Category Archives: Philosophical, Psychological & Historical Considerations

Bertrand Russell complained about one of his grandmother’s preferred puns, “What is mind? Doesn’s matter. What is matter? Never mind.” And yet we, as a species, continuously attempt to fathom the mystery of the mind, with the help of philosophy, psychology and history. Shakespeare has given us much food for thought on all three, as well as music for those who love the music of words.

Shakespeare on Brexit

The championship of exaggerations is over and the first dust of time is settling on the Brexit referendum. In the circumstances, it may be somewhat amusing to evaluate the reactions rather than the results. Considering that opinions are formed in … Continue reading

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Orlando’s Horror

Twill vex thy soul to hear what I shall speak; for I must talk of murders… Titus Andronicus, act 5, sc. 1 I will not repeat comments and reflections on the Orlando massacre. Rather, I will follow an imaginary trail … Continue reading

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Chicago Burning

“…a man’s life’s no more than to say ‘One.’ ” Hamlet, act V, sc. 1 During the recent Memorial Day week-end in Chicago, eight people were killed, and at least 57 more wounded. For somewhat  folkloristically funereal reasons, it is … Continue reading

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Spectacle, Ornaments and Marionettes

“Thus ornament is but the guiled shore To a most dangerous sea; the beauteous scarf Veiling an Indian beauty; in a word, The seeming truth which cunning times put on To entrap the wisest.” (Merchant of Venice, act 3, sc. … Continue reading

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Victory Day Memories

…memory, the warder of the brain, shall be a fume… Macbeth, act 1, sc. 7 Seventy-one years ago, May 9, 1945, was Victory Day. Nazi Germany officially signed the unconditional surrender to the Soviet Union. For Russia, WWII became the … Continue reading

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Methinks I am a prophet…

No prophet will I trust, if she prove false. (King Henry VI, part 1, act 1, sc. 2)   It’s not even a question of reading “the book of fate and seeing the revolutions of the times…” (1), or of … Continue reading

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The Bay of Pigs

What seest thou else in the dark backward and abysm of time? The Tempest, act 1. During this April 2016, an anniversary escaped the notice of most – 55 years have run their course since the Bay of Pigs invasion … Continue reading

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Stalin, Opinions & the Video Series

Good my Lord, be cured Of this diseased opinion, and betimes, For it is most dangerous.” (1)   The recent video production in the series “Historical Sketches” had to do with five episodes covering the life of Stalin. The very … Continue reading

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What’s in a name? Nagorno-Karabakh

… that which we call a rose By any other name would smell as sweet… On this point I would disagree with Juliet. If, rather than ‘rose’ the flower were called, say, ‘globularia’, the perfume would be the same, but … Continue reading

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Parallel Departures

… After life’s fitful fever he sleeps well. (Macbeth, act 3, sc. 2) Sometimes during the first century AD, the Greek biographer Plutarch decided to compare in tandem the lives of famous men, and to highlight their virtues or vices. … Continue reading

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