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News: Winter 1993/94

Hume Manuscript Update

In Issue 7 we reported that a recently discovered, unpublished manuscript by the 18th Century Scottish philosopher David Hume had been sold through Sotheby’s to a London dealer (a snip at £36,700!). It now appears that the dealer was acting on behalf of the National Library of Scotland, in Edinburgh. The library will add the manuscript to the extensive collection of Hume documents it already holds. There are also plans to publish the text of the manuscript in the near future.

Thou Shalt Steal

Just before Christmas a brand new concept in environmental activism was born – ‘ethical shoplifting’. A bunch of dudes from a group called CRISP (Citizen’s Recovery of Indigenous People’s Stolen Property) infiltrated the furniture department at Harrods and half-inched a number of mahogany candlesticks, lampstands and even tables.

The thieves were protesting about the destruction of nature reserves in the Brazilian rainforest. CRISP claims that 80% of the mahogany used in furniture is felled illegally in such reserves and that native Indians who have attempted to intervene have been murdered. They therefore accuse Harrods (and other furniture stores) of trading in stolen goods.

Demonstrators who tried to unfurl a banner in the shop window were politely dissuaded from doing so and were escorted from the premises with old-world courtesy. Some of the shoplifters were apprehended by Harrods security guards as they tried to leave, but considerable quantities of bulky furniture were spirited past the guards and handed in later at Chelsea police station. Harrods claim that all the mahogany in their furniture comes from legal, sustainable sources.

God Squad

The British Society for the Philosophy of Religion has finally received approval from the Charities Commission. Its Secretary is Professor John Clayton of the University of Lancaster. The society will be hosting the European Conference on Philosophy of Religion at University College Swansea from September 2nd-5th 1994.

Bradley Bunch

A society is to be launched this summer for fans of the 19th Century idealist philosopher F.H.Bradley. A symposium on Bradley’s philosophy will take place at the 1994 Joint Session at the University of Dundee (8th-11th July) and the inaugural meeting of the new society will take place at the same time.

Angels Bright

There has been a sudden resurgence of public interest in angels. Five books on the subject have been published in the last few months. Vicar’s wife Ms. Hope Price placed adverts in the national press appealing to people to send her details of their encounters with angels. She received more than 1500 replies, and has now published the most convincing of these as a book (Angels: True Stories of How They Touch Our Lives). The stories range from simple apparitions to angels actually intervening in human affairs – in one account, they prevent a bus from crashing into a brick wall.

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