Updates from October, 2018 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Earthling 1:56 pm on 31st October 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , doom, environmental violence, environmental warfare, global environmental crises, halloween, , state of the modern world, ,   

    State of the Modern World Address – October 2018 

    Careless Destruction of Most of Earth’s Species
    There’s Plastic in Your Poop: Study Warns Microplastics May Be Hurting Us All
    Scientists prove human activity is the top cause of warming Antarctic waters
    As the Antarctic Peninsula heats up, the rules of life there are being ripped apart
    Russia & Ukraine

    Russian Ministry Warns of Coming Environmental Apocalypse Fueled by Climate Change
    Russian Environmental Situation Deteriorating in Recent Years
    War-Related Environmental Disaster in Ukraine
    North America
    Arctic Offshore Wells Approved Off Alaska’s Coast
    America’s era of climate mass migration is here
    Monsanto Found Guilty for Giving Man Cancer
    British Columbia approved 83 logging cut blocks in endangered caribou habitat in last six months
    Latin America
    Chile becomes first Latin America country to ban commercial use of plastic bags
    Mexico creates biodiversity bank
    Amazon on the brink of doom
    Capitalists continue to murder environmental activists in Brazil
    Wales Pledges to Leave Its Remaining Coal in the Ground
    EU Nations Reach Agreement on Imposing Emission Cuts on Carmakers
    Single-use plastics ban approved by European Parliament
    Istanbul Vending Machines Offer Subway Credit for Recycled Bottles and Cans
    Rebellion Against Environment Abuse Commences in UK
    Middle East and North Africa
    Exposing The Environmental Costs of War
    Israel Uses Environmental Violence Against Palestine
    Hamas Uses Environmental Violence Against Israel
    Egypt’s Water Crisis: a Recipe for Disaster
    War Spoils: BP and Eni to start drilling in Libya within months
    Climate change is making the Arab world more miserable
    Iran at risk of losing majority of its farmlands
    Nigeria has some of the world’s most polluted cities — and that isn’t about to change
    Fish dwindle in the traditionally rich waters of Tanzania
    Gabon economically grows at expense of environment
    All-Female Wildlife Avengers Take Out Rhino Poachers
    Central Asia
    Climate Change May Cause Wars in Central Asia
    Efforts to Utilize the Dead Land Left By Soviet Annihilation of Aral Sea
    Kazakhs Preserve What Remains of Northern Aral Sea
    China is producing banned ozone-damaging chemicals
    Beijing’s Choking Smog is Back
    Scientists warn of China’s disappearing glaciers
    Man-made oasis: Xinjiang’s “green wall” fights expanding desert
    China Harming South American Environment
    India pledges to remove all single-use plastics by 2022
    India’s Power Generation At Its Cleanest-Ever As Thermal Share Falls
    Tourism boom threatens Chàm Island ecosystems
    Ecologically Important Hawaiian Island Has Vanished
    Solomon Islands
    Logging For China Is Decimating Forests in the Solomon Islands
    Indonesians can pay bus fare with plastic waste instead of money
    Central Australia may have seen the world’s worst rate of mammal extinction but it could get worse
    Rising gas output raises Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions
    Zero-Waste Kitchens and Low-Energy Cooking
    Environmental Harm of Halloween

  • Earthling 2:20 am on 26th October 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: 2020 census, agricultural automation, depopulation, Irina Medvedeva, Natalia Zubarevich, Nikita Mkrtchyan, Orel region rural depopulation, poverty in russia, rural depopulation, rural depopulation in russia, rural russia, Russia October 2018 pre-census, Russia trial census 2018, russian census of 2020, russian death rate, russian survival rate, Sergei Sobyanin, unemployment in russia   

