Notes from the Basement – 26 January 2021

  26 Jan '21   |  Posted by: Birlinn
Will we finish previewing 2021 before the month (or year) is up? Yes, indeed. The final whistle blows this week: here’s what’s coming from Arena Sport.

Other genres also available: here’s crimenature and the outdoorshistory and current affairs, and literary fiction and biography.

Old Ways New Roads is soon to be a virtual exhibition at Glasgow’s Hunterian Museum. It is already a handsome illustrated volume about how military road-building transformed Scotland over the course of the long and winding eighteenth century. The launch event is on Thursday 28th and will be free and fascinating. Register here. | [Eventbrite]

Burns Night 2021 looked a little different, but there were plenty of online events in honour of the Bard. Alexander McCall Smith took part in the Scotsman’s virtual event. You can catch up with with the readings, feasting and laughter here

World Holocaust Day is tomorrow, January 27th. Amongst the many, we remember Jane Haining, the Scottish schoolteacher who died in Auschwitz. Read more here, and listen here. | [BBC Sounds]

When is a life better written as fiction? Here’s David Robinson on the art of fictional biography, with high praise for Dennis Glover’s Orwell bio-fic The Last Man in Europe. | [Books from Scotland]

James Baldwin’s life and works are back in the spotlight. Our new edition of Talking at the Gates, James Campbell’s authoritative biography, is coming out in February. Here’s a fascinating conversation from Radio 3’s Free Thinking about Baldwin in this social and political moment.

On film, Regina King’s directorial debut One Night in Miami was Stuart Cosgrove’s pick of the week on the TalkMedia podcast. If you were fascinated by how the worlds of sport and music intersected with the civil rights movement, you can dive deeper into the story in Cassius X, which has a whole chapter on ‘The Fight that Changed America’. | [TalkMedia on Acast]

Our friends at Caught by the River are running a competition via their weekly newsletter. There are three copies of Ann Lingard’s The Fresh and Salt: The Story of the Solway up for grabs. Haste ye! | [Caught by the River]

Did you make even more Seville orange marmalade than Liz Hurley? If you did, here’s something to do with it, besides slather it on your morning toast.

Jenni Fagan’s new novel has been the toast of January. Keep her Spell for Hope and Renewal close, too, in these cold days.

That’s all, folks. January, be gone! See you in February.
Team Birlinn
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