from Us against You

It’s so easy to place your hope in people. To think that the world can change overnight. We demonstrate after an attack, we donate money after a disaster, we lay our hearts bare online. But for every step forward we take, we take an almost equally large step back. Seen over time, every change is […]

from Us against you

Perhaps one day he’ll find words for that feeling of being different. How physical it is. Exclusion is a form of exhaustion that eats its way into your skeleton. People who are like everyone else, who belong to the norm, the majority, can’t possibly understand. How can they? Fredrik Backman – Us against You – […]

A line drawing of a group of disapproving men on a black background

from Masterminds of the right

The tactics, and at times, the sheer genius, of the conservative lobby came most sharply into focus during the 1986 divorce referendum. Here was an issue that which was not as clear-cut as abortion. … the tactics used were those of the marketing guru. Points of psychological vulnerability were isolated and played upon. The fear […]

from The Wild Places

So few wild creatures, relatively, remain in Britain and Ireland: so few, relatively, in the world. Pursuing our project of civilisation, we have pushed thousands of species towards the brink of disappearance, and many thousands more over that edge. The loss, after it is theirs, is ours. Wild animals, like wild places, are invaluable to […]

from Mayhem

But how can you trust anyone’s story? Every story, including mine, is an enactment of what we wish to be true, an edited version of our selves. Mayhem: a memoir

from Mayhem

We thought we were so modern. But then so did our parents, and so did their parents before them. Mayhem: a memoir

from Mayhem

It’s easy to express vulnerability when you are strong, and almost impossible when you are not. Mayhem: a memoir

from Alone in Berlin

He might be right: whether their act was big or small, no one could risk more than his life. Each according to his strength and abilities, but the main thing was, you fought back. Hans Fallada – Alone in Berlin, c.1947, 2009

from The book of Joan

If we look at history – those of us who study it, who can remember it – we understand the reason why those who come to power swiftly, amid extreme national crises, are so dangerous: during such crises, we all turn into children aching for a good father. And the truth is, in our fear […]