Contrary to popular opinion, there has in fact been a working class Protestant contribution to culture in Northern Ireland. What is more problematic is a specifically Loyalist contribution, as the recent staging of a new play, Tartan, and surrounding events illustrate.
Many feminists abhor Femen for its naked protests and apparent acceptance of conventional or trashy ideas of beauty, but there is also a more basic clash at work here between a direct confrontation with injustice and a new feminism which finds itself too embarrassed to oppose non-Western or Islamic forms of oppression of girls and women.
By the end of the Ethiopian campaign in May 1936, the Royal Italian Air force had deployed more than three hundred tons of arsenic, phosgene and mustard gas. Fascist Italy was thus the first European state after World War I to make use of this weapon of mass destruction against people deemed racially inferior.
The surface noise of democratic politics can make leaders slow to recognise a crisis. The knowledge that previous crises have been overcome encourages delay; delay encourages drift; fear of drift encourages precipitate action; precipitate action encourages mistakes; mistakes encourage caution. And so the cycle wobbles on; we survive but don’t really go anywhere.
Was professional history, based on dispassionate sifting and analysis of evidence, replaced after the 1960s in response to the developing Troubles by a public history more interested in reception than in method, which saw historians take on the role of legitimising the Irish twenty-six-county state, and the border?