Deaths which occurred on a February 28:
2006 Some 60 villagers, in two trucks destroyed by
improvised landmines of the Maoist rebels, in the Darmagura area of the
Dantewada district, Chhattisgarh, India. 20 villagers are wounded, of which
several die subsequently, as there are no hospitals in that impoverished
area. The trucks were carrying villagers returning from an anti-Maoist meeting.
On 09 February 2006, the Maoists had looted 20 tons of explosives from the
National Mineral Development Corp (NMDC) office in Dantewada district, killing
eight men of the Central Industrial Security Force.— (060228)
2005 Michael Lefkow, 64, and Donna Humphrey,
89, forced to lie on the basement floor of the Lefkow home in Chicago
and then shot multiple times by Bart Ross, of the 4500 block of North Bernard
Street in Chicago. Michael Lefkow was the husband of US District Judge Joan
Humphrey Lefkow [1944~], and Donna Humphrey was her mother who was visiting
from Denver. Ross had filed a lawsuit against the University of Illinois
over cancer treatment in the early 90s. The suit first was ruled against
twice before Judge Lefkow rejected it on a technicality in 2004, and that
cost Ross "his house, his job and family" according to the note he wrote
before committing suicide
by shooting himself on 09 March 2005.
2005 Salam Taha and
some 130 other persons including a suicide car bomber driving into
a line of National Guard applicants waiting for a physical outside a health
center, next to a market in Hillah, Iraq. Some 150 persons are wounded.
2005 One policeman and a suicide car bomber, at a
police checkpoint in in Musayyib, Iraq. Several policemen are wounded.
2005 A civilian during a gunfight between insurgents and
Iraqi troops in Baquba, Iraq. Two civilians are wounded.
Two policemen in Baghdad, Iraq, one by a gunman and one by a roadside
2004: 21 of the 27 crewmen (24 Filipinos and
3 Greeks) of the 174-meter-long chemical tanker Bow Mariner, loaded
with 13 million liters of ethanol, en route from New York to Houston, which
sinks late in the evening, in the 60-meter-deep Atlantic some 80 kilometers
off the coast of Virginia, after an explosion which follows a fire that
started on the deck. The survivors suffer from hypothermia. The ship, built
in 1982 and flying the Singaporean flag, is managed by the Greek company
Ceres Hellenic Shipping Enterprises Ltd.
2004 Mahmoud Juda,
23; Amin Dahduh, 32; Aiyman Dahduh, 42; by missiles fired at 19:00
(17:00 UT) by Israeli helicopters at their car in Gaza City's Sheikh-Radwan
neighborhood. Juda was a commander of Islamic Jihad's Al-Quds Brigades,
of which the Dahduh cousins were members. Ten innocent bystanders are wounded;
among them are a severely injured boy, 6, and two other children.
Six Afghans and five men of the South Waziristan tribal region,
when Pakistani soldiers shoot at their van, mistaking it for a fleeing car
from which four men had fired in the air as troops were trying to defuse
rockets in village Shulam, near Wana, capital of South Waziristan.
Two Pakistani policemen, shot by a fat Afghan Islamic extremist,
28, outside the US consulate in Karachi, at 13:30 (06:30 UT). The attacker
first wounds policeman Anam Zeb with a pistol, grabs Zeb's sub-machinegun
and with it shoots the others, wounding five more Pakistanis: three policemen,
a paramilitary ranger, and a civilian. Out of ammunition the shooter flees,
but is caught.
2003 Linda Suffoletto, 43, from injuries
suffered in the 20 February 2003 fire of The Station nightclub in West Warwick,
Rhode Island, of which she is the 97th fatality, the first one to die after
the fire (in which her husband, Benjamin Suffoletto, 43, died).
More than 110 Moslems in the Naroda Gaon and Naroda Patiya areas,
Gujarat, India, by a Hindu mob which torches houses, hacks at people, pours
kerosene of fleeing Moslems and sets them afire, while police stand by and
tell Moslems: "We have orders from above not to protect you."
