- In praise of ‘low value’ subjects. February 27, 2023
- Frigga Haug and the mystery of learning December 6, 2022
- Debating Growth. November 29, 2022
- Code red for human survival November 8, 2022
- The politics of silence. September 4, 2022
- Posts on Corsican themes. August 10, 2022
- When Corsica welcomed thousands of Serb refugees (1916) August 9, 2022
- Climate justice, heat justice and the politics of resilience August 5, 2022
- Nancy Fraser’s eco-socialist common sense. August 3, 2022
- Education, social justice and survival in a time of crisis. July 18, 2022
- A political education. May 10, 2022
- Redistribution and recognition should go hand in hand. April 17, 2022
- French presidential election: could Mélenchon make it? April 10, 2022
- Owning our crises March 26, 2022
- French elections 2022 January 29, 2022
Eddie Playfair on In praise of ‘low value’ … nivekd on In praise of ‘low value’ … eletseminario.org on Market autonomy or democratic… jofsaxon on Frigga Haug and the mystery of… Eddie Playfair on Debating Growth.
Category Archives: Culture
Posts on Corsican themes.
Seneca in Corsica The Roman senator and philosopher spent several miserable years in exile on the island in the first century A.D. Paoli in London ‘The 18th century Che Guevara’ produced one of the first constitutions of the enlightenment era and fought … Continue reading
Posted in Culture, History Tagged Corsica 2 Comments
Learning from Utopia
What is the function of alternative political and economic systems, whether actually existing or imaginary? Is it to offer hope that change is possible, or at least to provide some perspective on our own way of life?
Draws on ‘The Dispossessed’ by Ursula Le Guin. Continue reading
Posted in Culture, Education, Fiction, Reviews Tagged Alternatives, Anarcho-syndicalism, Anarres, dystopia, Education, Equality, Science fiction, Urras, Ursula Le Guin, utopia, utopianism Leave a comment
‘Bewilderment’ by Richard Powers
Bewilderment is an entirely rational response to what we are collectively doing to our planet. Confronted by the injustices, dysfunction and unsustainability of the world we’ve created, how can we not react with bewilderment? This wonderful novel is both an … Continue reading
Posted in Culture, Fiction, Reviews Tagged Biodiversity, climate emergency, Planet Earth, Richard Powers, Sustainability Leave a comment
‘Light Perpetual’ by Francis Spufford
‘Light Perpetual’ is a wonderful celebration of life and love. It opens with some extraordinary time-stretching to describe the impact of a split-second destructive event in wartime. Then time is shrunk and stretched repeatedly in order to follow the ‘lost’ … Continue reading
Posted in Culture, Fiction, Reviews Tagged Francis Spufford, Light Perpetual Leave a comment
Zola’s ‘La Curée’ and the corruption of desire.
Rougon-Macquart #2 Emile Zola’s ‘La Curée’ (1872), translated as ‘The Kill’, is an extraordinary novel of unbridled appetites, material and sexual, and of the moral decay and rottenness of unfettered capitalism. It shares a setting and many common themes with … Continue reading
Posted in Culture, Fiction, Reviews Tagged Brian Nelson, capitalism, corruption, desire, Emile Zola, Karl Marx, La Curée, modernity, Paris, Rougon-Macquart, speculation, The Kill 3 Comments
Seven ways to avoid a Frankenstein education.
Seven ways to avoid a Frankenstein education – Philippe Meirieu. The French educationalist, Philippe Meirieu, in his 1996 book ‘Frankenstein Pedagogue’ reviews popular accounts of attempts to fashion a person to a maker’s design. Such fictional person-making often proves futile … Continue reading
‘Listen to this’.
There’s something to be said for being told to ‘listen to this’, ‘look at this’ or ‘read this’. An important aspect of any educational programme is presenting learners with something new or re-presenting something familiar in a new context. And … Continue reading
Posted in Culture, music Tagged 'Listen to this', Alex Ross, classical music, Clemency Burton-Hill, culture, music, music education, Year of wonder Leave a comment
‘The Ministry for the Future’ by Kim Stanley Robinson
Fiction can change the world and the didactic approach or the ‘novel of ideas’ can be compatible with good storytelling. Like any work of art, a work of fiction can change us as individuals and, through us, help to make … Continue reading
Tsitsi Dangarembga’s ‘Nervous Conditions’.
The personal is political, and this wonderful book is both entirely personal and deeply political. Nervous Conditions (1988) is the story of Tambudzai, a young woman growing up in rural Zimbabwe (then known as Rhodesia) in the late 1960’s, told … Continue reading
Posted in Culture, Fiction, Reviews Tagged Africa, colonialism, Equality, inequality, liberation, Nervous Conditions, Race equality, racism, sexism, subjugation, Tsitsi Dangarembga, Zimbabwe Leave a comment
In praise of lightness – Calvino’s Leggerezza.
The Italian writer, Italo Calvino, was invited to give the Charles Eliot Norton lectures at Harvard University in 1985 but died before he was able to deliver them. Luckily, we have the text of 5 of these 6 planned lectures … Continue reading
The mighty pencil
The mighty pencil It’s just a pencil Making a mark in a specific place On a specific piece of paper On a specific day. It only takes a second or two, No time at all. Such a simple thing. But … Continue reading
‘Unsheltered’ by Barbara Kingsolver
Barbara Kingsolver’s novels are always fascinating and rewarding and her latest, Unsheltered (2019) is no exception. We follow two stories over a hundred years apart and set in the same location; Vineland, New Jersey, a town originally established as a … Continue reading
Posted in Culture, Fiction, Reviews Tagged Barbara Kingsolver, Charles Darwin, evolution, Mary Treat, natural selection, Unsheltered Leave a comment