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November 2019 / Issue 115

Manchester Square Wokery and zealotry 3

Letters Hong Kong needs Britain’s help; Hollow ethics and empires; Trans athletes, defended; Create wealth, then share it; A Russian responds; Faith in France; Kolakowski celebrated; Why the Brexit Party is here to stay 6

Columns Points East & West The pseudonymous Tacitus, a serving soldier, says the West needs better ideas and fewer weapons 8 Diary Justin Webb celebrates breakfast, diabetes research and the right to make bad jokes 9 Politics Nick Cohen says Tory radicals are clearing the way for Corbynite extremism 10 Westminster Simon Heffer skewers Dave and Davery 12 Guest Speaker Dalibor Rohac tells conservatives not to venerate nation states 14 Wig & pen Matthew Scott says Britain’s constitution needs respect, not rewriting 15 Marketplace Hamish McRae denounces meritocracy 16 Bright Green Lisbet Rausing digests the meat v soya dilemma 17 WokeWorld An unWoke uprising David Cox calls time on tolerating intolerance 24 Open Season Samir Shah defends “white saviours” from cruel and lazy critics 26 Spare Rib Kathleen Stock asks why “blackface” is hateful, but drag is merely amusing 27 Stonewalled discussion Helen Joyce explains how rows over trans women have split Britain’s biggest gay-rights organisation 28 White-flag academia Noel Malcolm battles obfuscation and cowardice in Cambridge University 30



Crash landing: our postBrexit identity crisis ‘Capitalitis’ is Britain’s undoing Simon Jenkins unpicks myths and complexes on the Celtic fringe 18 Owen Polley says Remainers and UKloathing nationalists spell doom for Ulster Unionism 21

Features The real Russian church rises Victor Madeira highlights the Orthodox clergy’s defiance of the secular and ecclesiastical hierarchy 33 Carrying water for freedom Joseph Yi-zheng Lian lauds the Hong Kong protestors’ success 34 Grave dancers need a new story In an extract from his new book, Pravda Ha Ha, Rory MacLean sees the shadows of the present darken an optimistic east European journey of 30 years ago 38

Comes the reckoning Edward Lucas explains how the post-1989 rediscovery of history has turned sour 41

Pastor and traitor Elisabeth Braw uncovers the Stasi plot to infiltrate and undermine East German churches 46 Islam’s lost cities Justin Marozzi reveals how tolerance and inquiry once characterised the Islamic metropolises of the ancient world 48

Civilisation Screen Peter Hitchens unmasks the tiresome antiChristian bias in fictional dystopias 52 Books Brian Griffiths on Margaret Thatcher: Herself Alone by Charles Moore; Jane O’Grady on Sontag: Her Life by Benjamin Moser; Francis Harris on Jacob’s Ladder: The Unauthorised Biography of Jacob Rees-Mogg by Michael Ashcroft; Adam Zamoyski on King of the World: The Life of Louis XIV by Philip Mansel; John Gerson on Big Sister, Little Sister, Red Sister: Three Women at the Heart of Twentieth-Century China by Jung Chang; Jamie Blackett on Winning Against the Odds: My Life in Gambling and Politics by Stuart Wheeler; Carole Bourne-Taylor on Serotonin by Michel Houellebecq, translated by Shaun Whiteside; Stephen Robinson on The Anarchy: The Relentless Rise of the East India Company by William Dalrymple; Damian Thompson on Mass Exodus: Catholic Disaffiliation in Britain and America since Vatican II by Stephen Bullivant 54 Theatre Two unfinished works by Jane Austen have reached stage and screen. Kirsty Lang finds The Watsons much better than Sanditon 65 Music Jonathan Gaisman marks the end of the Endellion era 66


Art Cindy Polemis on the method and madness of William Blake 68 Drawing Board Christian House on the sharp shadows of Magnum’s street photography 71 Scene John Laurenson visits a French theme park: popular, conservative, historical and successful 74 Poetry Irena Pavliuk 75 With Prejudice Maureen Lipman explores the outer limits of casting convention 78

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