Hello all! Here is your special extended edition of public history updates from over the past three weeks.
To start things off, here’s a hilarious video of a flashmob in Breda done to mark the return of Rembrandt’s famous painting the Night Watch to the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, which we’ve pictured below. Definitely the kind of flash mob that we want to be a part of.
One of the biggest stories in the news this past week has been the passing of Margaret Thatcher on April 8th. Her death has been the subject of much celebration for some, due to their disapproval with her apparent lack of concern with promoting feminism, her indifference towards the plight of the gay community as well as her alleged mistreatment of the working class which caused a ripple effect of unemployment and welfare dependency. For others, her death was instead a time of mourning as they looked back on the positives that came as a result of her time in office. Among other things, she reduced national debt, helped to dismantle the class system in England and signed the Anglo-Irish agreement which in turn led to the Good Friday agreement. Above we’ve included a link to the BBC History page on Thatcher for anyone who wants to learn more about her.
Whenever the economy faces a downturn, culture and the arts are inevitable the first to get cut, seen as a luxury, rather than a necessity. In the article above written by Canadian Todd Hirsch however, it is argued that investing in the arts is an economic imperative for the three reasons; it can mitigate the ups and downs of other industries, culture helps to attract and retain labour to certain areas and, it is the easiest way for citizens to become creative, innovative and imaginative, and therefore able to keep up with global competitors, is by having a vibrant arts and culture community. What do you think?
The most famous item associated with Trinity College is arguably the Book of Kells. Recently digitized from the Manuscripts & Archives Research Library, it is now up on the TCD website for everyone to enjoy, especially for those who can’t go see this incredible work in person.
For all of you Tolkien fans out there, the ring that allegedly inspired the fabled one true ring goes on display this week at The Vyne, a historic mansion in southern England as part of a joint effort of Britain’s National Trust and the Tolkien Society. Read more about it above!
In other celebrity death news, Annette Funnicello died from complications of multiple sclerosis on April 8. Funnicello was part of the Mickey Mouse Club, as well as starring in many Disney films as well as the Beach Party series with Frankie Avalon. Above is CNN’s Remembering Annette Funicello.
Finally, linked above is a list of 19 offbeat holidays you can celebrate during the month of April. We hope you’ll join us tomorrow for National Reach As High As You Can Day, and then again on the 23rd for Talk Like Shakespeare Day.
Until next week!