    Russia, free from people: what the census can show 

    Russia has undertaken a trial census in preparation for the upcoming nationwide census in 2020. The state has new questions for citizens, and citizens have new problems related to their prospects of survival.
    Some examples include the distance of the respondent from their main place of work, and willingness to accept a new job even if they were not looking for one. There were also questions about the permanent registration of the respondent, and the duration of their stays in other countries.
    “The question of the second job disappeared from the questionnaire, apparently because previously it was not answered, because of people trying to hide additional income. As for the academic degree, this figure, apparently, is not important for the country’s leadership to know,” Nikita Mkrtchyan, a researcher.
    Curiously, shortly before the start of the trial census of October 2018, the UN published a report, according to which the population of Russia in the coming decades will decrease by 12-13 million. In particular, by 2025 the rural population in Russia will decrease from 36 to 22 million.
    Actually, there is nothing sensational in the UN report. Since 2000, the rural population of Russia has decreased by 500 thousand people per year. In the Orel region, half of the surviving villages have only 1-100 people. In villages in the Pskov region, the death rate exceeded the birth rate by 2.6 times. It is followed by the Kursk and Smolensk regions…
    Over the past ten years, 132 settlements have disappeared in the Orel region. Such data is published by the territorial body of the Federal state statistics service. According to the Orel information Bureau, in the near future more than 800 settlements will disappear from the map of the region. The extinction of the village has its own sad logic. The fact is that the network of primary schools in rural areas is rapidly decreasing. For this reason many move to regional centers where there is an opportunity to send children to schools. Another consequence of the disappearance of rural schools is the disappearance of rural teachers and the actual elimination of cultural life in the village. Clubs disappear, movie theaters are closed, people do not know what to do, and many start drinking from despair. “When people go to cities – large or small, they often stay there. There is a certain labor market there, specialists are needed… and the rural population is simply not reproduced. It is exhausted and very old,” Mkrtchyan said.
    However, the former Director of the Institute of Demographic Security, Chief Researcher of the Institute of Childhood of the Russian Children’s Fund, Irina Medvedeva, does not agree with this point of view: “It is only necessary to stop the closure of maternity hospitals and the reduction of small village schools — and then the UN forecasts will not be justified. The destruction of the village is not only a demographic problem. It is also a cultural problem. Whatever village is not destroyed is half-asleep, it still retains the cultural tradition. And the Russian cultural tradition has many children.”
    Among the causes of population decline is the outflow of people from sparsely populated areas. People leave mainly in search of work, because there is practically no work in the village. As expert Natalia Zubarevich explains: “The standard traditional agricultural sector is almost dead. …There are modern productions such as pig and poultry farms, but they are located near the cities and there is mechanized production, which does not require the employment of a large number of people. The village doesn’t need workers, you know?”
    However, Irina Medvedev offers a way out: “We must give people jobs in small businesses. Small processing enterprises will extend the province and fix the demographic situation. …When people have a future that can bring happiness to them and their descendants, then people will begin to give birth to children.”
    The authorities have their own point of view, and it is more pragmatic. Recently, the mayor of Moscow Sergei Sobyanin revealed its essence: “In rural areas today there live an extra 15 million people who are by and large not needed for the production of agricultural products, taking into account new production technologies in rural areas.” Nikita Mkrtchyan confirms the thesis of the mayor of Moscow: “The rise of agriculture is now associated with certain industries. Grain-growing is a very profitable industry, it is export-oriented, and it requires almost no labor. This reduces the need for people. Agricultural productivity is growing, exports are growing, but people in villages are not needed. The non-Chernhttps://newizv.ru/news/society/14-10-2018/rossiya-svobodnaya-ot-lyudey-chto-mozhet-pokazat-perepis-naseleniyaozem region has already disappeared. There is no one to work there, and it is no longer necessary.”
    The World Bank has for the first time calculated a Human Capital Index that reflects the level of productivity of young people. Although Russia has occupied 34th place, its results in terms of survival rates of adults are lower.
    The indicator that pulls Russia down is the survival rate of adults, which is estimated as the probability of 15-year-olds surviving to 60. Russia occupies 121st a place. According to this indicator (0.78), Russia is in the worst group of countries — the statistics indicate that only 78% of 15-year-olds live to the age of 60. For comparison, the survival rate of adults in the US, according to the World Bank, is 0.9, in China: 0.92, in Germany: 0.93. Russia was bypassed by countries such as Kazakhstan (0.8), India (0.83), Ukraine (0.81), Ethiopia (0.79), Mongolia (0.79), all countries of South America (except Bolivia, Venezuela and Suriname, for which the World Bank has no data). Other countries with the same results as Russia (0.78) include, for example, Afghanistan, Sudan and Papua New Guinea. One of the best results (0.95) is in countries such as Iceland, Switzerland, Italy, etc.
    Translated from https://newizv.ru/news/society/14-10-2018/rossiya-svobodnaya-ot-lyudey-chto-mozhet-pokazat-perepis-naseleniya

