Category Archives: Culture

Book Review Podcasts: Nicholas Buccola (“The Fire Is Upon Us”) Discusses A Great Intellectual Debate In 1965 (NY Times)

The Fire Is Upon Us Nicholas BuccolaIn 1965, James Baldwin, by then internationally famous, faced off against William F. Buckley Jr., one of the leading voices of American conservatism, in a debate hosted by the Cambridge Union in England. The debate proposition before the house was: “The American dream is at the expense of the American Negro.”

Nicholas Buccola’s “The Fire Is Upon Us” tells the story of that intellectual prizefight as well as the larger story of Buckley’s and Baldwin’s lives.

 

Celebrity Documentaries: “Very Ralph” On HBO Profiles 50 Years Of Ralph Lauren Fashion (HBO)

From a The Cut online review:

Lauren lived his life as a character in his own movie, and his clothes allowed his customers to do the same. Some days he was Rick from Casablanca, dressed in a double-breasted white dinner jacket, and other days he was a cowboy, wearing jeans and cowboy boots with a blazer.

Ralph Lauren is “zee American designer,” says Karl Lagerfeld in Very Ralph, a new HBO documentary on the Bronx-born fashion icon. Coming from zee most prolific French designer of the 20th and 21st centuries, that’s saying a lot. But the film, which premiers today, supports that statement, illustrating with interviews and archival footage how he’s successfully sold an American fantasy to a global audience for over 50 years.

To read more: https://www.thecut.com/2019/11/ralph-lauren-documentary-very-ralph-hbo.html

Movie Nostalgia: The Grooming Habits Of James Bond 007 In The Early Films

From a Gentleman’s Journal online article:

79b6e821de28787d8d2f7cff79febddc“He went into the bathroom and had an ice-cold shower and washed his hair with Pinaud Elixir, that prince among shampoos, to get the dust of the roads out of it…”

“There was everything in the bathroom — Floris Limes Bath Essence for men and Guerlain bathcubes for women.”

In Ian Fleming’s From Russia, With Love, there is a terrific exchange between James Bond and Tatiana Romanova — a Soviet corporal who takes up with the British agent. On a sleeper train out of Turkey, the two are readying themselves for the day ahead and Romanova, noticing that 007 doesn’t wear cologne, asks him why this is.

“We wash,” replies Bond, drier than a martini. And this clean-cut, neatly clipped and slightly stinging response sums up the superspy’s attitude to his grooming routine. It’s a thoroughly English approach; leaning on trusted, heritage brands — and not preoccupied with overly strong scents or convoluted bits of kit. So this got us thinking: if a pared-back, simple grooming routine was good enough for MI6’s finest, surely it should be good enough for us?

To read more: https://www.thegentlemansjournal.com/article/we-followed-james-bonds-grooming-routine-for-a-week-this-is-what-happened/

Trends In Healthy Living: Copenhagen, Denmark Is The “Global Exemplar Of Bicycle Culture”

From a New York Times online article:

Copenhagen Cyclists Betina Garcia for The New York TimesCopenhagen’s legendary bicycle setup has been propelled by all of these aspirations, but the critical element is the simplest: People here eagerly use their bicycles — in any weather, carrying the young, the infirm, the elderly and the dead — because it is typically the easiest way to get around.

Copenhagen’s status as a global exemplar of bicycle culture owes to the accommodating flatness of the terrain and the lack of a Danish auto industry, which might have hijacked the policy levers. Trouble also played a role.

Nearly half of all journeys to school and work in Copenhagen take place on bicycles. And people like it that way.

The global oil shock of the 1970s lifted the price of gasoline, making driving exorbitantly costly. A dismal economy in the 1980s brought the city to the brink of bankruptcy, depriving it of finance to build roads, and making bicycle lanes an appealingly thrifty alternative.

To read more: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/09/world/europe/biking-copenhagen.html

New Science Podcasts: Archaeologists Study Slavery In Caribbean, “WEIRD” Psychology

scimag_pc_logo_120_120 (2)Most historical accounts of slavery were written by colonists and planters. Researchers are now using the tools of archaeology to learn more about the day-to-day lives of enslaved Africans—how they survived the conditions of slavery, how they participated in local economies, and how they maintained their own agency. Host Sarah Crespi talks with Contributing Correspondent Lizzie Wade about a Caribbean archaeology project based on St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands and launched by the founders of the Society for Black Archaeologists that aims to unearth these details. Watch a related video here.

Sarah also talks with Jonathan Schulz, a professor in the Department of Economics at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, about a role for the medieval Roman Catholic Church in so-called WEIRD psychology—western, educated, industrialized, rich, democratic. The bulk of psychology experiments have used participants that could be described as WEIRD, and according to many psychological measures, WEIRD subjects tend to have some extreme traits, like a stronger tendency toward individuality and more friendliness with strangers. Schulz and colleagues used historical maps and measures of kinship structure to tie these traits to strict marriage rules enforced by the medieval Catholic Church in Western Europe. Read related commentary.

 

World Affairs Podcasts: French President In China, Demographics In Texas And Public Groping In Japan (The Economist)

The Intelligence EconomistThis week our correspondent joined Emmanuel Macron on his visit to China. The French president is stretching his diplomatic wings, and has some striking views about Europe’s place in the world. The state of Texas has been reliably Republican for decades, but its demographics are changing; could it at last turn blue? And how Japan is dealing with its epidemic of public-transport groping.

Cinematic Short Films: “The Heartbeats Of Memory” Directed By Nono Ayuso (2019)

Filmed, Edited and Directed by: NONO AYUSO

The Heartbeats Of Memory Cinematic Poem Short Film By NONO AYUSO 2019

The Memory: Roberta Coppa
VO Artist: Chloe Dunn

“It starts with a journey.
Imagine a film that captures every instant
And for each frame, a memory.”

The Heartbeats Of Memory Cinematic Poem Short Film By NONO AYUSO 2019

Music and Sound Design: Paulo Gallo

Grading: Fran Cóndor
Compositing and VFX: Damian Todd
Graphic Design: Nico Ordozgoiti

Shot in Super 8 in Japan. April-June 2019.

The Heartbeats Of Memory Cinematic Poem Short Film By NONO AYUSO 2019

Website: https://nono.film/