J.S. Bach, the most famous housemaster of all time?

Aside from the fact that I am (at least partly) of German stock, I never thought I had that much in common with renowned composer Johann Sebastian Bach. At least not until I visited the Bach Haus in Leipzig several months ago, where I discovered that we had one  surprising thing in common: Bach, like myself, was a dorm parent (i.e. housemaster) at a boarding … Continue reading J.S. Bach, the most famous housemaster of all time?

Second World War leaflet propaganda

The use of airborne leaflet propaganda during times of conflict was first seen in the 1870 Franco-Prussian War, when the defenders of Paris dropped leaflets over the besieging German troops from a hot air balloon, proclaiming their defiance. However, hot air balloons and the like were slow and unwieldy, and it wasn’t until the First World War that the potential of airborne leaflet propaganda could … Continue reading Second World War leaflet propaganda

The Münster rebellion: the creation of a 16th-century theocracy

Today, Münster is a small and unassuming city in the northwest of Germany, hardly the first place one would think of when asked to identify historical hotbeds of sedition and rebellion. Yet for several surreal months in 1535-6, Münster was the scene of a radical religious and political experiment, an attempt by a small group of radical Protestants to create a totalitarian communist theocracy, a … Continue reading The Münster rebellion: the creation of a 16th-century theocracy