December 09

Troublesome Love of Edith Sitwell

On the 9th of December 1964, Dame Edith Sitwell, a British poet and critic, died in London. Both as an artist and as a public personality, she was a provocative and controversial figure. Her poetry, influenced significantly by the French symbolist movement, was often experimental and multidimensional. In her early career she focused mainly on […]

December 08

The Passions of Camille Claudel: Sculptor, Woman

On the 8th of December 1864, Camille Claudel was born in Fère-en-Tardenois, Aisne, northern France. As a teenager, Claudel was determined to make it as an artist in Paris, so she convinced her parents to fund her studies at the Academie Colarossi. Here, she met Rodin who was filling in for her teacher Boucher. Very […]

December 07

Louis Prima: Just a Gigolo

On the 7th of December 1910, Louis Prima, an American trumpet player and singer of Italian descent, was born in New Orleans, Louisiana. His performances, starting from the jazz infused 1920s right up to the  pop and rock dominated 1960s at the end of his career, were a rich combination of musical showmanship, comic genius and Italian […]

December 06

The Earliest Encyclopædia Britannica

On the 6th of December 1768, the first part or ‘number’ of 100 thick pamphlets which made up the first ever Encyclopædia Britannica appeared in print in Edinburgh, sold for 6 pence a piece. In our times when digital versions of the Britannica  online and on optical discs can be accessed from various modern gadgets, the graft […]

December 05

GORDON’S ALIVE!

“World coming to end! Strange new planet rushing toward Earth! Only miracle can save us…” (Flash Gordon) There are movies that, like wine, get only better with time. Or, perhaps they stay the same all along, and it is only our perception of them that changes? One such movie is undeniably Flash Gordon. Released exactly […]

December 04

Jeanne Manford: Parenting and Homosexuality

On the 4th of December 1920, schoolteacher and gay rights activist Jeanne Sobelson Manford was born in Queens, N.Y. She was known as the co-founder of the support group organization Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG). In October 2009, U.S. President Barack Obama remembered Manford’s role in the establishment of PFLAG in […]

December 03

The Vanishing of Agatha Christie

“Do you know the feeling you have when you know something quite well and yet for the life of you can’t recollect it?”, is the opening line in Agatha Christie’s semi-autobiographical novel Unfinished Portrait. The book was published in 1934, eight years after her mysterious disappearance from her house in Sunningdale. On the 3rd of […]