Friday, September 14, 2007

On September 14, ...

... 1960, Col. Joseph Mobutu seized control in Congo. He "suspended" the new president and 2 prime ministers in the country, which had won independence from Belgium just 10 weeks earlier. Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba fled; after numerous attempts, assassins ended his life in February 1961. Securing control in 1965 and adopting the name Mobutu Sese Seko, the onetime colonel ruled the country, which he renamed Zaire, until the mid-1990s.
... 1927 (80 years ago today), Isadora Duncan (left) died in Nice, France. A half-century earlier she'd been born in San Francisco, to a poet father and a "Victorian lady" of a mother, who divorced when she was a child. Eventually finding her way to Europe, Duncan became a dancer and choreographer. As is evident in the video below, she was renowned for her penchant for bare feet and neoclassical drapery. Sympathetic to Lenin's Soviet experiment, she lived and worked in Moscow in the early 1920s. Duncan died in a scene of high drama: while a passenger in a sports car, her long neckscarf caught in the wheel, strangling her.

1 comment:

Lakshmi Bai said...

An avid fan of Isadora Duncan, I danced as a young girl at the Temple of the Wings in Berkeley (http://www.berkeleyheritage.com/berkeley_landmarks/temple_of_wings.html), which taught interpretive dance in Duncan's style. For the curious, Margaretta Mitchell took a photo including yours truly (that's me, the pipsqueak in front carrying the flower garland) at a dance recital at the Temple in 1980: http://www.margarettamitchell.com/fine/2.html.