Search Results for: pandemic

Challenging the ‘Great Reset’ theory of pandemics

Thucydides saw plague as a disease of the ‘body politic’ – and an opportunity to improve the health of society. History shows that pandemics have a way of disrupting our assumptions about medical and social progress.

Art, History and Pandemics with Tom Holland

On this, the first episode of History Lessons, Mattias Hessérus speaks to the historian Tom Holland about the relationship between reality and art in the age of a pandemic.

history boys

History while it’s still smoking

There are clear pitfalls in writing the first draft of history but that doesn’t mean that historians should shy away from the challenges of doing so.

xi jinping people's liberation army

The Eurasian Century, Part V: Beijing’s Gambit

In many ways, Xi Jinping’s China is a state like no other. But its ambitions for global supremacy are but a new twist on a familiar problem – and are eliciting a familiar response from the rest of the world.

Fortifications in the style of the brilliant French military engineer Sebastian de Vauban (1633-1701) . Engraving c1890

On guard: the contemporary salience of military fortification

Fortresses, border walls and guard towers – today’s excessively guarded age is on a global scale far exceeding famous past efforts including that of Roman Emperor Hadrian and the Great Wall of China. Often unremarked on, these fascinating structures tell us a story of changing global power struggles and political might.

A Roman fresco from the Osteria della Via di Mercurio in Pompeii depicting a group of men having fun playing dice.

What the Romans did for fun

Blame the pandemic; blame social media, but as winter rolls around again it can feel as if we’ve forgotten how truly to celebrate. But antiquity offers us the key to re-learning how to have fun, as opposed to merely pretending we are.

A boy speaks on the phone underneath a 10-foot-high statue of former U.S President Bill Clinton on Bill Clinton Boulevard in 2019 in Pristina, Kosovo.

The Balkan Question

The future of the Balkans is being decided by a clash between the liberal idealists and conservative realists. Whichever worldview prevails will determine the region’s geopolitical future.

Eruption of Vesuvius, by Pierre-Jacques Volaire (1729-1792).

When disaster strikes

Disasters result from vulnerabilities in our social fabric and a lack of preparedness for new threats. Those with the fewest options have the most to lose.

A member of staff removes a file from a depository at The National Archives, London.

The intelligent use of history – what is the past good for?

In times of global uncertainty and upheaval, many people look back to an imaginary golden age of simplicity and stability, or seek to blame a past individual or policy for current ills. Danger lies in both these coping strategies. We need to make intelligent use of history.

Benin's anti piracy task force on patrol in the Gulf of Guinea.

Troubled waters

Military force will not be enough to fix the Gulf of Guinea’s piracy problem. The roots of the crime lie on-shore, deep in the politics of oil and statehood.

Bandstand by sea and people

More than a bandstand

Derelict bandstands are a symbol of a lost age of Victorian optimism. It’s time to recapture their zeal in improving civic life.

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