My teaching and parliamentary work has been complemented in recent weeks by giving papers on different topics and in different venues.
At the end of last month, I gave the inaugural lecture, on the subject of ‘The Classics and Parliament’, to mark the launch of the Network for the Interface of Classics and Politics, at the Victoria Gallery at the University of Liverpool. I examined the relevance of the classics to contemporary political discourse and what we could learn from them in addressing current political distrust with parliamentarians. The photograph shows me talking to some students after the lecture.
Last week, I was in Edinburgh and spoke to Edinburgh University Philosophy Society on the Conservatives and the Constitution, explaining basic Conservative dispositions and how Conservatives view the relationship between the people and government. Earlier this week, I spoke at the History of Parliament Parliaments, Politics and People Seminar on ‘One Person, Multiple Votes: University Constituencies and the Electoral System, 1868-1950’, at the Institute of Historical Research at the University of London. My contribution was on the abolition of university seats by the Representation of the People 1948, examining the arguments advanced for abolition and the case for retention. The universities did on occasion return some distinguished members, including Eleanor Rathbone, the most influential female politician of the inter-war years. I thus took the opportunity to turn up with copies of my 2015 Speaker’s Lecture on Rathbone, the subject of an earlier post.
In later posts, I will draw out some of the points made in the lectures. Watch this space…