Photo-essay: The Million Man March

The marchers came from all over North America in a shared experience; strangers hugged and held hands as if they were old friends By Andy Hall In 1995, The Nation Of Islam leader, Louis Farrakhan had called for a march on Washington similar to the one 32 years before organised by Martin Luther King and […]

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Out and About in the Fourth Estate With Steven Gilfillan

Under The Greenwood Tree It was one of these evocative autumn mornings, so I was doubly shocked to hear that Borak Yesenin’s mother had died. It came as a surprise too when on behalf of him and the rest of the family I was asked to the funeral, and in the small parish church where […]

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Cultural gatekeepers make for bad teachers

A bad native speaker teacher sees the British as we and the students as they, as ‘Johnny foreigner’. By Phil Hall For many years I taught Asylum Seekers. Many of them had been in the UK for quite a few years. What upset me was to come across young people who had been in the […]

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Norris McWhirter’s White Rabbit

By Phil Hall The first guided client to be ushered up the slopes of Chomolungma-Sagarmatha by Sherpa Tenzing was brave Sir Edmund. This was the day that the mountain was finally colonised. I wonder, did Sir Edmund Hillary pee on the summit to celebrate the moment? This happened in 1953 on 29th of May four […]

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Letters from Paul Robeson

Selected by Dominic Tweedie from: Paul Robeson Speaks: Writings, Speeches, Interviews, 1918-1974 Paul Robeson was a superstar in the USA in the 1930’s and 40’s despite the fact that he was African American. In 1915 he was twice an All American football star and while playing for the NFL got his law degree summa cum […]

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Is socialism a partial solution to discrimination?

Is the solution to racism, misogyny and prejudice a nicer capitalism or do we need a more profound transformation of society? What do we do when a right winger like Priti Patel claims that she is fighting prejudice? Do we acknowledge this and support her as a woman who has suffered deeply from two types […]

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Allow Me to Spit!

In the USA racism is the collateral damage caused by social inequality and injustice, and a history of slavery, segregation and discrimination. By Phil Hall ‘Killer Mike’ in his emotional response compared the killing of George Floyd by a policeman in Minnesota to the killing of a zebra by a lion. What level of hate […]

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So, you say that Darwin’s scientific ideas have nothing to do with social values?

Victorians and Edwardians did terrible, cruel things in the name of Malthus and Darwin. by Philip Hall The cast system is inhuman. Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) seems impossibly cruel. Look at the Taliban: Malala got a bullet in the head just for going to school. Look at forced marriage, at child marriage. How can that […]

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