Museum of Modern Art – rekindling a love affair

By Cressida Smart

Last week, I rekindled an old love, one I met four years ago. The moment I first laid my eyes upon all its glory, I knew I was struck. There was nothing that quite compared in London nor in fact anywhere I had visited. When I returned last Wednesday, I wondered if my feelings would be the same or if perhaps I had moved on. As I walked through the revolving glass door on East 53rd between 5th and 6th avenue, I looked up. The sun bounced off the white gleaming walls that reached high. I inhaled and knew my feelings hadn’t changed. I fell in love with the Museum of Modern Art and my ties with it were as strong as ever. I relished the prospect of exploring this beauty once again. Read more of this post

This week on the web

By Josh Cowls

Welcome to this week’s collection of internet must-reads.

1. After a week of ruminations and negotiations over the US’s debt ceiling, James Surowiecki, author of The Wisdom of Crowds, explains why the procedure is anachronistic and unnecessary:

The only reason we need to lift the debt ceiling, after all, is to pay for spending that Congress has already authorized. If the debt ceiling isn’t raised, we’ll face an absurd scenario in which Congress will have ordered the President to execute two laws that are flatly at odds with each other. Read more of this post

Norway shooting: a resurgence in violence amongst extreme right-wing groups?

By Anca Voinea

Even though the meaning of the term has been variously re-interpreted with every historical era, terrorism continues to define an act of violence which aims to create a sense of vulnerability within a large population. According to Rapoport’s classification, there are four types of terrorist organizations currently operating around the world, categorized mainly by their source of motivation: left-wing terrorists, right-wing terrorists, ethno nationalist or separatist terrorists, and religious or “sacred” terrorists. Read more of this post

England vs India, First Test Match Report

By Angus Bromhead

Monday morning’s long snaking queues through St John’s Wood of the like only seen at film premiers shows that cricket is not a dying sport. The atmosphere at the start of the 5th and final day was electric, the game in the balance as the crowds surged into Lord’s. A stubborn England had the final day to take India’s remaining nine wickets. Tens of thousands of office workers surreptitiously listened to Test Mach Special or attempted to catch glimpses of the score. The long anticipated first Test in this series has not disappointed. Both teams fighting for dominance displayed flashes of brilliance in a game which was full of surprises. Read more of this post

The Twelfth Man: Westminster satire

By Matthew Richardson

So summer is here at last. Bar the extra day of debate, the red-box of office can be safely stowed away in the attic and the sandal-wearing, drink-in-hand joy of summer in the constituency can begin at last. Joy to the world, and all that. Read more of this post

The political stalemate in the debt ceiling crisis

By Alexander Bryan

On Monday night, President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner both took to the airwaves and put forward their explanations of the debt crisis. The simple fact that the two figures most important in resolving this dispute were in separate buildings blaming each other rather than in one room trying to find a solution is perhaps indicative of the intense partisanship which has engulfed Washington, described by President Obama as ‘a town where compromise has become a dirty word’. Read more of this post

Bush 9/11 Speech: ‘ a great people defend a great nation’

By Chris McCarthy

A great people has been moved to defend a great nation.

President George W. Bush, 11 September 2001

Historic speeches are commonly preceded by great events: Churchill’s wartime rallies; Kennedy’s American University address at the height of the Cold War; Reagan’s Challenger disaster eulogy. These unique moments present a window of opportunity for public figures to reassure their constituents, rebuke the enemy or lead their audience in mourning. Every speech has an agenda, some of which are determined by the events that spark them. Read more of this post

Lucian Freud – master of realism

By Cressida Smart

“I paint people not because of what they are like, not exactly in spite of what they are like, but how they happen to be.” Lucian Freud

Yesterday, I learnt that Lucian Freud, the British painter, had died. William Acquavella, Freud’s worldwide dealer, based in New York, said, “My family and I mourn Lucian Freud not only as one of the great painters of the twentieth century but also as a very dear friend”. Read more of this post

Love and Longing in Bombay by Vikram Chandra book review

By Emma Brooks

So far I have only read one Indian novel, The White Tiger, which I quite enjoyed. I’ve obviously been aware of the world of Indian literature for a while, my mother and grandmother both being fans, but I had never really been tempted by the novels. Now, as an array of them sit on my bookshelf I’ve finally taken the plunge and am quite enjoying it. So, my latest read is Love and Longing in Bombay by Vikram Chandra. Read more of this post

New ‘Apprentice’ Format? You’re Hired!

By Emma Jones

This year’s ‘The Apprentice’ was a misnomer. It should really have been called ‘The Young, Subordinate Business Partner’.

Its eventual winner, Tom Pellereau from London, used Sunday night’s final to propose a flawed but characteristically personal business plan. His dream: to invent a chair (aka ‘a sitting device’) that would solve the world’s back problems, saving businesses and the economy millions in lost work hours every year. Lord Sugar pledged to put £250,000 into this business plan, which he claimed simply needed ‘tweaking’. Read more of this post

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