In September and October 2009, the British Academy held ceremonies to honour individual scholars for the excellence of their work in the humanities and social sciences.
The whole article can be downloaded as a PDF file.
Published in British Academy Review, Issue 14 (November 2009).
On 17 June 2009, a group of leading academics, economics journalists, politicians, civil servants, and other practitioners met at the British Academy for a round-table discussion of the current financial crisis. The question under discussion in this British Academy Forum had been framed by Her Majesty The Queen on a visit to the London School of Economics in November 2008, when she had asked: if these things were so large, how come everyone missed them? A purpose of the Forum was to provide the basis of an ‘unofficial command paper’ that attempted to answer this question. The discussion inevitably ranged more widely – touching on the social fall-out of the crisis, and including a plea for a greater emphasis on the teaching of economic history in universities. But it was with The Queen’s question in mind that the two convenors of the meeting, Professor Tim Besley FBA and Professor Peter Hennessy FBA, subsequently drafted a letter summarising the discussion: it was sent to Buckingham Palace on 22 July.
Includes features on November 1989 and the fall of the Berlin Wall. Also: military interventions since the end of the Cold War. The opening articles illustrate the stronger role that the British Academy is playing in public debates and policy-making – through its Forums, through the research it funds, and now through its recently launched Policy Centre. Then there are articles offering different perceptions of late 20th-century history – including the dramatic events that changed Eastern Europe twenty years ago. The remaining articles reflect the work that the Academy supports in the study of different aspects of culture, whether of another time and place, or closer to home.
On 15–16 October 2009, the British Academy held a symposium on ‘The Collapse of Communism in Europe: A Re-examination Twenty Years After’. The convenor, Professor Archie Brown FBA, here offers his own reflections.