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February 05, 2005



Russell, The History of Western Philosophy - in which it is shown that not only the square root of two is irrational.
James Hogg, The Confessions of a Justified Sinner - dear God, is that what we are like?
Gibbon - Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire - is that what we were like?
Darwin, The Origin of Species - how we got to be like that.
Jim Watson, The Double Helix - the scientist as spiv (so don't look there for moral guidance) explains Darwin's details.
Smith, Wealth of Nations; Hayek, "Serfdom" and some of his later ones - how to organise ourselves to do least harm to each other.

W Shakespeare, Collected Works - an account of why we never will.

Laban Tall

You're not telling me Oliver Kamm went to a State school ? A comprehensive ?

I'll eat my copy of 'Adventures With Aeneas' if that's the case.

Segment Fraud

The list was going well until you got to Feyerabend. Oh dear.


If Kamm went to a State school in Leicester, it was definitely a comp - although I get the feeling he might be from the better part of town.

Leicester schools must have gone downhill over the next 10 years: I certainly didn't get exposed to George Sabine! It all started with history books for me (a Kenneth O. Morgan, so I don't how I ended up where I am politically), and degenerated thereafter. You're exactly right about Ayn Rand not fitting the English temper though - all a bit full-on and not accomodating of tea breaks.


Better work up an appetite, Laban. I'm probably breaking a code of Omerta here, but I can confirm that Oliver Kamm definitely went to a state school - albeit a grammar; he was a year or two above me and Leicester scrapped the 11-plus the year I took it. It was the Wyggeston Boys school (aka the Wyggy). Simon Hoggart also went there, and Colin Dexter (creator of Inspector Morse was a teacher there in the 50s. The Attenborough brothers also went there - which is completely true and completely unbelievable.


To clarify - I think you'll find that Leicester must've scrapped the 11-plus as an option that year, but it had been phased out as compulsory in the mid-60s. My mum's 48 and she didn't have to take it. And isn't Wyggeston just a sixth form college these days (QE?)?

Either way, far better than my school.


Well, chaps, does that mean that you all speak funny?


I doubt Kamm does, and if Chris went to Oxford probably not... One of my friends forced me to shed most of the accent as a condition of speaking to her, but it still comes through on occasion. It doesn't help that the local paper is the Leicester Mercury - pronounced Lestarh Murkreh.

The other hallmark of a proper Leicester child is holidays to Skeggy... and I'd love to know if Kamm ever did that.


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