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What's in a name?

Tuesday, September 27, 2005
The Language Guy starts an interesting discussion about our use of the word 'refugee'. Personally, I don't entirely agree that 'refugee' is increasingly acquiring racial or negative connotations. But it's certainly weird and rather worrying that Bush has described people displaced by Hurricane Katrina as 'not refugees' but 'Americans'... (Aside from the prejudice implied by such a statement, it's also curiously ironic in a country settled by people from all over the world.) But there he goes again...

It's a library thing

Thursday, September 22, 2005
Slightly worried about how nerdy I'm becoming in my old age but this is really quite nice.

For instance, the search facility lets you find all the other users in the world with a certain book or author in their library...And then you can find out what other books those possibly like-minded libraries contain and find new stuff that you might like to read... Tonnes of bookish fun for everyone...

Should novelists only express their opinions through their fiction?

Get this. An article in The Guardian written by the vicar of Putney claims that Rushdie should do less 'public crusading' and get back between the pages of his books; whilst the Literary Saloon believes that Rushdie should forget about being an author, for the next little while at least, and take up full-time column-writing and crusading.

But here's an idea. (I'm feeling a bit naughty and ready to flout the new laws against incitement.) Maybe we, the country, should offer many of our eminent leaders (in both politics and religion) a short sabbatical to write a work of fiction? Let's face it. Many of them have already had lots of practice...