Stuart Hall – born Jamaica 1932, moved to study English Literature at Oxford Univ 1951, became active in the New Left and CND from mid-50s onwards, godfather of Cultural Studies at Birmingham Univ from mid-60s – famous for his “Forward Continue reading Book review: Stuart Hall – Familiar Stranger (Penguin)
Let us praise but faintly now our overlords.Onwards blindly onwards with regret (alas) thatCompetence, compassion, common sense areKey components absent and conspicuouslyDeemed defunct, superfluous, inessential,Out of fashion, overrated, so noWonder people wonder what the rules are,Now or never, what the Continue reading Lockdown Deja Vu
Back in the early 1980s, when I was a naive but well-intentioned Politics student in Sheffield, I was mostly inspired by reading the great Marxist historian and CND campaigner E. P. Thompson – “The Making of the English Working Class”, Continue reading Who’s afraid of Terry Eagleton?
Reading this book (Verso) about the cooption of creativity by capitalism over the past 20 years – ie how everything, everyone, every job, is expected to be “creative”, whatever field it’s in – and thus creativity becomes meaningless, an empty Continue reading Creative?
This is my favourite photo of the bottom of the garden at the moment. We’re all working from home now, though some of us do that all the time and others don’t (and don’t like it). I’ve printed out a Continue reading Day one official lockdown
Or at least that is the hope. All work cancelled within 24 hours last week, examining, teaching, playing, youth theatre, choir – plus all Wakefield Jazz gigs cancelled until September – and it was all going so well. So I Continue reading Enforced inactivity leads to activities…
Into a new decade, the 2020s, as an increasingly older person, already I have to confront the reality that there won’t be a government in the UK that I can support until I’m in my 60s, despite much door-knocking in Continue reading New Year 2020
Time marches on! Always much to report and little time, plus the needs of diplomacy. Booking the Jazz club and promoting the gigs, and compering – it’s a constant task in the back of my mind. And all activities distract Continue reading Into November
Friday’s gig at Wakefield Jazz was two hours of solo piano impro, Laura Cole (Leeds) followed by Alexander Hawkins (Oxford) – a treat for myself, a respectable audience of just under 40 – some of the regulars stayed away, others Continue reading Solo piano culture
Back to work at NSCD playing piano for ballet classes, back to work at CVYT (youth theatre in Leeds), singing songs about Dr Martens (my shockingly faulty vegan DMs, split within months) and ravenous dragons, back to work with intermittent Continue reading Working it all out.