“No”

On not joining in. This has been such an achingly long isolation, with it’s constant undertones of fear, desolation and death that it’s great to see everything opening up again, in a way. I’m really glad, for example, to see the cafés, shops and bars that have survived the no face-to-face customers and very little […]

The Silence of the Social Scientists: A provocation

It’s very early on a Saturday morning here in Liverpool and I’m listening to Elizabeth Alker on Radio 3 like I always do. She’s on gloriously peaceful early morning form and has already played a jazz version of Nick Drake’s ‘River Man’ that would charm any passing angels. So all’s well and idyllic here except […]

Peeling Back the Busyness

Some thoughts about afterwards, for when we get there. Not that I think this is over, not for a minute, but I keep thinking about ‘afterwards’ and what could make it better than before. It’s kind of my job, as someone who spends so much of his time these days studying sociology, to talk about […]

It Will Take The Time It Takes: Writing in the lockdown

A pause, thirteen weeks into lockdown, to think about how I’ve got on with my own academic work and changed my working methods because of the pandemic. A beginning I realise that, in the context of everything that’s happening to us all, how I’m getting on with writing my sociology PhD might not seem to […]

At the Calderstones Border

I miss the places with people in them,Or passing through.Random as well as planned meetings with friends.The touch of a hand,Arms round each other’s shoulders,The look in your eyes,The being together.Bean There, the Bluecoat,The University Library, The Calderstones Border.These many places where I’m missing you.And when we meet again,And we will meet,Will we meet again […]

Home Life During a Pandemic

2nd May – Week 6 Sarah’s not here with me this morning as I begin the writing of this sixth lockdown letter from home. And that’s because even though it’s a Saturday she’s at a funeral, and will be at another tomorrow, another on Monday, and on they go. Busier than she’s ever been, along […]