Arts Matters

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Character and Plot

A recent film left me a little mystified. What was it about? What was the meaning? How did it all make sense? The story seemed to end inconclusively and many of the events depicted had led nowhere. What were we to make of it? My theatre companion suggested it was best seen as a character …

Fictional Worlds

If you watch any Doctor Who episode from the classic series, you might well wonder what all the fuss is about. Some were better than others but there are undoubted moments of mediocrity to be found. Occasionally it was downright awful. Yet the series celebrates its 50th anniversary this weekend and has been lauded throughout …

The Book

It lowers the heart rate. It stimulates your mind. It broadens horizons.  Is there anything as lovely in life as reading a book, treating oneself to a few hours of escape? A book can be a window on a different world, perhaps a world of ideas. It can be a book of fantastic stories describing …

Literature, Philosophy and Existentialism

I have a difficult relationship with novels. I sometimes wonder what’s the point of a fictional story. And should I really spend frivolous time on novels when I haven’t yet even read the complete works of Aristotle, where surely more truth is to be found? Dickens is my favourite author but I always feel a …

A Christmas Carol

At this time of year, the splendid A Muppet Christmas Carol movie usually finds its way into our DVD player. And after seeing such a heart-warming feast I always reach for the family copy of the original book and read a few of its classic passages to the children. We have a wonderful early printing …