cutting on the action

photography and film – facts, ideas, values

The Great War in Colour: Albert Kahn Archive

The Great War in Colour: The Wonderful World of Albert Kahn

is a great programme, which part is part a series. {2}

For those outside the UK, this can only be watched BBC iPlayer for a while, though if you download with the BBC download software (which you first have to download), you have a month.

February 2, 2008 Posted by | photography, World War I | , , , | Leave a comment

Turkey bans WordPress to placate Islamic creationist

Turkey blocks WordPress access at request of creationist cult leader

Our man is Adnan Oktar – he’s soon going to be a member of the EU !

His creation is the Atlas of Creation under the pen name Harun Yahya.

An April 2006 article in The Economist, In the beginning :The debate over creation and evolution, once most conspicuous in America, is fast going global.

Maybe I suggest as an immediate counterpoint:

Some Non-Scientific Observations on the Importance of Darwin


Someone enterprising could make a few quid with a range of models/statues of important characters from the Age of Reason, the main feature of which would be be an extended arm and fore-finger pointing into the middle distance, not unlike the statues Saddam put on the waterfront in Basra, pointing over to the Shat al Arab and Iran beyond. You could buy one of these reasonably priced statues (made in PRC no doubt) and point it in the direction of wherever it was reliably known the most backward thinking person in the world was then situated.

February 2, 2008 Posted by | Adnan Oktar, anti-evolutionism, Turkey | , , , | Leave a comment

It’s true: Its truth

Apparently Chaucer didn’t use the word its in The Canterbury Tales or perhaps any of his writing. He uses his for its in the opening line of The Prologue:

Whan that April with his shoures soote {1}

There are any number of wonderful websites on Chaucer, including the Harvard University Geoffrey Chaucer, but so far I have not found a mention of why no its. It’s a mystery! However, pages such as this English Language in the Fourteenth Century: The Status of English are fascinating.

We can learn where and how and why Chaucer used fart {2}, but not its. It’s a bit frustrating to find its not mentioned. One expects to be able to find an instant answer to anything nowadays but there just isn’t one on its. Perhaps if a Chaucer expert comes across this post while idly checking for mentions of his or her own work in Google, or other reputable search engines, he or she will pass on the story of itslessness.

Presumably it’s not just Chaucer but everyone who had no its, so it will be a general story about the development of English with particular reference to its.

The Historical variability of English

Introduction to “The General Prologue” of The Canterbury Tales

This a lecture given by Ian Johnston which covers an awful ot of ground and is also interesting

The Making of Chaucer’s English: A Study of Words [1998] By Christopher Cannon

A Google Book, and therefore not completely transcribed, but there is enough there to get the idea. Don’t forget the text is searchable through the Google ‘Search in this book’ feature on the bottom right. The page may need to be scrolled down a bit.


Ian Johnson’s home page is full of lecture and essays on all sorts which also look….very interesting.

This one written in 1998, The Illogic of a Creationist Argument, I noted, noting particularly how he has come to the nub so clearly that even Richard Dawkins might learn something from it. It might give a clue as to how well he does on other themes, including many literary and philosophical one’s he covers.

Equally readable, a lecture to biology students, Some Non-Scientific Observations on the Importance of Darwin [1998] Ian Johnston, Liberal Studies Department, Malaspina-University College, Nanaimo, BC.


All for the want of a horse shoe nail…..

February 2, 2008 Posted by | Biology, Chaucer, English language, evolutionary biology, science | , , , | Leave a comment