british institution


“To anyone visiting London, I’d say one essential thing you have to do is just to walk down the Southbank. You’ve got the National Theater, British Film Institute, Tate Modern, Royal Festival Hall. So lots of culture in a kind of public space. All kinds of different people mingling, and to me that’s what makes London special.”
Samuel L Jackson criticises casting of black British actors in American films

ok i kiiiiinda see his point especially with african american historical figures… but the thing is all british actors are highly desirable in america because they are better trained. not saying americans don’t have drama schools but there is a difference between them and the big, prestigious drama schools in london, in fairness. british actors tend to be classically trained and highly versatile in both stage and screen. so they are in very high demand over there.

second point to say is that black british actors tend to go to america because there is not enough roles for them here, and that’s very sad. it is still extremely difficult for people like idris elba, john boyega and chiwetel ejiofor (who are amazing, we can all agree on that) to have longlasting careers in britain alone. so that’s something that definitely needs fixing over here. but i am hesitant to fully agree with SLJ since i rep our black british actors so hard and think they need recognition and opportunities to showcase their talent too. i don’t want them to be out of a job :(

what does everyone else think?

EDIT (IMPORTANT): i wrote the below post in response to one of the many comments taking issue with the idea that african american actors are ‘poorly trained’. i feel utterly mortified thinking that people think that’s what people thought i was saying here. having read many of the comments i now see that i came across as a right dick in my first post so please read below and comment if there is anything else in the post you take an issue with!!! not going to delete it though because i think sometimes on this website it’s good to show that you make mistakes and you have blind spots even when you think you are pretty aware of representation issues and so on, but that you can learn and develop your thinking by accepting your mistakes and taking on board what people FROM THAT COMMUNITY tell you. appreciate all the comments on this post and please keep them coming!!

“looking back at my first post i think it was both badly worded (the general thrust was meant to be about why americans might prefer british actors but i accept that it didn’t come across clearly) and also had a hefty dose of snootiness about british drama institutions that were both uncritical and unnecessary. i fully accept that and would like to apologise as i can’t in any sense claim deep knowledge of american versus british drama schools so really that was just quite silly and i regret that.

i hope that you can see though that this uncritical fawning of british drama education was in no way meant to be a put down of african american actors as being ‘poorly trained’, and somehow not deserving of the roles black british actors get. i can’t stress this enough because it could not be further from my thinking and i would hate if my original comments came across as a snide towards african american actors, or as me trying to pit the two against each other. that was not my intention at all.

i absolutely, 100% accept that many, many black actors in america are higly trained yet still not getting the recognition and roles they deserve. black british actors have the same problem and they both have to navigate through a racist industry. however i dont think black british actors need to get the slack for a racist film industry and not pursue roles in the biggest film industry in the world. american casting directors love the brits for whatever reason and i dont see why black british actors shouldn’t go for those roles if they can. that was my only point – in no way was it meant as a comment about ‘poorly trained’ african-american actors. i do not think at all, hell no.

if anything, my thinking stems primarily from a desire to fight the corner of black, working class actors like john boyega and idris elba who work fucking hard and are amazing and deserve every role they can get. this is in contrast to the utterly vile trend of extremely posh and privileged white, male actors like benedict fuckface making it big in america for literally no apparent reason, above actually talented actors like idris and john who are frustrated by lack of opportunities for people of colour in their home country. i hope this has clarified my viewpoint a bit as i would feel utterly mortified if what people took from my post was a put down of black american actors.”


