Sean McGouran, August 2006
Post –Soviet Cinema
The Guardian (G2, 27.01.03) carried an article headlined The Kazakhs are coming. (Presumably this is a play on Colin Welland’s cringe-making ‘The British are coming!’ remark at the Oscars ceremony many moons ago. Welland presumably did not realise that ‘the British are coming!’ had Revolutionary War undertones — and sounded quite ominous to American ears.) The Grauniad story is generally speaking a ‘feel good’ one, the film industry in this ...
John Clayden, September 2006
Recently at the Portobello Film Festival I came across this film by David Zeiger It is an 84 minute documentary about the Vietnam GIs who actively opposed the war. It brilliantly uses the old technique of intercutting contemporary interviews of ex-servicemen telling what they did, with old footage and documents of the sixties and early seventies. This often demonstrates a fascinating contrast between the youth and old age of the same ...
Brenden Clifford, November 2006
Islam and its Discontents
Islam, one of the major cultures of the world, has been without a state to uphold its position in the world-order for close on 90 years. The Islamic state was destroyed by Britain in the course of the war which it declared on Germany in 1914.
It has been argued that the destruction of the Islamic state was one of the purposes for which Britain declared war on Germany. And the destruction of the Islamic state appears to me to be the ...
Gwydion M Williams, January 2004
Britain and America present themselves as the heroes of the 20th century. The various wars are not seen as a successful spreading of Anglo cultural, linguistic and economic values across the rest of the globe. Rather, it was several heroic defences of freedom against tyranny.
This vision gets strained when one looks at the biggest 'Blowback' in world history, the defeat of Britain and France by Hitler's Germany. Most of the Tory party had ...
Max Anderson, August 1998
Lord Spiv And His Pals
As one commentator noted this week, the creation of New Labour has, indeed, been the work of a “tightly-knit group of politically motivated men”. The phrase is that used by Harold Wilson to describe the Communist Party activists who, he told the House of Commons, were behind the 1966 seaman’s strike.
Given that New Labour’s politics are clearly some way to the right of those of the old CPGB, the parallel would seem an odd one.
What Wilson ...
Gwydion M Williams, June 1998
The Right Hand Of Anarchy
Mrs Thatcher in the 1980s took an axe to the roots of Britishness. This is not how she saw it, of course. She genuinely believed that she was removing an excrescence on True Britishness. If the monstrous accumulations of the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s were swept aside, things would get back to ‘normal’.
Something like Mrs Thatcher’s memories of her childhood in Grantham would spring up to replace the things she was destroying.
Nice theory; ...
Sean McGouran, April 1997
AYuppie's view of the British Empire
Sean McGouran considers John Laughland's assumptions about
the British Empireas expressed in a recent article in The Sunday Times
about German imperialism.
The Sunday Times of 2nd March had an article by one John Laughland, ‘Germany, naturally an empire’. It was a plug for his book, The Tainted source: The Undemocratic Origins of the European Idea. Laughland’s argument is based on the fact that Germany is in the middle of Europe, ...
Gwydion M Williams, March 1996
Corporations Good, Corporatism Bad ?
G.M. Williams argues that people do not remember how
successful coropratism was in the 1950s in ending the miseries
of the 1930s and '40s
The Body Politic is a very old idea. It is something going beyond the family or clan or tribe, yet without falling under the dominion of a single individual whose private life as Duke or King gets tangled up in public matter. A corporate body derives its existence from many different individuals, and ...
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