Author: Dr. Cliff Cunningham

  • HALLOWEEN: Mansion on O Street

    HALLOWEEN: Mansion on O Street

      If you ever wondered what is behind a secret door in a spooky mansion, then head to Washington DC. At the Mansion on O Street, you can actually open that secret door. If you value your life however, you might want to reconsider. I had a private tour of the O Mansion by its […]

  • Halloween Witch Hunt

    Halloween Witch Hunt

    How about a good old-fashioned pumpkin horror story from Spain to get Halloween off to a fine start? “Maria de Ulibarri, married, age 36, came before an inquisition commission in September 1611. Her goal was to discharge her conscience and remedy her soul. Ulibarri told the commissioner that three years earlier she had been lured […]

  • Cold War Radio

    Cold War Radio

    While radio often seems nostalgic now, it had great value during the Cold War, from the 1950s to the 1990s. Writing of Radio Liberty and Voice of America in his new book Cold War Radio, Dr. Mark G. Pomar says they “were born of the Cold War. They were conceived not only as weapons to […]

  • A Surprising Violin Concerto

    A Surprising Violin Concerto

    The latest outing by our Austin Symphony Orchestra featured the violinist Elisabeth Kufferath. It was an inspired choice to celebrate the music of Albert Dietrich (1829-1908), a little-known German composer whose main claim to fame was his relationship with Robert Schumann and Johannes Brahms. Compositions by all three were included in the concert, an all-German […]

  • Naval Strategy

    Naval Strategy

    In physics, ‘exceptional points’ are specific system parameters leading to the commonality of two different solutions that can only exist in systems with losses. For those with a scientific, rather than a naval history background, that is a fine approach to this important book by Dr. Kevin D. McCranie. He is Professor of Comparative Strategy […]

  • The Celestial Hunter

    The Celestial Hunter

    Hunting took many forms in ancient Greece. Sometimes a wild boar would be hunted. Another time a God would take the form of a wild boar to hunt down a human he didn’t like. That is what is depicted here: Ares, the God of War, took the form of a boar to hunt down Adonis. […]

  • The Farce of Wrestling

    The Farce of Wrestling

    If you have any faith in the ‘sport’ of wrestling, you probably don’t want to see this play. It will shatter any illusions you might have. It’s not really a sport, but rather a scripted spectator sport, where the winner is ordained before the match begins. That, at least, is the premise of the play […]

  • Getting China Wrong

    Getting China Wrong

    Our engagement with China has been wrong for decades. Disastrously wring. This is the assessment of Aaron L. Friedberg, Professor of Politics and International Affairs at Princeton University. He outlined America’s toubled relationship with China to an audience at the LBJ School of Public Affairs in Austin Getting China Wrong is the title of his […]

  • Judy Garland at 100

    Judy Garland at 100

    June 10 this year marked the 100th birthday of Judy Garland, who died in 1969. The singer attained iconic status with the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz, and for the remaining 30 years of her life Garland was arguably the most famous female singer in the world. The Austin Symphony Orchestra hosted a 100th […]

  • Doris Goodwin donates archives to Austin

    Doris Goodwin donates archives to Austin

    The Briscoe Center for American History in Austin is about to become the home to collected archives of Doris Kearns Goodwin, and her late husband Richard Goodwin (1931-2018). Richard Goodwin’s “American Promise” speech for Pres. Lyndon Johnson, was a plea for the Voting Rights Act in the wake of Bloody Sunday in Selma, Alabama. It […]