February 14th 1852: Great Ormond Street hospital founded

On this day in 1852, the Great Ormond Street Hopsital for Sick Children opened in London. In the mid-nineteenth century, despite high child mortality rates, there was little professional medical help available for children, with many parents opting to care for their children themselves. Dr. Charles West identified this problem, and drew attention to childhood diseases in a series of lectures. It was Dr. West who fought for the opening of Great Ormond Street, the first hospital of its kind in the UK. When the hospital first opened its doors, it had only ten beds, and was led by the matron Frances Willey. Great Ormond Street struggled financially in its first years, but in 1858 it was saved when famed author Charles Dickens gave a public reading of A Christmas Carol to raise money for the hospital. With Dickens’s money, the hospital could expand and increase its bed capacity to 75. In the years that followed, Great Ormond Street further expanded and attracted notable patrons who wanted to support its work. Most famously, in 1929 the author J.M. Barrie donated the copyright to his creation Peter Pan to the hospital, which has provided the hospital with a steady income. Great Ormond Street is a British institution, and continues to have a worldwide reputation for patient care.

At the 1927 manoeuvres directing staff reprimanded Sir Frederick Pile, a future general, for ‘undertaking a dangerous act and for doing something which certainly was not war.’ Pile had been in command of the Brigade’s armoured cars. Instead of holding back with the infantry he dashed off and caught the opposing side in the midst of its deployment. Pile’s armoured cars delivered their opponent a nasty surprise, upset their manoeuvre and placed them at a disadvantage for the rest of the exercise. The German Army would have rewarded such initiative whereas, to the British, Pile had violated a stereotype of war which they were determined to maintain.
—  Albert Palazzo, The Way Forward: 1918 and the implications for the future, in 1918: Defining Victory.
Lady Macbeth: how one film took on costume drama's whites-only rule
It’s set in Victorian Britain – and has more black characters than all the Austens and Downtons put together. Will Lady Macbeth end period drama’s whitewashing of history?
By Steve Rose

“There are two sides to this problem. First, the repercussions are being felt on Britain’s screens and stages as actors of colour are excluded. As Thandie Newton has said about being based in Britain: “I love being here, but I can’t work, because I can’t do Downton Abbey, can’t be in Victoria, can’t be in Call the Midwife … there just seems to be a desire for stuff about the royal family, stuff from the past, which is understandable, but it just makes it slim pickings for people of colour.”

As a result, many British actors – from Idris Elba to David Oyelowo to Chiwetel Ejiofor – go to the US to find work as well. Sophie Okonedo went to act with Denzel Washington on Broadway, Newton is currently in Westworld, Daniel Kaluuya jumped ship with American horror Get Out – and the list goes on. Samuel L Jackson recently questioned why all the plum Hollywood roles were going to Brits; if he channel-surfed on British TV, he would have seen why.

The second aspect of the problem is that these ethnically cleansed costume dramas give the impression that there were no people of colour in Britain’s past, which is far from the truth. In the third century, Roman emperor Septimius Severus, born in what is now Libya, brought his family and court to York. A fourth-century skeleton excavated in York in 2010 was found to have African characteristics and was buried with a bracelet made of ivory. DNA tests discovered rare African-specific chromosomes in white British men. Onyeka’s book Blackamoores documents the presence of Africans in Tudor Britain. Britain’s global empire and the legacy of slavery brought significant non-white populations to our shores.

The underrepresentation of black historical figures on screen has created a catch-22 situation. At the British Film Institute last year, Oyelowo spoke about trying to develop a movie based on Bill Richmond, a real‑life black bare-knuckle boxer in 19th‑century London. He read out one of his rejection letters, in which the producers explained that they couldn’t make his film since “a viewer must have a sense of what it is they are to get: either a familiar title or a piece of history that is ripe for a revisit”. In other words, even though this was a true story, the producers thought it would confuse audiences to see a black character in a period movie. Oyelowo went off to play Martin Luther King instead.”

anonymous asked:

What do the BAFTAs have against Tom cos from what I have gathered, this isn't the first time he has been snubbed by them even thought he goes out of his way for them like presenting awards for them and stuff. 2. Why did the BBC write that nonsensical article bashing the lead actor of a show they endorsed. TNM wouldn't have been as popular as it was if it was a new comer not an actor with an established fanbase like Tom and lastly the crown actors are amazing but the storyline has been overdone.

