South bank

Studying history isn’t what it used to be

Is history in danger of becoming a thing of the past on campus? In recent weeks, Aston in Birmingham announced a consultation on plans to close its entire history department. Meanwhile, London South Bank has announced that its history course will not be recruiting students from this Autumn.  The condemnation was swift. Former regius professor of history at Cambridge Richard J Evans and author of numerous books on the Third Reich, said that history was ‘more important than ever’, since it provides the skills to look critically at the evidence and to distinguish fact from fiction’ in age of fake news and populism.  But as a history student myself, I’m not convinced a decline in

Theatre closures are not necessarily a disaster – they offer a chance to remake culture

Theatre stands on the brink of ruin, says Sonia Friedman. And if you believe Twitter, so is my career. I’m apparently ‘a disgrace to my profession’. ‘Not fit to do my job’. I wear ‘grubby’ oversized T-shirts, dare to have ‘an anagram for a name‘ (sorry for being foreign) and possess the face of an ‘etiolated ferret’ and, naturally, for all this, I should be fired.  Leaving aside for a moment my funny name, ferrety face and baggy clothes (all criticisms not without some merit), what was my crime? To suggest that theatre being on the brink of ruin might not be such a disaster. That tongue was firmly lodged in cheek was of course