Paul Haste

Wrong about Somers Town

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I was disappointed with Alasdair Smith's review of Shane Meadows' film Somers Town (Culture, Socialist Review, September 2008).

The only part I agreed with was his comment that Meadows "creates a warm and sympathetic picture of life for immigrants".

The rest just seems unnecessarily bitter, as though Alasdair was trying too hard to see something that was never meant to be there in the first place. It seems obvious to me that the film's "claustrophobic cinematography", as Alasdair puts it, reflects the isolation and loneliness that many recent immigrant workers from abroad and migrant workers from other parts of Britain feel upon arriving in London.

Letter From Colombia

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The rise of the first left opposition in Colombia for 20 years is having an impact throughout Colombian society, argues Paul Haste

President Uribe's supporters in congress have recently proposed a "presidential coup" aimed at closing congress to avoid the opposition taking control.

It is an indication as to how far to the right political debate is in Colombia. The interior and justice minister thought the proposal "interesting", but it also reflects a concern among this elite that for the first time in decades a leftist opposition is rising.

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