New College of the Humanities

Volume 30 Issue 6 June 1980

'Monumentally bad diplomacy, worse strategy, chaotic military organisation and inept generalship' - Thomas Tulenko describes how great powers have failed in their attacks on Afghanistan. Penned as Soviet tanks rolled into Kabul in December 1979, the BBC's David Loyn offered his own analysis thirty years later.

After gaining its independence from Spain in 1824, Peru experienced a boom as a result of demand for guano as a fertiliser. As John Peter Olinger details, the boom came to an end when it was replaced by nitrate as the preferred fertiliser, and Chile seized Peruvian nitrate deposits in the War of the Pacific from 1879-84.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the longest-serving American President, has been accused of 'spineless government that betrayed the integrity of American ideals'. S.G.F. Spackman shows us that there are other ways of interpreting his policies.

The epic voyage of this Elizabethan adventurer to Peru and his subsequent capture by its Spanish masters inspired Charles Kingsley's Westward Ho! An article by A.L. Rowse. 

Overburdened by taxation, the people of Naples, as Neil Ritchie explains, led by a poor fishmonger's boy and inspired by Giulio Genoino's vision of a more just society, rose in revolt against their Spanish overlords.

Lawrence A. Clayton on the Chinese labourers who came to work in Peru, often in appalling conditions.

The seventeenth-century Jews regarded Venice as 'the land of promise', where for a few generations they flourished almost free from constraint and prejudice.

Much of the research that has established social history as a serious branch of historical study has been carried out in County Record Offices explains J.A. Sharpe, of which Essex is an outstanding example.