Tag Archives: TS Eliot

Welcome to the banker-poets: Why creativity thrives in financial services

Why should I let the toad work/ Squat on my life?” With the summer holiday season upon us, it’s easy, even in a hardworking and ambitious place like the City, for the mind to turn to the pleasures of life outside the office. But Philip Larkin’s bitter question shouldn’t get the better of us for long. There’s an irony, after all, in a poem that complains about the livelihood that allowed the poet to write it. And as Larkin admits later in the poem, it is not the job so much as the toad of his own personal fears that keeps him from a freer but less financially secure life. Continue reading

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We mustn’t mourn the end of encyclopaedias

AS A boy, I remember being taken to the local library and taught to use the dark, weighty volumes of the Encyclopaedia Britannica. As of now, that dates me. A “digital native”, someone to whom the modern information revolution comes naturally, is often defined as a person who has never owned a camera that needs a film. This week we can add, someone who thinks encyclopedias don’t need books. The end of the print version of the EB, announced on Tuesday, marks a turning point, but, despite twinges of nostalgia, one for the better. Continue reading

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Poetry and capitalism make a heroic couplet

T.S. ELIOT was a banker, but that hasn’t stopped two poets from refusing to be shortlisted for this year’s prestigious, £15,000 Eliot Prize over a sponsorship deal with Aurum Capital, an investment firm specialising in funds of hedge funds. First Alice Oswald and now John Kinsella have given up their coveted places on the list. Kinsella told The Guardian he was an “anti-capitalist in full-on form”, while Oswald announced that “poetry should be questioning not endorsing such institutions”. Continue reading

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