History, Music and its Words

Tanita Tikaram and her worldly imagery

June 21, 2016

This may be one of the most difficult posts I have chosen to write. Many of my sparks begin so quickly. And because time is so limited, there’s hardly a moment left to follow through on an inspirational thought or piqued interest in an artist, in this case singer and songwriter, Tanita Tikaram. Some of you may be familiar with her work and yet because this New Zealand-born folk singer and writer is not part of the mainstream world of music, many of you may not be.

It is hard for me to acknowledge that while I list Tanita Tikaram among my all time favorite songwriters, I have only ever had her debut album, Ancient Heart, in my small music archive. And before I make an unqualified remark about this being her best work of all the albums she has produced over the years, I had better watch my step. I have only listened to Ancient Heart, over and over again, and amazingly, am not yet familiar with the rest of Tanita Tikaram’s oeuvre. Continue Reading…

History, Poetry and its Words

Nelson Mandela’s poetic icons

June 21, 2016

There will be no direct quotations from the poems that I’m about to mention, but if you are interested, you can surely look up these quickly over the internet. It is that easy nowadays to access poems from famous poets and hundreds of others whose names are not (yet) part of legend. Many of you may not have access to printed anthologies right now, so the internet is a quick search and find resource. In this case, all you need to do is look up these two poems listed below.

The first one, many of you might know quite well. Some of you may have even received it as part of a prescribed reading list back at high school or college. Continue Reading…

Film and Literature

Some of my favorite actresses

June 21, 2016

Here are some random thoughts and cultural expressions of my own. It relies on no direct internet research but does rely very much on memory. Things have been a little quiet for me lately in the sense that I haven’t been able to get out much and go and see the latest movies on offer. So, what’s hot, and what’s not, well, I’m afraid I wouldn’t be of much help here. My memories take me back to some of my favorite actresses over the years that I have been watching movies. And because some of these shows are exceptionally good in my humble opinion, or because I happen to adore the work of the actress, I sometimes watch repeats of them. That’s thanks to the internet streaming services and large libraries of DVD collections at our disposal. Continue Reading…

Cultural Diversity

What it means to be culturally diverse

June 21, 2016

She has a right to her privacy and to divulge nothing about her personal life to me.

But I have the distinct and pleasurable suspicion that, like me, she is culturally diverse. If she is entirely unhappy with this affirmation, she will, at some stage call upon me to never mention her again, or simply perform an edit of the work I am doing for her. But I am also positive in my affirmation that none of this will happen. After all, readers here are not privy to her name, her line of work, her religion or culture. Continue Reading…

History, World Events

Who do you think are the most influential women in the world today?

June 21, 2016

Come on ladies (and gentlemen). Surely you must have some ideas of your own? I ask this question purposefully because, apart from my own interest in who influences you the most, it is also part of my own cultural expression to the world out there. Invariably, because we are all so different from one another and live in different parts of the world, we’ll all have different ideas. Isn’t that enriching? Imagine if we all agreed on the same old things and faces.

The world wouldn’t be too interesting, would it? Nevertheless, I will be a little more objective with my thoughts tonight because even though some of the women I am about to mention have done sterling work over the years, I am not sure I agree with their ideologies and motives in life. This also means that I may differ from some of them on a cultural, personal and moral level. But it is only fair to readers to make up their own minds of what they think. If there is a woman or two that I happen to adore, please forgive me if I thoughtlessly revert to a little subjective expressionism. Continue Reading…


My brief history of the cultural universe

June 21, 2016

Originally, I was going to label this post as follows;

My brief history of the world.

But, thinking on the theme for my blog, I decided to change it to the title you now see before you. I also thought, perhaps that my original choice sounded a lot too familiar, like Richard Dawkins’ A Brief History of the World – I’ve never read this thick tome, by the way – or Steven Hawkins’s musings on a brief moment in time, or some such thing. Nevertheless, I remain attuned to how culture has largely been ignored during earth’s short encounters with humanity. Continue Reading…


Let’s talk about Toni and her friends then

June 21, 2016

My thoughts are a lot clearer now.

Today I’m going to chat to you about a woman I have admired for nearly ten years now since I first discovered her at university. I’m also happy to tell you that I was slightly humored and placed my finger in the sky and asked myself; now, who shall I write about today. And, for some unknown reason, Ms. Toni Morrison’s name popped into my little head. I say this is odd because it has now been a few years since I re-read her remarkable novel, Beloved. The funny thing is though, this is the only book of the Pulitzer Prize and Nobel Prize for Literature winner I have read closely and intensely. Continue Reading…

Cultural Diversity

The two Hannah’s

June 21, 2016

This is a very short story about two very different women. In both good ways and bad, they are as culturally apart as women of the world come. Both of them are from a different era, quite possibly from a time since long before you were born. This is certainly the case where I am concerned, anyway. This short post on the lives and times of the two Hannah’s is based on fact. It is inspired from real life and the events that surrounded them and in which they were involved really did happen in history.

Let us begin with the first Hannah who was born before the second one and long before us anyway. For Hannah, jobs were never easy to come by, not because there was a drastic shortage of them but mainly because she had a very serious problem which she was quite ashamed of. Had she lived in today’s times, she would have learnt that there was nothing to be ashamed of and that, particularly today, she would have been able to learn how to overcome this particular disability of which she is not the only one to be afflicted with. Continue Reading…

Cultural Diversity, Languages and Literature

How my cultural journey started

June 21, 2016

Initially, I had thought that at some stage of my earlier cultural life, my journey towards cultural diversity had been dormant for a while. But when I think about it now, this was never the case. In more recent years of my adult life, I have been quite active in enriching and empowering myself. Before that, before I proactively began my subconscious journey towards being a culturally diverse woman, I had still surreptitiously been on that growth path. Let us begin right from the very beginning.

From the earliest possible age when toddlers are able to begin learning and adapting to their cognitive thinking abilities, my mother read me stories. And because she was such an endearing story teller, I loved every word I heard come from her mouth, even if I did not understand them at the time. By the time I had reached school-going age, my mother and father would pump me with books, even when the occasion did not warrant this. I could have been branded a spoilt child, but, in actual fact, I became a gifted young girl. Continue Reading…


What happens when you read to those who can’t

June 21, 2016

This remarkable and inspirational story is a precursor to a later post on two very different women. In that post, one of the women was incredibly brave. This helped her to chronicle one of the most gruesome events that are now part of world history. The events occurred during the middle of the previous century, and in part thanks to this brave woman, one of the most prominent perpetrators of crimes against humanity ultimately received a humane judgment.

But being the coward that he was, he chose to take his own life instead. For the record, this man was responsible for the deaths of millions, not even thousands, of men, women and children. In my later post, the other woman, completely different from the first one mentioned here, was initially an unwitting participant in these gruesome crimes. Originally, she did not know what was happening. As will be pointed out later, one of the problems related to her early ignorance was the fact that she could not read. Continue Reading…