Portsmouth’s World War Two Heroes: the ‘tour’

If you look in my ‘talks’ page, you will notice that I have a couple of provisional bookings to give talks on my forthcoming book, ‘Portsmouth’s World War Two Heroes’.

Just a reminder that I am available to give talks to local history groups, at museums, or other institutions. All talks are fully illustrated, with either OHP’s or Powerpoint. For a list of my previous talks see my ‘talks’ page above: I have given many in the past few years.

Talks based on ‘Portsmouth’s World War Two Heroes’ are bookable any time from February 2012 onwards, but I can still give any of my other talks listed on my profile any time. I’m happy to do book signings, workshops, anything. Contact me to discuss!

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10 Comments

Filed under portsmouth heroes, site news, World War Two

10 responses to “Portsmouth’s World War Two Heroes: the ‘tour’

  1. John Erickson

    There is a fair-sized town, Coshocton, not far from where I live, that is celebrating it’s sesquicentennial. As part of the focus on local history, we would LOVE to have you appear and encourage the local youth to investigate their heritage and honour those that gave so much for their freedom.
    So, what’ll it cost? I figure you can stay with us, the town trustees will probably cough up $50 or so, so what’ll you need in petrol money to drive over? That’s what, about a 2-day drive from Portsmouth to New York? We’re about 14 hours from NYC, so we’ll get you a nice motel in Newark, NJ.
    Deal?

  2. x

    It is a shame you aren’t still in academia. So many young lecturers I have come across couldn’t lecture their way out of a wet paper bag.

    I always thought it unfortunate that shy academics to fund their research are forced to stand in front of a few hundred teenagers a few times a week.

    • James Daly

      It’s not just young academics, some of the older ones are pretty dire too! I used to get so frustrated at uni, with comments like ‘I f***ing hate students’ and ‘I didn’t do a doctorate so I could teach snotty nosed kids’. Very few academics seem to have a real flair for teaching.

      I guess theres two ways to think about it – one, if you’re not a people person, don’t go into a job that involves teaching. Or two, why isn’t there more of a distinction between research and teaching. But then again, research should inform teaching, and vice versa. I guess the real problem is the attitude towards students among academics. The best lecturers, in my opinion, treated students with respect and as trainee historians rather than as a meal ticket that had to be endured.

      Higher Education has become so commercialised, and students are paying thousands a year, yet do not get the value of their fees back in teaching, nor the customer focus that they deserve. Universities wouldn’t exist without students.

      • x

        The institution where I was imprisoned was research biased. And I never heard “I hate students” at any time but I did get an inkling that some of the over 50s or so were tired of students. But it wasn’t boredom with teaching so much as I think since the start of Blair’s Grand Experiment students as animal have changed. University today feels more like sixth form/college years 3,4 and 5. One of my tutors despaired of the political apathy and lack of intellectual interest in the vast majority of students. Most students ticked boxes. And the keen ones were conformists who read and said the right thing.
        If I could tweak the system I would send all new Phd’s out into the world for 5 years or so. Another my tutors (a lovely young security specialist) wistfully said one day she had been in education for 23 years.

        Two of the best lecturers I had were Australians. The elder of the two is a world renown expert on the Global South who used to shock his “audience” by speaking to them. Every lecture would start “Ow are we all then?” and he did remember students. What I liked about him was he told you what he wanted. I don’t want to be spoon fed but I can’t abide woolliness. Lecture one he told us what he wanted from the essay and how the exam would be structured. The younger of the two wasn’t a super lecturer just average but she bent the rules to get source material for us and most importantly in my book took time to mark work. Academic texts are the easiest thing in the world to read. Yet the number of lecturers who couldn’t be bothered to mark portfolio work was surprising. I likened it to being on an architecture course being told to design and week after week slogging designing mansion when all was needed was a mud hat. No excuse. I had a law lecturer who could read 5000 word essay in minutes. A 500 word portfolio piece should be nothing to mark and supply a few sentences of feed back.

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