Reading for Battle

Battle Readings is a regularly updated compilation of articles, essays, and opinion pieces relevant to the themes of the Battle of Ideas.

Choose a theme from the listing on the left to narrow your search, or view all readings.

Recent Readings

The music of victimhood
Folk has always narrated and recorded the sad stories of those dispossessed and down-trodden in an unequal society. What I take issue with is the idea that we should take our political cue today from such tales of victimhood.
Shirley Dent, The Independent, 20 July 2008

Let them take drugs - the safe ones
There is nothing quite like the hush that descends over a stadium when eight men are limbering up to do battle for the mythic title “fastest man on Earth”.
Matthew Syed, The Times, 19 July 2008

Will Humanity Survive the 21st Century?
The biggest risks include nuclear war, biotech plagues, and nanotechnology arms races. The good news is that the biggest existential risks are probably decades away, which means we have time to analyze them and develop countermeasures.
Ronald Bailey, Reason magazine, 18 July 2008

Cities Unlimited: Making Urban Regeneration Work
A decade of regeneration policies has failed to stop the inequality of opportunity between towns and cities in the North and those in the South East increasing.
Tim Leunig and James Swaffield, Policy Exchange, 18 July 2008

Online junk-food ads 'targeting children'
Children are continuing to be targeted by junk food companies advertising their products over the internet or through "viral" promotions, despite a ban on television adverts promoting unhealthy food to the under-16s.
Jerome Taylor, The Indepdent, 16 July 2008

‘Culture knows no political borders’
Tiffany Jenkins talks to James Cuno about looting, exporting and owning antiquities
Tiffany Jenkins, The Spectator, 16 July 2008

If this is torture, sign me up
In last week's G2, Joe Queenan claimed new classical music is 'torture'. John Berry, artistic director of English National Opera, speaks for the defence
John Berry, Guardian, 15 July 2008

Want Obama in a Punch Line? First, Find a Joke
What’s so funny about Barack Obama? Apparently not very much, at least not yet.
Bill Carter, The New York Times, 15 July 2008

The ‘Credit Crunch’ and London’s Economy
The UK economy is slothful rather than sound and too reliant on too few ‘essentials’; the credit crisis is symptomatic of deeper, structural problems facing the UK and Western economies; and these underlying problems are unlikely to be addressed in Britain by current government priorities.
Gavin Poynter, Rising East, July 2008

My Plan for Iraq
The call by Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki for a timetable for the removal of American troops from Iraq presents an enormous opportunity. We should seize this moment to begin the phased redeployment of combat troops that I have long advocated, and that is needed for long-term success in Iraq and the security interests of the United States.
Barack Obama, New York Times, 14 July 2008


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Your Culture or Mine? - Chris Frayling

"If you'd rather not have your prejudices challenged, stay away from the Battle of Ideas."
Nigel Warburton, senior lecturer, philosophy, Open University; author, Free Speech: A Very Short Introduction

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