Essays & Images on Cities, Travel and Contemporary Culture. A web journal of James A. Clapp, Ph.D., an UrbisMedia Ltd. Production

Vol.104.3: A MEDITATION ON GOING TO MARS (Re-Post)

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Recently I posted a piece about “beauty” and asked if my readers had some thoughts on the subject.  I did receive a few in email and comments, but not a lot.  I was Read More

Vol.93.4: THE LAST TIME I SAW PARIS [MR]

© 1999, UrbisMedia-Ltd.

© 1999, UrbisMedia-Ltd.

In the final scene of Bernardo Bertolucci’s The Sheltering Sky (1990), Paul Bowles, the author of the original story is seated in a Tangier café where he greets Kit Moresby (Debra Winger), Read More

Vol.92.3: Dystopia’s Children (a movie review essay)

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I probably come off as a bit of a pest with my insistence to my grandchildren that they need to read more books (and write more, but that’s a subject for another posting).  I am willing to buy Read More

Vol.91.4: PARIS AND THE PROFESSORS, a Movie Review Essay

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There were seven screenwriters on Casablanca.  Chances are that at least one of them had a romantic experience in Paris that resulted in Bogart’s doleful line to Bergman Read More

Vol.89.4: CINEMA CHINA, Part 6

© 1974, Paramount Pictures Chinatown, USA

© 1974, Paramount Pictures
Chinatown, USA

[This concludes the Cinema China series]

Chinese often viewed America as the jin shan, “Gold Mountain,” the name Read More

Vol.89.2: CINEMA CHINA, Part 5

William Holden and Jennifer Jones on a “high and windy hill” in Hong Kong © 1955, 20th Century Fox

William Holden and Jennifer Jones on a “high and windy hill” in Hong Kong © 1955, 20th Century Fox

Counter-Revolutionary Cinema

China seems to live up to the axiom that the only constant is change. 1949 brought a big change indeed; but a political Read More

Vol.89.1: Creation Re-Boot (Re-Boat?)

© 2014, UrbisMedia

© 2014, UrbisMedia

Lost passage from Genesis: Gen 2.0: And God felt that his computer had crashed when the humans he had created from his animation program had gone all crazy killing Read More

Vol.88.8: The Passion of the Mel [A Good Friday Reprise from, 15.4]

© 2004, UrbisMedia

© 2004, UrbisMedia

2014: I used to ask my grad students in my seminars that, if they could time travel, would they prefer going into the future, or the past.  Then I would ask them Read More

Vol.88.7: CINEMA CHINA, Part 4

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[continued from 88.3]


The rather odd story of Western heroism in the face if the Japanese conquest of Nanking is recounted in John Read More

Vol.88.4: CINEMA CHINA, Part 3

Anna May Wong and Marlene Dietrich ride in separate compartments on the Shanghai Express. ©1932 Paramount Pictures

Anna May Wong and Marlene Dietrich ride in separate compartments on the Shanghai Express. ©1932 Paramount Pictures

The Enduring Revolution

The essence of drama is conflict, and China’s conflicted 20th C plays out like a dysfunctional family saga compounded by uninvited foreign guests Read More

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