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S A Abrahamsson (Scania)

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Ocean's Kingdom
Ocean's Kingdom
Price: £12.54

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Paul the composer, 29 Oct. 2011
This review is from: Ocean's Kingdom (Audio CD)
Paul McCartney's greatest days as a composer were when he was an ebullient youngster and can be dated from 1960-something-to-the late seventies. I have however much appreciated his later forays into the orchestral genre, and this is no exception. I appreciate he has had help with the orchestration, on the other hand his hand is noticeable throughout the work. Just listening to the CD I was struck by the clarity of the sound, the depth of the bass, the undeniability of the strings... Paul seems rather influenced by Philip Glass and other 'repetitive' composers, so one may miss the melodic genius at times, but on the the other hand - we have already had that. As an addendum I think his greatest work was Abbey Road, his solo albums McCartney and Ram, one of the most exceptional albums of pop music!


Pythagoras
Pythagoras
by James Wasserman
Edition: Paperback
Price: £21.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting for students of Greek philosophy, 12 Jun. 2011
This review is from: Pythagoras (Paperback)
While the true history of the Pythagorean movement is hidden in legend, this book is interesting as a rather thorough classical or traditional introduction to that legend. One gets most of the rumours and legend about Pythagoras, succinctly presented, where modern works, attempting to find THE historical truth behind the legends, become just as subjective due to the mostly very late sources of antiquity. This work seems to have been rather lovingly transcribed from the original to modern readability, and I have found it a great complement to later works. It is, after all, myth, legend, rumours, intrigue - and my own desire to find out what in the Pythagorean tradition derives from Plato, and what not, is not answered, nor will it, I suppose, ever be. But the Pythagorean mythos is powerful enough. So - the book is recommended to students of the subject. There are, after all, ample footnotes and references too. The thread goes to the Timaeus, and to Kepler of course.


The Nail and the Oracle: Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon v. 11
The Nail and the Oracle: Complete Stories of Theodore Sturgeon v. 11
by Theodore Sturgeon
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £22.81

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A posthumous Nobel prize?, 7 Sept. 2009
This edition of the complete stories of Theodore Sturgeon belongs on every literary person's bookshelves, for here was, to speak from the heart, one of the greatest writers of the former century, not just in science fiction and fantasy but generally speaking. Even his minor pieces speak to the heart as Art. I hope the complete edition will serve to inform more than science fiction afficionados about this writer, who wrote about love, morality, loneliness, oddness, togetherness and prejudice and freedom in such deeply felt ways that the science fiction or fantasy aspects became exceptionally apt metaphors for deeper human experience and thought. Lovers of the series True Blood - for example - should check out Sturgeon's fantasy, such as the novel Some of Your Blood, but also his masterpiece More Than Human, in addition to buying the whole set of complete stories. It is very difficult, if impossible, to find anything Sturgeon wrote that is not superior in style, and intellectually and emotionally gripping. If my judgment seems overstated, at least buy one of the collected volumes, like this one, and check for yourself. Also check out the Theodore Struegon Home Page for more information about this rare and highly personal artist. Thank you, Theodore! I hope the times will catch up with you! Also thanks to all who have worked to bring about this edition.


Archytas of Tarentum: Pythagorean, Philosopher and Mathematician King
Archytas of Tarentum: Pythagorean, Philosopher and Mathematician King
by Carl A. Huffman
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £109.80

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Plato's friend in need became a friend in deed, 10 July 2009
Like Huffman's book about Philolaus this book is a major contribution to the difficult field of presocratic philosophy and, it should be pointed out carefully - the history of science, and in this case also of mathematics. Due to the meagre precise data available, and relatively few directly preserved bits of text - all of which is here - much of the history has to rely on guess-work, for example is a major source Plato's famous but questioned Seventh Letter. If we accept it nevertheless questions remain: When was Archytas born? Did he influence Plato, or did Plato influence him, or was neither the case? Anyhow the enigma of Archytas is frustrating, for here we have a major pythagorean thinker, a philosopher king with democratic leanings, a mathematician of considerable importance and one of the founders of the science of mechanics. Besides all of which he also made toys for children to help them sleep. Huffman lets us know as much as there is to know, and is as always a lucid writer. Anyone interested in the earliest days of scientific thought should look up this work.


