Category Archives: Literature

October 22

Sartre Vs. Nobel. The Arguments Behind the Refusal

 On the 22nd of October 1964, Jean-Paul Sartre (1905-1980) was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature and refused it. The ceremony held by the Swedish Academy in Stockholm was not attended by the writer. In a public announcement, printed in Le Figaro on the 23rd of October 1964, Sartre expressed his regret at the scandal […]

October 21

Was Don Quixote Kafka’s Alter Ego?

On the 21st of October 1917 Franz Kafka wrote a brief parable The Truth about Sancho Panza. Its original title “Die Wahrheit über Sancho Pansa” was given by Max Brod, who later published the text in the volume “Beim Bau der chinesischen Mauer”.  The parable is composed of only two sentences, yet its meaning is […]

October 19

Quincunx, Electricity, Computer… The Mastermind of Sir Thomas Browne

Sir Thomas Browne was an English author of numerous medical, religious, scientific and esoteric works. He was born on the 19th of October 1605 and died exactly 77 years later on the 19th of October 1682. This numerological symmetry seems in his case more of a necessity than a coincidence for it supports his theory […]

October 14

The Tale of the Real Winnie Bear

On the 14th of October 1926, Alan Alexander Milne’s iconic collection of children’s stories Winnie-the-Pooh was first published by Methuen in London. The story of the actual brown bear which inspired Milne’s cartoon teddy is a lot less known, even though it has been the subject of books, such as  Real Winnie: A One-of-a-kind Bear (2003) by Val Shushkewich, or even […]

October 11

Piaf and Cocteau: Les Enfants Terribles

When I write I disturb. When I make a film I disturb. When I paint I disturb. When I exhibit my paintings I disturb, and I disturb if I don’t. I have a knack for disturbing. (Jean Cocteau, Diary of an Unknown) On the 11th of October 1963, a French poet, novelist, designer, playwright, artist, […]

October 07

Edgar Allan Poe: Death in a Gutter

On the 7th of October 1849 Edgar Allan Poe died in Baltimore, America. He was one of the world’s most renowned crime and horror writers, credited also with inventing the detective and science fiction genres. Poe was the first Victorian writer who had an ambition to earn a living from writing. Judging by the final outcome of his life, he […]

October 03

Ginsberg’s Howl Versus American Censorship

On the 3rd of October 1957 Allen Ginsberg’s ‘Howl and Other Poems‘ was ruled not obscene. ‘Howl and Other Poems’ by Allen Ginsberg polarised American society of the 1950s. On one side of the barricade placed themselves bohemian writers and poets of the Beat Generation, to whom transgression of social standards and taboos became an axis of […]