Top Of The Week


A selection from recent editions of The Browser

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Browser Top Of The Week
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The Ten Best Films Of 1931

Kristin Thompson | David Bordwell On Cinema | 1st January 2022 | U

Annual list, always interesting. Having begun 14 years ago with 1917, the author arrives now at 1931, a year in which "a small handful of filmmakers mastered the 'talkies' and made movies that look and sound as if they could have been made years later". Highlights include Fritz Lang's M, John Ford's scientific thriller Arrowsmith and Yasujiro Ozu's intriguing, silent, Tokyo Chorus (5,546 words)


A Bit About PURLs

Ed Summers | inkdroid | 16th December 2021 | U

Former metadata librarian reminisces about an early building block of online cataloguing: the PURL or "Persistent Uniform Resource Locator". This is a system that allows individual links to change without breaking an entire library catalogue. Created in 1995, this method is "a great example of how exposed pipes are useful when building applications that are meant to be infrastructure" (1,834 words)


Renaissance Philosophy, Magic, And Botany

Fabrizio Baldassarri | JHI | 22nd December 2021 | U

On the fabled lamb of Tartary, an "animal-plant" first described in medieval texts that captured the imagination of Renaissance philophers and botanists. Although a few did try to argue for its actual existence, the lamb mostly served as a thought experiment for investigating the nature of plants. The debate had implications for later notions of spontaneous generation, hybridisation and grafting (2,631 words)


Against Shock

Sam Kahn | 3AM Magazine | 5th January 2022 | U

There was a time when art took upon itself the duty of shocking its public, and when some of its great works were very shocking indeed. But that time was the late 19th century. For the past century or so, "shocking" artworks have grown ever cruder in form and ever more trivial in their effects. It is time for a return to art which is enduring, wise and resonant. Life can supply the shocks (2,860 words)


First Rites

Anna Della Subin | Granta | 6th January 2022 | U

On the history of men and women acclaimed in their lifetimes as gods, from Adam in the Garden of Eden, and Demetrius Poliorcetes in the Athens of 307BC, to Jesus and his apostles; by way of Lysander the Spartan general, Epicurus the materialist philosopher, Antinous the lover of Hadrian, and Tullia the daughter of Cicero. Julius Caesar accepted deification, Augustus declined the honour (2,400 words)


Video Of The Week: Live From Studio S2 | YouTube | Hania Rani

The Polish pianist and composer performs a medley of her minimalist, percussive works using a variety of different keyboards (25m 40s)


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