As the Queen celebrated her 25th year on the throne, England was restless, on the verge of anarchy, and sweating out the hottest summer in years. God Save the Queen went to the top of the charts, and the Sex Pistols, followed later by other acts, vented their rage at the royal family. We will revisit the tumultuous year of 1977 as our starting point to explore the British musicians who protested the monarchy in the late 1970s and 1980s.
Following the most recent referendum on Scottish independence, it's a perfect time to reflect on the origins of Scotland. What does the murder of John Comyn by Robert Bruce in 1306 tell us about medieval Scotland? How has history been rewritten to stress nationalist narratives? And did anyone really care about Scotland as a country or state in the early fourteenth century? All this and a murder most foul. Or moderately foul. Or perfectly justified. It's all very Scottish. But somebody was murdered and this week John takes a stab at addressing the formation of Scotland under Robert Bruce in the fourteenth century.
Remember, remember the Fifth of November! Guy Fawkes has become an iconic face of the American Occupy movement, but was the Gunpowder Plot really an effort to improve the lot of the lower classes? This week we will explore the religious terrorism that inspired a national holiday.
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