Tuesday, 6 August 2013

25 - Greene/Browning/Hume

David Hume. That Politics may be Reduced to a Science. Hume is very knowledgeable about politics in other countries, such as France, Italy, and Poland, as well as that of Britain. Interesting thoughts on the advantages of a hereditary leader and the inconvenience and divisiveness of an elected leader. If governors are elected they must be elected frequently leading to these 'temporary tyrants' becoming more rapacious so they can accumulate sufficient wealth before they are replaced. Of ministers, Hume says: 'There are enough of zealots on both sides, who kindle up the passions of their partisans, and, under pretence of public good, pursue the interests and ends of their particular faction.' Nothing much has changed!

Elizabeth Barrett Browning. Sonnets from the Portuguese No. 43. How do I love thee? Let me count the ways./I love thee to the depth and breadth and height/My soul can reach when feeling out of sight/For the ends of Being and ideal Grace. etc. Beautiful and beautifully constructed.

Graham Greene. The Innocent (1937). A man returns to the small country town where he was born, taking a one-night-stand date with him for the night. The town rekindles memories of his childhood and his first love. The ending reminded me a little of Ray Bradbury's poem 'Remembrance', since in both they return in middle years and find a note they had written as children. This is very different to the poem though. The smell of innocence.

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