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The Whistle Library features engaging and important reports, discussions, articles and videos specially curated from the Web for the exclusive reading and listening pleasure of subscribers every month. Read on to know what subscribers to The Whistle enjoyed in July 2019 at The Whistle Library!

Monsoons are made for reading

The much-awaited rains are finally here in India. Bliss, to just sit by a window at home and curl up with a good book and a cuppa. Well, to make your monsoon reading even better, I have a great selection of reading and viewing for the month of July.

To begin with, since we just had the European Parliament elections, there is a panel discussion organised by the think-tank, Chatham House, on the implications of these elections for you to view. I hope you have read my blog post on the EU elections, which also provided a link to a paper from the think-tank Bruegel on improving cohesion in the EU.

https://www.chathamhouse.org/file/perspectives-european-elections

Watch the rain with a good book and a cuppa

Equally relevant reading right now would be an excellent review by Anne Applebaum, of a new book on post War Europe by Ian Kershaw called The Global Age: Europe 1950-2017, from the New York Review of Books.

Next, I have for you a wonderful commemoration speech made by Charles Dickens – who has done so much for Britain’s institutions – on the anniversary of The Commercial Travellers School set up for the children of the deceased and unfortunate members of The Commercial Travellers (travelling salesmen in newly-industrialised Britain) body. Dickens beautifully connects the subject of travel to education and the widening of one’s mind and horizons. Meanwhile, I hope you read and liked my post on the status of school education in India and how it compares with the best in the world.

https://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/d/dickens/charles/d54sls/chapter14.html

If education is about providing people with the capacity for critical thinking, then Susan Sontag has to count among the most prolific thinkers and writers of the last century. There is now new evidence to suggest that Susan Sontag was the real author of a book on Freud, known to have been written by her ex-husband, Phillip Rieff. Read about the new biography of Sontag to be published later this year in this article from The Guardian.

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2019/may/13/susan-sontag-her-life-benjamin-moser-freud-the-mind-of-the-moralist-philip-rieff

And in yet another explosive biography, we find that Harper Lee didn’t go silent after To Kill a Mockingbird, but was at work writing about a true crime story which she never managed to complete. Read the review of Casey Cep’s biography of Harper Lee by Michael Lewis in The New York Times. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/06/books/review/casey-cep-furious-hours-harper-lee.html

A posthumous collection of the writings of the great thinker and writer, Oliver Sacks, called Everything in Its Place: First Loves and Last Tales is out and you can read this beautiful review of it from The New York Review of Books.

This is something I ought to have shared back in April, when it was National Poetry Month in the US, but perhaps the monsoon is as good a time as any for poetry, so here goes. Poetry Foundation’s Poetry Magazine is offering a free download of their entire April issue on the occasion, so enjoy!

https://www.poetryfoundation.org/harriet/2019/04/national-poetry-month-special-free-downloads-of-our-april-2019-issue-more

And how can we close the July selection, without some music, as always? Those who have read Peter Shaffer’s play, Amadeus, or seen the film will enjoy this article from The New Yorker that talks of the comeback of Salieri, most commonly known as the arch rival of Mozart and even suspected to be his murderer. Those who love western classical music will enjoy it too… it got me listening to some of Salieri’s music that I had never heard before!

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2019/06/03/antonio-salieris-revenge

How about listening to some of Salieri’s music now? I have selected Piano Concerto in C, composed in 1773.

Finally, all the Bob Dylan fans out there can watch Martin Scorsese’s documentary film on Dylan’s famous 1975 tour that has just been released in select theatres and on Netflix on June 12, 2019 along with a 14-disc set of music. Read a review/preview of Rolling Thunder Revue in this Rolling Stone article and watch the trailer.

Bob Dylan’s ‘Rolling Thunder Revue’: See Trailer for Martin Scorsese’s Netflix Doc

That wraps up the July monsoon selection. With so much going on, don’t let it rain on your parade… stay home and soak in some wonderful cultural insights. We’ll catch up again in August.


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