how it felt to be alive in February 2020

The correct response to the title here is of course it depends who you are and what you did. But anyway; in a February when the big news story was the alarming spread of coronavirus/COVID-19, which history will tell us is either – (a) a…

11 June 1936: The International Surrealist Exhibition

Thursday, June 11th, 1936. Ominous context; the previous week, Mussolini had authorised his troops to kill prisoners taken in the war that followed Italy’s invasion of Ethiopia. Shortly thereafter, Haile Selassie, Emperor in exile, would appeal to the League of Nations against the Fascists, but…

A Reading of Orwell (and others) in 2017

  I started writing this thing about George Orwell ages ago, but never got it finished, but suddenly it seems possibly relevant, so here it is, still not in the final form intended, extremely long-winded, but hopefully fairly coherent. I should also point out that…

Play for Today: 21st January 2016

  It’s fair to say the past week or so of my listening (and writing) has been derailed somewhat by the passing of David Bowie. There’s been (and is) so much online about the mawkishness/validity of feeling bereaved over the death of Bowie/famous people in…