On the BBC discussing saving Alfoxton House here in Somerset, and the legacy of Wordsworth and Coleridge…
I have hinted a few times that my adult interest in Coleridge comes from my loe for seafaring tales – and Moby Dick is, at least one of my favorite MOVIES of all time. 😉 Now, I am delighted to find that Ron Howard, who is probably one of my favorite media people out there, is directing a movie version of the real events that inspired Melville, as presented in the very, very fine book In the Heart of the Sea. I am not that much of an avid movie goer, but I implicitly trust Howard to make this great; the cast, helmed by Chris Hemsworth, Cillian Murphy, and apparently, Michelle Fairley, is certainly reasonably high-profile. I’ll be a happy camper if this turns out to be great!
I stumbled over a German newspaper article a few months ago that brings new attention to the vita of our trusted acquaintance, Robespierre.
According to Der Spiegel, it seems very plausible that Robespierre suffered from a rare disease of the inner organs, Sarcoidosis. The effects of the disease are profoundly unpleasant, but not deadly. Still, it sheds some light on Robespierre’s later years, and the many theories that surround the state of his health: With Robespierre, we have a man who was struggling to keep up with his duties, every day, while dealing with a disease neither he nor his contemporaries could possibly understand or heal.
Thank you for your patience, and welcome back to “Your Coleridge”. I am still Rafe, previously posting as “Person from Porlock”, now using my overlord account at WP. Soon, the blog will resume its usual studiousness – albeit with a few changes. For once, my day job allows me less involvement with, well, non-profit endeavors. I will still post once or twice per month, because, little secret, I love this topic, BUT way less frequently than I used to do.
Because of this, here’s my call to arms, I am looking for writers for the Coleridge blog!
Looking for writers for “Your Coleridge! – When and why this should concern you:
- …If you’re an active member in the community of Romantic researchers. I often get notes and PMs from people that ask me to post certain announcements, or talk about an upcoming project. Post them yourselves, right here!
- …If you’re a “Friend of the Blog”, and I have shared material by you earlier on. That means that I consider your contributions interesting, and relevant to the topics we deal with here.
- If you feel you have something meaningful to contribute – like, any thoughts on Coleridge, or his time and age, or his heritage, or…. Again, whatever you consider interesting enough to be shared.
How you become a writer for “Your Coleridge”:
- PM, or email me, at: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Hit me up on Facebook, under my work account: https://www.facebook.com/raphael.pinthus
- Comment on the blog, indicate your interest.
Please note, though, that I don’t give out writer rights blindly. If you’re interested in contributing to the blog, please explain (briefly, three sentences are more than enough), your motivation, and your planned contribution. Please mind that abusing writer rights will lead to their withdrawal.
Why I do this/what’s in it for me
- I like to learn new stuff.
- I want to bring the community closer together, and get to know cool people from all over the world that are connected to my own studies.
- I want to continue blogging about Coleridge, and your contributions will surely serve to motivate me, and to keep me with the general topic.
So, let me know if you think you are fit to become a writer at “Your Coleridge”!
Outside of all media marketing, public imagery, liberal greeting card sales, and so on, Nelson Mandela was most certainly one of the men of the century. One of the great teachers, one of the greatest rolemodels.
I think the image we have of him is distorted, though: This man was not valuable to mankind as an African quasi-Dalai Lama; this man was worth looking up to because he was a fighter, a grinder with balls of steel. This is how I look at him, at least.
There’s this anecdote about Mandela reciting the famous Invictus poem to other prisoners during his incarceration on Robben Island; I am not sure if it’s true or not. It connects Mandela’s life, sort of, at least, to what I do on this blog, and so here I present you, dear readers, William Ernest Henley. Farewell, Mr Mandela!
“Invictus”, by William Ernest Henley
Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.
Took me a while longer to get adjusted back to a life of regular blogging. Sorry, folks, but here we go again…
Never was a story so ridiculously overused as Romeo and Juliet, from Underworld to Twilight, to the slightly watchable Leonardo diCaprio surfer movie from the late 90s.
This time, we get a movie that is slightly closer to Shakespeare’s original play, even though apparently still a movie aiming at a teenage audience. While this is hopefully not as obvious a crapfest as, I don’t know, Ichabod Crane being a timetravelling alien hunter, and while the supporting cast looks stellar, I can yet see the cheese dripping.
Joss Whedon’s interpretation of Much Ado About Nothing, to the contrary, though set in present day, seems much more interesting to me. My personal Oscar might go to another movie, though, even though the trailer is not out yet: Michael Almereyda and Ethan Hawke team up for more Shakespeare, after their superb rendition of Hamlet (oh, I am too lazy now to post the trailer, just google it.)
This time, it’s Cymbeline.
From what I have learned so far, this edition is not up for sale, but, while I am admittedly not much of a collector, this one has piqued my interest:
The art is superb, and most importantly, a fresh departure from Doré, and Peake, something much needed in the sometimes overly cheesy treatment of the Rime.
I will eventually contact Pentagram directly, but if you happen to know if this item can be purchased somehow, let me know!
Graham Davidson, of The Friends of Coleridge – the largest literary circle in the world dedicated to the heritage to the person to which this blog was dedicated -more on them later 🙂 – what a sentence, said the demon of the parataxis – has asked me – to return to our main clause – to ask YOU about something:
So, there’s a book in the works that could, on many levels, deeply affect my own, and perhaps your approach to Coleridge’s life and times – a book on Mr C’s father, Reverend John Coleridge.
The problem is just, there doesn’t seem to be a market for it – in that, only a few hundred have pledged to buy the book upon release, and that complicates publication (we’re talking about a price of 75 £ for a 600-page tome, no less).
So, Graham asks you to contact him under http://www.friendsofcoleridge.com/if you’re interested in purchasing a copy of this extremely small, extremely limited print run…
And now a few reasons as to why I think you should be interested!!!
- First of, no, I am not affiliated with the Friends of Coleridge; I am a member, yeah, but I am not benefitting from anything they do, except that in my German cave, I read their bi-annual magazine with great interest. 🙂
- No, I don’t get money, fame, or whatever the hell you might think I get from the book. 🙂
But now, where was I… Ah, the book itself!
The reasons that I have, well, I think I will need a whole second post to detail them. In sum, and to keep this post readable, and at least somewhat interesting, the one thing that waters down the research of Romantic poetry is the tendency to idealize the people that we talk about.
And that makes rational discourse about the writers of the 1800s oh so difficult to bear.
And how can this book help, you say? Or, how do I, without the usual banter, expect it to help?
Because a writer’s formation, his education, tell me whatever you want, but it begins with his parents. So, I wager, if we understand the parents better, that saves us zillions of utterly nonsensical critical literature of the kind that has the words “reflect” or “Bakhtinian” in the title.
So, I need this book, because I love to think of Coleridge as a genius, but would rather like to hear what children’s stories he was more likely to be told, or what books were in his parents meager bookshelf. Or, in general, to have a real idea who his parents were, not just a summary from a biography that gets lost in its own structure.
And, without all my usual banter, and in all seriousness, that’s why you need this book, too!
Go to http://www.friendsofcoleridge.com/, and send them a mail, if you like! This might be a nic coffee table book alone… Or it might be a milestone. I bet on the latter. 🙂
This book, it must be published!