Many more Moslems are maimed, burnt, or otherwise injured.
Ahsan Jafri and at least 70 others at the Gulberg society, Chamanpura,
India, massacred by a Hindu mob. Jafri was a former Member of Parliament.
2001: 13 persons in crash of high-speed passenger train
with a stalled Land Rover, at Great Heck, some 300 km north of London, 06:10..
2001 Haq Nawaz, executed
at Mianwali Jail in central Punjab province.
Haq Nawaz, a Sunni activist from the Sipah-i-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP,
a militant Sunni organization), was originally sentenced to death
for the killing of Sadiq Ganji, director of the Iranian Cultural Centre,
in Lahore on 19 December 1990. The order for Haq Nawaz's execution
has come after the Supreme Court rejected his appeals and the President
turned down his mercy petition.
The death penalty will not resolve the ongoing violence between Sunni
and Shiite extremists. Over the past few years, hundreds of people,
many of them unarmed civilians from either the Sunni or Shiite communities,
have been killed in Pakistan in violence between the two groups. While
the Government of Pakistan must take decisive action to end the sectarian
violence that has killed dozens this year alone, the death penalty
does not serve this purpose. On the contrary, the use of the death
penalty only encourages the cycle of violence to continue as sectarian
groups seek revenge for those executed.
Recent violence and government action also demonstrate that the use
of the death penalty is not having a deterrent effect against the
ongoing sectarian violence. In anticipation of retaliatory violence
for the execution of Haq Nawaz, between 875 and 1200 SSP activists
have reportedly been arrested since 24 February.
On 26 February, a Shiite doctor was killed by a gunman on a motorcycle
near Multan, Punjab province, in a suspected sectarian murder.
Enlightened people oppose the death
penalty unconditionally, in all circumstances and wherever it occurs
throughout the world. Executions by the state reinforce the culture
of violence which it is supposed to prevent. Even judicial systems
with extensive legal safeguards, make the irrevocable nature of the
death penalty particularly problematic in all jurisdictions
there have been cases where innocent people have been executed. The
death penalty has never been shown to be an effective deterrent against
violent crime. Scientific studies have consistently failed to find
convincing evidence that the death penalty deters crime least
of all politically-motivated crime more effectively than other
1986 Sven Olof Palme, 59, Swedish Prime Minister (1969-76,
82-86), shot to death in Stockholm.
1993 ATF raids Branch
Davidian compound near Waco.
gun battle erupted at a compound near Waco, Texas, when agents from
the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms tried to serve warrants
on the Branch Davidians. Four agents and six Davidians were killed
as a 51-day standoff began.
At Mount Carmel in Waco, Texas, agents of the US Treasury Department's
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) launch a raid against
the Branch Davidian compound as part of an investigation into illegal
possession of firearms and explosives by the Christian cult. As the
agents attempt to penetrate the complex, gunfire erupts, beginning
an extended gun battle that leaves four ATF agents dead and fourteen
wounded. Six Branch Davidians are fatally wounded, and several more
are injured, including David Koresh, the cult's founder and leader.
A cease-fire is eventually declared
and the ATF agents withdraw. Exactly who fired the first shot is in
dispute, although, after the raid, a ATF agent tells an investigator
that a fellow agent may have fired first when he killed a barking
dog near the compound. This statement is later recounted and both
sides contend that the other started fire first.
A few hours after the raid, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
becomes the lead agency in charge of the standoff and telephone conversations
begin between Koresh and the outside authorities begin.
David Koresh was born Vernon Wayne Howell in Houston, Texas, in 1959.
In 1981, he joined the Branch Davidians, a sect of the Seventh Day
Adventist Church founded in 1934 by a Bulgarian immigrant named Victor
Houteff. Koresh, who possessed an exhaustive knowledge of the Bible,
rapidly rose in the hierarchy of the small religious community, eventually
entering into a power struggle with the Davidians' leader, George
Roden. For a short time, Koresh retreated with his followers to eastern
Texas, but in late 1987, he returned to Mount Carmel with seven armed
followers and raided the compound, severely wounding Roden. Koresh
went on trial for attempted murder, but the charge was dropped after
his case was declared a mistrial.
