Latest Issue

Simon Schama on how he changed his mind about Jags, Iggy Pop—and John Major

The historian answers Prospect's brief encounter questions—including why he wants to be thrown in the Thames after he dies

Simon Schama illustrated by Nick Taylor

What is the first news event you can recall?

The sinking of the Flying Enterprise, January 1952. I was six, nearly seven, and pictured the gallant Captain Carlsen alone (or nearly—he had a tugboat mate with him) on the ship listing 50 degrees, trying to sail it to harbour intact but giving up after six days. It seemed spectacularly Man vs Cruel Sea, although it was later said that if he’d tried to make it to Cork not Falmouth, the ship would have…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to

More From Prospect