Monthly Archive: March 2011

The Second Death of Latin

Language is a powerful shaping force of civilization, and each of the world’s languages is changing constantly. The way we speak has a profound effect on – and is itself profoundly affected by – other vectors of empire. Here, a master historian looks at how a “mother” tongue was ended (but not really) by powerful forces that, at first glance, seem to have

The Birth of Indic Architecture

In many cases, we can see a clear link between architecture and the cycles of empire. There can be little question that the great 17th century Ottoman architect Sinan is an imperial architect, a rising-empire artist whose work seems to exist to glorify

Dracula as a Foretelling of WWI

With the 1897 publication of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, the English were exposed to a terrifying Gothic novel that expressed the fears of the age: Questions of invasion, identity, and war were entangled in a dramatic story about vampires feeding on women and