In Defence of Soviet Art: A Reply to Jonathan Jones

Beat theWhites Red wedgeThe centenary of the Russian Revolution has opened in an appropriately explosive fashion, with Donald Trump’s first raft of vile executive orders provoking international protest on a gargantuan scale. It is fair to say that tensions are high, and widespread anger is the order of the day. However, all of this rage pales in significance next to the righteous fury of a lone Guardian art critic . . .

400 Years Since the Death of Shakespeare: A Revolutionary in Literature—Part Four

Image result for ShakespeareThere are at least a quarter of a million words in the English language—although some estimates suggest a far higher numberperhaps a million or more. Whatever the true figure might be, it is clear that English has more words than any other European language. This is the result of its peculiar historical evolution.

400 Years Since the Death of Shakespeare: A Revolutionary in Literature—Part Three

Sir Francis Walsingham by John De Critz the Elder - Public DomainThe age of Shakespeare was also the age of Machiavelli. That brilliant Italian philosopher was the man who first explained that the conquest and maintenance of political power has nothing to do with morality. In Shakespeare’s plays, particularly the history plays, we have an eloquent description in literature of what Machiavelli demonstrated in political philosophy.

400 Years Since the Death of Shakespeare: A Revolutionary in Literature—Part Two

luther windowThe England of Shakespeare, like the Spain of Cervantes, was in the throes of a great social and economic revolution. This was a very turbulent and painful change, which thrust a large number of people into poverty and created in the towns a large class of dispossessed lumpenproletarian elements.

400 Years Since the Death of Shakespeare: A Revolutionary in Literature—Part One

Shakespeare - Public DomainShakespeare transformed English literature, reaching heights that before were unheard of and which have not been reached subsequently. Like a blazing meteorite he shot across the firmament and cast a glorious light on an entire period in our history. His impact on world literature was arguably greater than any other writer. His works have been translated into every language. For centuries after his death his star has not dimmed but shines as brightly as on the first day.