Check out the top-five and “Out of the Past” modules of the right-hand column, where you’ll find lots of interesting new stuff–just in time for Christmas!
Archives for December 17, 2008
Frederic Spotts, The Shameful Peace: How French Artists and Intellectuals Survived the Nazi Occupation (Yale, $35). New from the author of Hitler and the Power of Aesthetics, the first book-length study of how France’s culturati coped with the German occupation. The answer is in the title. Virtually all French artists played ball with the Nazis in one way or another, and some of the greatest (including the incomparable pianist Alfred Cortot) did their bidding with foul alacrity. Spotts’ book is insufficiently detailed and lacks full source notes, but the story it tells is both true and compelling–as well as depressing. Anyone naïve enough to think of artists as a nobler breed should read it and weep (TT).
Ida Lupino sings “One for My Baby” and “Again” in Jean Negulesco’s Road House (1948):
“‘Well, I like a lot of talk in a book, and I don’t like to have nobody tell me what the guy that’s talking looks like. I want to figure out what he looks like from the way he talks. And another thing-I kind of like to figure out what the guy’s thinking by what he says. I like some description too,’ he went on. ‘I like to know what color a thing is, how it smells and maybe how it looks, and maybe how a guy feels about it–but not too much of that.'”
John Steinbeck, Sweet Thursday