One of this country’s greatest ever social commentators, Charles Dickens, brought the seedy underbelly of life in Victorian London, to the eyes of the world. He did not subscribe to the popularist view of life in Victorian England, and his body of work, although it received some critisism for it’s gritty, honest content, still towers like a colossus over his contemporaries. He would have made a great blogger. One of his literary ‘firsts’ was to introduce the serialisation of his […]

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In the post 9/11 frenzy of self congratulation about the west’s superiority, Tony Blair’s former foreign policy guru, Robert Cooper, and a host of Mainstream Media flag-wavers were urging us not to be ashamed of our empire. Cooper insisted that empire was “as necessary now as it had been in the 19th century”. The British empire was, we were assured, a generally well-intentioned attempt to instil ideas of good government and ‘civilised’ behaviour into less well-favoured societies. Is such a […]

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