How The Light Gets In
The reason so many quote from E M Forster's modus operandi - only connect - is that it works. Connecting is the mainstay of all communication. A direct hit of recognition will elicit laughter.
Our contemporary times has made fantasy the biggest of all industries in the world. Fantasy as distraction; as movie, as game, as Internet distraction; the fantasy of perennial fulfilment through white wires running into your ears; and continuous communication through cell phone fantasy. The fantasy that you can only be whole and human by digital connection. Fantasy is our way of coping, of making a dry cake cream laden in our imaginations. It is going to bed with one person but having sex with a dozen others. This is how we get to fuck the stars, the celebs; by fantasy. Fantasy keeps the world ticking over. Take fantasy out of Capital and you have nothing left.
Most of Ukip's voters are English. They yearn for a fantasy golden age when they were masters of these isles and the world, and their land was green, pleasant and white. To understand the nostalgia and sense of loss, you have to go back not to the end of empire, but to the end of the last century.
HowTheLightGetsIn, the World’s Largest Philosophy and Music Festival, is set to return to Hay-on-Wye for 2015. HowTheLightGetsIn
Let's start with one heretical thought: competition is disastrous in our education system and should be abandoned as a guiding principle. Instead what we need is cooperation - an informal co-operative of pupils, teachers, parents, communities working together to help achieve the best possible outcome for each pupil.
London is a haven for private members' clubs. From the traditional centres of St James and Mayfair, to Shoreditch and Kentish Town, our appetite for such clubs shows little sign of abating. With the launch of my own club, Library, just weeks away what light can the colourful history of these clubs shed on their continuing appeal?
Firstly, that while chaos is really very lovely in a coastline or a forest or a cup of tea, I'm not convinced it would be much fun on a global scale. I'd miss Radio 4 and I've got used to the idea that my Co-op always has a ready stock of chutney. Secondly - and far more importantly - I'd be out of a job if I couldn't think up ideas that weren't actually likely to happen.
Some may think of anonymity as a modern phenomenon enabled by media and technology and its ability to help people hide their true identities. Or others may believe it's a relic of the past, when no one seemed to care who writers were at all, and destined to disappear in our digital age. But the truth is far more complex.
Some gay people might feel that finding a gay gene might diminish prevalent homophobia, but this is naive. Racism has not diminished because we know that blackness or whiteness is genetic. But scientists still treat us like rats in a lab and look for 'causes'. I have been told I am a lesbian because my mother smoked and drank whilst carrying me.
HowTheLightGetsIn, the philosophy and music festival at Hay-on-Wye, has just finished its fifth outing. To find out how the