Author Archive: Andrew Green

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Tennyson in Llanberis

January 23, 2021 0 Comments
Tennyson in Llanberis

Alfred Tennyson was born in Lincolnshire, and lived there throughout the first part of his life.  The portrait of him that always comes to mind is the photo Julia Margaret Cameron took of him in 1865, which shows him as prematurely aged, with thinning, straggly hair, untidy beard and lined face (Tennyson said it made […]

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Pos poblogrwydd Boris

January 16, 2021 0 Comments
Pos poblogrwydd Boris

Yn gyson mae’r cwmni pôl pinion YouGov yn tracio bwriad pleidleisio pobl ar draws Prydain.  Dangosa’r canlyniadau mwyaf diweddar (4-5 Ionawr 2021) fod y Blaid Geidwadol a’r Blaid Lafur yn gyfartal (39% yr un).  Sut ar y ddaear y gallai hyn fod yn bosibl? Ystyriwch yr hyn sy wedi digwydd ers i Boris Johnson ennill […]

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The Cyfarthfa Philosophical Society

January 9, 2021 0 Comments
The Cyfarthfa Philosophical Society

The end of the eighteenth and the beginning of the nineteenth century saw the rise of local ‘literary and philosophical institutions’ throughout the British Isles.  They aimed to bring together like-minded people to discuss issues of the day.  The label ‘philosophy’ usually meant not logic or metaphysics, but an interest in the latest developments in […]

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The shock of the cold

January 2, 2021 1 Comment
The shock of the cold

The year of Covid has changed many social habits, for good and ill.  Some habits are quite new and unexpected.  One of the most recent in our area has been the rise of cold-water sea bathing. I tend to go running along the sea cliffs at roughly the same time – just after dawn at […]

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The Last Bard: loops of an invented tradition

December 26, 2020 0 Comments
The Last Bard: loops of an invented tradition

By now the ‘invented tradition’ is itself a tradition.  Since Eric Hobsbawm and Terence Ranger published their edited collection The invention of tradition in 1983, we’ve become familiar with the idea that rituals, histories and beliefs that seem age-old were actually recent fictions devised with specific purposes in mind. One of the chapters in The […]

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The revolutionary gaze of Constance Mayer

December 19, 2020 0 Comments
The revolutionary gaze of Constance Mayer

In a room a woman, about thirty years of age, sits alone. The room is plain, with two bare walls, dark and grey.  Its furniture is sparse, just a chair and a round table with round brass handles.  The woman wears a simple white cotton dress.  It has a high waistband and lacks sleeves, leaving […]

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Some books I read in 2020

December 11, 2020 1 Comment
Some books I read in 2020

One of the very few consolations of Covid lockdowns has been that more people seem to have read more books during 2020.  In the first half of the year fewer print books were sold, since bookshops were often closed, but UK sales of e-books increased by 17%, and audio books by 47%.  I’ve certainly read […]

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Henry de la Beche defends slavery

December 4, 2020 2 Comments
Henry de la Beche defends slavery

If you were a financial beneficiary of a Caribbean sugar plantation dependent on slave labour, how would you react to the movement to abolish slavery?  Fight the movement aggressively in order to defend your interests?  Keep your head down and wait to collect your government compensation?  Admit the rightness of the movement’s cause, and ‘disinvest’?  […]

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The art of the political apology

November 27, 2020 0 Comments
The art of the political apology

Most politicians are egotists.  (All right, I can think of a few exceptions, but as a general rule the proposition stands.)  The bloodstreams of those who reach positions of real power contain dangerously high levels of egotism, or they would not have succeeded as they have.  One of the results of such self-regard is that […]

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Richard Owain Roberts’s ‘Hello friend we missed you’

November 20, 2020 0 Comments
Richard Owain Roberts’s ‘Hello friend we missed you’

Hello friend we missed you is Richard Owain Roberts’s first novel.  Published by Parthian, it was nominated for this year’s Guardian ‘Not the Booker’ prize.  It duly won the award in October 2020 after a readers’ vote. In the book Roberts sets himself a big challenge: how to engage us as readers with a protagonist […]

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