  • Earthling 4:28 am on 25th October 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: 112.rdpress.ru, alexander beglov, anti-piracy laws in russia, censorship of pornography, , copyright law in russia, Council of the Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, dangerous information, denouncing extremism in russia, extermination of the uighur people, facebook twitter censorship, free phone from russian government, funding non-profits, google censorship in china, great firewall, great firewall of china, kazakh genocide, russian government support for npos, sco surveillance cooperation, surveillance cooperation, uighur genocide, uyghur genocide, war on piracy in russia   

    October Internet Freedom Update 

    Russian ministries ramp up “War on Piracy”
    The Ministry of Culture is developing a package of amendments that will force search engines to remove links to pirated content, without trial, as well as significantly expanding the powers of the censoring body Roskomnadzor. The new legislation will oblige all search engines operating in Russia to remove links to pirate sites out of court at the request of copyright holders. It is possible that search engines may have to show sites with legal content in priority, and they may be fined for refusing to remove links to sites with pirated content.
    The authorities believe that the simplification of website blocking is necessary, since the mechanism of judicial blocking, which has been in force for more than five years, does not adequately protect the interests of right holders.
    It is worth noting that the law prohibiting search engines from issuing links to prohibited sites has already been adopted and even entered into force at the end of September 2018. However, the copyright lobby apparently does not gain enough power from this. Otherwise it is difficult to explain the desire to create such a pile of laws, essentially duplicating each other.
    (Translated from https://roskomsvoboda.org/42433/)
    St. Petersburg to fund non-profits censoring dangerous information
    The Governor of St. Petersburg Alexander Beglov approved a bill giving financial support to non-profit organizations (NPOs) that are struggling with potentially dangerous information on the internet.
    In July this year, the St. Petersburg parliamentarian offered to support NPOs “”protecting children from dangerous information on the Internet.” The Deputy has prepared a bill providing subsidies for such organizations. According to Mr. Teterenko, organizations that oppose online dissemination of information harmful to health and development of children must be maintained.
    He said that today the world-wide web is full of dangers for teens: groups for the search term “biker”, the promotion of marginal subcultures, “death cults”, and gambling. In addition, young people due to their inexperience can be too frank in online communication, which is why they risk running into blackmailers, the Deputy notes.
    He cites data from the Kaspersky Security Network, according to which, even the inclusion of the “parental control” function often does not prevent teenagers from visiting undesirable resources related to alcohol, tobacco and drugs, using obscene vocabulary and even publishing pornographic content.
    At the same time, according to the Deputy, there are organizations in the city that are engaged in educational work, and directly confront communities and users that disseminate unwanted information.
    (Translated from https://roskomsvoboda.org/42416/)
    Dagestan authorities are handing out smartphones for online denunciations
    In Dagestan, local authorities decided to encourage denunciations of online “extremists” by announcing an action, according to which the residents of Dagestan who report the highest number of extremist posts on social networks will receive a smartphone. The first place will get an Apple iPhone SE 32 Gb; the second place, a Xiaomi Redmi 5 32 Gb; and the third place, a Xiaomi Redmi 4A. This was announced in a statement on the Dagestan government counter-extremism website “Hotline”, 112.rdpress.ru. It is on this website that the government receives reports of online extremism from residents.
    Informants can share links to posts that violate the legislation of the Russian Federation, which incite hatred on religious or national grounds, and experts will process the requests and transfer them to the law enforcement agencies.
    (Translated from https://roskomsvoboda.org/42271/)
    Coordinated surveillance in the East
    The Council of the Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) agreed on joint online monitoring of terrorist threats.
    The SCO agreed on Thursday in the capital of Kyrgyzstan on monitoring threats of a terrorist nature on the internet, said the Kyrgyzstan anti-terrorism leader Asylbek Kozhabekov. “Special attention is paid to the challenges and threats posed by persons traveling to regions with increased terrorist activity, as well as those returning to the territory of the SCO member states,” he said.
    The meeting was attended by delegations of the special services of India, Kazakhstan, China, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
    (Translated from https://roskomsvoboda.org/42475/)
    Facebook and Twitter continue to take sides

