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The Barkeep As Guardian of Civilization: Recovering The Lost Art Of Epicurean Mixology

Originally the title for this piece was going to be “How Women Destroyed Drinking,” but in the course of writing, a greater problem seemed to reveal itself and your author felt that perhaps it was best to leave all the misogynistic mansplaining on Thermidor to Billy Pratt. While female empowerment has had a role to play in the decline of enjoying drink as drink, the wider escapism of alcohol consumption is not solely the result of the unrestrained social feminine. Bartenders, who during the midd

Controrisorgimento

"You Romans think the world ends at Ponte Molle. Don't you know that Germany has already graduated, while you are only at the alphabet? Weishaupt scattered the first seeds of social reform; he foresaw everything, calculated everything, weighed everything. That great man could tell you, watch in hand: "In seventy years the fruit of Illuminism will have attained maturity. In thirty years it will have spread dismay throughout all this decrepit Europe; it will permit not a single king to say, "To

Catalonia And The Problem Of Separatist Nationalism

On October 1, 2017, a disputed independence referendum was held in the provinces of northeastern Spain sometimes aggregated as Catalonia. As the vote was unconstitutional, Spanish police forcibly suppressed a number of polling stations, but the final turnout was 43% of registered voters with 92% in favor of independence. With these results, the separatist leaders believe they have a public mandate to create an independent Catalan nation-state. Putting economics aside as the barometer for all dec

Blood, Soil, And Anime: Studio Gainax And German Occultism

Some weeks ago, our friends at Myth of the Twentieth Century did a rather marvellous job examining the activities of the Aum Shinrikyo organisation, particularly the infamous Tokyo Subway attack of 1995. The episode as a whole is excellent, and deserves a complete listen-through (perhaps even before continuing here), but it was an off-hand remark by Adam Smith that spawned the journey we are about to take down the rabbit hole of Anime productions which your author believes to have been deeply in

Geneva 1782

Bertrand de Jouvenel, in his Pure Theory of Politics, recounts a general state of optimism during the fin-de-siecle of the 18th century, a time when enlightened absolutism had began to settle in a state of rest, and cabinet wars (Kabinettskriege) were the predominant form. He specifically quotes from a 1792 work by French revolutionary Jean-Paul Rabaut Saint-Étienne, quite fittingly enough published months before the beginning of the French Revolutionary Wars proper... We see already that wars a

The Narrative of Heartbreak and “Big” (1988)

In a flash Amy was able to transform our hetero-normative experience back into something she was more comfortable with, her own safe space of gender neutrality, with the magic words: "get this shit off me." Tossing her the tissue box, I chastised her for breaking the narrative, something usually reserved for slightly longer than fifteen seconds after sex. Amy may have rolled her eyes, but the fact of the matter remains: sex is the narrative of attraction. For the red-hot 20 minutes I spent with

Syberberg's Vision: A Review Of On The Fortunes And Misfortunes Of Art In Post-War Germany

On the Fortunes and Misfortunes of Art in Post-War Germany, Hans-Jürgen Syberberg; translated and annotated by Dr Alexandre Jacob, London, Arktos Media Ltd., 2017. Sybergberg, the film-maker, and social and cultural critic is a man of the soil, like Knut Hamsun. From a landed heritage, his father managed estates. Syberberg remains close to the soil, physically, spiritually and culturally. Syberberg escaped denazification; he was seven when Germany was over-run and devastated from East and West

A Review of The Everlasting Empire: The Political Culture of Ancient China and its Imperial Legacy

When looking at an outline of Chinese history, one of the most striking things is the longevity of China's imperial structure, lasting from the unification of China in 221 B.C. all the way to 1912. As far as I'm aware, the only Western state to even approach this record is the Roman Empire, beginning (to use one common start-date) in 27 B.C., and not fully collapsing until 1453. Now, China was obviously not a serene empire, as dynasties certainly did rise and fall, sometimes with anarchic period