Philolaus of Croton: Pythagorean and Presocratic: A Commentary on the Fragments and Testimonia with Interpretive Essays
Philolaus of Croton: Pythagorean and Presocratic: A Commentary on the Fragments and Testimonia with Interpretive Essays
by Carl A. Huffman
Edition: Paperback
Price: £59.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A necessary book for the student of Greek philosophy, 10 July 2009
Many names pass by in the histories of philosophy, and one may be given a brief summary of their presupposed opinions and theories, but often one wants more. Philolaus should be one of those, considering that it was (falsely) claimed that Plato more or less copied his Timaeus from his work. He was also the first one known to state that the Earth moves in an orbit, in his case around a central fire, with the sun, not around the sun, but yet a remarkable idea. Philolaus is in this book examined, with his times, very thoroughly and expertly in a book that is nevertheless highly readable even to a non-expert. The basic texts are there, in Greek and in translation, and having read this book one will be substantially enlightened concerning both Philolaus and his times (around 475-at least 399 BC) and concerning his possible and likely importance for Plato. Philolaus here stands out as a full rounded philosopher on his own, not just as a representative of some postulated pythagorean tradition, about which the book also has a lot to say. I needed to read this book for my own work, but it was pure pleasure to do so.


Aristachus of Samos (Dover Books on Astronomy)
Aristachus of Samos (Dover Books on Astronomy)
by Sir Thomas Little Heath
Edition: Paperback
Price: £21.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic cosmology by a very learned scholar, 9 Jun. 2009
The cosmological project began with the classical Greeks around 600-550 BC, and this book although with a number of years on its shoulders is still a magnificent contribution by a scholar who knew both Greek and astronomy. Having studied the matter somewhat myself I have found nothing really to be out of date. - The astronomical content of classical philosophy, such as in Plato, is often disregarded these days, so this book is highly recommended especially for those who wish to see philosophy in a more science-oriented light and also to better understand the Copernican revolution in its philosophical and cultural impact. It is a rather comprehensive book not just about Aristarchus but about Greek cosmology as a whole. And fluently, readably written. I highly recommend it.


The Blank Slate (Allen Lane Science)
The Blank Slate (Allen Lane Science)
by Steven Pinker
Edition: Paperback

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting review of an important debate, 9 Jun. 2009
In The Blank Slate the author reviews the debate about what used to be called nature vs nurture and carries it from ideology over into science. Especially the blank slate view, the view that we are born without anything innate, that we are 100% products of environment or upbringing is examined critically in the light of recent scientific advances. The book is intelligently written and well researched, but will annoy those who have taken a dogmatic stand mainly for political reasons. The author, does not, however propose that our environment or upbringing lacks a role, instead emphasizes the complexity of the issues.


Rimsky-Korsakov - (4) Complete Operas
Rimsky-Korsakov - (4) Complete Operas

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A major bargain of 4 great operatic works!, 6 Aug. 2006
Rimsky-Korsakovs operas were usually not played much in the West, with some exceptions (mainly The Golden Cockerel), but the fall of the Berlin and other walls have opened up opportunities that did not exist so far. For a long time the only available complete opera of Rimsky's was an excellent recording from 1957 of The Snow Maiden, now in this box one gets three large operas, May Night, Snow Maiden and the Golden Cockerel with its pre-Stravinsky tonalities and the briefer prelude Vera Szeloga which Rimsky later wrote for his first opera The Maid of Pskov, which Gergiev has recorded elsewhere. So collectors of Russian opera have a better life nowadays, and the beauty of Rimsky-Korsakovs music, and its originality and melodic intensity comes well across here. These orchestras and singers from Bulgaria with additions from the Bolshoi itself know the music as intimately as an English orchestra would know Elgar and a French orchstra would know Debussy, and to provide any detail criticism would simply be out of place as mere nit-picking. The recordings sound good - listen for example to the finale of Snow Maiden - a similar box with other Russian and Rimsky works would be highly appreciated. For any opera lover, including those who haven't yet given Rimsky-Korsakov a chance, this is a fine introduction!
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