Latest

Wrecking Edinburgh: The Story Continues

September 3, 2016
by David Black

‘There is nothing more terrible than ignorance in action,’ wrote Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, the sublime poet-philosopher who brought former Edinburgh University Rector, Thomas Carlyle, ‘from darkness to light’. How times have changed. In ages past our universities were centres of humane enlightenment...

A Bargain

September 1, 2016
by Alan Taylor

From our chief editor and writer-at-large.

The SRB at the Festival – Part 6 (Final, 2016)

August 30, 2016
by Nick Major

There are true novelists, and then there are hobbyists. Those in the latter category see writing as something to do once the kids have left home and the weekends are slow and empty again. Why not write fiction? After all, so the hoary old adage goes, everyone has a novel in them. BBC broadcaster Melvyn...

News from SRB: Alasdair Gray in paper

August 29, 2016

A paper sculpture of Alasdair Gray by John Ferguson has gone on display in the window of Main Point Books, Edinburgh.

Crichton’s Close

August 29, 2016
by Colin Waters

A Scottish Poetry Library blog With the sort of timing wags might describe as ‘exquisite’, the Scottish Poetry Library was completing an autumn programme of events with a European theme on the very morning after the UK decided to leave the EU. As the member of staff whose job it is to promote such...

The SRB at The Festival – Part 5

August 27, 2016
by Nick Major

Charlotte Square was looking tired on Wednesday 24 August. The grass was a faded yellow. A couple of parasols were drooping to the ground. The heat was back, but it was that stifling, dry heat you get during a long day in the office. Time had slowed to sluggish pace. There are normally a cohort of regulars...

The SRB at the Festival – Part 5

August 27, 2016
by Nick Major

Charlotte Square was looking tired on Wednesday 24 August. The grass was a faded yellow. A couple of parasols were drooping to the ground. The heat was back, but it was that stifling, dry heat you get during a long day in the office. Time had slowed to sluggish pace. There are normally a cohort of regulars...

The SRB at the Festival – Part 4

August 25, 2016
by Nick Major

There have been more poets at this year’s Book Festival than you would have found in any pub on Rose Street in the 1960s. But if there was one to see on Friday 19 August it was Alice Oswald. The last time she came up from Devon she read from Memorial, her translation of what she calls ‘the Iliad’s...

The Real Muriel Spark

August 23, 2016
by Alan Taylor

MY immediate thought on reading the reports of the death of Robin Spark – who died earlier this month in Edinburgh aged 78 – was relief that his mother, Muriel, was not around to read them. Had she been, I imagine her reaction would have been a combination of disbelief, anger and frustration. Legal...

The SRB at the Festival – Part 3

August 22, 2016
by Nick Major

Simon Callow’s first job in the theatre was working for Edinburgh’s Young Lyceum Company. He played an extra in Bill Brydon’s 1973 production of David Lyndsay’s A Satire of the Three Estates at the Edinburgh Festival. Forty-three years later, on Thursday 18th August, he put on a bravura, if...