So I’m going to go against my usual manner of answering things like this and just try to type without over-thinking it very much and editing.

Here are my thoughts and ideas…

The entertainment industry is all about playing the game. I just posted something about how great performances are ignored year after year and in spite of that, people who are so in love with the biz act like these awards are gifts from God that angels themselves wing down to Earth.  Please.  It’s fleeting and superficial.  That article – you said it perfectly.  It is nonsensical.  Why? Because of the game.  Because it’s about clicks.  It’s about whatever will create drama at the moment.  It is a continued proof of the adolescent and petty nature of the industry.  

Yes, he has been snubbed previously.  He was not nominated for The Hollow Crown.  Ridiculous.  Full stop.

Regarding The Crown – I’ve only seen part of the first episode so I can’t give an informed opinion on the whole series, but what I saw seemed well done. And I’m just going to be blunt…a British arts institution choosing a series about beloved Queen Elizabeth II over a series about an evil arms dealing Brit shouldn’t shock anyone.  Seriously.  

Another issue I’m thinking about is that basically, Tom Hiddleston is an easy target.  He is kind and polite to a fault.  He isn’t going to get nasty, he isn’t going to come up swinging, he isn’t going to lash out against the media, not even in a sly passive aggressive way.  He isn’t going to respond by creating more drama. This is sort of a weird Bully In The Schoolyard situation going on here with him and the media and it is pathetic. It is a typical tactic of distraction. Let’s go after Tom Hiddleston, not for anything like real moral failing or legal issues (DUI, domestic abuse, etc. – which plenty of actors have), but for talking about UNICEF (which is why they hired him) and making personal choices about relationships (without asking our permission *gasp*).  Let’s do that instead of talking about actual issues in the entertainment industry, like the wage gap and Ageism and lack of diversity and similar things.  Let’s pick on Hiddleston instead.  Pathetic.

Thanks for the message!

In London for the The Lovie Awards!
It has been a constant pleasure to be part of such an inclusive journey caring for the best of the European web in the most contextual level.

There’s a huge party later today on the British Film Institute, in form and content. Here’s a snapshot of one of the early WIP concepts honoring it.

How to study/ revise for History!

This is an overview of 8 different methods of revision and studying for history assessments. (It can also be used for other humanities based subjects too.)
It is also a basic outline of revision/ study methods, however I shall make more posts on different assessment types and how I do them.

This is based on how I learn.  I(Feel free to change them to suit your needs!) If you have any questions, or I have missed a method, please feel free to message or ask me!

 1 – The Clock Method.

I can guarantee that next to nobody up until now has heard of this method before, mainly because I made this one up when I was 14 … It’s slightly unconventional and can only work for certain time periods, but this method works wonders for me (and I still use it at university too). I’m quite sad because no one uses this method, so please tell me if you like this or would (or do) use it!! :D

What you need: An analogue/ digital clock… Anything that tells the time. You may also want post-it notes to go around the clock, although I personally don’t do this.
When to use: As soon as you have learnt dates, the clock is your trigger.
1- Looking at the clock, tell the time.
2-If it reads, say, 19:15 try and recall all the events and dates for that year (that’s in your syllabus!). So, in 1915 the film ‘Birth of a Nation’ is released; and the British Women’s Institute is founded, etc. 3- Where possible, try and remember entire dates ie. In 1915 on the 1st January X happened…
4- If you have more than one event that you have to remember for that year try and recall all of them as quickly as possible when its ‘year’ comes up.
5- This method is more of a spot-check method. So, when you’re studying for other topics and go to tell the time, use it then. J
Advantages: Quick recall. If you keep this method up you’ll find that it’s easier to recall dates quicker, which can be good as the more precise you are in exams, the higher marks you tend to get. You also begin to do this automatically after a while, which I find very handy.
Disadvantages: Can only go up to years that end in ~~59.. However I tend to do a running commentary in my head of events after years ending in ~~59.

