Five underrated classics

1.Cane, Jean Toomer (1923) – Harlem Renaissance author Toomer beautifully interweaves lyric, prose and drama in this series of vignettes written about the cultural history and experiences of African Americans in the United States. These stories are often pervaded by nauseating violence, such as cruel ostracisation in “Becky” or sexual violence in the “Box Seat”, […]

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Profile: Donald Russell

Tradition may be everywhere in Oxford, but I spoke to one 95-year-old tutor who has seen over 65 years of change. Donald Russell, a 95 (almost 96) year-old tutor at St Johns, first came here as a classics student at Balliol in 1939 until being called up to service in World War two. After working […]

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Mary Beard: Interview

Was there a particular moment when you discovered your passion for Ancient Roman history? Those moments are always mythical and mythologised, but I have vivid memories of when the ancient world (not so much the Roman world) first struck me.  I was five years old and had been taken to London, and to the British […]

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DEBATE: This house would support state funding of drama and the arts

PROPOSITION: Tommo Fowler makes a play to get state sponsoring for the stage Theatre can be roughly split into two categories: commercial and subsidised. Commercial theatre fuses art with the rampant Capitalist machine, while its subsidised cousin relies upon state handouts partially bankrolled by the hundreds of thousands of people who probably have no interest […]

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