I think that everyone, from whatever political perspective, will agree that the events of Saturday night in Clapham were regrettable. The image broadcast to the world was of a large gathering of women protesting male violence and mourning the death of a young woman with her whole life ahead of her. For this vigil... Continue Reading →
In the light of another assault on democracy we need the Humanities more than ever
When I finally switched off from a day of online meetings on Wednesday I thought I’d relax by watching some gentle TV. Then a prompt from a friend on social media made me switch over to a new channel, the BBC at first and then CNN. Within moments I was hooked in to the drama... Continue Reading →
There are bigger battles to fight so please just wear a mask folks
Even a cursory engagement with British history would be enough to remind us that we are a fairly rebellious people when we are told what we should or shouldn’t do. There is a proud tradition of standing up for our ‘rights’ even if, for the most part, those rights are nowhere defined in a written... Continue Reading →
‘I still do not understand why so many people are so intolerant and angry about the destruction of shops but not by the murder of people’. Black Lives Matter – a series of posts from History at Northampton
This week we sharing a series of personal blog posts from staff and students reacting to the killing of George Floyd and the protests here and around the world. Today's is from Charlotte, who has just completed her second year of study for a degree in History at the University of Northampton. Here are some of... Continue Reading →
‘Keep cool and you command everybody’*: reflections on history and why we are focusing on the wrong freedoms.
‘We live in societies where the positive freedom to act as we wish is perhaps our central concern. Whatever the professed fears f global warning, or the expressed sympathies with the poor and downtrodden, the willingness actively to change our way of living is the province of only a small minority. For most, the everyday... Continue Reading →
Restricting immigration, a good idea? An historical perspective from 1905 to the present
At the beginning of this week the incumbent Home Secretary announced that from January 2021 new legislation would restrict immigration into the UK, as the government had promised in the run up to the 2019 General Election. In brief the aim of the Conservative administration is to limit the amount of poorer, less well educated,... Continue Reading →
Radical Conservatism, Edwardian Tariff Reform and Brexit
Recent changes in British Conservatism and the wider Brexit process have reminded me of a moment in the history of the Conservative Party during the Edwardian period.
Should we teach ‘difficult’ history in schools?
One twenty-two-year-old (Instagram ‘influencer’ Freddie Bentley, pictured above) recently caused consternation by suggesting topics such as climate change and Brexit should be taught in schools rather than the history of the Second World War. It followed comments by contestants on the reality show The Apprentice that revealed that they weren’t sure of the dates of... Continue Reading →
I’m not sure I want THIS country back…
In seems appropriate to be writing about racism and xenophobia this winter, appropriate but quite disturbing. I was prompted to write this blog post by one of my third year History students who had read my book London’s Shadows over the summer in preparation for his studies. In Chapter three I look at the mixed communities... Continue Reading →
‘O monstrous traitor! I arrest thee!’: From Guy Fawkes to the Brexit ‘betrayers’ a short history of treason in England
The execution of the Gunpowder Plotters, by Claes (Nicolaes) Jansz Vissche (1606) Today is the 412th anniversary of the execution of Guy Fawkes and his fellow Gunpowder plotters. As every school boy knows Fawkes was arrested on the 5 November 1605 as he prepared to blow up the Westminster Hall and send King James I... Continue Reading →