Category Archives: Essays

Plátanos and Parasites in Guatemala

Buen provecho! That is, enjoy your meal. Or, more literally, take good advantage of it. So goes the pre-chowing down salutation in Guatemala. Additionally, more often than not, when a person finishes at the table he gathers his utensils and … Continue reading

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The Sound of Water

Eight-year-old Chuyia, the youngest and most petite of the heroines of Deepa Mehta’s Water (2005), the closing film in the director’s Elements trilogy, has a hard road ahead of her on the death of her much older spouse. This child … Continue reading

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Cracks in the Earth

Despite the apparent relative ease with which Sweden and Switzerland, as well as a handful of other territories in Europe, walked the tightrope of neutrality during the Second World War this must have been an exceptionally difficult balancing act to … Continue reading

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F-i-r-e i-n I-n-d-i-a

In India’s highly patriarchal culture the eldest son enjoys a privileged position. Ashok, one of the central characters in Deepa Mehta’s 1996 film Fire, fully enjoys the fruits of this exalted lot. He shares his household with his aged, widowed … Continue reading

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One More Line…One More Line…One More Line…!

In some sublime sentences the Japanese novelist Yukio Mishima once likened writing to farming. Both required vigilance, daily grind and unceasing dedication, he wrote. Yet at the end of a long season of indefatigable labour one could do no more … Continue reading

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Whiskers was a Movie Star!

Upon leaving Australia for the first time in 1987, with the aim of travelling the globe as more than a tourist, I was clear as to my overriding wish – to help others if I could – but little inclined … Continue reading

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Ennui in a Nation with its Back to the Wall – two films by Paolo Sorrentino

As different on a narrative and other levels as they are, two of Paolo Sorrentino’s most well-known films, his Academy Award winning (for Best Foreign Language Picture) The Great Beauty (2013) and Il Divo (2008) comprise a complementary vision. Early … Continue reading

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