    Facebook’s Purge Of Political Pages Fuels Delusion Of Insurgent Threats To Democracy
    Twitter Announcement: RT and Sputnik Advertising
    Google surrenders to the Communists
    Google Is Handing the Future of the Internet to China
    The good side of China’s Great Firewall
    AI system recognizes porn through voice recognition
    China detains 1,834 suspects in online porn crackdown
    China weaponizes the internet for genocidal purposes

    “The authorities employ high-tech mass surveillance systems that make use of QR codes, biometrics, artificial intelligence, phone spyware, and big data.”

  • Earthling 7:36 pm on 15th October 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: damaged ecosystems, evnironmental rehabilitation, how to rehabilitate and restore damaged landscapes, , rainforests, recovering from environmental damage, rehabilitation, restoration and rehabilitation, working with mother nature   

    How to Rehabilitate and Restore Damaged Ecosystems 

    By Carroll Colette J. Yorgey
    Damaged ecosystems are everywhere where people have built homes, developers have built condominiums and office building, and also where people drill for oil and extract precious resources. Today it is important to find solutions to restoring these damaged ecosystems back to natural habitats.
    The answer to restoring and rehabilitating damaged ecosystems is working with nature. Nature heals. We can see this every day when we look at the cracks in walls and sidewalks where an interesting flower or weed as taken over. Nature takes over and takes care of itself if humans will let it. Also humans can help nature take care of itself by lending a hand. This way nature can rehabilitate and restore itself faster than letting nature takes its course.
    Ongoing efforts
    Efforts have been ongoing of preservationists and environmentalists who take over lands that have lost their true nature. Research is done on how the ecosystem or habitat was in its original form. Most original ecosystems are composed of native grasses, plants, and trees. There are also native animals and birds that habitat in these areas. Once the ecology is restored to its original state, the process of native wildlife will also be restored, with sometimes original wildlife brought back to the area.
    What about prevention?
    Prevention is however the best way to keep ecosystems safe without having to restore a damaged ecosystem, which might cost a lot of money. There is a huge cost involved in restoration. Costs might include the cost of seeds, replenishing the soil, restoring original water systems, etc.
    Researching the area in question is a huge cost in itself. Before one can restore and rehabilitate an ecology, research must be done in order to know the true and original ecology of the area. Once research is done, plans have to be drawn up in order to initiate a complete restoration project. Labor is needed also, which might also involve cost if there aren’t enough volunteers. Just to recruit volunteers might also involve cost.
    But prevention is the best way to eliminate restoration and rehabilitation by keeping the ecology the way it always was. So how do people prevent an ecology from being degraded. They don’t cut down trees and bushes. They don’t drill for oil and extract resources. They don’t develop wetlands.
    Cutting down trees destroys habitats for animals and birds. Even removing too many dead trees destroys the habitat for insects and other small wild creatures. Cutting down trees also leads to soil erosion and desertification. Removing grasses and shrubs also leads to soil erosion and desertification. Nature operates on a natural system where each living organism works with every other living organism to create a fully sustainable environment of biodiversity and natural habitat.
    Extracting too many natural resources such as oil and gas depletes the earth of its natural function. Developing wetlands totally destroys natural flood control, habitats for birds and other wildlife, and the pure drinking water that humans and animals need for survival.
    Therefore, prevent the ecology from being degraded. Work together with others to make sure that natural ecosystems are not destroyed; but also work with other people who care about the Earth to restore and rehabilitate ecosystems that have been destroyed.
    Here is something to think about: The restoration and rehabilitation of huge rainforests. It might be impossible to research what was there before if it is destroyed before there is any research done on what was there before it was destroyed. There are so many new plants and species in rainforests that it is impossible to know what they were if they are removed before any investigative research is done.
    Therefore it is highly imperative that natural ecosystems not be degraded or destroyed. It is also extremely important to restore and rehabilitate any ecosystems that were destroyed if at all possible.
    Restoration can be done by letting nature take over and helping nature along with volunteers and dedicated people who care about the Earth.
    Copyright © 2018 Carroll Colette J. Yorgey

