Category Archives: History

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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Jean Jaurès: ‘what is courage?’

Jean Jaurès (1859-1914), member of the French National Assembly, leader of the Parti Socialiste Français and peace campaigner was an eloquent and compelling public speaker. One of his most famous speeches was his 1903 address to young people at the … Continue reading

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Jane Addams and John Dewey

The Toynbee papers #2 An imagined conversation. Toynbee Hall, Commercial street, Whitechapel, 1921. Jane Addams of Chicago is greeting her old friend John Dewey who has just arrived. John, my dear friend – welcome to Toynbee Hall. I trust you … Continue reading

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Boswell in Corsica.

The Scottish lawyer and writer James Boswell (1740-1795), famous for his Life of Samuel Johnson, was also a great supporter of Pasquale Paoli and Corsican independence. Boswell met enlightenment thinkers such as Voltaire and Rousseau and was encouraged by Rousseau to … Continue reading

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W.E.B. DuBois, black liberation and liberal education for all.

The great African American academic, socialist, peace and civil rights activist William Edward Burghardt DuBois (1868-1963) wrote about philosophy, sociology, history, race equality and education as well as writing fiction. He is best remembered for his The Souls of Black … Continue reading

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