By 1990, he had become the leader of the Branch Davidians and legally
changed his name to David Koresh, with David representing his status
as head of the biblical House of David, and Koresh standing for the
Hebrew name for Cyrus, the Persian king who allowed the Jews held
captive in Babylon to return to Israel. Koresh took several wives
at Mount Carmel, and fathered at least twelve children from these
women, several of whom were as young as twelve or thirteen when they
became pregnant. There is also evidence that Koresh may have harshly
disciplined some of the hundred or so Branch Davidians living inside
the compound, particularly his children.
A central aspect of Koresh's religious teachings was his assertion
that the apocalyptic events predicted in the Bible's Book of Revelation
were imminent, making it necessary for the Davidians to stockpile
weapons and explosives in preparation.
Following the unsuccessful ATF raid, the standoff between the Branch
Davidians and the FBI stretches into seven weeks, with little progress
made in the negotiations, as the Davidians had stockpiled years of
food and other necessities before the raid. On April 18, 1993, US
Attorney General Janet Reno approves a tear-gas assault on the compound,
and at approximately 6:00 A.M. on April 19, the Branch Davidians are
informed of the attack and asked to surrender. A few minutes later,
two FBI combat vehicles begin inserting gas into the building and
are joined by Bradley tanks, which fire tear-gas canisters through
the compound's windows.
Branch Davidians, many of whom have donned gas masks, refuse to evacuate,
and by 11:40 a.m., the last of at least one hundred tear-gas canisters
have been fired into the compound. Just after noon, a fire erupts
at one or more locations on the compound, and minutes later nine Davidians
flee the rapidly spreading blaze. Gunfire is reported, but ceases
as the compound is completely engulfed by fire.
Koresh and at least eighty of his followers, including twenty-two
children, are killed during the federal government's second disastrous
assault on Mount Carmel. The FBI and Justice Department maintain that
there is conclusive evidence that the Branch Davidian members ignited
the fire, citing an eyewitness account and various forensic data.
On the gunfire reported during the fire, the government argues that
the Davidians were either killing each other or themselves as part
of a suicide pact, or were killing dissenters who were attempting
to escape the Koresh-ordered mass suicide by fire.
Most of the surviving Branch Davidians contest this official position,
as do some critics in the press and elsewhere, whose charges against
the ATF and FBI's handling of the Waco standoff range from incompetence
to premeditated murder. In 1999, after six years of denials, the FBI
admitted that they used incendiary tear-gas grenades in the assault,
which theoretically could have ignited the compound's wooden walls
Texas Agents from the Bureau
of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms raid the Branch Davidian cult compound
in Waco, Texas, prompting a gun battle in which four agents and six
cult members are killed. The federal agents were attempting to arrest
the leader of the Branch Davidians, David Koresh, on information that
the religious sect was stockpiling weapons. A nearly two-month standoff
ensued after the unsuccessful raid. The roots of the confrontation
between the federal government and the Branch Davidians went back
10 years before the Waco siege. In 1983, a young man named Vernon
Howell showed up at the Mt. Carmel headquarters of the sect. Lois
Roden and her son, George, were competing for leadership of the commune
at the time. Lois had an affair with Howell, but died shortly thereafter.
George Roden attempted to take charge of Mt. Carmel, but Howell challenged
his leadership, claiming that he was an angel with a direct line to
God. Roden responded by posing a contest to Howell: Whoever could
resurrect an exhumed corpse would prove their worthiness to rule the
cult. Howell declined the challenge, going instead to the sheriff
to have Roden arrested for illegally digging up a body. When the police
wanted no part of it, Howell and Roden ended up in a gunfight that
left Roden injured. While Howell was awaiting trial for attempted
murder, Roden was jailed for contempt for filing "the most obscene
and profane motions that probably have ever been filed in a federal
courthouse.. Howell took over the cult and the Mt. Carmel compound
in Roden's absence, and later got a mistrial on the attempted murder
charge. Soon, Howell started his own harem, declaring himself the
only one allowed to have wives. The others told reporters, "We as
Davidians aren't interested in sex. Sex is so assaultive, so aggressive.
