" When I read a book I seem to read it with my eyes only, but now and then I come across a passage, perhaps only a phrase, which has a meaning for me, and it becomes part of me. "
W. Somerset Maugham

Back in the day


Harry S. Truman Announces His Point Four Program

As the fourth point of his presidential inauguration address in 1949, Truman announced what became known as his Point Four Program—the US policy of technical assistance and economic aid to less-developed countries. Such assistance, mainly in agriculture, public health, and education, was provided through contracts with US business and educational organizations. During the Cold War, the US government used Point Four to win support from uncommitted nations. Does the program still exist?



The Domesday Book

The Domesday Book is a written record of a survey of English landowners and their property ordered by William the Conqueror in 1085. The most remarkable administrative feat of the Middle Ages, it now serves as the starting point for the history of most English towns and villages. Originally called "the description of England," the name Domesday Book—a reference to doomsday, when people face a final accounting of their lives—was later popularly attached to it. What was the purpose of the survey?

Born on a day like today


Federico Fellini

After collaborating on screenplays with Roberto Rossellini in the 1940s, Italian Federico Fellini turned from writing to directing films. His movies earned international acclaim, and a number of them won Academy Awards, including La Strada, 8 ½, and Amarcord. Filmed in color starting in 1965, his movies became a celebration of life, with its beauties and grotesqueries, as well as an exploration of Fellini's dream life. His wife starred in several of his films. Who was she?

Last updated on Friday, 20th January 2012

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