Showing posts from January, 2016

Patrick Marber's Closer: A Classism Analysis

1997 saw Patrick Marber's award-winning play Closer make its premiere in London; seven years later a film adaptation was released, directed by Mike Nichols and going on to win a BAFTA and two Golden Globes. On my last viewing of the film, with a friend as au fait with the plot as I am, I pointed out several details that related to classism. This is not, of course, the main theme that suits the work, as the prominent idea of the narrative is that, "the truth doesn't bring us closer" - the question of absolute honesty being paramount to a relationship is the story's greatest debate, but with character traits that crack archetypes in a post-modernistic manner, I want to discuss the role and portrayal of each figure's class.

Note: For the purposes of this piece, a combination of the film and play will be used. All characters, settings, time differences etc. will follow that of the 1997 play, as will the majority of speech, but due to not having a text on hand (and…

MPs that sound like IKEA products

Anyone friend of mine will tell you I can spot a piece of IKEA furniture a mile off - I famously walked into someone's house and said, "you've got Ektorps". Not having the same knowledge I have, they thought I meant some sort of disease. I meant their sofa.

So I thought it was about time to put my knowledge to good use and I decided to formulate a list of top five MPs surnames that sound like something you'd find in IKEA - and what product they would be.

Position: 5
Full name: Rt. Hon. David Evennett
Constituency: Bexleyheath and Crayford
Nature of product: Rack that holds utensils in a kitchen on a wall
Closest example: GRUNDTAL

Position: 4
Full name: Robert Flello
Constituency: Stoke-on-Trent South
Nature of product: Tea towel
Closest example: VINTER

Position: 3
Full name: Mary Glindon
Constituency: North Tyneside
Nature of product: Office chair, but one with arms and that spins without creaking
Closest example: VOLMAR

Position: 2
Full name: Natascha Engel
Constituency: North Ea…

"Do not mistake democracy for division": John McDonnell reminds us Labour is more than a poorly covered reshuffle

Several months ago I saw Jeremy Corbyn address Nottingham's packed Albert Hall in the run up to the Labour leadership election. In the minutes he was addressing the room, there was a powerful, almost suffocating, optimism about what could be achieved under his leadership, this belief that a new kind of politics really was possible.

Among all the fuss of the reshuffle and the slanted coverage of it - and I'm not even getting into what the BBC have done - there's been a heavy media implication that Labour are scrapping among themselves, taking away the focus from their policies and how they want act against the Tory cuts. On that basis, it was brilliant to get away from the reporting-every-move attitude of the lobby journalists on Tuesday night and back to what "a new kind of politics" really means.*

The positive glow that I felt after Corbyn's Nottingham rally was replenished with a mix of talk and discussion in Derby yesterday, headed by the phrase "An E…

Vinyl and foreign TV: attentive, not pretentious

Around two years ago I realised the reason my parents' record player had fallen out of use was down to lack of interest, not function, and so I suggested that for my seventeenth birthday we got the thing in working order and listened to Jimi Hedrix on vinyl, like I did some twelve years beforehand.

A college friend - who's built up a track record for incredible present purchases - bought me Bombay Bicycle Club's So Long, See You Tomorrow for my seventeenth and so I listened to this instead. Though I've begun to build up my own mini-collection*, I've not yet listened to any of my parents' old vinyl.

Believe me, I'm well aware that purchasing current albums on vinyl in 2014-6 seems incredibly pretentious, but there's method in the madness. Maybe it would help to include that I've never purchased an album solely digitally, I've always been one for hard copies and CDs, so perhaps I was doomed to be swept up by the vinyl revival of the twenty-first c…