  • Earthling 12:32 am on 15th October 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: African hero, African musician, Fela Kuti, Fela Kuti bio, Fela Kuti biography, Freedom fighter, Nigerian hero, Nigerian musician   

    Fela Kuti 

    Fela Anikulapo Ransome-Kuti (Born October 15, 1938 — Died August 2, 1997), commonly known as Fela Kuti, was a Nigerian musician and activist who created the Afrobeat genre and continually protested against political corruption in Nigeria, Africa, and globally. He had a hufe influence on African music through his innovative combination of traditional Nigerian Yoruba music with African American and Latin American styles of music such as jazz, blues, soul, salsa, and calypso. He was highly politically involved, created his own political party, and was arrested 200 times over his life.

    Fela was born in Abeokuta, Nigeria in 1938. His father was a Protestant pastor and a non-professional pianist. His parents were both politically active. His mother avidly supported the anti-colonial movement.
    Fela’s parents sent him to London in 1958, expecting him to study to become a doctor. Instead, he went to Trinity College’s school of music. He studied Western classical music and also became acquainted with jazz. In London he married his first wife, Remi Taylor. He created a band in 1961 called Koola Lobitos, which achieved some popularity playing jazz and high-life style music.
    In 1963, Fela returned to Nigeria and formed a new version of his band with different members. He developed a new style which he called “Afrobeat”. It combined traditional Yoruba music with elements of jazz, blues, R&B, funk, salsa, and Calypso.
    In 1969, Fela toured Los Angeles and recorded there. He encounted the writings of Malcolm X, Eldridge Cleavaer, and other black nationalists. He felt inspired to change his band’s name to Nigeria 70 and make his music more explicitly political.
    After returning to Nigeria, Fela established a communal compound that included his family, a recording studio, and a rehearsal space. The compound was called the Kalakuta Republic. Fela changed his bands name again, to Africa 70. He was very productive and became wildly popular in West Africa. He was especially popular among Nigeria’s poor because he stood up for them.
    Following Fela’s transition to explicitly addressing political issues, he was persecuted by the Nigerian government. Throughout the rest of his life, he was continually harassed, imprisoned, beaten, and sometimes tortured by the Nigerian government. He was arrested 200 times. In 1977, 1000 soldiers invaded the Kalakuta Republic. They threw Fela’s elderly mother from a window, leading to her death. They also broke Fela’s bones and fractured his skull, nearly killing him. They set the compound on fire and didn’t allow firefighters to put it out.
    Fela survived and was briefly exiled in Ghana before returning in 1978. The same year, he had a mass-wedding with 27 of his backup singers. In 1979, he created a new political party, the Movement of the People. In 1980 he changed his band’s name to Egypt 80. For the next three years he was able to go about his musical business productively and with less disruptions than usual. Then the military junta returned and Fela was given a ten-year sentence for currency smuggling in 1984. He was freed the next year with the help of Amnesty International.
    After his release, Fela divorced his 12 remaining wives, leaving him with only his first wife Remi. They had three children, who formed a band called Positive Force. His son Femi went on to become a successful musician.
    Fela continued to condemn the Nigerian government, as well as certain other governments and people, such as Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan. Due to illness, his musical output decreased in the 1990s.
    Kuti died from complications related to AIDS in Lagos in 1997. His funeral was attended by roughly a million people.
    Musical Style and Legacy
    Fela released 50 albums and performed abundantly. He sang in Pidgin English and Yoruba. He completely transformed the African and global musical scenes by creating the new Afrobeat genre, which was a combination of elements from traditional Yoruba music and various Western genres such as jazz, blues, R&B, funk, and salsa. He produced longer pieces of music than is usual, with pieces ranging from ten to thirty minutes.
    Fela is also remembered as a great and tireless political activist . He endured 200 arrests, many beatings, and an invasion of his compound in which and he was nearly killed, and his mother was injured leading to her death. In spite of all this, he continued to live in Nigeria and openly challenge the government.
  • Earthling 4:42 am on 6th October 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: 100 virgins, 33-year-old virgins, 72 virgins, afterlife in Islam, attractive 33-year-olds, beautiful muslim singles, black irises, busty women, eternal companion, eternal friend, eternal love, eternal virgin, full-breasted women, good women, Houri, Houris, Hur, Hurin 'in, , jannah, large-breasted women, love in paradise, Maidens of paradise, mirror face, mirror men, pure women, revirgination, righteous women, romance in paradise, romantic women, see-through people, see-through women, sex in paradise, sixty-cubit women, tall women, transparent women, true love, virgins for martyrs, virgins in paradise, voluptuous women, white eyes, women who don't poop, your perfect match   

