Wheres guy fawkes when you need him
Alexander the Great, according to Plutarch, carried on his campaigns a copy of the Iliad , kept alongside a dagger; on a more pronounced ideological level, ancient Romans looked to the Aeneid as an argument for imperialism. In this major reinterpretation of epic poetry beginning with Virgil, David Quint explores the political context and meanings of key works in Western literature. These traditions produce opposing ideas of historical narrative: a linear, teleological narrative that belongs to the imperial conquerors, and an episodic and open-ended narrative identified with "romance," the story told of and by the defeated. Quint situates Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained within these rival traditions. He extends his political analysis to the scholarly revival of medieval epic in the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and to Sergei Eisenstein's epic film, Alexander Nevsky.
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Nine things you never knew about Guy Fawkes
It offers adult infantilism, a refusal to confront reality, an abdication of personal responsibility, an utter lack of self-awareness and a mania for scapegoating — all of them on an epic scale. On 9 June , the House of Commons passed an act to hold an in-out referendum on membership of the EU by votes to One might think that these votes indicated overwhelming support both for holding a referendum and for implementing its outcome.
This is clearly not the case. An unholy and disparate alliance of MPs is conspiring to make Brexit in any sensible form an impossibility. Some are so opposed to leaving the EU that they will do anything to thwart it, despite most of them having voted for implementation. They are crooks. Some are so ideologically wedded to an extreme form of Brexit that they will vote against any lesser version of it. They are fantasists. Some see the present chaos solely as an opportunity to force a general election and bring about a change of government.
They are knaves. All are engaged in political posturing. All are duplicitous. All are increasing the risk of chaos through a no-deal exit. This is dishonesty or self-delusion or both.
The people were asked one question — to remain or to leave — and they expressed, narrowly, a wish to leave. That is all they expressed, because it is all they were able to express.
There are five options. The first is to cancel Brexit. That is the one thing that would be a betrayal of what people voted for, as well as a betrayal of what MPs themselves overwhelmingly voted for in If Brexit proceeds, the remaining four options all come with drawbacks. The biggest drawback is attached to a no-deal exit, with its potential not just for short-term chaos, but also for long-term catastrophe. Only a tiny minority of MPs would support this outcome, yet the behaviour of all of them is making it more likely.
That leaves us with three versions of a negotiated settlement. A Canada-style deal has the twin drawbacks of a hard Irish border and damage to our trade with the EU. A Norway-style deal has the drawback of continued free movement. If the referendum is to be honoured and a no-deal exit avoided, one of these options needs to be chosen along with its drawback. All three options need a withdrawal agreement. No one has yet suggested a convincing way that the existing agreement is likely to be improved upon.
Yet MPs will not support it. What exactly do they want, apart from fluffy toys for everyone? I have deliberately not mentioned a second referendum as an option, because to me it is not an option. It is a cop-out. More deceit. More dereliction of duty. And, for that reason, if there was a second referendum, this time I would vote to leave. It is an axiom of politics that governments should provide firm leadership.
However, since every other axiom of politics is in abeyance at the moment, perhaps this one should be ditched as well. At present, the Prime Minister — along with a handful of her colleagues — are the only grown-ups in the room. It is time to force the pubescent rabble that passes for a House of Commons to take some responsibility.
It may not be possible to change the withdrawal agreement, but it should be possible to change the political declaration that accompanies it.
Instead of that declaration envisaging one specific outcome of trade negotiations, it could simply outline the three options, and any others that may exist, including their respective drawbacks.
And MPs should then be obliged, on a free vote, to state which option they support. If they do choose to support one of them, they will also need to support the withdrawal agreement. As may be apparent, I am angry at the moment. Until today, I have been uncertain as to the true target of that anger. Now I have had time to consider it, I know precisely the target. And it is not the Government which, whether one agrees with its position or not, has been honest and conscientious throughout.
It has laid out the practical options for withdrawal, for which it has been vilified and scapegoated by a pathetic array of political pygmies who either lack the courage of their convictions, or whose extreme convictions are to be foisted on everyone else by blackmail. In particular, their treatment of the Prime Minister has been disgusting. My anger is directed at our immature, deceitful and self-serving members of Parliament. Where is Guy Fawkes when we need him?
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Guy Fawkes Night
That piece of graffiti, seen after a walk across Ilkley Moor in Yorkshire, prompted hearty laughter a few years ago. The name lives on — quite innocently in the Fawkes family — while the life and death of the original anarchist has passed into legend. We still celebrate Guy Fawkes Night in England, and November 5th was a jolly feature of my childhood, with garden bonfires, potatoes roasting in the ashes, Yorkshire parkin handed round, and fireworks exploding with crackles and bangs and great shooting stars. We never burned a guy — it always seemed rather macabre.
The festival is now just a chance to take our families out to a pitch-black field in the freezing cold and admire an array of fireworks. The reason for celebrating November 5th has almost been forgotten. Could you imagine if we celebrated an attempted plot to kill the British monarchy or government these days, and would we? King James 1st was the monarch on the throne in , and he was a protestant.
Guy Fawkes and the Gunpowder Plot: everything you need to know
And since then, for most of us, Guy Fawkes has been no more than an old stuffed suit, bunged on to a bonfire. Guy and his Catholic conspirators planned to blow the place up as James I opened Parliament. They feared that persecution of their church would get worse unless James went up in smoke to be replaced by his more sympathetic daughter Elizabeth. To those in power Guy was a terrorist. But how we need another Guy Fawkes to put a rocket up this pathetic Parliament. Figuratively speaking, of course. But never, ever straight and honest answers or debate one move up from the primary school playground.
Fireworks for Guy Fawkes
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At Westminster in London, Guy Fawkes, a chief conspirator in the plot to blow up the British Parliament building, jumps to his death moments before his execution for treason. On the eve of a general parliamentary session scheduled for November 5, , Sir Thomas Knyvet, a justice of the peace, found Guy Fawkes lurking in a cellar of the Parliament building. Fawkes was detained and the premises thoroughly searched.
Health & Safety failings 1605 nearly cost the country its King
He was born and educated in York ; his father died when Fawkes was eight years old, after which his mother married a recusant Catholic. He travelled to Spain to seek support for a Catholic rebellion in England without success. He later met Thomas Wintour , with whom he returned to England. Wintour introduced him to Robert Catesby , who planned to assassinate King James I and restore a Catholic monarch to the throne.
Please refresh the page and retry. We may be warned to remember, remember, the fifth of November - but not many of us know the true story behind Guy Fawkes, the most well-known conspirator behind the Gunpowder Plot. He was then hung, drawn and quartered. But is this really what happened? As Bonfire Night preparations get underway, we take a look at some of the common misconceptions and lesser known facts about the nation's favourite villain.