Every nation state has it's cultural cannon
through which to fire its greatest hits,
a list of authors, composers of music
and otherwise creative folk who,
for a populous with a weak grasp of history,
their works create a narrative on which they can lean.
The British cannon includes William Shakespeare,
Christopher Marlowe, Milton, Handel, Jane Austin,
Robbie Burns, William Blake, George Elliot
Oscar Wilde, Edward Elgar, Benjamin Britten,
and finally-for me the 20th century essayist, George Orwell.
Anything work under 60 old has yet to settle in.
The difficulty with such pre-digestion
is that the culture is hard to refresh and simply repeats on us.
With books beyond copyright then the written word
dies repeatedly on the digital screen, through adaptation.
Such that people seeing it only half understand where they take note.
With historic forms-choral music-they become
more fun for performers than for their audience.
As history claims culture, so culture becomes nostalgia
for people who falsely imagine what the old culture once meant.