Tag Archives: current events

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My apologies if this meme has been passed around too often already . . . .

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Notre-Dame.

Detail from Notre-Dame, one late afternoon, by Henri Matisse (1902).

One brilliant afternoon in 1977, I was met at the door of Notre-Dame by a formidable ancient nun, who was swathed in a voluminous black habit and brandished a collection box. The photos I took of the cathedral were of typical amateur quality, but it meant a lot to me to have evidence that I’d been there.

I’m one-half French, so I can’t help but feel a bit hollow inside (despite my also being two-and-a-half generations American). It’s sad that modern technology could not prevent the catastrophe that has haunted all Gothic cathedrals ever since their erection. But the comfort I take from the demise of Notre-Dame is the reassurance demonstrated by the Founder of Christianity.

Not “Au revoir,” but “Je reviens.”

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Inconvenient Facts: Reading Current Events.

One of the main characters in Irish Firebrands is a political journalist, who writes newspaper columns, and reports on television, too. The story doesn’t go into his writing, but the Muses left hints about his career that make me wonder about their plans for yet another book in the saga. I guess the Muses want job security, too! Knowing how to read current events may help novelists to write plausibly about fictional reporters on their beats….

The Passions of Patriots: A Novel ~ Christine Plouvier, Indie Author

2005_Spanish_Levantine_warfare_in_Parker-Pearson 3 Click on the page image to read article.

“Never let the facts get in the way of a good story” has been variously attributed (Twain? Hemingway?), but it accurately describes the dilemma of reading about current events, especially during wartime. Apparently artists have been among army camp followers ever since cave walls served as the Neolithic hunter-gatherer’s news feed, pictured at left.

Napoleon’s motives for carrying a printing press on campaign may have included not only a need to control scuttlebutt amongst the troops, but also to help manage the spin that local rags might have put on his image.

Battle of Waterloo A contemporary sketch of the Battle of Waterloo, 1815.

The American Civil War was documented extensively in battlefield reporting art, but it was also the conflict during which photojournalism got its start: even the battlefield artist had his picture taken. (Click on images to enlarge.)

Pennsylvania,_Gettysburg._The_Home_of_a_Rebel_Sharpshooter_-_NARA_-_533315.tif

The advent of battlefield…

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