Extracts from the Aug 2003 Journal

Watch on the Rhine - and the Danube (editorial)

For months now, stretching into years, the Middle East has so monopolised world interest that little attention has been paid to other parts of the globe. Even we, who have every reason to follow events in the European heartland closely, have only kept a fitful watch on the Rhine and the Danube. [more...]

Colours of skin and mind

'Brown is the new black', proclaims Meera Syal of Goodness Gracious fame, and, as she is a television personality, none would gainsay her. What her cryptic utterance means is that, in the rich mix of multicultural Britain, India - the source of Bombay Nights and curry - has replaced the Afro-Caribbean as the flavour of the month. [more...]

Film knight

Sir Alexander Korda strode like a colossus across the inter-war and immediate post-war history of the infant British film industry - the country's only film mogul. He produced films infused with British patriotism - even jingoism - often as a coded riposte, couched in historical allegory, to the looming fascist threat from Continental Europe. Ironically, these most British of films were crafted by teams which included writers, cameramen, set designers, musical soundtrack composers and costume-makers who, like Korda, were refugee Hungarian Jews. [more...]

An accusation

Haven of refuge

Between 1939 and 1945 a total of 225,000 German and Austrian Jews perished in the Holocaust, including 90 per cent of the parents of those who came to England under the Kindertransport scheme. We all think that we know why our families died in the Shoah. We thought that all countries had closed their borders to Jewish refugees in 1938/39. [more...]

Art Notes

Grenville Lindall Winthrop read law at Harvard but the last 43 years of his life were devoted to his passion: the study and collection of nineteenth-century art. He collected some 4,000 works, and finally bequeathed the lot to Harvard. A Private Passion, at the National Gallery until September, sponsored by ExxonMobil and organised by Harvard's Fogg Museum, features some of these treasures. There is the French Revolutionary painter, Jacques-Louis David, as much a politician as an artist, with his powerful and vivid portrait of Napoleon 1; William Blake, all hellfire and mysticism; the doom-laden romantic pre-Raphaelites, including William Holman Hunt and Dante Gabriel Rossetti; the emotional French artists, like Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres and Gustave Moreau; and the cooler, dispassionate Americans, like Walt Whitman and John Singer Sargent. Winthrop has truly catholic tastes, and appears to favour narrative works or those of breathtaking splendour, such as Moreau's sumptuously gilded Jacob and the Angel. [more...]

Central Office for Holocaust Claims

Dachau Book of Remembrance

The organisers of 'The Book of Remembrance' project, founded in 1999 by private initiative, wish to set a symbol of remembrance for those who suffered in the camp at Dachau, Germany's first concentration camp (established 22 March 1933). It is an attempt to 'put faces and names on the anonymous masses who suffered under the Third Reich'. [more...]