Daily Archives: March 20, 2019

3 posts

Shanghai 1937: Where World War II Began

When did World War II begin? Americans might say December 7, 1941-the day the Japanese Imperial navy attacked the American naval base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. For Europeans, it was September 1, 1939 when Nazi Germany invaded Poland. But in China, people will tell you a different date -August 13, 1937, the start of the Battle of Shanghai. That day, after what is called the “century of humiliation,” including six years of repeated “incidents” initiated by the Japanese military, China at last “stood up.” Shanghai was the most international city in Asia, with a large foreign population, so at the time of the military conflict, it was headline news around the world. Based on the book Shanghai 1937: Stalingrad on the Yangtzeby Danish author Peter Harmsen, SHANGHAI 1937: WHERE WORLD WAR II BEGAN introduces key figures in the conflict, chronicles how the battle unfolded over the course of three months, and explores the aftermath and years of war that followed. SHANGHAI 1937 incorporates rarely seen archival footage as well as interviews with author Peter Harmsen, military historian Edward Drea and professor of modern Chinese history Hans Van DeVen, in addition to two Chinese experts on this subject: Su Zhiliang, Ph.D. of Shanghai Normal University, and Ma Zhendu, director of the Second Historical Archives of China. The film also includes vivid recollections of men and women, such as Ronald Morris, Liliane Willens and Patricia D. Silver, who experienced these events as foreign children living in Shanghai.

Airs 3/27 at 4 a.m.



Remembering W.S. Merwin

The world lost a renowned poet the other day, on March 15th. W.S. Merwin died at the age of 91.

In 1971 and again in 2009, Merwin won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. He won the National Book Award for Poetry in 2005, and the Tanning Prize, one of the highest honors bestowed by the Academy of American Poets, and the Golden Wreath of the Struga Poetry Evenings. He was also named the 17th United States Poet Laureate by the Library of congress in 2010.

Click here for a remembrance of his life by Poetry Foundation, and to read some of his poetry.


Click here for the latest Brain Pickings by Maria Popova for the article titled: “Astrophysicist and Author Janna Levin Reads “Berryman” by W.S. Merwin: Some of the Finest and Most Soul-Salving Advice on How to Stay Sane as an Artist”