September Miscellany (2010)

September has been a very good month. A score of  7.07 on the Depression Scale which is the second highest ever and by far the best September. This may be partly because I am now marking more generously. It may also be partly because there is always something of a positive reaction when I emerge …

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Unbridled Romanticism

In Chapter 5 of The Roots of Romanticism Isaiah Berlin considers what he terms 'the final eruption of unbridled romanticism'. Berlin says that Friedrich Schlegel, himself a part of the movement, named three vital components of this movement: Fichte's philosophy, the French Revolution, and Goethe's novel Wilhelm Meister. Fichte's philosophy The innovation which Fichte and …

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Work, work, work (OP)

15th August 2007 Peter Linebaugh in The London Hanged (p14) writes... >>new morality became triumphant among the capitalist class at the end of the seventeenth century. Christopher Hill contrasted it with the religious attitudes prevailing earlier: 'Labour, the curse of fallen man, had become a religious duty, a means of glorifying God in our calling. …

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Scott’s Tales of a Scottish Grandfather

Walter Scott's Tales of a Scottish Grandfather takes as a paratext the idea that he is explaining Scottish history to his grandson. In fact the degree to which Scott remembers this varies - he certainly slips in the odd reference to 'your grandfather' or 'your grandfather's grandfather', but for the majority of the time it is clear that …

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Goldsmith’s Traveller

On the EighteenthCenturyWorlds List ( see right for link) Ellen recently posted some verses from Goldsmith's The Traveller..... Goldsmith, from "The Traveller" Creations' mildest charms are there combined, Extremes are only in the master's mind. Stern o'er each bosom reason holds her state, With daring aims irregularly great; Pride in their port, defiance in their …

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June Miscellany (2009)

A scanty month dominated by another bout of Depression. In fact a week of recovery at the beginning June has only punctuated an episode which began in May and from which I am far from recovered. The problem in writing about Depression is that it is miserably re-iterative, solipsistic and impossible to make interesting. Depression …

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