Books

Harry Potter and the Death of the Hallowed

In celebration of 20 years since the first Harry Potter book was published, I thought it’d be a good chance to look back to one of my own offerings  in which I offered a radical reading of Potter’s relationship to his magical art. During a short speaking tour on Mutiny in the US with Peter Rollins,

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Mark Fisher

Not sure how I missed this in January, but genuinely saddened to hear that Mark Fisher has died. Very open about his struggles with mental health, he took his own life. There’s a fantastic summary of his huge influence on cultural theory here, and also here. On a more personal level, I was hugely impressed

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Trump vs The Prince

‘It is not reasonable that they know how to rule, having always lived as private citizens… the first bad weather kills them.’ Reaching for something to read before bed the other day, I pulled down Machiavelli’s classic book on the dark art of state-craft, The Prince. Chapter VII begins thus: 500 years before Trump, it

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From Russia, With Chaos

Over the past couple of weeks I’ve been re-reading Peter Pomerantsev’s book Nothing is True and Everything is Possible, each page pushing me towards the same, slightly counterintuitive conclusion: if you want to understand Trump’s America, you need to look to Putin’s Russia. I first read the book when a colleague – a history teacher I’d

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Theology and Fiction: Telling Stories of Order Amidst The Chaos

I just this week finished John Yorke’s book Into the Woods: How Stories Work and Why We Tell Them. It was recommended by a good friend who’s a director in theatre and is also now writing for television. She insisted that I read it before I began any more writing. I’m really glad I did, for

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A Theology of Human Machines | Solving the ‘Modest Problem of Death’

A fascinating read in the latest New Republic, reviewing Irish writer Mark O’Connor’s new book, To Be A Machine – subtitled ‘Adventures among Cyborgs, Utopians, Hackers and Futurists Solving the Modest Problem of Death.’ Anna Wiener writes: O’Connell is less interested in evaluating technology than in the people who make it and its philosophical implications. As he

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New Book

Delighted to announce that I’ve been awarded a grant from Arts Council England to work on my next book.  Following a 20 page application about artistic quality, and with supporting letters from some senior (and lovely) people in publishing, the award feels like a massive endorsement of the work I’ve done so far. The money

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The Only Way to Have a Free Press is to Pay For It

One of the things that’s been on my mind in the wake of recent political events is the vital importance to liberal democracy of a genuinely independent and critical free press. It strikes me that if we want a free press, we’re really do need to be willing to pay for it. In Raoul Martinez’s Creating

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Next Up, Capitalism Is Killing Us

Lead stories on the radio this morning:  How a third of fathers want a less stressful job so they can actually spend time with their kids.  Eight people in the world have more wealth than the poorest 50% The UK’s National Institute for Clinical Excellence rejects a life-extending cancer drug for use on NHS because

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