How Charles Darwin was bullied by his teacher Richard Owen

I recently relocated my copy of Charles Darwin’s The Origin of Species, the 1968 Pelican paperback version of the first edition, with editor’s introduction. This is the edition that sold out in 1859 on the first day of publication – all 1250 copies. Five more editions followed, all slightly different – and the book (including… More How Charles Darwin was bullied by his teacher Richard Owen

The incredible Ernest Eldridge and his adventures with Mephistopheles

Last week I was out for a pre-Christmas lads’ get-together – where we inevitably talk engineering or bloke stuff – and managed to mention somebody so obscure that several people reached for their phones and that old standby, Google. Has anybody heard of Ernest Eldridge and Mephistopheles? No? I’ll tell you. Ernest Arthur Douglas Eldridge was an English… More The incredible Ernest Eldridge and his adventures with Mephistopheles

Social media shaming is bullying – and must stop

One of the disturbing uses of social media these days appears to be ‘shaming’ – picking on strangers over some superficial issue the ‘shamers’ demonise, in ignorance of context and circumstance. The fact that ‘shaming’ is so judgemental underscores what it actually is – bullying. History, alas, tells us that this sort of behaviour is part of the human… More Social media shaming is bullying – and must stop