrance recalls one of the masses of  remainder-stocked, clearance stores around Tottenham Court Road, but […]

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The Boy in the striped pyjamas

My wife and I saw The Boy in the striped pyjamas last night. We left in silence at the film’s end. But we carried different kinds of silences. Her’s was a silence waiting to be broken, once her grappling of her emotional response found its expression. Mine was a silence borne out of something else […]

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Tell me, how amazing is MIT’s Open CourseWare initiative? Amazing. Their Literature section is quite impressive. And these are some of the courses which include audio and / or video elements.

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