Archive for the ‘Comment’ Category

Many commentators – particularly on the left – are throwing accusations of ‘fascism’ at US President-elect Donald Trump.

In this measured and thoughtful blog Jane Caplan considers whether this is a useful analytical term ..

Trump and Fascism. A View from the Past

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A interesting BBC report on a new (‘Putin-sanctioned’) Russian film extolling the Russian-Kazakh hero/martyrs of Panfilov’s 28 Men. That the story behind the film is largely felt to have been a Communist invention seems neither here nor there.


Of more importance is the national story of a multi-ethnic Soviet Union steadfast against fascism – with clear echoes of the current Russo-Ukrainian crisis and of Russian/Kazakh relations.

You’ll find the BBC report here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-37595972

The movie trailer is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cQq_cnX5eUA

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ICYMI: LWLies x NatStudies? Interesting article from Little White Lies exploring the the way in which cinema can provide a way of understanding the construction of collective identities. Read ‘What cinema teach us about nationalism?’ here.


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O'Leary_November 2015

Current public discussions about how the UK is to leave the European Union have been too simplified, and have failed to come up with any solution that recognises that only England and Wales voted to leave. Brendan O’Leary outlines a way forward that might enable those nations of the UK that want to remain in the EU to do so. Read more.

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OpenCanada.org offers an interesting analysis of the prospects for an independent Kurdistan.

Kurdish Iraqis have long dreamt of a state to call their own. With the support of Canadian troops, they are now gaining ground as the fight against ISIS continues. But what would their independence mean for the region? By Michael Petrou. Read here.


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Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, has indicated that a second independence referendum is ‘highly likely’ following Scotland’s overwhelming vote to remain within the European Union. Full report here.


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Neal Ascherson offers fascinating analysis of the UK’s EU referendum in the New York Times here.


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Interesting article in today’s New York Times:

If Britain votes to leave, it will be in large part because of strong anti-Europe sentiment in much of England, the heart of the movement to divorce Britain from the Continent. Read on.


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On 19 May, the Constitution Unit hosted its third Brexit seminar. Our panellists Professor Sionaidh Douglas-Scott, Queen Mary University of London, Professor Jim Gallagher of Nuffield College, Oxford, Professor Cathy Gormley-Heenan, University of Ulster, and Dr Rachel Minto, Cardiff University discussed the impact that Brexit would have on Devolution and the Union. This briefing paper, written by Robert Hazell and Alan Renwick, explores this topic in further depth. It opens by explaining that public opinion is much more pro-EU in Scotland and Northern Ireland than in England and Wales; this creates the possibility of a divided, and divisive, referendum result if the different nations in the UK vote in different ways. The paper then discusses the process of withdrawal, how the devolved nations would be represented during the Brexit negotiations, and whether a vote for Brexit would trigger a second independence referendum in Scotland. It concludes by considering the long term policy consequences of Brexit, in terms of the scope for greater policy differentiation between the different nations of the UK, and the scope for the devolved nations to develop different relationships with the EU.

Read the briefing paper here.


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SOURCE: What Scotland Thinks

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