Category Archives: Literature

June 25

George Orwell’s Childhood Recollections

On the 25th of June 1903, English novelist, essayist, journalist and critic Eric Arthur Blair, known by the pen name George Orwell, was born in Motihari, Bengal Presidency, British India. Regarded as one of the most influential English writers of the twentieth century, he is best known for the novel Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949), in which he […]

June 23

Mark Gertler: Figurative Painting and ‘Women in Love’

On the 23rd of June 1939, British figurative painter Mark Gertler gassed himself in his London studio. His suicide ended the period of the artist’s prolonged depression caused by growing financial difficulties, unfavourable reviews after the exhibition at the Lefevre Gallery, and the recent break up with his wife. He had also never fully recovered […]

June 11

Renée Vivien and the Trials of Lesbian Poetry

On the 11th of June 1877, English poet Renée Vivien (née Pauline Mary Tarn) was born in London to a wealthy British father and an American mother. She adopted her French name at the age of twenty-one after moving to Paris, where she lived a notorious bohemian lifestyle defined by her quirky style of dressing, turbulent […]

May 29

Dennis Hopper: The Man Who Went Looking For America…

On the 29th of May 2010, American actor, filmmaker, photographer, and artist Dennis Lee Hopper died in Venice, California. Known in Hollywood for his insolent behaviour, Hopper made his debut on film in two roles with James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause (1955) and Giant (1956). After Dean’s death, and major falling out with […]

May 19

Oscar Wilde in Prison

On the 19th of May 1897, Irish writer Oscar Wilde was released from prison after serving a two year  sentence for criminal sodomy and “gross indecency”. He had to go through hard labor and major deprivation, a very problematic situation for a hedonist accustomed to his creature comforts. His experiences in prison were the basis […]

May 15

World’s Voyage to Eternity in Katherine Anne Porter’s ‘Ship of Fools’

On the 15th of May 1890, the American Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Katherine Anne Porter was born in Indian Creek, Texas. During the next ninety years, she came to experience the most extraordinary social, political and technological transformations, all of which constituted merely a background to her very eventful life. After losing her mother and grandmother at […]

May 08

The Story Behind Gauguin’s Biographic Noa Noa

On the 8th of May 1903, the iconic French Post-Impressionist painter Paul Gauguin died in Atuona, Marquesas Islands, French Polynesia. In 1891, Gauguin sailed to French Polynesia allegedly to escape European civilization and “everything that is artificial and conventional”. As a record of his travels, he ended up writing a book titled Noa Noa describing his experiences […]