Category Archives: Democracy

Koestler, Arthur: “Darkness At Noon”

Although he never specifies exactly where he is writing about, there is no doubt that Koestler is describing the Stalinist purges in 1930s Russia during what he refers to as the “diseased century” when “the individual was nothing, the Party … Continue reading

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Taylor, A.J.P. “The Origins Of The Second World War”

That rare book that makes you reconsider conventional wisdom. From the off, Taylor dispels commonly accepted wisdom such as the fact that the Nazis deliberately started the Reichstag fire. Taylor doesn’t dismiss that it as a possibility but says that … Continue reading

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Tuchman, Barbara: “The Guns Of August”

Tuchman’s Pulitzer for her superbly written book about the outbreak of World War One was well deserved. The speed at which the conflict escalated into a World War remains astonishing, and something to bear in mind as the current crisis … Continue reading

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Booker, Christopher And Richard North: “The Great Deception. Can The European Union Survive?”

The title is misleading; this is no conspiracy theory about a deception; it is a detailed and reasoned history of the European Union. Well researched and full of relevant facts. Occasionally, you can detect a slight bias. In what book … Continue reading

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Fenlon, Iain “Piazza San Marco”

I don’t see myself as idealistic; I’m a doer, not a thinker. Every now and then I get excited with a new idea or project and immerse myself in it until life inevitably intrudes and erodes my initial enthusiasm. One … Continue reading

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Conradi, Peter: “Who Lost Russia? How The World Entered A New Cold War”

Why did Russia not democratise after the fall of communism? Peter Conradi puts forward one reason: that Russia lacked the democratic consensus that was a feature of other Eastern European countries that made the transition. Another factor was a lack … Continue reading

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Nafisi, Azar: “Reading Lolita In Tehran”

Academic and literary critic Azar Nafisi describes the impact that the 1979 Iranian Revolution had on her life in Reading Lolita In Tehran. Before the revolution, Nafisi was comparatively free to read and teach whatever books she chose. This ended when the revolutionaries took … Continue reading

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