If you had to invent a god of art, you could scarcely do better than the Greeks did in creating Hephaistos. It’s easy to identify with his story. He is Hera, the Queen of Heaven’s attempt at procreation without Zeus. Seeing a baby disabled, his feet facing the wrong way, she casts him out of … Continue reading Art and Alchemy
In almost my most favourite book, The Mark and The Void by Paul Murray, a Greek waitress hands a customer some baklava and says: “In Greek we say nostimo. Which means, hmmm, something you want to come back to. You know, like nostalgia, the pain to want to return home… That’s Greece, you cannot even … Continue reading The Pursuit of Paradise.
“ I wasn’t born of a mother. Apart from being physically female, I identify in every way with the masculine, and with my father.” This might be a line from ‘Lara Croft Tomb Raider’, but it's from a 6th/5th century Athenian playwright* who puts these words into the mouth of Athena. Athena is a product … Continue reading The Athena Connection
The Odyssey is full of enchantment for its characters and its audience. Some of this comes from the wealth of domestic detail: the preparation of meals and baths, descriptions of romantic gardens, rich palaces. There are moments of magical transformation as when our near drowned hero, who has slept all night in a pile of … Continue reading The Odyssey – AM I Bothered?
Show me a conflict and I’ll show you a fence to sit on, though I like to think it’s a good point from which to acquire the strengths of both sides. In the debate between whether the meaning of a text resides in the text itself or in the readers’ response, my view is: use … Continue reading Achilles and Patroklos – Gay or ‘Just’ Close Friends?
Towards the end of Bladerunner, Roy Blatty stands in godlike potency over Deckard; he is transfixed by the power of life and death that is now his. When warriors in the Iliad are in the final throes of hand to hand combat, they are described as ‘equal to Ares’, the god of war. More accurately, … Continue reading Brief Lives. Roy Blatty and Achilles.
Published in Hastings Independent Press Issue 91 8/12/17 Beautiful Helen of Troy - seduced by Paris into leaving her daughter and husband, Menelaus. It’s often said about women in Ancient Greece that they were second class citizens without power or freedom, so was she just an object to be manipulated and fought over? Generalisations made … Continue reading Helen of Troy- Whore or Heroine?