PLAGUETIME 9


I write a fairly regular ‘essay’ in a series called RANSACKING THE PAST for display on The British Haiku Society Website. Sometimes I dredge books of my own early haiku for ones I could have done better (most of them) and write a critique, sometimes I look at old articles in Blithe Spirit (the BHS […]

PLAGUETIME 7


I’ve just read JBPriestley’s They Walk in the City (1936) Edward Greenfield refuses to go along with the kind of life that his smug brother Herbert has designed for himself. The latter had made his great gesture when he had determined to be an analytical chemist and, in face of many obstacles, lack of money […]

On Being a Belloc Fanatic


For nearly seventy years I’ve been what I suppose could be called a Belloc-fanatic. The question is – How could that be the case when he was a died-in-the-wool Roman Catholic, of an anti-pacifist, anti-vegetarian persuasion? I think I must have just relegated all that (on his account) to the category ‘unthink’, and (for myself) […]

IT ALL DEPENDS WHAT YOU MEAN BY…


Sometime in the 1940’s, somehow, I stumbled upon a radio programme called The Brains Trust. I think my mother perhaps used to listen to it. It must have been before 1948 because I was upset by media enthusiasm when, on 12th April 1948, Professor CEM Joad (1891-1953), a key figure in the programme, was convicted […]

THE HOUSE OF INTELLECT


I’ve read another book. Judging from the very neat pencil underlinings it looks as though I’ve read it before sometime. Since I often wonder why it has been my habit for sixty-odd years, I was interested to find that the underlinings were very helpful generally but especially during the course of more or less skim-reading […]

DEMOCRACY IS A MEANINGLESS CONSTRUCT


For solace and enthusiasm, I’ve been re-reading HGWells’ The Outlook for Homo [so-called] Sapiens. He says he hammers at his main ideas which ‘offends delicate-minded people’ but has always attempted to resolve contradictions, struggled for effective knowledge, working ‘not simply for knowledge but for stark clarity of thought about it…’ All it’s possible to do […]

IT ALL DEPENDS WHAT YOU MEAN BY…


Sometime in the 1940’s somehow I stumbled upon a radio programme called The Brains Trust. I think my mother perhaps used to listen to it. This must have been before 1948 because I was upset by media enthusiasm when, on 12th April 1948, Professor CEM Joad (1891-1953), a key figure in the programme, was convicted […]