Movie - Shaolin [ China, 2011 ]

In a time when China was in turmoil because of internal power struggles and external interests were at the door, waiting to grab a piece of the magnificent wealth the empire had to offer, a warlord is forced to choose a new path. No one road to enlightenment is the same, this movie shows that even if the last moments of life are near, one still has the option to reject evil if one has the power to wish it.

Title: Shaolin
Country: China
Year: 2014
Directed by: Benny Chan
Cast: Andy Lau, Nicholas Tse, Jackie Chan


Thothpedia - Wisdom

    The basic definition of wisdom can be found by linking it with philosophy becoming a result of the philosophical undertaking. In all schools of thought and religions around the world wisdom was and is the noblest of pearls. There is no clear definition of wisdom mainly because there is no exact way to measure it or to acquire it.
     Ancient Egyptians had a God, Sia, representing the concept of wisdom, often being shown in anthropomorphic form while holding a papyrus scroll. The hieroglyph with the same name also stand for "to perceive" and "to know". Similar gods are Seshat and Thoth.
     Confucius identified three methods of gaining wisdom, the noble form was reflection, the easiest was imitation and the hardest was experience. He also said: "Love of learning is akin to wisdom".
     Western philosophy from antiquity was centered around wisdom, the name philosophy actually means "love of wisdom". For Socrates and Plato it was necessary to understand the "Form of the Good", for Aristotle it was an understanding of causes.
     An important element of Christian and Islamic teachings, wisdom is cherished by members of both religions, being regarded as a gift of understanding, separated from secular wisdom. In Judaism, wisdom is a high virtue along with kindness and justice.


ꗇ History in Images ꔀ Soviet Posters ꗇ

Through propaganda and educative posters, Soviet iconography permeated into Russian society with relative ease. Lenin is the one who takes the responsibility of creating the first truly propaganda machine, the fate of Communism depended on keeping people close to the party and with a high enough morale to face all the shortcomings that came with building socialism. Artists from all-over the land participated in this field, giving many excellent examples of posters that transcended the boundaries of political tools and became works of art in their own right. The basic philosophy was to make various subjects appealing to the mases, they didn't necessarily have to be simple, but universal. They needed to make war seem heroic and working the fields as relaxing as a stroll in the park, with young and blond Russian women happily waiting for their working men while they take care of the kids or, even better, working beside them.

Six main eras have been identified in the development in the field of propaganda posters:
1. the Bolshevik Era (1917-1921) - key features are the revolutionary fervor with a strong emphasis on symbolism, more than 3500 poster designs were created.
2. the New Economic Policy (1921-1927) - key features are the Avant-garde Constructivism Style and a feeling of slightly more freedom even if faced with famine and discontent.
3. the first two "five year plans" - key features: Stalin wanted to industrialize Russia as fast as possible with an emphasis on heavy industry; in the first part of the period, photo-montage was used.
4. the Great Patriotic War, or World War 2 (1939-1945) - key features of the period are the revival of the Bolshevik style.
5. the Cold War (1946-1984) - key features are the use of Social Realism and posters promoting peace.
6. Perestroika (1984-1991)

Posters began to cover all areas of social and private life, from culture to work, from politics to war, they were the "bibles" of common soviet people, or at least this was the idea. Some of the more well known artists and designers are Alexander Apsit, who created the famous hammer and sickle symbol and the red star, Irakili Toridze knwon for his "Motherland is calling", Victor Karetsky, Victor Ivanov, N. Treschenko, Victor Govorkov, M. Heifitz, etc.

Two possible directions from which we will continue in future articles are the similarities with political posters from National Socialist Germany and the other being advertising posters mainly from the United States and consumerist society.

For now however let's look at some examples.

1917 - "The Loan of Freedom" by Kustodiev B. M. This poster refers to the bonds issued by the provisional government in order to stabilize the economy, the measure however did not manage to garner much support from the people.

???? - "Stop" by Karetsky V. B.

1919 - "May Day, workers have nothing to lose but their chains" by A. P. Apsit

"1940" - "Moscow is the capital of the USSR" by L. M. Lisitsky

1942 - "Red Army Soldier, save!" by V. B. Koretsky