Thomas Merton
Thomas Merton
Bright morning. Watching American news broadcasts. Currently reading Thomas Merton‘s journals, and was reminded that he entered the monastic order during the Second World War (c. 1941).

Attended a fascinating talk by Professor Chris Weedon yesterday evening at the Centre for Critical and Cultural Theory at Cardiff University. The talk was entitled ‘The Cultural Politics of Memory: the Case of GDR’, and explored what often gets forgotten in accounts of the German Democratic Republic.

In an insightful piece for The New Yorker, Jia Tolentino revisits Ivanka Trump‘s 2009 self-help book The Trump Card. Tolentino observes: ‘Ivanka’s aesthetic differences from her father are often parsed as political differences, and she has made the most of such misperceptions.’

Michiko Kakutani has listed George Orwell‘s Nineteen Eighty-Four as a must-read for 2017.

The New York Times looks back on the release of David Foster Wallace’s magnum opus

david-foster-wallace-infinite-jest
When his “Infinite Jest” came out 20 years ago, David Foster Wallace felt some anxiety about how his fully stuffed novel would be received. In an interview on the radio show “Bookworm” at the time, Wallace said: “This is the great nightmare, when you’re doing something long and hard, is you’re terrified that it will be perceived as gratuitously hard and difficult, that this is some avant-garde-for-its-own-sake sort of exercise.” (more…)