Essays

16th November 2020

A Balkan Journey by John McDougall

The tragedy in Sarajevo was a lesson for the people of every country, nation, land, city. The Balkans have been a crucible for the question of European peace and unity in the midst of ethnic and political struggle for centuries...
9th November 2020

Spitfire Britain and the Zombie Union by Scott Hames

Can the kingdom still be united if there’s no unionism in the union? And was ‘Unionism’ simply the most charming and esoteric of checks and balances on the ‘union’? It may all seem abstruse now, but Scott Hames sees us hurtling through an absurdly persistent pragmaticism towards a constitutional car crash.
27th October 2020

A Sanctuary for Furies
by Tor Scott

Historically the marginal realm of the feminine, the home for women artists was not always the mere prison of patriarchy. Tor Scott introduces the surrealist women who rendered the domestic sphere as visionary spaces for alchemy and transformation.
6th October 2020

John Latham’s
Niddrie Woman
by Murdo Macdonald

John Latham's 'Niddrie Woman' : former shale bings, a massive piece of land art, a nature reserve, a monument to the achievements and sufferings of the people and the territory of the industrial revolution. A documentation by Murdo Macdonald.
27th September 2020

Come Into the Open:
Taking a Breather on the other side of Lockdown
by Neil Cooper

Artists have been adapting their practice to COVID-19 restrictions. In the open, is the Common Guild’s off-site response to the ongoing situation. Six artists have created new audio works designed to be listened to outdoors on headphones during government-sanctioned daily walks. Neil Cooper responds.
20th September 2020

THERE/NOT THERE
Batman, and other Unilateral Americans
by Mitch Miller

As conservative interests look set to capture its Supreme Court, cities convulse in class and racial conflict and the skies burn along the west coast, the American horizon has never looked darker. Should we Seek an American hero to save US? According to Tom King’s recent take on the the ever-popular Batman, probably best if we didn’t.
28th August 2020

PLAGUE
Albert Camus’ La Peste (1947)
by Owen Dudley Edwards

Clarity on the plague -on all plagues upon us! Owen Dudley Edwards reads the words of 'La Peste', looks at the history, and judges this as medical fiction, which might help our honesty with medical facts.
21st August 2020

A Monumental Servitude: reflections on the objects of the capitalist city
by Hussein Mitha

Abolish restaurants, statues, bars, mirrors and painting -the lot? The bourgeois desire to be served is inescapable in our urban contexts which consolidated in the 19th century city - the ideological hothouse of capitalist modernity. Hussein Mitha reflects on the glut of materials crowding the urban consumer.
14th August 2020

The Hollow Victory over Losers
by Johnny Rodger

Walter Benjamin's work is said to have much influence over contemporary thought. What has been the quality of that influence? And what could he possibly have to say about current winners and losers? Johnny Rodger looks at Benjamin in the context of some more recent work by Ahmed, Butler, Preciado and others.