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About this blog

Willie MacFarlane

A blog taking you behind Hamburg's rich fortifications which you normally only see from the street: the opulent Alster villas, asylum-seeker detention centres, arty-establisment folks’ Ottensen abodes and many more places you've seen, but never dared go into ... More Info

Blog For Us

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Behind Hamburg's Walls

Behind Hamburg's Walls

Willy Brandt: Does disappointment in social democracy ever really have a beginning?

December 24, 2013 by William MacFarlane

For the millions in the English speaking world who feel chronically let down by social democracy — particularly post Blair and post the exposure of the Obama illusion — it may be a comfort… Read more…

Amazon customer? – As socially unacceptable as trafficking guns to African child-soldiers, or as shooting heroin.

November 14, 2013 by William MacFarlane

What, you mean to tell me you really still buy stuff from Amazon? What, from here, in Hamburg, or in London, in late 2013? Don’t bullshit me now, for I… Read more…

Categories: Uncategorised

Hey, Helene: leave that hair alone

September 23, 2013 by William MacFarlane

It’s no one’s fault that Helene Hegemann is a semi-famous novelist already at the age of twenty-one, that her first book could make international ripples already, if not waves, as… Read more…

Clemens Meyer at Harbour Front: Go hear this man, quickly!

September 19, 2013 by William MacFarlane

I had got it wrong, quite, quite wrong. I’d read Katy (Derbyshire) hyping, pushing, gushing about & explaining this man on her Love German Books, but I wasn’t able to… Read more…

Authors shine while Harbour Front ‘Festival’ and Spiegel flop: German Book Prize reading with Mirko Bonné and Monika Zeiner

September 18, 2013 by William MacFarlane

I want to admire Mirko Bonné for the way he does what he does. It’s evident that he’s not really enjoying the event, but he gets on with it professionally,… Read more…

Review: Donal McLaughlin’s ‘Naw much of a talker’, a Scottish-Swiss novel.

September 9, 2013 by William MacFarlane

  NAW MUCH OF A TALKER by Pedro Lenz, translated by Donal McLaughlin Freight Books, 153 pp., £8.99, August 2013, 978 1 908754 22 6 As the title suggests, Donal… Read more…

Jakeys Scotland: Salmond’s queerest re-branding yet

August 28, 2013 by William MacFarlane

  (Full copyright to this photo belongs to comedian Jamie Andrew, who I’d like to thank for putting this image in the public domain . I’d also like to thank… Read more…

If you want to get read, get censored …

August 26, 2013 by William MacFarlane

… that’s the suprising by-product coming out of Christian Füller’s officially ”censored” — i.e. by the newspaper in which it should appear — but now everywhere available article on paedophilia,… Read more…

Blue Hydrangea / Blaue Hortensie. By Rilke, and me.

August 19, 2013 by William MacFarlane

“So like the last bit green in artists’ paint pots …”   This is a painting of Marie-Hortense, Cézanne’s wife, painted by the artist in 1877. According to a lecturer… Read more…

Stephan Heym readings & the Weakness of Worthiness

August 16, 2013 by William MacFarlane

(In the 1920s the banqueting hall of Hamburg’s Literaturhaus — location for the Heym reading last Saturday — was used for Ausdruckstanz – expressionistic dance. No Ausdruckstanz in evidence at… Read more…

Categories: Uncategorised