He [Howell] has shouldered that burden for us.. Reportedly his many
wives included girls as young as 12. Howell changed his name to David
Koresh in 1990 and told everyone that he was the Second Coming of
Christ. Not long after, he began filling the cult member's heads with
apocalyptic warnings and insisting that they arm themselves. In 1992,
a deliveryman accidentally dropped a package and saw that it was filled
with grenades. It was against this background that the federal government
obtained a warrant for Koresh's arrest. To Koresh, the failed raid
served as proof that he really was being persecuted. When federal
agents moved in to end the siege on April 19 with tear gas, a fire
broke out that killed more than 75 cult members. Koresh and 16 others
shot themselves to death before the fire engulfed the entire compound.
Only eight Branch Davidians escaped with their lives. Ultimately,
five cult members were convicted of manslaughter for their roles in
the February 28 gunfight.
1975 More than 40 people,
in London's Underground as a subway train smashes into the end
of a tunnel.
1967 Henry R. Luce, 68, founder of the
Time-Life magazine business.
1966 Charles A. Bassett II,
34, and Elliot McKay See Jr., 38, astronauts,
in T-38 jet crash.
Anderson, US playwright born on 15 Dec 1888. His greatest success
was Winterset (1935), a poetic tragedy inspired by the Sacco and
Vanzetti case: the son of a man who has been unjustly condemned to death
seeks revenge and vindication of his father's name. Maxwell Anderson was
the father of sociologist Quentin
Anderson [1912 – 18 Feb 2003], whose son is Maxwell L. Anderson
[1956~] director of the Whitney
1940 Alfonso XIII de Borbón, corrupt king of Spain (1902-1931)
1923 François Flameng, French painter and draftsman
born on 06 December 1856. MORE
ON FLAMENG AT ART 4 FEBRUARY
with links to images.
1940 Day 91 of Winter
War: USSR aggression against Finland.
More deaths due to Stalin's desire to grab Finnish territory.
Finnish troops pull back on the Isthmus
The Soviet Union launches a massive general offensive. The Finnish
troops on the Karelian Isthmus withdraw from Pulliniemi and Lihaniemi.
During the course of the day Finnish
troops beat back three enemy attacks on the Taipale strongholds [photo].
In the north, the Swedish volunteer
corps, Svenska Frivilligkåren, takes over responsibility for the front
at Märkäjärvi in Salla in the early hours of the morning.
The Lotta Svärd Defense Union of Finland
(the women's voluntary defense organization) and the Central Organisation
of Social Democratic Women decide to organize a joint collection of
gold rings and other valuables to buy fighter aircraft for the Finnish
Foreign Minister Tanner returns from
Stockholm. He says Finland has no choice but to accept the Soviet
Union's peace terms. A majority of the Finnish Government are inclined
to agree, but nevertheless want first to hear the views of the Commander-in-Chief.
The Western Allies promise to send
Finland 10'000 troops in April. France's diplomatic representative
in Helsinki, Monsieur Magny urges Finland to make a formal appeal
Day in Finland, is being celebrated in Norway as Finland Day.
In Washington, the US House of Representatives
approves legislation for a $20 million loan to Finland.
Oy Karl Fazer Ab buys Frans Emil Sillanpää's
Nobel Gold Medal, donated by the author to raise money for Finland's
defense. The Finnish confectioners pay 100'000 markkaa for the medal,
which they then return to the author.
Suomalaiset vetäytyvät Karjalan kannaksella
Talvisodan 91. päivä, 28.helmikuuta.1940
massiivinen suurhyökkäys alkaa. Suomalaiset vetäytyvät Karjalan kannaksella
Pulliniemestä ja Lihaniemestä.
