Simon Barrow

  • 8 Oct 2011

    The core to Archbishop Desmond Tutu's appeal, and to the opposition he has also elcited, lies in his sheer humanity as well as his fidelity to the core of the Christian message, says Simon Barrow. This is a pattern which holds out hope for the future of Christianity in dark times.

  • 6 Sep 2011

    The debate on Scottish independence in advance of a mooted 2016 referendum is only just beginning, but Simon Barrow suggests that the contours of a fresh agenda on both sides is already emerging in surprising comments from representatives of the Westminster parties north of the border.

  • 18 Aug 2011

    Theology is ‘wrestling with the unfathomable mystery of God’, but to enlighten rather than to obscure, says Simon Barrow, paying tribute to two Mennonite scholars and pastors, Alan and Eleanor Kreider, as part of a festschrift entitled 'Forming Christian Habits in Post-Christendom'.

  • 5 Aug 2011

    The prospects of settlements in some of the most intractable situations in the world today, as well as in domestic political wrangles over the health service, education and more, depend upon a host of unseen actors, says Simon Barrow. They create the conditions for the more formal political mechanisms to make progress.

  • 23 Jul 2011

    The recent horrific terror attacks in Norway seem to have been occasioned in part by the rise of fearful far-right movements which use Christian language as part of their guise. The answer to these should not be accommodation, says Simon Barrow, but an attempt to build robust civic alliances for social justice and against racism and xenophobia.

  • 9 Jun 2011

    The ‘Big Society’ is becoming a fresh political battleground over the summer, says Simon Barrow. Shrinking the state by galvanising more money and resources from private citizens through volunteering, delegating and contracting is central to the Prime Minister’s approach – both to running the country and to keeping his own party together. But the strategy is beset with disagreement, and a huge 'reality gap'.

  • 2 Jun 2011

    Where does the Church of Scotland – not the established church, but still a self-proclaimed ‘national’ one – now sit within a changing Scottish national settlement, following the formalities of its 2011 General Assembly? Simon Barrow looks at some of the issues.

  • 10 May 2011

    Football is woven into the historical, cultural and social fabric of communities in Scotland and across Britain, but media attention to 'soccernomics' focuses heavily on the English Premier League, says Simon Barrow. There are some clear reasons for this, but we definitely need some fresh ideas about ‘football as if fans mattered’ which begin with the wider picture, rather than consigning the non-elite to our peripheral vision.

  • 6 May 2011

    Will the five different polls that took place on 5 May 2011 prove to be a watershed for politics in Britain? It depends where you see the axis for change and the key tipping points, says Simon Barrow. There are at least two distinct ways of narrating differential outcomes.

  • 29 Apr 2011

    Monarchy as an institution rooted in inherited wealth and pure eugenic privilege stands in contrast with, and contradiction to, the levelling Gospel of Jesus Christ, argues Simon Barrow. But a kind of mythology and ritualising in the popular imagination prevents both Christians and others from seeing what is really going on, and what is wrong with it.