The Swedish playwright August Strindberg was one of the founding fathers of naturalistic theater. A feature of many of his plays is the minute dissection of attitude and motivation by individuals within tightly bound groups. As in the present drama, such relentless inspection of behavior often has drastic consequences. Thekla, married to the needy Adolf, has a surprise encounter with her former husband, the lordly Gustav. Or is it really a surprise?
"this is my favorite play"
This treatise on politics was the fruit of Machiavelli's many years of experience as a diplomat and historian and circulated in 1513 but not published until 1532. It was dedicated to Lorenzo de Medici, a member of the ruling dynasty of Florence. In Machiavelli's view the ideal ruler is an effective executive rather than a moral paragon. If one desires power, one must take all the appropriate steps to acquire and maintain it.
Lady Susan is an epistolary novel by Jane Austen about a beautiful and manipulative widow scheming to arrange wealthy marriages for herself and her daughter. This book is the basis for the film Love & Friendship, written and directed by Whit Stillman, and starring Kate Beckinsale and Chloe Sevigny. This dramatized production is presented by the Online Stage.
In recent times the philosophy and practices promoted by the New Thought movement have attracted much attention through the burgeoning of the self-help industry and films such as "The Secret." Among New Thought authors, William Walker Atkinson was not only one of the most eminent, but also one of the most prolific. One of his most notable works is the mental training manual, Your Mind and How to Use It, first published in 1911. A new recording of a self-help classic, narrated by Denis Daly.
Oedipus the King is the story of a man whose life is destroyed by his own good intentions. When a terrible secret from his past is brought to the light of day, the consequences are chilling - and ineluctable.
While debate continues about the historicity of Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, the collection of sayings attributed to him, has remained one of the most influential religious texts of all time. Using simple yet profound language, the author probes the eternal mystery of the Tao, the elusive substrate which underlies all creation.
Although unfamiliar with the Persian language, the eminent English poet and critic Richard le Gallienne had a profound interest in the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. In 1901 he published a collection of 261 quatrains, which was based on earlier English translations, in particular the prose version by Justin Huntly McCarthy. In his introduction, Le Gallienne suggests that his ignorance of Persian was in fact an advantage as it allowed him to focus on producing good poetry rather than merely an accurate translation.
A refreshing, nondenominational examination of the teaching of the most celebrated religious icon in Western history, this audiobook presents a set of interpretations that is both inspiring and challenging: food for thought for believers and nonbelievers alike.
"Conduct for a Man's Character"
Among the monuments of world literature, few works have been as influential as the Divine Comedy. Dante's compendious allegory of a journey through the world of the afterlife is significant on many levels. It established Italian as a literary language, and consolidated the position of Florentine Italian as the lingua franca of the Italian peninsula. As an engaging portrait of the social and intellectual life in medieval Florence it is unrivalled
The subject and argument of the poem are clear from the title. However, unlike Juvenal, Johnson espoused the view that Christian values are an essential aspect of a life well lived. While Johnson passes harsh judgement on the foolishness of greed and social pretensions, his scorn is much tempered by that natural compassion that has made him one of the most lovable figures in English literature.
Unlike many of his contemporaries, the English poet Francis Thompson (1859-1907) was a true mystic. While more celebrated poets, like Wordsworth, Tennyson, and Arnold, were content to express their religious leanings in traditional devotional formulae, Thompson strove to portray the divine directly, in all its terrifying majesty. In this way he is more akin to earlier masters, like Henry Vaughan and George Herbert, than to the poets of his own day.
Genevieve Behrend was a teacher and exponent of Mental Science, a New Thought discipline created by her mentor, Thomas Troward (1847- 1916). As the only direct student of Troward, the author had a unique insight into the philosophy and methods of her master. Your Invisible Power, published in 1921, is her first and most famous book. It is a guide to the use of visualization and other mental processes in life enhancement and the achievement of personal goals. A new recording of one of the first great self-help classics narrated by Denis Daly.
"Great Pratical Reminders"
Rosmersholm is a play surrounding the deep and intense political and cultural change in Norway in the middle of the 1880s, a period during which the traditional ruling class were forced to relinquish their right to impose their ideals on the rest of society. We follow Johannes Rosmer, a pastor who has resigned from his position; Rebecca West, a woman who sees Rosmer's potential and believes she can help him to realize his dream of creating a world of "happy, noble people"; and Headmaster Kroll, Rosmer's former best friend.
A philosopher and pioneer of the New Thought movement, James Allen (1864-1912) has become something of an icon in the self-help industry of today. Many life coaches and motivational mentors have drawn material liberally, if selectively, from his writings, and his suggestion of a straightforward path to an ideal life has made his works very popular. However, in Allen's view, a truly healthy and prosperous life is built on moral virtue.
"The Keys for a happy life"
This book, a true spiritual classic, consists of notes of several conversations had with, and letters written by, Nicholas Herman, of Lorraine, a humble man of little education. After having served as a soldier and a footman, Herman was admitted as a lay brother to the order of the barefooted Carmelites at Paris in 1666, where he took the name "Brother Lawrence." The conversations are supposed to have been recorded by Joseph de Beaufort, who later became vicar general to the Archbishop of Paris.
This collection of the reported sayings of the Buddha is one of the canonical texts of Theravada Buddhism. Written in simple and concise language, and embellished with picturesque examples, this manual of moral practice has a powerful universality which sets it apart from most sectarian scripture.
John Pollen (1855-1923) was an official in the Indian Civil Service. A keen linguist, he learned Russian, Esperanto, and Persian and in 1915 published an English translation of The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. His collection contains 158 quatrains and includes a set of seven prefatory quatrains by Andrew Lang and a foreword by the Aga Khan.
Together with the Iliad, the Odyssey, The Divine Comedy and Paradise Lost, the Aeneid is one of the true monuments of world literature. Like all these great classics, over the centuries it has become stultified by academic formalism, and its true glory as a narrative of thrilling power and richness has become very much obscured. This new translation seeks to highlight the vigor and immediacy of Virgil's epic while still respecting the grandeur of the original language.
After many years living abroad with her longtime lover, Lady Catherine Champion-Cheney visits her former marital home, now occupied by her son, Arnold, and his wife, Elizabeth. Also present is her estranged husband, Clive, who lives in a cottage on the estate. Elizabeth has become dissatisfied with the life she leads with her wealthy husband, who is very occupied with his political career, and she encourages the advances of a dashing but impecunious suitor, Teddy Luton.
Many masters employed the form of the sonnet, including Petrarch, Spenser, Shakespeare, Keats, and Robert Bridges. However, the most celebrated, and oft quoted, examples are to be found in the collection by Shakespeare, first published in 1609. In the 154 poems, Shakespeare surveys and dissects the subject of love in all its guises, and its relationship with youth, age, illness, death, and memory.