Taipaleessa suomalaiset torjuvat päivän
aikana kolme vihollisen hyökkäystä tukikohtia vastaan.
Ruotsalainen Svenska Frivilligkåren
ottaa aamuyön kuluessa rintamavastuun Sallan Märkäjärvellä.
Suomen Ilmapuolustusliitto, Lotta Svärd
ja Suomen Sosiaali-demokraattinen Työläisnaisten liitto päättävät
järjestää yhdessä kultasormusten ja muidenarvoesineiden keräyksen
hävittäjälentokoneiden hankkimista varten.
Ulkoministeri Tanner palaa Tukholmasta.
Tannerin mukaan Suomella ei ole valinnan varaa: tarjotut rauhanehdot
on hyväksyttävä. Hallituksen enemmistö alkaa kallistua rauhan kannalle,
mutta haluaa kuulla vielä ylipäällikön mielipiteen tilanteesta.
Länsiliittoutuneet lupaavat lähettää
Suomeen 10'000 sotilasta huhtikuun kuluessa. Ranskan Helsingin-lähettiläs
Magny kehottaa Suomea heti esittämään avunpyyntönsä.
Norjassa vietetään tänään Kalevalanpäivänä
Washingtonissa edustajainhuone hyväksyy
lakiehdotuksen, joka mahdollistaa $20 miljoonan lainan myöntämisen
Oy Karl Fazer Ab lunastaa kirjailija
F. E. Sillanpään Suomen maanpuolustukselle lahjoittaman Nobelmitalin
100'000 markalla jaluovuttaa sen takaisin kirjailijalle.
Finnarna retirerar på Karelska näset
Vinterkrigets 91 dag, den 28 februari 1940
inleder en massiv storoffensiv. Finnarna retirerar från Pulliniemi
och Lihaniemi på Karelska näset.
I Taipale avvärjer finnarna under dagen
tre fientliga attacker mot baserna.
Svenska Frivilligkåren övertar på morgonkvisten
frontansvaret vid Märkäjärvi i Salla.
Finlands luftförsvarsförbund, Lotta
Svärd och förbundet för Finlands socialdemokratiska arbetarkvinnor
fattar beslut om att gemensamt arrangera en insamling av guldringar
och andra värdeföremål för anskaffningen av jaktplan.
Utrikesminister Tanner återvänder från
Stockholm. Enligt Tanner har Finland inget val - de erbjudna fredsvillkoren
måste godkännas. Majoriteten av regeringen börjar luta mot fred, men
man vill ännu höra överbefälhavarens åsikt om situationen.
De västallierade lovar sända 10 000
soldater till Finland under april. Frankrikes ambassadör i Helsingfors
Magny uppmanar Finland att omedelbart anhålla om bistånd.
I Norge firar man Finlands dag idag
I Washington godkänner representanthuset
ett lagförslag som möjliggör beviljandet av ett lån på $20 miljoner
Oy Karl Fazer Ab löser in den Nobelmedalj
som författaren F. E. Sillanpää donerat åt landsförsvaret för 100
000 mark och ger medaljen tillbaka åt författaren.
1913: 6.8-m, 4000-kg elephant seal killed, South Georgia
Henry James, in London, US and British novelist, born
15 April 1843 in New York. His fundamental theme was the innocence
and exuberance of the New World in clash with the corruption and wisdom
of the Old, as illustrated in such works as Daisy
Miller (1879), The
Portrait of a Lady (1881), The
Bostonians (1886), and The
James was named for his father, a prominent social theorist and lecturer,
and was the younger brother of the pragmatist philosopher William
James [11 Jan 1842 – 26 Aug 1910]. The young Henry was a shy,
book-addicted boy who assumed the role of quiet observer beside his
active elder brother. They were taken abroad as infants, were schooled
by tutors and governesses, and spent their preadolescent years in
Manhattan. Returned to Geneva, Paris, and London during their teens,
the James children acquired languages and an awareness of Europe vouchsafed
to few people in the US in their times. On the eve of the US Civil
War, the James family settled at Newport RI, and there, and later
in Boston, Henry came to know New England intimately. When he was
19 years of age he enrolled at the Harvard Law School, but he devoted
his study time to reading Charles-Augustin Sainte-Beuve, Honoré
de Balzac, and Nathaniel Hawthorne. His first story appeared anonymously
two years later in The New York Continental Monthly and his
first book reviews in The North American Review. When William
Dean Howells became editor of The Atlantic Monthly, James
found in him a friend and mentor who published him regularly. Between
them, James and Howells inaugurated the era of US “realism.”
