Blog/History

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The return of Pelican Books

I'm glad to see the return of Pelican Books. Five new Pelicans appeared earlier this month, the first to bear the imprint for some 25 years. Read more →

Shukhov’s tower

It watched over the revolutionary turmoil of 1920s Russia, the dictatorship of Stalin, the Nazi advance to the borders of the Moscow, the long years of Soviet decline and eventual collapse, and the rise of a new Russian autocracy under Vladimir Putin. Read more →

Barbican ghosts

During my visit to London last week I finally summoned the discipline to visit a place that has long haunted my imagination: the Barbican Estate in the Cripplegate area of the City of London. Read more →

The Russian Constructivists

Russian Constructivism was the most radical, intense, ambitious and ultimately tragic design movement of the last century. The Constructivists burned brilliantly in the years immediately preceding and following the 1917 Russian Revolution. Read more →

Designing immortality

Following on from the last two, here's just one more post about this year's Edinburgh Festival. One of the most fascinating talks I attended was a Book Festival event, Would you want to live forever?, in which the philosopher John Gray and the author Marcel Theroux discussed the strange and somewhat under-reported history of late 19th and early-to-mid 20th century attempts to undertake the ultimate engineering challenge: the conquest of death by scientific means, the quite literal design of immortality. Read more →

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