Let me share with you a doubt. My doubt is that visual art has all that much of an impact on history. have written many of the essays you've been reading as if art had something to say, and as if it were important. And I believe, more or less - on good days -- that something like this is true.
It's amusing to imagine what Alexis de Tocqueville would make of China recommending his 'Revolution' to its people. What China's leadership seems to have failed to notice is that the French Revolution is generally considered to have been a good thing by its people.
In a week when three members of Pussy Riot, Russian President Vladimir Putin's prime party poopers, have been put on trial in Moscow accused of "hooliganism" in an Orthodox church (they sang a "punk" prayer!!!), Russian "queer" politics may have stumbled on its own 1812 moment.
A guy sort of rolled his eyes and churlishly mumbled, "Why should we care in the U.S. about some dumb French holiday?" All rudeness aside, I decided to explain it to him. I love talking to churlish brick walls. I'm like a perky, blond Sisyphus.
At a time when viewers are obsessed with Downton Abbey, this film offers an upstairs downstairs French Revolution era glimpse complete with dying rats, gossipy crones, lotharios in gondolas, and the very beautiful queen.
The reasons that there aren't any trophy heads after the financial crisis are plentiful: there are legal obstacles, practical obstacles, a lack of personnel, and general fuzziness about how economic crimes are defined.
Two centuries ago, news of revolution -- and revolution itself -- reverberated back and forth across the Atlantic at astonishing speed. The social media of the day? Word-of-mouth information, rumor, and opinion.
For two long centuries, the Arab Middle East has struggled to meet the challenge of modernity, a task exacerbated by the lingering, and increasing, dissonance between the glorious past and the shameful present.