By his mid-20s James was regarded as
one of the most skillful writers of short stories in the US. Critics,
however, deplored his tendency to write of the life of the mind, rather
than of action. The stories of these early years show the leisurely
existence of the well-to-do at Newport and Saratoga. James's apprenticeship
was thorough. He wrote stories, reviews, and articles for almost a
decade before he attempted a full-length novel. There had to be also
the traditional “grand tour,” and James went abroad for
his first adult encounter with Europe in 1869. His year's wandering
in England, France, and Italy set the stage for a lifetime of travel
in those countries. James never married. By nature he was friendly
and even gregarious, but while he was an active observer and participant
in society, he tended, until late middle age, to be “distant”
in his relations with people and was careful to avoid “involvement.”
Recognizing the appeal of Europe, given
his cosmopolitan upbringing, James made a deliberate effort to discover
whether he could live and work in the United States. Two years in
Boston, two years in Europe, mainly in Rome, and a winter of unremitting
hackwork in New York City convinced him that he could write better
and live more cheaply abroad. Thus began his long expatriation, heralded
by publication in 1875 of the novel Roderick Hudson, the
story of a US sculptor's struggle by the banks of the Tiber between
his art and his passions; Transatlantic Sketches, his first
collection of travel writings; and a collection of tales. With these
three substantial books, he inaugurated a career that saw about 100
volumes through the press during the next 40 years.
During 1875–1876 James lived in Paris, writing literary and
topical letters for the New York Tribune and working on his
novel The American (1877), the story of a self-made
US millionaire whose guileless and forthright character contrasts
with that of the arrogant and cunning family of French aristocrats
whose daughter he unsuccessfully attempts to marry. In Paris James
sought out the Russian novelist Ivan Turgenev, whose work appealed
to him, and through Turgenev was brought into the circle of Gustave
Flaubert, where he got to know Edmond de Goncourt, Émile Zola,
Alphonse Daudet, and Guy de Maupassant. From Turgenev he received
confirmation of his own view that a novelist need not worry about
“story” and that, in focusing on character, he would arrive
at the life experience of his protagonist.
Much as he liked France, James felt that he would be an eternal outsider
there, and late in 1876 he went to London. There, in small rooms in
Bolton Street off Piccadilly, he wrote the major fiction of his middle
years. In 1878 he achieved international renown with his story of
a US flirt in Rome, Daisy Miller, and further advanced his
reputation with The Europeans that same year. In England
he was promptly taken up by the leading Victorians and became a regular
at Lord Houghton's breakfasts, where he consorted with Alfred Tennyson,
William Gladstone, Robert Browning, and others. A great social lion,
James dined out 140 times during 1878 and 1879 and visited in many
of the great Victorian houses and country seats. He was elected to
London clubs, published his stories simultaneously in English and
US periodicals, and mingled with George Meredith, Robert Louis Stevenson,
Edmund Gosse, and other writers, thus establishing himself as a significant
figure in Anglo-American literary and artistic relations.
James's reputation was founded on his versatile studies of “the
American girl”. In a series of witty tales, he pictured the
“self-made” young woman, the bold and brash US innocent
who insists upon US standards in European society. James ended this
first phase of his career by producing his masterpiece, The Portrait
of a Lady (1881), a study of a young woman from Albany who brings
to Europe her narrow provincialism and pretensions but also her sense
of her own sovereignty, her “free spirit,” her refusal
to be treated, in the Victorian world, merely as a marriageable object.
