In the 1930s, the Nazi party began issuing propaganda featuring the image of a “perfect Aryan” child. If you were looking to build a master race of adorable white people, you could do a lot worse: Hessy Taft, the model, had round eyes, a charmingly surprised expression, and a perfectly tousled tuft of dark hair on her head.
She was also Jewish.
Venus and Adonis by Titian(c. 1555-1560) & Rubens(c. 1610)
Compliments about my writing > everything else.
Thank you, sweetie. It’s really kind of you to say.
I absolutely love it when my Grandma and me get into a conversation about our family. I probe her to death about all those relatives that I never met. Here are a few gems I uncovered today:
- My Great-Great-Uncle Cyril had one glass eye; my Grandma doesn’t know why or how it happened.
- My Great-Great-Grandma had a bob for her entire life, and a small cyst on her eyelid that disappeared when she died.
- My Great-Great-Uncle John suffered from shell shock (PTSD) after fighting in World War Two, and killed himself by driving off a cliff.
- My Great-Grandad was called Jeremiah and was a miner (Northern family through and through); he was on the beaches on D-Day (and survived.)
- When my Grandma was young, there weren’t any funeral parlours, and when a relative died, the coffin (and body) was kept at home; after my Great-Great Grandma died, and her body was in the house, my Great-Grandma woke up from a nightmare and thought she saw her Mother’s face on the pillow next to her.
- She told me that there was a popular superstition at the time that if you touched the dead, you wouldn’t dream about them.
- My Grandma had three Aunties called Florence, Gertie and Annie, and they were all inseparable.
- My Great-Uncle Joe also committed suicide after he fought in the Vietnam War.
- During his time in the National Service (for those who don’t know, British men were required to serve two years in the armed forces until 1963 when conscription was abolished), my Grandma and Grandad wrote a total of 265 letters to each other; both of them kept their respective letters until my Grandads service was finished, and they burnt them together in a bonfire.
I love family history so much. I was thinking about it, my Great-Great Grandma will have been born around 1875. My Great-Great Grandma, a woman that my Grandma remembers well, was alive when Robert Browning was (she potentially knew him as the Poet Laureate?) And her Mother (or maybe her Grandma), will have almost assuredly, undoubtedly, definitively have at least known of William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge personally, as the two poets lived in the village next to my family. Six generations really isn’t that much of a leap. It’s insane, and amazing to know so much about people that I never met or knew, yet somehow feel so connected to.
Painter painting in our land pictures of only white angels
Painter painting in our time in shadows of yesterday
Eartha Kitt - Angelitos Negros (1970 performance)