Political Thought in Times of Crisis, 1640-1660 – Symposium, 1-3 Dec

Sponsored by the Folger Institute Center for the History of British Political Thought, Washington, US. Was the mid-seventeenth-century crisis in Britain and Ireland essentially one aspect of a broader “global” crisis? How might scholars theorize the relationships between political thought and other verbal and non-verbal expressions of change and instability (political, economic, social, cultural, and… Continue reading Political Thought in Times of Crisis, 1640-1660 – Symposium, 1-3 Dec

EU referendum raises questions about voting rights and citizenship

The news that foreigners would not be allowed to vote in the planned EU referendum came as a bit of a shock earlier this week, if not as a major surprise. The rules are based on those for the General Elections. Besides, it seems the Tories are keen to exclude anyone from voting who might not… Continue reading EU referendum raises questions about voting rights and citizenship

Historians in Britain need to ask the right questions about Europe

Following the surprise result of the General Elections earlier this month historians in Britain have reopened the debate about Europe. Depending on where you stand, Britain is either part of Europe, or a strange place across the Channel you can travel to. The Historians for Britain who have come out in favour of ‘fundamental changes… Continue reading Historians in Britain need to ask the right questions about Europe

Laughing about Hitler

Is it ok to laugh about Hitler? This seems to be the one big question critics have been asking themselves about Timor Vermes’s Look Who’s Back – a novel about Adolf Hitler waking up in 21st-century Berlin seeing a confusingly modern world through a Nazi lense. Some teenage boys playing football on a field must… Continue reading Laughing about Hitler

Men and Women in the English Revolution

Over the summer I agreed to review two books on the English civil wars. One Blair Worden’s God’s Instruments (2012), the other Ann Hughes’s Gender and the English Revolution (2012). The first, aside from a few fleeting references to Lucy Hutchinson, deals almost exclusively with Oliver Cromwell and other men who fought in the Civil War… Continue reading Men and Women in the English Revolution

What happened to social justice and equality in Higher Education?

What’s wrong with Higher Education in the UK? Nothing, if you look at it from afar. The UK has some of the best universities in the  world as our VC never fails to remind us. We come second only to the US, and students from all over the world are attracted to study here by… Continue reading What happened to social justice and equality in Higher Education?

Talk to them

I have just returned from a conference in Paris and must say I am deeply impressed by the way the organisers and participants managed to cross linguistic boundaries. Virtually all of the French colleagues had very good English, while most of the foreign participants had only little or no French at all. Yet, we all… Continue reading Talk to them

Trust the people – the British will eventually come round

So David Cameron has – yet again – promised the British people a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty, should they elect him prime minister next year. And it seems he would get a lot of support for a ‘No’ campaign. Maybe I should not be too surprised about the aggressive euroscepticism of the British Conservatives… Continue reading Trust the people – the British will eventually come round

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