This week, I pen an essay about masculinity in JD Salinger’s novel and Lana Del Rey’s sixth studio album. These two texts are allies in their deconstruction of hyper-masculinity and their integration of the feminine. Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar is also given a hearty mention.
I write about the personal and political of Rodin’s sculptures, with mentions given to Charles Baudelaire, Barbara Hepworth, Anish Kapoor, Comme des Garcons and Boris Johnson’s decision to prorogue the British Parliament.
In Part Two of my first response to Quentin Tarantino’s 9th film, I challenge recent critiques of the film. In particular, I argue that the film’s representation of Sharon Tate and other women is subversive, subtle, sophisticated and ultimately empowering.
In Part One of my first response to Quentin Tarantino’s new film, I offer a close reading of the Spahn Ranch scene to inform a discussion of Tarantino’s play with expectation in the film.
First published on Everyday Analysis, 19th September 2014
First written and published in 2014, I introduce this essay to Harping On. I use Nietzsche’s conception of the Apollonian and Dionysian drives to deconstruct a little girl’s existential crisis.
After a weekend reading T.S Eliot’s ‘Four Quartets’ for the first time, I decided to commit this 2014 paper to my blog. Here, I compare the fallout of conflict in ‘The Burial of the Dead’ from Eliot’s ‘The Wasteland’ and Titania and Oberon’s quarrel in Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’.
I visited the ‘Dior: Designer of Dreams’ exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum and it was stunning. Read my thoughts here, covering Christian Dior’s love for women, my love for Raf Simons and what I’ve come to love about Maria Grazia Chiuri’s design output as creative director.
Karl Lagerfeld, creative director of Chanel, Fendi and his own eponymous label, died on 19th February 2019. I reflect on his career, controversies and what his passing entails.
To mark Holocaust Memorial Day 2019, I’ve written about the trip I took to Auschwitz when I was 16 with the Holocaust Educational Trust.
After a week of aggressive political posturing, I argue that we need to deconstruct and re-think remembrance: going beyond the performative symbolic poppy to build a more progressive and responsible world.
A gobbit-style close reading of Lao Tsu’s ancient spiritual text, Tao Te Ching, with particular focus on how we interpret wu wei, or ‘non-action’.
I write a piece about my decision to leave Facebook
In light of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements, I argue that Darren Aronofsky’s controversial and much-reviled ‘mother!’ is a timely and progressive film that challenges the construct of the female muse.
A gobbit-style close reading of Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamzov, with a particular focus on religion in the novel. I also draw comparisons with John Donne’s Sonnet 14 from his Divine Meditations.
First published on Cloudbanks and Shimbleshanks, 8th May 2015
I revisit an essay from 2015 in which I discuss the implications of the 2015 General Election result, where the Conservative party won an outright majority.
Lana Del Rey’s new LP Lust for Life was released on Friday 21st July 2017. I critique the build-up and marketing of the album in the days leading up to the release, particularly the interaction with fans
Upon the appointment of George Osborne as the new Honorary Professor of Economics at the University of Manchester, I pen an open letter arguing that this superficial move plunges the university into ideological infamy.
First written in September 2015
The abyssal nature of Alexander McQueen’s oevure actively opens and prompts further interpretation. I critique McQueen’s relationship with history and death through Walter Benjamin’s conception of allegory.
First written in September 2015
Alexander McQueen was remembered at an internationally lauded exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum in 2015. I re-examine his work and our remembrance of his work using the critical lens of Jacques Derrida.
First published in November 2014 on Cloudbanks and Shimbleshanks
Disney has announced a string of live-action remakes of its own animated films. With reference to Jacques Derrida and Theodor Adorno, I question whether these will be progressive re-workings of old films or plain evidence of industrialised unoriginality.