Author: peter

Book Review: A Will to Power

Next year marks the centenary of arguably the most important event in modern Irish history, the Easter Rising. Before 1916 the ‘settled will’ of the Irish people was a home rule parliament; the rebellion birthed ‘a terrible beauty’, that would lead, eventually, to Irish independence, in the process dividing the nation, literally and metaphorically. Among […]

Which is the world’s most segregated city?

Segregation has shot up in Madrid – due less to property speculation than a lack of affordable housing. Photograph: Alamy   “Reclaim your community,” declared the posters. “Hipsters beware.” Pinned around London’s East End last month, they announced Fuck Parade, an anti-gentrification demonstration that culminated in an attack on a café selling bowls of cereal. […]

Will Northern Ireland’s Peacewalls Ever Come Down?

In 1971, a secret report by the Northern Irish government criticised the speed with which walls, gates and fences were being constructed in Belfast to separate Catholics and Protestants. The so-called “peace lines”, it said, were creating an “atmosphere of abnormality” in the city. But the Stormont report writers did “not expect any insurmountable difficulty” […]

Donald Trump Kicked off the Scottish Green

GLASGOW, Scotland — “My mother was born in the Hebrides, in Stornoway, so that’s serious Scotland,” Donald Trump told an interviewer in 2010. The U.S. presidential candidate has long made much of his Scottish roots. He likes Scotland so much that he chose Aberdeenshire as the location for a controversial £1 billion golfing complex. But […]

Dundee: from black sheep of Scottish cities to ‘living cultural experiment’

Chris Van Der Kuyl set up his first video game company in Dundee in the mid-1990s. “It was an industrial landscape,” he says of the city, which had been bled of heavy industry from the 1970s onwards. “Everything was closing, everyone was leaving.” Van Der Kuyl’s 4J Studios would go on to help develop the […]

Shame in the Shetlands

Shetlanders are fond of saying that their nearest train station is the Norwegian city of Bergen, such is the islands’ distance from the British mainland. Perched on a rocky outcrop surrounded by the wild, oil-rich North Sea, the U.K.’s most northerly archipelago has a very distinctive history and identity. But windswept Shetland — population circa […]

Bob Gillespie, the SNP and Labour’s primal scream

It’s a bank holiday Monday afternoon in a Glasgow boozer. Busy tables are littered with discarded yellow raffle tickets and half-empty pints. On the small stage, a heavily pregnant woman belts out Purple Rain. Bob Gillespie stands by the entrance, shoulders filling out a tweed jacket, silently mouthing Prince’s words. The 77-year-old passed his love […]

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