Issue

Prospect Magazine

Issue 127

October 2006

Contents

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Myths of British ancestry

Stephen Oppenheimer Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Everything you know about British and Irish ancestry is wrong. Our ancestors were Basques, not Celts. The Celts were not wiped out by the Anglo-Saxons, in fact neither had much impact on the genetic stock of these islands

Thatcherism's final triumph

Peter Wilby
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

The complaint from the left against Blair is that he missed the chance to push Britain further leftwards. His failure to build a new consensus, plus the collapse in trust over Iraq, means the chance has now gone

The Brown revolution

Steve Richards
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

It is July 1994. Gordon Brown has just been elected leader of the Labour party. Tony Blair becomes shadow foreign secretary, with a mission to reform Britain's relationship with Europe. What happens next?

Lies, spin and deceit

John Lloyd Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Tony Blair is charged with lying and deceiving the public with "spin." But spin is just the reaction of politics to a more aggressive media. And on Iraq, it is Blair's judgement, not his integrity, that is at stake

New Labour odyssey

prospect Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

From the back streets of Birmingham via Oxford to election as an MP in 2001, I have been at the heart of New Labour. It was never a middle-class coup—it grew from the core of Labour's traditions

The next middle class

Fran Abrams
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

I spent a year observing pupils at an Ilford comprehensive and met the new generation of upwardly mobile Britons. Family values, hard work and religion are all back—but not politics

Lula’s second breath

Jonathan Power Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

In 1980 I travelled to São Paulo to meet Lula, a firebrand trade unionist. Twenty-six years later, a wealthier and more democratic Brazil is preparing to re-elect him to a second presidential term

What happens next?

Sunder Katwala Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

The government has run out of steam. Where should the party go from here?

Labour's real leadership problem

Hugh Roberts Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Tony Blair is not the cause of the Labour party's fundamental problems. Their roots go back to constitutional changes made in 1981

Prospect Think Tank of the Year Awards 2006

prospect Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

On 20th September Prospect held its annual Think Tank of the Year Awards at the Savile club in Mayfair

Playwrights of the north

Michael Coveney Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Will the recently established National Theatre of Scotland give rise to a new golden age of Scottish contemporary drama?

Crowding out

Terence Kealey Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Danny Kruger's "fraternity" is little more than a PR exercise. Here's a real Big Idea for David Cameron to get his teeth into

The decline of Kofi

Alexander Casella Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Kofi Annan's ten years as United Nations secretary-general have left the organisation in worse shape, politically and adminstratively, than it has ever been

Reich at 70

Nick Crowe Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

America's greatest living composer helped dig classical music out of its mire of discordance, and reunited serious and popular traditions. Happy birthday Mr Reich

After the bomb

Mark Fitzpatrick Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

What does North Korea's nuclear test mean for the country's neighbours?

Baby bomber

Josephine Wall
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

How a one-liner on mumsnet triggered a national controversy

Summer of discontent

David B Green
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

A year ago, Israelis felt in control of their destiny. Now the future looks bleak

An Afghan opium deal

Johann Hari
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

While we destroy Afghan poppies, the world is short of opiates. The solution is clear

Growth is good

Will Wilkinson
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Don't believe everything you read—getting richer does actually make you happier

The penny drops

David Willetts
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Blair ran rings around us, but we have finally learnt to deal with New Labour

Musical notes

Stephen Everson Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Can there really be people out there who will be turned on to classical music by inane interval chatter and mindless interviews? The BBC should know better

Between the lines

Jason Cowley Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

He didn't make the Booker longlist because he disdains literary prizes, but John le Carré remains one of the most under-rated of postwar British writers

Widescreen

Mark Cousins Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Penélope Cruz has appeared in 14 American films without being memorable. Yet Almodóvar takes her back to Spain, gives her curves—and she is immortal

Dawkins the dogmatist

Andrew Brown
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Incurious and rambling, Richard Dawkins's diatribe against religion doesn't come close to explaining how faith has survived the assault of Darwinism

Tales of old cities

Philip Oltermann
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

What does "psychogeography" mean? In the hands of Paul Auster and Iain Sinclair it is little more than a return to old routines

The art of Simenon

Lesley Chamberlain
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Georges Simenon's 76 Maigret novels are studies in the art of watching the world go by—and a homage to carefully nurtured intuition

Dangerous ideals

Julian Evans
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Andrew O'Hagan's fictional account of a wayward and dysfunctional priest is most striking for its discussion of the importance, and trap, of idealism

Private view

Ben Lewis Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Prophecies that the art market bubble would burst have proved empty. Yet some of us keep making them. How long can an idea of the "contemporary" last?

The conversation

Damon Galgut
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

A child soldier leads Father Angelo to speak with the devil in the African bush

Notes from underground

Dan Kuper Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Why is the Northern line worse than the others? No one seems to be quite sure, but it does mean plenty of "crowd control" practice for us tube workers

Lab report

Philip Ball Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

The alleged transatlantic bombers were planning to mix liquids in aeroplane toilets to form instant explosives. Is the chemistry really that simple?

Brussels diary

Manneken Pis Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Nicolas Sarkozy's plans to revive the EU constitution may not be to everyone's taste. Plus, why the French are dreading the prospect of Gordon Brown as PM

Out of mind

Robert Drummond Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Schizophrenic states of mind seem to deny either access or empathy. What does it mean to know how someone else feels?

Washington watch

Tumbler Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Gordon Brown's praise for Tony Blair's foreign policy in the Sun was about more than Labour's squabbles. It was an attempt to get the American right on side

Inefficient markets

P L Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Apple's threat to sue companies that use the word "Pod" in product names is reminiscent of the bully-boy tactics that made Microsoft so unpopular in the 1990s

France profonde

Tim King Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Although Blairism is withering away in Britain, it drives the presidential campaign in France, as I saw during Ségolène Royal's recent visit to a local village

Foreword

David Goodhart Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Numbers game

The Cruncher Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Letters

prospect Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

News & curiosities

prospect Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

Enigmas & puzzles

Ian Stewart Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127

In fact

prospect Free entry
21st October 2006  —  Issue 127







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