One for the Books

BY STEPHEN PAX LEONARD Writing in the latter half of the nineteenth century, Oscar Wilde spoke of the ‘Oxford manner’. It was all fine and good to come down with a decent class of degree and take your Blue in water polo, but what really mattered to him was whether a graduate who had been ‘granted leave to supplicate’ had an appreciation of the ‘Oxford … Continue reading One for the Books

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Descent into Cultural Nihilism

BY STEPHEN PAX LEONARD It was the spring of 2003. Amidst a vortex of gorging humanity, the statue of Saddam Hussein in Baghdad was being ripped off its plinth by excitable vandals. Many western television viewers sympathised with these young men dressed in thawbs who were celebrating the end of decades of repression and dictatorship. For the majority of Britons watching very similar events unfurl … Continue reading Descent into Cultural Nihilism

No Country for Straight White Men

BY STEPHEN PAX LEONARD The weather was disagreeable: damp, diffident and almost apologetic. It was not surprising. It was a Tuesday. The morning toast sat there silently, waiting to be marmaladed, and for a moment the world seemed heavy and inert, devoid of banter and silliness. It was borne in upon me that this Tuesday morning was going to be a long and uneventful one. … Continue reading No Country for Straight White Men

University Has Changed, Parents

BY STEPHEN PAX LEONARD Ripples of laughter could be heard from the Senior Common Room where undergraduates dressed in ‘I am a feminist’ hoodies wrestled on the sofas. The LGBTQQIAAP+ dinner had just finished, and the students had retired to the SCR ‘safe-space’ to let off steam and gossip about who they found ‘dangerous’. This was not Oxford. The SCR sherry and newspapers were long … Continue reading University Has Changed, Parents