Category Archives: History

Matisse in Corsica.

The great artist Henri Matisse (1869-1954) was inspired to use colour in radical new ways during his first visit to Corsica. After their wedding in early 1898, Matisse and his wife Amélie Parayre spent their honeymoon first in London and … Continue reading

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Brecht’s radical Galileo

Brecht’s ‘Life of Galileo’ is a great piece of theatre with universal appeal. It’s also a particularly good one for science students because it brings the scientific method to life. Galileo’s struggle to get acceptance for the ‘Copernican’ heliocentric model … Continue reading

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From ‘slumming’ to solidarity.

The evolution of responses to urban poverty and inequality. Part 2. From London to Chicago and back again Two selective and interlinked chronologies: London 1884: Toynbee Hall in Whitechapel was founded by Canon Samuel Barnett and his wife Henrietta Barnett … Continue reading

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From Toynbee to TELCO via Chicago.

The evolution of responses to urban poverty and inequality. Part 1. From settlement to social activism Living and working in East London, I am interested in how our part of the city has been shaped by its past, how today’s … Continue reading

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Four young men and one war.

This is a very brief account of the lives of 4 young men from around a century ago; all members of the same Scottish family. The accounts are neither special nor representative and they form a tiny fraction of the story … Continue reading

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Les réfugiés francophones de Londres.

Nous nous sommes réunis au Lycée Français Charles de Gaulle le 19 Octobre pour rappeler les évènements qui ont bouleversé le monde il y un siècle. Avant d’évoquer le Londres de 1916, je me permets d’évoquer celui de 1966. C’est … Continue reading

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London’s francophone refugees

We are roughly at the mid point of our commemoration of the First World War. Let’s look back just over a hundred years. London before the outbreak of war in 1914 was the greatest industrial city in the world and … Continue reading

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