Monthly Archives: January 2022


The International Dance Festival@Silicon Valley typically includes a Festival Concert. The artists who teach perform. There was nothing typical about 2020 or 2021! However, IDF@SV carried on producing two successful seasons of classes & workshops online. Fantastic! Now, the dancers, students, and those trying out dance for the first time will have a chance to see what the artist/teachers do. The performances will be over Zoom. The artists will perform in separate places as their homes are separated by thousands of miles. Farthest East: Audreyanne Delgado Covarrubias in Durham, North Carolina. Farthest West: Megan Ivey Rohrbacher in Hawaii! Even the two artists in California are as far apart as they could be and still be in the Bay Area: Annie Wilson in Novato (Marin County) and Etta Walton in San Jose.

No matter where they are, they are terrific! Join us for an amazing, fun hour on Sunday, Jan. 30, at 2 p.m. We are limited by space – no one is in a theater – but the talent is UNLIMITED!!! The performance is FREE. Of course, we will appreciate a donation of any amount to support the program. To do that, mail a check to The Lively Foundation at The Lively Foundation, 550 Mountain View Ave., Mountain View, CA 94041-1941 OR go to the landing page of this blog, scroll down until you see the PayPal button (PayPal keeps 2.2% plus 30 cents for every donation.)

Here is the Zoom invitation. The show starts at 2 p.m. You can enter earlier, but there is no need to be there much before 2 p.m. Thanks!

Leslie Friedman is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Leslie Friedman’s Zoom Meeting
Time: Jan 30, 2022 01:30 PM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

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Passcode: 594198
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pictures from top: Audreyanne Delgado Covarrubias, Etta Walton, Megan Ivey Rohrbacher


LEONARD WOOLF: Bloomsbury Socialist

Leonard Woolf: Bloomsbury Socialist

By Fred Leventhal and Peter Stansky

Oxford University Press, 2019

Leonard Woolf was the secular saint who helped his famous wife, Virginia, through mental crises. Historians Leventhal and Stansky show he was much more. Leonard Woolf was also a leader, scholar, activist, successful author of fiction and deeply researched papers on international government and economy, creative co-founder and business director of the Hogarth Press, anti-imperialist statesman, Foreign Service diplomat, spokesperson for mutual security agreements of the League of Nations, devoted gardener, dog lover.

This is a breakthrough book. It restores Woolf to a place of his own and demonstrates why his contemporaries revered him as a moral intellectual, a paragon.

The first part, The Personal Journey, covers Woolf’s family, education, marriage, friendships all in historical context. It gives an intimate look at his years in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) in the Foreign Service. This section examines the influence Woolf’s friends had on his intellectual and spiritual development. Virginia, through their love and shared work, is a major presence. In Ceylon, he had authority over a large district. He collected revenue, dispensed justice, interacted personally with individuals. While he worked twelve hour days, expanding agriculture and building schools, he received letters from his friend Lytton Strachey urging him to propose to Virginia, maybe by telegraph. This part of the book is distinguished by psychological insights, sympathy with the subject, and examination of social and intellectual classes.

The second part, The Political Journey, analyzes Woolf’s studies of economics, trade, and labor in nations and colonies around the world. He wrote for the Fabian Society and the Labour party. Woolf was aligned with the Fabian Society, the British Socialist organization that sought reforms leading to democratic socialism. However, Woolf favored individual rights over state authority and nationalism. In early days in Ceylon, he believed that Britain helped colonials solve problems. Later, he favored self government. He adopted that attitude toward other British colonies, though not all simultaneously. His many, gigantic research projects include the books Empire and Commerce in Africa, written for the Labour Research Department (1920), International Co-operative Trade, the Fabian Society, 1922; both published by George Allen & Unwin. Foreign Policy: The Labour Party’s Dilemma, Fabian Research Series/Victor Gollancz (1947)

The presentation of the studies’ details and purposes is admirably clear and shows how the work shaped Woolf and how his intellect shaped the work.

Labour’s dilemma was how to react to human rights abuses in the Soviet Union. Woolf’s opposition to the Soviets’ cruelty was steadfast as it would be to China’s. His lifelong belief that an international system was the only hope to avoid another cataclysmic war led him to advocate for the League of Nations. His findings supported collective security agreements. He was among the first British writers to recognize the truth about the Nazi regime.

For the United Nations, he urged collective security against militarized nationalism. His work is timely now: international cooperation is threatened by attacks on the European Union, the US refusal to support the World Health Organization, and scorn from Brazil and the US for steps against climate change.

At St. Paul’s, his public school, though an outstanding scholar and athlete he was taunted for being Jewish. At Cambridge he was part of the most elite, intellectual cliques yet defined by friends as a Jew. Judaism and Hellenism combined to form his philosophy. He credited the Hebrews with establishing the value of individual lives through the non-negotiable Ten Commandments and the Greeks with secularizing government by being skeptical about religion while keeping spiritual values. His integrity was as powerful as his intelligence. This book brings us Leonard Woolf, and we need him.

The Authors:  Professsor Fred Leventhal taught British history for 35 years at Boston University. He also taught at Harvard, Boston College, and the University of Kent (UK). He was co-editor of the journal Twentieth Century British History and is former president of the North American Conference on British Studies. Professor Peter Stansky taught at Harvard and then at Stanford University and is the Frances and Charles Field Professor Emeritus of British History. He also served as president of the North American Conference on British Studies.

review by Leslie Friedman, published Fall, 2020

Peter D.L. Stansky: HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Peter Stansky! Frances and Charles Field Professor Emeritus of modern British History, he joined the Stanford University History Department in1968. He served as Chair of the History Department for 7 years. He is the author of many, many books* and internationally honored as the shining light of his field, On Jan. 15, 2022, Stanford honored him with a Symposium on topics of his special interests: William Morris and the Arts & Crafts movement in England; Virginia Woolf and the Bloomsbury Group; George Orwell. On Jan. 17 a gathering of students, many now distinguished professors and authors themselves, and friends from across the US and the world thanked him for his friendship, encouragement, enlightenment, and lively verve. Beginning today, Hedgehog Highlights on the livelyblog will feature reviews of his recent books. Thanks to The Institute for Historical Studies and its editor, Maria Sakovich, for permission to re-publish the reviews that appeared in TIHS publication which were written by Leslie Friedman, one of Professor Stansky’s Stanford Ph.D.s.

*Books by Peter Stansky include: Ambitions and Strategies, England since 1867, William Morris, Redesigning  the World, On or About December 1910, Another Book That Never Was, From William Morris to Sergeant Pepper, Sassoon, The First Day of the Blitz, Edward Upward, Twenty Years On. Books by Peter Stansky and William Abrahams: Journey to the Frontier, The Unknown Orwell, Orwell: The Transformation, London’s Burning. Book by Peter Stansky and Fred Leventhal: Leonard Woolf: Bloomsbury Socialist.