    Islam: Maidens of Paradise 

    A houri, in Islam, is a female virgin companion created as a reward for men in Paradise. Houris are described in the Islamic sacred texts as being beautiful, voluptuous, loving, modest, and faithful. Their eternal age is given as 33. According to the traditions, every man will be married to at least two houris; another figure given is 72. Martyrs are said to go to Paradise and receive 72 houris immediately upon dying. Houris will not bear children unless they want to, nor will they menstruate, urinate, defecate, or spit.
    Houris are mentioned a number of times in the Quran and described in more detail in the hadith, which are narrations containing the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad.
    According to Muhammad Asad, the Arabic word “hour” or “houri” is the Arabic plural of “ahwar” or “hawra”, which both mean “a person who possesses the quality of hawar”; “hawar” designates whiteness of the heart, as well as the clear whiteness of the eye in contrast to the blackness of the iris. Some early Quran commentators, including al-Hasan al-Basri, understood the term “houri” to designate all righteous women.
    Physical appearance
    In the Quran, the houris are compared to rubies and coral. They are also repeatedly mentioned as being of equal age, and the word used can also be interpreted as meaning “well-matched.” They are described as having large, beautiful eyes, and “large” or “full” breasts. The age of the houris given in the hadith is 33. The hadith indicate that everyone in Paradise will be sixty cubits tall.
    Houris are described as being light-skinned, although there is also mention in the hadith of a black woman for someone who desires one. Houris are also described as being transparent, so that the marrow of their bones can be seen through their legs. One hadith mentions that a man will place his hands behind a woman’s shoulders and see his hand through her.
    Another quality mentioned in some hadith is that the bodies of houris will be like mirrors. Some hadith indicate that the houri’s cheek will be like a mirror in which the man can see his face; some mention the houri’s liver having this quality. A hadith says, “his inside will be a reflection of her and her inside will be a reflection of him.”
    The houri’s clothing will include a veil or hijab. The houri’s veil is described in the hadith as being “better than this world and everything in it.” Another hadith mentions a houri being dressed in seventy garments, all of which will be transparent for the man.
    Romantic and Sexual Relations
    The houris and their men will be in love with each other. For example, one hadith mentions that houris will say to their husbands “I swear by Allah, there is nothing in the Garden more handsome than you and there is nothing in the Garden more beloved to me than you.”
    Sexual relations in Paradise are described in the hadith as well. Men will go from pavilion to pavilion, enjoying sexual relations with their wives one at a time. One hadith mentions a man deflowering a hundred virgins in one morning. Another mentions a man being occupied in intercourse with one woman for forty years. It is specified that men will have endless sexual energy and will not suffer from impotence or fatigue. The houris are eternal virgins, meaning that their hymens will regenerate after intercourse.
    The houris are not only sexual partners, but they are also romantic companions with whom men will cohabit eternally. Houris are described as sitting on thrones, couches, or cushions, alongside their husbands. They reside in houses of pearls along with their husbands, and also may inhabit pavilions as they wait for their turn in amorous relations.
    Houris and Other Religions
    Some other religions feature descriptions of heavenly brides or maidens as well. Houris are also featured in Baha’ism, which acknowledges the Quranic descriptions as true. In Zoroastrianism, a righteous person is said to encounter a beautiful virgin maiden (Daena) after death; yet in Zoroastrianism the virgin is said to be an image of the person’s own moral qualities and behavior. Parallels can also be drawn between the houris and the Nymphs of Greek tradition, the Valkyries of Norse tradition, and the Apsaras of Hindu and Buddhist traditions.
    Article written by me for Lunyr

