The latest video in my series about Austrian concepts of law and the Austrian experience of landscape is called “Preservation Waltz.” Rare books, forests, and domestic architecture. Sustainability is the key principle:
I’m pleased to share the latest video from my developing film about law and landscape in Austria. This segment is called “Florian & Friends Talk about Purity”:
The video is about water, water law, Austrian identity, legal philosophy, concepts of the state, ideas of the public, approaches to time and tradition, metaphor, and some great old books. Plus, there’s a cameo appearance by a sweet Alpine cow.
My latest video is about rare books, jazz, the passage of time, and old movies … and the law reports of the great jurist Edward Coke:
For a 1080p version for the most current systems, click here. For multiple formats on my YouTube channel, here (select the settings tab on the lower-right corner of the frame—that’s the wheel icon, the third icon from the right).
“What can the jazz process tell us about life?” That’s the overriding theme of Trading Fours on Blog Talk Radio, hosted by Drs. Jackie Modeste and Wesley J. Watkins, IV.
I had a lively conversation about The Rule of the Clan on the show today, and in keeping with the spirit of Trading Fours—and trading fours—our discussion ranged widely. You can hear the full one-hour show through this media player (or by clicking on the link in the first paragraph):
In the course of our conversation, the three of us had a lively exchange about jazz and democracy I thought worth sharing. Among other things, it seemed like an American version of the discussion I had with Prof. Stefan Kirste about the relation between law and musical aesthetics:
Here’s an excerpt from the conversation, which in the audio file begins at about 33:00:
Me: What liberal government has to sell has to be better than what’s on offer from other social theories.
Me: And if liberal government is working, if it’s corrupt along any lines, certainly those of nepotism, if it’s ineffective, then liberal government deserves to lose. But I don’t think it should. And that’s why I think it’s important to defend central government, to defend modern liberal ideals of robust government capable of vindicating the public interest and thereby liberating individual energy.
Jackie: OK, yes. Yes! So what I’m thinking about is when we—
Me: Jackie, sorry to interrupt you. Something that Wes said … maybe we could play with this a little bit. I’m trying to draw connections to the jazz concerns that you have here on the show. Maybe government is like a band leader. And so if you’re thinking about Duke Ellington, right, and the kind of music that he was able to enable, if you don’t have a good band leader, then someone is going to steal that show and the swing is going to be undermined. I’m not sure if … is that the case in jazz?
In my previous post, I discussed how E. B. White’s Stuart Little put the ideas of world federalist Emery Reves into literary form. Next time, I’ll talk more generally about how White’s view of international law is implicated in his depiction of nature and his approach to English prose style. Today, I’d like to take a brief detour.
You may not know the name Marvin Hamlisch, but you more than likely have heard his music, especially if you enjoy Hollywood or Broadway. He wrote some of the greatest scores for both, from “The Sting” to “A Chorus Line.” As one might have expected of someone who enrolled in The Julliard School at the age of seven, he was one of an exceedingly small group of musicians to have won an Emmy, a Grammy, and Oscar, and a Tony—such paragons of popular song are known as EGOTs—and he was one of only two musicians to have won all those awards and a Pulitzer. Here is the theme he wrote for the James Bond film “The Spy Who Loved Me”—followed by a recent performance of the song by Radiohead, for readers who may not want to be reminded of the 1970s.
And Hamlisch didn’t just write hits. If you want to get a sense of how important his background music was to the power of American film, try imagining this sequence from Woody Allen’s “Take the Money and Run,” about the hapless bank robber Virgil Starkwell, without Hamlisch’s score:
My latest video is about the concept of human dignity in German constitutional law. The video also considers the relation between law and art—in this case, music—which I’ve also examined in two other videos: “The Beauty of the Code” and “Law in Stone & Glass.”
Before I post my interview with the German Minister of Justice (I hope to do so later this week), I thought I’d share a snippet of lively conversation I had this afternoon with a young German lawyer in a picturesque spot in city of Würzburg. Now I’m off to give a public lecture about The Rule of the Clan!