As pictures have become our default communication method, because typing is too annoying and, between Twitter and the need for constant instant information, long written pieces have fallen out of favour, image – meaning how we look, which has to do with what we wear, which has to do, natch, with fashion – has become ever-more important as a means of instant communication. As all public figures, and figures who occasionally go out in public, know. Just consider the rise of the street style stars.
Below the antic surface of family life was an indigestible anxiety. Chris and Carla were lumbered with a sense of not having lived up to their own potential; “both of us were smarter and more imaginative,” Carla said. The Daneses felt that they should treat their own children as “unfinished equals,”
Writing was the centre of our family, the language we spoke, and the love between my parents. Identical ring binders open on their knees, they were often together on the sofa, arguing about sentences, exchanging strings of synonyms as if they were endearments. My father the writer, my mother the editor – theirs are the only skills to which I’ve ever aspired.
From the earliest years of his life, ﬁction served the dual purpose of creating a cast of characters he cared about, and making the cast of his own life care more about him.
He was a terrible mess: a shapeless grey suit, stained and covered, as far as I could work out, in cigarette ash, complemented by a pair of ancient carpet slippers and that face, famously lined with what he called its geological catastrophe. The same face has been described as looking like a wedding cake left out in the rain. But there he was, and he mounted the platform to read – or rather to recite, as he needed no notes. And at that moment there was an involuntary intake of breath from the audience. His flies were undone.
One of the most gruesome hallmarks of 1945 was the systematic use of rape as an act of terror by the victors. The Soviet army was particularly fearsome in this respect, especially in China, where Buruma likens their behavior to that of the sixteenth-century conquistadores. "The surest way to repay humiliation with humiliation is to rape the women, in public, in front of the men, who are helpless... to do anything about it. It is the oldest form of terror in human conflict…. Raping German women, especially those who appeared in front of the emasculated ex-warriors of the 'master-race,' made the despised Untermenschen feel like men again." Male sexual humiliation also underlay the épuration sauvage in France, during which Frenchwomen who had slept with the enemy were particular targets: a new law was even passed, against "national unworthiness," to deal with this source of shame.
Second, some Jews will be unnerved because they don’t want to be told that their Judaism is no longer native. They feel Jewish, after all. Maybe they like lox, or Woody Allen, or Jonathan Safran Foer, or Yiddish expressions, or Adam Sandler’s “Hanukkah Song.” If they feel such comfort with aspects of Jewish culture, why should they feel so alienated from synagogue attendance? And who am I to tell them they are non-native Jews?
It is notable that April’s power over Frank does not lie in the fact that she excites him more than other women sexually—it is, rather, that her cool brand of beauty imbues her, in his mind, with a higher social value than that of his previous lovers. In other words, he is driven, if unconsciously, by an impulse cooler and more calculating than lust.
Alma had a flirtation with Klimt while she was still in her teens – wisely unconsummated as the painter suffered from syphilis – followed by marriage to Mahler, during which she had an affair with the architect Walter Gropius, to whom she returned after her fling with Kokoschka, before leaving him in turn for the novelist Franz Werfel. Her amorous career provides something of a guide to the culture of Vienna at the turn of the century.
“The internet is not what I thought it was 20 years ago,” Williams said. “It’s not a utopian world. It’s essentially like a lot of other major technological revolutions that have taken place in the history of the world.” He compares it to, well, agriculture. “[Agriculture] made life better. It not only got people fed, it freed them up to do many more things — to create art and invent things.” The... rub is that we often take convenience too far. “Look at the technology of agriculture taken to an extreme — where we have industrialized farms that are not good for the environment or animals or nourishment,” he says. “Look at a country full of people who have had such convenient access to calories that they’re addicted, obese, and sick.” He likens this agricultural nightmare to our unhealthy obsession with internet numbers like retweets and likes and followers and friends.
You pity the old ladies. What you don't know is that they pity you even more. They know what a burden you're carrying around, and they know how bad it makes you feel, to think of losing this thing that's actually a crutch that keeps you from maturing and connecting with the real world.
"He echoes what a lot of us feel: sometimes you love to hate Wales," said eminent Welsh poet Menna Elfyn. "I once wrote a poem in the shape of a boomerang because that's how I felt about Wales – ultimately you are pulled back to your roots in a search for a quiet spot."
aterstones had simply lost sight of the old-fashioned art of bookselling: finding out what the customer wants. He tore up Waterstones' rigid centralised directives that meant every shop from Aberdeen to Exeter stocked the same books, as well as the "awful" planograms – photographs of a display table that had to be faithfully recreated in every store. "That makes sense if you are selling shampoo... in Boots, as it makes sense to have all the dandruff shampoos next to each other. It doesn't make sense in a bookshop, if you want interesting bookshops."
Had enough of corner-cutting hotel breakfast bars, economy class and security lines? "Swans: Legends of the Jet Society," by English historian Nicholas Foulkes, will either inspire or infuriate you. The oversize, slipcovered book is full of photo spreads that show how the upper crust traveled from roughly the '50s to the '80s, attending black-tie fetes in sprawling mansions and donning natty nautical ensembles while frolicking on yachts.
Back in France, President Mitterrand offered Alaïa the Legion of Honor, but the designer declined it. “Three times I have refused,” he recounts. “From Mitterrand, from Chirac, and from Sarkozy. Why? Because the most beautiful decoration for me is when women are wearing my clothes.”
As of January, their turn is up. Representative Patrick Kennedy left Congress, and Capitol Hill has, for the first time in more than sixty years, no Kennedy in national elected office.The name will endure, because Jack and Bobby represent American beauty and sadness in their fullest, most iconic expressions. Now that the family is stepping out of power, it is morphing, alongside Marilyn, into a... kind of disembodied American type, as hollow and powerful and irrelevant as the men on the money — fleshless ciphers who stand for the mid-century American ideals of social justice and perpetual national renovation. Ideals that, every day under Obama and the divided Congress, grow less fresh and meaningful. So take a good long look at The Kennedys whenever and wherever it airs. Go see Marilyn Monroe, whoever is playing her. Dream their dreams with them one last time. Because it's time to wake up.
This time there was a marked difference in Kennedy’s reaction to being so close to death. “John seemed fine, oblivious…. He whistled,” Haag writes, “although he did make me promise not to tell his mother.” “But, John, we could have died,” she said, still angry and frightened. “Yeah, Chief, but what a way to go,” he replied, and went back to securing the boat for the night.