  • Earthling 12:02 pm on 1st October 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Arturo Toscanini, Byron Janis, Gary Graffman, , Jewish pianist, Ronald Turini, , Soviet pianist, , Vladimir Horowitz   

    Vladimir Horowitz 

    [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFvqvZOtCF0%5D
    Vladimir Samoylovich Horowitz was a Ukraine-born pianist of Jewish descent, who began his career in the USSR and then moved to the US and became a citizen there. He is widely considered one of the greatest pianists of the 20th century.
    Horowitz was born to a Jewish family in Kiev or Berdichev in 1903. The sources are in disagreement about this. [1] Horowitz’s father later listed his year of birth as 1904 in order to make him appear too young for the army. His mother was a skilled pianist and gave him his first piano lessons.
    Horowitz joined the Kiev Conservatory in 1912. He studied under Felix Blumenfeld, Sergei Tarnowsky, and Vladimir Puchalsky. He graduated in 1919, performing Rachmaninoff’s third piano concerto at his graduation.
    Horowitz embarked upon his career as a professional pianist, giving his first solo concert in 1920. He toured Russia extensively and performed many concerts, often being paid with food instead of money due to the country’s poverty. In 1922, he gave 15 concerts in Khakov in exchange for food and clothing. From 1926 onwards, he debuted in Berlin, Paris, London, and New York.
    In 1932, Horowitz began a lasting partnership with the conductor Arturo Toscanini. The next year, he married Arturo’s daughter Wanda. She did not speak Russian, so they communicated in French. They quickly had their first and only child, Sonia Toscanini Horowitz. Their different religious backgrounds were not a problem because neither of them was practicing.
    At the outbreak of World War 1, Horowitz and his family moved to New York City. He was naturalized in 1944, and spent the rest of his life in the US, with the exception of some.
    Horowitz suffered from doubt in his own abilities, in spite of his great popularity. He became depressed. Some sources indicate that Horowitz was homosexual, which would have worsened his psychological condition.
    From the late 1930s until 1985, Horowitz would often withdraw from public performances for many years at a time. His longest retreat from public performances was from 1953 to 1965. In 1965, he resumed giving recitals on rare occasions. During his long periods of withdrawal, he continued to produce recordings. He sometimes requires great pressure from his wife and friends to stop him from canceling concerts. He also sometimes had to be pushed onto the stage. [1]
    Horowitz underwent electroshock therapy for depression in the 1960s and 1970s. In the 1980s, he tried antidepressants, and his piano playing suffered from their effects. He quit the medication by 1985 and his pianism improved again. [1]
    He returned to the USSR for a series of politically significant concerts in 1986. The following year, he went to Europe and gave his last tour. Horowitz died of a heart attack in New York City in 1989. He was buried in the Toscanini family tomb in Milan, Italy.
    Musical Style and Legacy
    Horowitz was known for his clean and clear playing, his technical skill, and his colorful, exciting style. He had a number of students, notably including Byron Janis, Gary Graffman, and Ronald Turini. He remains one of the most famous and respected pianists of the 20th century.
    [1] http://www.berdichev.org/vladimir_horowitz_and_his_biography.html
    Article written by me for Lunyr

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