Archive for the ‘Poland’ Category

Bs As al pie de la letra: Witold Gombrowicz, La loca traducción: Video

Joseph Conrad, Polish author, was born today in history: 03 December, 1857

Joseph Conrad

Joseph Conrad

Joseph Conrad (born Józef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski; 3 December 1857 – 3 August 1924) was a Polish author who wrote in English after settling in England. He was granted British nationality in 1886, but always considered himself a Pole. Conrad is regarded as one of the greatest novelists in English, though he did not speak the language fluently until he was in his twenties (and always with a marked accent). He wrote stories and novels, often with a nautical setting, that depict trials of the human spirit in the midst of an indifferent universe. He was a master prose stylist who brought a distinctly non-English sensibility into English literature.

While some of his works have a strain of Romanticism, his works are viewed as modernist literature. His narrative style and anti-heroic characters have influenced many authors, including D. H. Lawrence, T.S. Eliot, F. Scott FitzgeraldWilliam FaulknerGerald Basil Edwards, Ernest Hemingway, George OrwellGraham Greene, Malcolm Lowry, William Golding, William S. Burroughs, Joseph Heller, Italo Calvino, Gabriel García Márquez, J. G. Ballard, Chinua Achebe, John le Carré,  V. S. NaipaulPhilip Roth, Hunter S. Thompson, J. M. CoetzeeStephen Donaldson and Salman Rushdie.

Films have been adapted from, or inspired by, Conrad’s Almayer’s Folly, An Outcast of the Islands, Heart of Darkness, Lord Jim, Nostromo, The Secret Agent, The Duel, Victory, The Shadow Line, and The Rover.

Writing in the heyday of the British Empire, Conrad drew on his native Poland‘s national experiences and on his personal experiences in the French and British merchant navies, to create short stories and novels that reflect aspects of a European-dominated world, while plumbing the depths of the human soul. Appreciated early on by literary cognoscenti, his fiction and nonfiction have gained an almost prophetic cachet in the light of subsequent national and international disasters of the 20th and 21st centuries.

“How did a daughter of a Jewish kerosene merchant living in Krakow Poland rise to become the first woman magnate?”

Helena Rubinstein

Helena Rubinstein

Writing in Tablet, Jeremy Sigler asks:

How did a daughter of a Jewish kerosene merchant living in Krakow Poland rise to become the first woman magnate? Wax. Basically. Wool fat. Lanolin—the greasy secretion from a gland in sheep that coats their wool, making it water resistant. One day, a sheep farmer realized why his hands were so soft and began to spread the word about this lanolin junk. Just boil some fleece in salt water and you wind up with a pretty good wad of lanolin at the bottom of your pot.

But how to profit from it? Enter Helena Rubinstein, or “Madame,” as most people called her. It turns out HR knew how to turn a profit because she was a naturally gifted entrepreneur. Etymology: entrepreneur: 1828: manager or promoter of a theatrical production. Money is not a theater prop, however. And this skilled entrepreneur knew how to make it—by selling a large quantity of lanolin to an even larger number of “repeat” customers.

 

Jacob Bronowski died on this day in history: 22 August, 1974

Jacob Bronowski

Jacob Bronowski

Jacob Bronowski (18 January 1908 – 22 August 1974) was a Polish-Jewish British mathematician, biologist, historian of science, theatre author, poet and inventor. He is best remembered as the presenter and writer of the 1973 BBC television documentary series, The Ascent of Man, and the accompanying book.

Shaking the hand of Trotsky’s killer, Princess Poniatowska got goose bumps

Elena Poniatowska, vicepresidente de Interlitq

Elena Poniatowska, vicepresidente de Interlitq

Paying a prison visit to interview Ramón Mercader, the assassin of Leon Trotsky, the Russian Marxist, intellectual, and revolutionary who was murdered today in history, 21 August, 1940, Elena Poniatowska, one of Mexico‘s best known journalists and authors, and a Vice-President of Interlitq, recounts that she got goose bumps on shaking his hand:

En mi documental Asaltar los cielos  Poniatowska cuenta aquella visita que hizo la joven periodista al espía y asesino Ramón Mercader. Con su peculiar uso del idioma cervantino, con sus modos certeros y populares, recuerda aquel encuentro con perfección y hace un gesto de rechazo cuando dice:  “Se me enchinó el cuero cuándo tuve que dar la mano al asesino de Trotsky”. Y aún parece que se le “enchina el cuero”, que se le pone la carne de gallina decimos nosotros, al evocarlo.

Ramón Mercader

Ramón Mercader