Scenes from Village Life

Village halls are fine things even for those who don’t share John Major’s mystical warm beer and leather on willow visions of rural England. I have been to weddings, birthday parties and aerobics classes in village halls. They are a great community asset and , indeed, would help contribute to David Cameron’s vision of the Big Society if he had done anything about it rather … Continue reading Scenes from Village Life

Long Ago in Czernowitz

Today it is called Chernivtsy and is in the Ukraine. One hundred years ago it was better known as Czernowitz, capital of the Crown Land of Bukovina in the Austro-Hungarian Empire.  Known as the Vienna of the East it had a thriving coffee house culture, public buildings in the familiar ochre known as ‘kaisergelb.’ It also had a large Jewish community, a large part of … Continue reading Long Ago in Czernowitz

Notes on Violence

Food that was cooked last week and reheated several times tends to be unappetising and may be bad for you. So it is with each new article written in support of the so-called Nordic Model which criminalises the clients of sex workers, who are sometimes referred to on this side of the Atlantic as ‘punters’ and never as ‘johns’. The striking number of articles originating … Continue reading Notes on Violence