20 years ago

August 21, 2008

Two lecturers at Aberdeen University who faced upheaval because of funding problems were found dead last week. The deaths ... have led to demands by the Association of University Teachers that stress counselling for staff be set up ... It is not the first time stress induced by university cuts has been linked to tragedies. In 1986 at Heriot-Watt University a pharmacy lecturer was found dead weeks after the announcement that his department was to close.

Last month, albeit without fanfare, we celebrated the tricentenary of the Glorious Revolution ... This time next year, our friends across the Channel will just have celebrated the bicentenary of the French Revolution. Glorious it may not have been. A revolution it indisputably was. Among its legacies is the guillotine, and while Mrs Thatcher may be no Robespierre ... she does make regular use of the French doctor's machine to silence her opponents and critics by restricting debate in the Commons (Paddy Ashdown, leader of the Social and Liberal Democrats).

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