My blog, nickandtheworld.wordpress.com, offers thoughts related to my broad areas of interest, as a DPhil candidate in International Relations. These include climate change diplomacy, global environmental challenges, the impact of norms and ideas in world affairs, sovereignty, legitimacy, the United Nations, and the place of emerging powers (China, India, Brazil etc) and developing countries more generally in the international system.
My take on contemporary events is trying to link these to the bigger questions of change and continuity in international politics. In the absence of subject-specific expertise, I suffer from an irresistible urge to find a more general significance to ongoing issues that might be of interest to the casual student of world politics, tapping into academic debates, but without getting lost in the finer points of jargon and theory. Prospective readers might be fans of the Economist or Foreign Policy magazines and hopefully find a few unconventional and provocative thoughts in my speculative arguments.
The name of my blog came from a Jens Lekman song, ‘Friday Night at the Drive-in Bingo’. I liked the idea of the blog being a sort of pit stop for entertainment, a lottery as to what topic the reader gets. I set myself the brief of writing about “music, politics and popular culture” as I came to the project primarily as a music writer but, ever the egotist, there are plenty of other things I want to have my say on. Popular posts so far have included a review of my Christmas presents (not as bad as it sounds) and a rundown of misleading stories about the University from the newspapers; whereas my music writing, which focuses on folk and alternative rock, hasn’t quite found its niche yet. I also get a lot of hits from seemingly arbitrary search terms such as ‘Eric Pickles hat’ and ‘celery’ so if you’re into either of those things, definitely check it out – similarly, if you quite like the student papers but want something a little more leftfield, I hope it will give you something worth reading.
I’m a third-year English student at Teddy Hall, and Topographies is about music, politics and general pop culture nonsense. It’s my attempt to keep some kind of cultural awareness alive and current even while my workload is overwhelming. If you can relate to this, and if you have an interest in left-wing politics, feminism or pop culture, then hopefully you’ll enjoy my blog.
I started Topographies in the dead, dark, lame duck days before Christmas in order to write about the year that was about to end, but I’m keeping it going – I aim to post at least a couple of times a week. A particular interest of mine is the points at which pop culture and the media intersect with politics – two of my most popular posts so far have been about what a pop song tells us about the motives behind Ann Widdecombe’s involvement in Strictly Come Dancing, and the anti-feminism inherent in most women’s magazines. I also write more straightforward reviews of podcasts, films and music, and am hoping to write about books and the Internet in the new year. However, hopefully politics will always be an important concern.
Last year the man next to me on the train was reading someone’s blog. When I looked closer, I realised it was mine.
I’m Alex Gabriel, columnist and frequent contributor at PoliticalPromise.co.uk, a youth politics site where a lot of other under-30s and I blog continuously about life in the Con-Dem nation. Every imaginable alignment is present, from eyebrow-plucking Cameroons like our editor Charlie Edwards to raving Bennites like Ani Mathur. (Personally, I tend toward the latter.)
Last year the student protests showed our age group isn’t turned off by politics. Political Promise officially supported the first march, not because we all opposed the fee hike but to help dispel the myth that young people are apathetic. Whatever its views on him, Ed Miliband was right: this new generation is defined by its ideals.
The next issue of our print edition, launched last autumn, goes out to common rooms and societies in March. If you like the site and want to see more, drop us a line on Facebook or Twitter – but most importantly, read us. On the train or elsewhere.
from here, with love… found at www.jess-shepherd.co.uk
The most common reaction that people have when they find out that I write a fashion blog is to look me up and down and mumble “oh, really?” in a surprised tone. I can hear the words “you’re not, um, very fashionable” even though they remain unspoken. I’m always relieved – what could be worse than looking like a fashion blogger? Needless to say, I’m the kind of person who thinks of ‘chances for outfit changes’ when other people think of ‘days’, and from here, with love… is borne out of my indiscriminate obsession with clothes and shopping. Over the last year, I’ve gone from posting once a week to sometimes three times daily about everything from magazine editorials to red carpet dresses and catwalk collections to high street sales, all the time trying to avoid fashion blogger clichés to create something that’s great to read. Writing my blog has created career opportunities, justified lots of shopping trips, provided a hands-on education of social media, and given me a distraction from my degree, but most of all it has been constantly fun and enjoyable. I hope you like it, too!
A journo-geek and eco-nerd, I’m a Californian writer attracted to the other side of the pond by promises of mince pies, royalty and actual football (I don’t understand the term “soccer,” either.).
When I’m not bemoaning the loss of my tan line, I blog on environmental news. From the psychology of climate change to bionic cats (OK, maybe that one isn’t enviro-related), I discuss, analyse and report all things science and nature.
Often witty and always entertaining, I’ll take a break every once in a while to post about the journalism industry or my travels back and forth across the Atlantic. My experiences growing up on a farm in the Central Valley also make brief appearances, as does my time spent living in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Someday I’ll write for the BBC or The New York Times, but until then I’m a humble blogger, vying for your attention. Follow me on Twitter @mbloudoff.
As a third-year English and French student at Brasenose College and second-tier thesp, I’ve taken a break from my normal activity of writing about myself to work in Nantes, France as an English-language assistant in two secondary schools. For the seven-month duration of the contract I’m keeping a regular blog for the purpose of writing about myself.
More specifically, ‘Another Night in Nantes’ (or ‘Nan-tes’, as my grandfather would say) is about my cultural and personal experience as an English boy in thick black glasses in a foreign country. It features entries on French culture, lesson plans about the British way of life, getting drunk with Anglophones, getting drunk with French people, buying a Blackberry, losing a Blackberry, and the time a group of film students asked to record my breath to use as the sound of the American photographer Man Ray having sex.
It might appeal to anyone considering a language assistantship for their third year abroad, considering the different ways of life in a foreign country, or considering updating their Twitter for the fifth time in an hour rather than starting their essay. French kids also say the funniest things, and if you want to know which bird ‘the cousin of the chicken’ is, this blog might be for you.
I’m a third year History and Politics student at Hertford who writes a music blog called www.crystalbearfighter.com. It discusses (mostly) new bands as I discover them, and shows videos and song links so that you can discover them too. It doesn’t take itself too seriously and largely mocks the ridiculous indie categorisation into which it seems to have been placed. Anyone interested in small bands will like this and I do seem to have a penchant for indie-ditty music as well as female fronted grunge. Recent bands have included Wild Moccasins, You Slut! and The Indecent, so I aim for variety. I also try and look at some local bands that you can go see in Oxford as well as taking inspiration from all over the globe.