Volume 59 Issue 2 February 2009

France’s Prussian Nemesis

Mark Bryant on how French cartoonists of the 1870s responded to national humiliation at the hands of a beligerent Prussia.

Darwin’s World

Juliet Gardiner looks at recent publications marking the 150th anniversary of Darwin’s most famous work and the bicentenary of his birth

Death of Geronimo

Richard Cavendish remembers the first American-Indian hero, who died on February 17th, 1909.

Playful Learning: The History of Progressive Education

Concerns about the British primary school curriculum made their way onto the political agenda last year with the publication of the interim Rose Report. With the full report imminent, Richard Willis looks at the history of progressive education and ponders its future.

America's Difficulty with Darwin

The conflict between supporters of Darwin’s theory of evolution and Creationists is often portrayed as the latest skirmish in an age-old struggle between science and religion. It is anything but, claims Thomas Dixon, who argues that Creationism, and its pseudo-scientific offspring, ‘Intelligent Design’, are products peculiar to US history.

Simone Weil: In A Lonely Place

The ascetic French philosopher Simone Weil spent the last months of her short life exiled in London working for de Gaulle’s Free French. But, her strange, austere vision for a France reborn after the tragedy of the Second World War was very different from that of the country’s future president.