An Unhelpful Guide to Wagner’s Ring

Perhaps there should be a rule that Historically Important Works of Art should be nice and short. Mozart knew this when he was writing dinky little tunes for tight-wearing Austrians with miniature attention spans. Alfred Hitchcock knew it too, famously quipping that no film should last longer than the capacity of a human bladder. Richard…

Dudes of the Dutch Republic

‘There are only two things I can’t stand in this world. People who are intolerant of other people’s cultures… and the Dutch.’ Thus spake Michael Caine in the 2002 documentary Austin Powers in Goldmember, and it’s easy to see why the Dutch arouse such passionate jealousy. In the 17th century, despite having a population of…