As a picture of US citizens moving in the expatriate society of England
and of Italy, this novel has no equal in the history of modern fiction.
It is a remarkable study of a band of egotists while at the same time
offering a shrewd appraisal of the US character. James's understanding
of power in personal relations was profound, as evinced in Washington
Square (1881), the story of a young US heroine whose hopes for
love and marriage are thwarted by her father's callous rejection of
a somewhat opportunistic suitor.
the 1880s James wrote two novels dealing with social reformers and
revolutionaries, The Bostonians (1886) and The Princess
Casamassima (1886). In the novel of Boston life, James analyzed
the struggle between conservative masculinity embodied in a Southerner
living in the North and an embittered man-hating suffragist. The Bostonians
remains the fullest and most rounded US social novel of its time in
its study of cranks, faddists, and “do-gooders.” In The Princess
Casamassima James exploited the anarchist violence of the decade
and depicted the struggle of a man who toys with revolution and is
destroyed by it. These novels were followed by The Tragic Muse
(1890), in which James projected a study of the London and Paris art
studios and the stage, the conflict between art and “the world.”
The latter novel raised the curtain
on his own “dramatic years,” 1890–95, during which
he tried to win success writing for the stage. His dramatization of
The American in 1891 was a modest success, but an original
play, Guy Domville, produced in 1895, was a failure, and James was
booed at the end of the first performance. Crushed and feeling that
he had lost his public, he spent several years seeking to adapt his
dramatic experience to his fiction. The result was a complete change
in his storytelling methods. In The Spoils of Poynton
(1897), What Maisie Knew (1897), The Turn of the Screw
and In the Cage (1898), and The Awkward Age (1899),
James began to use the methods of alternating “picture”
and dramatic scene, close adherence to a given angle of vision, a
withholding of information from the reader, making available to him
only that which the characters see. The subjects of this period are
the developing consciousness and moral education of children—in
reality James's old international theme of innocence in a corrupting
world, transferred to the English setting.
The experiments of this “transition” phase led James to
the writing of three grandiose novels at the beginning of the new
century, which represent his final and major phase. In these novels
James pointed the way for the 20th-century novel. He had begun as
a realist who describes minutely his crowded stage. He ended by leaving
his stage comparatively bare, and showing a small group of characters
in a tense situation, with a retrospective working out, through multiple
angles of vision, of their drama. In addition to these technical devices
he resorted to an increasingly allusive prose style, which became
dense and charged with symbolic imagery. His late “manner”
derived in part from his dictating directly to a typist and in part
from his unremitting search for ways of projecting subjective experience
in a flexible prose.
of the three novels was The Ambassadors (1903). This is a
high comedy of manners, of a middle-aged man from the US who goes
to Paris to bring back to a Massachusetts industrial town a wealthy
young man who, in the view of his affluent family, has lingered too
long abroad. The “ambassador” in the end is captivated
by civilized Parisian life. The novel is a study in the growth of
perception and awareness in the elderly hero, and it balances the
relaxed moral standards of the European continent against the parochial
rigidities of New England. The second of this series of novels was
The Wings of the Dove, published in 1902, before The Ambassadors,
although written after it. This novel, dealing with a melodramatic
subject of great pathos, that of an heiress doomed by illness to die,
avoids its cliche subject by focusing upon the characters surrounding
the unfortunate young woman.They intrigue to inherit her millions.
Told in this way, and set in London and Venice, it becomes a powerful
study of well-intentioned humans who, with dignity and reason, are
at the same time also birds of prey. In its shifting points of view
and avoidance of scenes that would end in melodrama, The Wings
of the Dove demonstrated the mastery with which James could take
a tawdry subject and invest it with grandeur. His final novel was
The Golden Bowl (1904), a study of adultery, with four
principal characters. The first part of the story is seen through
the eyes of the aristocratic husband and the second through the developing
awareness of the wife.
of James's short stories were potboilers written for the current magazines,
he achieved high mastery in the ghostly form, notably in The Turn
of the Screw (1898), and in such remarkable narratives as “The
Aspern Papers” (1888) and “The Beast in the Jungle”
(1903)—his prophetic picture of dissociated 20th-century man
lost in an urban agglomeration. As a critic James tended to explore
the character and personality of writers as revealed in their creations;
his essays are a brilliant series of studies, moral portraits, of
the most famous novelists of his century, from Balzac to the Edwardian
realists. His travel writings, English Hours (1905), Italian
Hours (1909), and A Little Tour in France (1884),
portray the backgrounds James used for his fictions.
