Crime and Punishment

Hmmmm…. So my Year 11s sat their GCSE English Language examination today: Paper One, Imaginative Writing. I wouldn’t normally comment on something like this but I am irked. The text given was a translation of Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment. A translation. Of a Russian text. In an English Language exam. I am concerned. The students have…

Etymologicon and The Elements of Eloquence, Mark Forsyth

These are not worth separate blog posts: same basic book written in the same basic style about the same basic themes.  Which sounds terribly dismissive but shouldn’t: as a self-confessed language geek who’s alert to the absurdity and beauty of our mongrel mother tongue, these books were a delightful treat.and a little like talking to…