The way you tell the story of Napoleon reveals how the historian imagines the plot of world history. Ridley Scott’s Napoleon awkwardly straddles comedy and farce, but never gets to the tragic heart of the French Republican European Empire. The way you tell the story of Henry Kissinger reveals how statecraft imagines world order. The… Continue reading Napoleon film, Kissinger’s death and world history
Are you looking for a new, readable, intriguing history book to read? I introduce you to a shortlist of 6 top history books from 2023 in the latest episode (122) of The Burning Archive podcast. All 6 books come from the shortlist for the 2023 Wolfson History Prize, Britain and the UK's most prestigious history… Continue reading Six top history books in search of an invitation
Why read Olga Tokarczuk, Winner of 2018 Nobel Prize for Literature? Find out in this fourth episode of my series on the Nobel Prize for Literature. It discusses the life of the 2018 Nobel Prize for Literature Laureate, the novelist Olga Tokarczuk. I give you 10 reasons to read one of the most celebrated Nobel… Continue reading Why read Olga Tokarczuk, Winner of 2018 Nobel Prize for Literature? Podcast Ep. 120
It turns out, despite his stern reputation, Patrick White can laugh, smile and even pat a purring cat. He was even once a spy, or should I say an intelligence operative. And the skills he learnt in that role during World War Two allowed him to field the questions of many inept journalists with consummate… Continue reading Podcast #119 Why read Patrick White, (1973 Nobel Prize), exile at home?
On the podcast this week I did the second of my series on the Nobel Prize, and featured the winner of the 1923 Nobel Prize for Literature, William Butler (W.B.) Yeats.
The great Russian film, Russian Ark, is a deep meditation on the treasures of culture and the tragedies of history. Will there be an American Ark 100 years from now?
I wrote in my previous post about the rhetoric of “as long as it takes” on Ukraine. How it is a feature of stubborn decision-makers, and the opting decisions of war. How NATO aligned elites might detach from this doomed path, but I am not holding my breath, too long. I doubt they will, not… Continue reading Endurance in War and Politics for Non-Political Souls
I have now released my full Mindful History course on my Learnworlds academy. I am offering a special introductory price. You will get three hours of video content and some great resources, including a simple five step process to apply history to decision making in your life.
Change is part of life and central to history. But has the pace of change accelerated over the last 50 years beyond our capacity to cope?
Melbourne City Councillors should reflect on the reality of its long pretence to be a sister city with St Petersburg. The ‘sister relationship’ always flattered Melbourne.
So I have decided to write a series of posts on my substack exploring theses on the world crisis. You can join my free weekly newsletter at jeffrich.substack.com, and I would encourage all readers of the blog to do so.
Empress Zhu wrote, “Once I lived in heaven above, in pearl palaces and jade towers; now I live among grass and brambles, my blue robes soaked in tears. I hate the drift of snow.”
I have posted this evening on my podcast and on Youtube a special episode. Here I talk openly for the first time about how I wrote my book, From the Burning Archive, which you can buy at the Amazon affiliate link or other online book retailers.
This week was the beginning of the next stage in my new life, la vita nuova as an independent author. After a ritual week on the liminal beauty of the Bay of Lorne in South-Eastern Australia, I transformed from a government official, wounded and now retired, to become an independent author.
My latest podcast takes a look at the influence of the Mongol Empire on Russian history, and indeed on world history.
I have published From the Burning Archive: essays and fragments 2015-2022. You can buy it as print or e-book here at Amazon and also at other online retailers. Here is an excerpt of the introductory essay of that collection. It tells how a dream image became a poem became a blog became a podcast and then an author platform.
From this traumatised, divided old Russian Soviet poet, we learn about our own strange freedom.
Something tells me Chekhov and the innovations in drama he bequeathed to us may appear in my podcast series on the gifts of Russian culture.
American elites wag the dogs of war as the post-democratic theatre burns. Liz Truss in Moscow: the disgrace of the British State. Journalists behaving like spin doctors and government propagandists again. Isabella of Castile and the Spanish Empire. The strangeness of the children of Ash and Elm. The uncontrollability of the world, and the true words of John Donne on public health rulez, OK?
A holiday of regeneration. The crisis in Europe, Ukraine, the failure of American diplomacy and the end of NATO. The Siege of Leningrad, Vladimir Putin, Operation Barbarossa, and Dmitri Likhachev on the Russian Soul. Elena Shvarts and the Flora of Ukraine. Russian Ark and the survival of culture in the floating hermitage of the Neva.