Category Archives: Books and Culture

A deliriously lovely chapter

One of the most beautiful passages in contemporary literary history will surely be, when it is published on May 5, chapter 20, “Sunlight on the Furniture,” in Villa of Delirium, by the French author Adrien Goetz. Its English translation by … Continue reading

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Tale of a Greek villa rebuilt

I was recently sent a novel, Villa of Delirium, about the lives of the historical inhabitants of a villa on the Côte d’Azur built at the turn of the last century as a copy of a palace in ancient Greece. … Continue reading

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Sir Roger Scruton, RIP

Death took Roger Scruton today. He was the world’s deepest thinker on architecture and aesthetics, which were embedded in the conservatism of his broader philosophy. Scruton embraced tradition, holding that “the tried and true” are a stronger foundation than novelty … Continue reading

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Curl’s American lecture tour

Professor James Stevens Curl, author of the pathbreaking Making Dystopia: The Strange Rise and Survival of Architectural Barbarism, will be visiting on our side of the pond to receive a Ross Award from the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art. … Continue reading

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The mods’ survival explained

They cut the feedback loop. Nobody has done a better job of explaining the persistence of modern architecture than does Roger Scruton in his review of James Stevens Curl’s new book, Making Dystopia. In his review, Scruton sums up with … Continue reading

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More on ‘Making Dystopia’

A book whose vile subjects have grown used to shucking off well-framed attacks for decades, and yet whose stranglehold on establishment thinking has loosened in recent years, is naturally offended by what could be their coup de grâce. So it … Continue reading

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Aslet on classicism’s future

Clive Aslet, longtime editor of Britain’s tony Country Life magazine, has written a rosy assessment of prospects for the classical revival – that is, the return to prominence of traditional architecture after more than half a century of its suppression … Continue reading

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‘Making Dystopia’: Arrival

There it was. Sitting on my stoop. Wrapped in a plain brown postal envelope. I picked it up. Oof! It weighs a ton. It is not big but it is heavy. A brick of gold. Making Dystopia: The Strange Rise … Continue reading

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Curl to clobber “dystopia”

Printing now in Britain at Oxford University Press is James Stevens Curl’s jeremiad against modern architecture, called Making Dystopia: The Strange Rise and Survival of Architectural Barbarism. A review copy is on the way. As I informed Professor Curl in … Continue reading

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‘Dream of Venice in B&W’

JoAnn Locktov, the editrix and impresaria of photographic essays of Venice in book form, sends me another of her beautiful works: Dream of Venice in Black and White, the third in her “Dream of Venice” series, published by Bella Figura … Continue reading

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