In his later years, James lived in retirement in an 18th-century house
at Rye in Sussex, though on completion of The Golden Bowl he revisited
the United States in 1904–1905. James had lived abroad for 20
years, and in the interval the US had become a great industrial and
political power. His observation of the land and its people led him
to write, on his return to England, a poetic volume of rediscovery
and discovery, The American Scene (1907), prophetic
in its vision of urban doom, spoliation, and pollution of resources
and filled with misgivings over the anomalies of a “melting
pot” civilization. The materialism of US life deeply troubled
James, and on his return to England he set to work to shore up his
own writings, and his own career, against this ephemeral world. He
devoted three years to rewriting and revising his principal novels
and tales for the highly selective “New York Edition,”
published in 24 volumes. For this edition James wrote 18 significant
prefaces, which contain both reminiscence and exposition of his theories
Throwing his moral
weight into Britain's struggle in World War I, James became a British
subject in 1915 and received the Order of Merit from King George V.
Henry James's career was one of the
longest, most productive, and most influential in US letters. A master
of prose fiction from the first, he practiced it as a fertile innovator,
enlarged the form, and placed upon it the stamp of a highly individual
method and style. He wrote for 51 years, 20 novels, 112 tales, 12
plays, several volumes of travel and criticism, and a great deal of
literary journalism. He recognized and helped to fashion the myth
of the US citizen abroad and incorporated this myth in the “international
novel,” of which he was the acknowledged master. His fundamental
theme was that of an innocent, exuberant, and democratic US confronting
the worldly wisdom and corruption of Europe's older, aristocratic
culture.In both his light comedies and his tragedies, James's sense
of the human scene was sure and vivid; and, in spite of the mannerisms
of his later style, he was one of the great prose writers and stylists
of his century.
remained limited during his lifetime, but, after a revival of interest
in his work during the 1940s and '50s, he reached an ever-widening
audience; his works were translated in many countries, and he was
recognized in the late 20th century as one of the subtlest craftsmen
who ever practiced the art of the novel. His rendering of the inner
life of his characters made him a forerunner of the “stream-of-consciousness”
movement in the 20th century.
HENRY JAMES ONLINE:
Complete On-Line Works.
The Altar of the Dead
The Awkward Age
Beast in the Jungle
Beast in the Jungle
A Bundle of Letters
The Coxon Fund
The Death of the Lion
The Diary of a Man of Fifty
The Figure in the Carpet
The Finer Grain
The Golden Bowl
An International Episode
The Ivory Tower (1917 posthumous ed.)
The Lesson of the Master
A Little Tour in France
The Madonna of the Future
Portrait of a Lady
Portrait of a Lady
The Real Thing, and Other Stories
The Sacred Fount
Turn of the Screw
Turn of the Screw
Watch and Ward
What Maisie Knew
The Wings of the Dove
1896 Josef Munsch,
Austrian artist born on 04 October 1832.
Confederate raider sinks near Fort McAllister GA
1844 Several persons, including Abel P. Upshur,
US Secretary of State, as a12-inch gun aboard the USS Princeton
1808 Nicolaes Muys, Dutch artist born on
21 April 1740.
1786 Jacob-Andries Beschey, Flemish
artist born on 30 November 1710.
Hilarius, 46th Pope (461-468). In an Encyclical to the East,
he reaffirmed the councils of Nicea (325), Ephesus (431) and Chalcedon (451),
at which the major creeds of the Church were defined.