Monthly Archives: September 2014

The city that never was

An exhibition in Berlin exploring Albert Speer’s grandiose plans for Germania, the rebuilt capital of the Third Reich. [Via SlowBerlin]

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Being Stephen Fry

Everything he touched, etc, etc… Lynn Barber reviews [£] his latest volume of memoirs: Thanks to the success of his musical, Me and My Girl (1984), he was rich from his mid-twenties and able to buy a large house in … Continue reading

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Beautiful game

“They played 10 overs each of a Twenty20 game before clouds stopped play.” Setting a cricket altitude record on Mount Kilimanjaro. Photo by @petermartell via @afpphoto.  

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Thinking the worst

The scandal that changed journalism: a fascinating Matt Bai article on how Gary Hart’s demise (which now seems ancient history) marked a watershed in political reporting. From that point onwards everything in a candidate’s life became fair game. We’ve been … Continue reading

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Mussolini’s suburb

The Palazzo della Civiltà Italiana, Rome, also known as “The Square Colosseum”. I took this photo on holiday this summer while exploring the district, south of the city centre, known as EUR (Esposizione Universale Roma). Strange, very strange. I don’t imagine … Continue reading

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Considering these precursors, a debate has arisen about which country spawned the earliest fascist movement. France is a frequent candidate. Russia has been proposed. Hardly anyone puts Germany first. It may be that the earliest phenomenon that can be functionally … Continue reading

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“And as I laughed I thought: ‘Dead right!’” Diana Athill, 96, on how we think about our own mortality. Subsidized by the State, French newspapers are losing money faster than you can say “Existentialism”. Nicotine and sweat and songs from the … Continue reading

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The Scottsboro Boys revisited

My Sunday Times feature [£] on how  the Kander & Ebb musical draws on the tortured history of minstrelsy: As a young man, Kander had directed blackface shows at a summer camp in Wisconsin. The whole point of using minstrelsy to … Continue reading

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When Tony met Gaga

And this is me in the Sunday Times [also £], trying to see the bright side of the Tony Bennett/Lady Gaga collaboration. The case for the defence is laid out in full in this Jazz Wax post, which argues that Gaga reaches … Continue reading

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“For every working journalist in America there are now 4.6 PR people.” The FT on the blurring of the line between news and public relations. Now that he is 80, Leonard Cohen has started smoking again. Should the elderly stop … Continue reading

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