2 – Word Vomit
This method is more-or-less what is says on the tin.

What you need: Pen/ Pencils; Paper. (A timer if you want to test yourself)
When to use:
Before, during and after studying for a test/ exam/ assessment. Depending on how big your exam is, start 1 month – 1 week before exam(s) (or at the advice of your tutor).
1- With or without timing yourself write as much about the exam topic you are going to answer, and that you can remember. DO NOT LOOK AT YOUR NOTES WHEN DOING THIS!
2-If you have a big topic coming up ie. You’re looking at Russia from 1897-1945, look at things either chronologically so split things up into reasonable chunks, and write about it; or do it thematically. (Chunk things regarding how you’re meant to answer the exam/ assessment where possible.)
3-Try not to learn things thematically when you’re asked to respond to the question(s) chronologically and visa versa.
Ensures you can cover a lot of material. See your weak points before the exam as you have no notes in front of you when you do this, so you know where to put in extra effort.
Can be frustrating when you can’t remember something.

Word Vomit Part Two / Free Writing:
This method can also be used for assessments such as course work/ presentations too if you’re struggling to make a start. Just free write.
When to use: During and after the planning stages of writing a plan.
Method: Free write your ideas for your assessment and see where they take you, especially if the assessment is stubborn and you don’t know where to start. Write your ideas down and watch them take form into sentences.
Advantages: The assessment is finally getting written.
Disadvantages: Tends to need heavy editing.

3 – Time Lines

What you need: Paper (I tend to use A3); Pens (coloured); Pencils (coloured); Ruler; Post-its.
When to use:
Revision for test/ Order events for an assessment.
1- Draw a line across the middle of the paper. The end on the left-hand side is the earliest date of your assessment, the end on the right-hand side should have the latest date needed.
2- Chunk the line into time segments ie. days/ weeks/years/ decades/ centuries – whatever is the most suitable for your needs.
3- If you are a visual learner (like me!): Have 2+ coloured pens/ pencils and assign them a meaning.  For example: Dates relating to people = blue; events = red; legislation = green etc. Try not to have more than 10 colours.
4- Depending on the needs of your assessment, also have key quotes around the edge of the timeline. (This way you’re killing two birds with one stone)
5- If you want to, add pictures.  
You can get all the important dates/ time written down; other people can test you on it; looks pretty; able to put it on your wall/ door so you can see it.
Limited space.

4 – Posters

Okay, so with this one, I find that it tends to be up to the nature of the assessment on whether or not I use this method of revision or how I use it. I used them a lot when I did A-Level Law because it helped me learn the practical elements, whilst I use posters now for exams which include source analysis.

What you need: Pens/ pencils (coloured); paper (coloured or plain); ruler
When to use:
As revision for an assessment. These can either be an on-going project ie. If you’ve got 30 sources to learn for a source analysis so you do them as you learn about the sources; or before assessments.
1- Split subject matter into smaller quantities. I find this method best if done thematically, or if I have split my exam into the chunks in which I know it’s going to appear.
2- Find out all the important information for the test.
3- Fold or segment the piece of paper into reasonable parts for each section.
4- Assign meanings to your colours! Write the information for each section on the paper, use your notes.
5- Write out all the key terms and main points.
6- Try to be concise in your work, but I make one poster per theme / source.
6- Stick them on walls/ cupboards/ doors and test yourself.
Can be used to test yourself with; able to condense important information. If you write it for another person with limited knowledge on the topic, shows good ability in expressing information. They are great for when you have to apply work ie. For Law, or source analysis.
Upsetting when you run out of space (just stick another piece of paper next to it), or when you try to draw and can’t…

5- Brain Storming/ Mind Maps

Brain Storms/ Mind Maps are so useful. I use these for both revision and for assessments and find them super helpful for organising paragraphs for coursework.

I tend to do one mind map per exam topic, or one mind map for one essay, but this is up to you.
When I use mind maps for I only have one colour for all dates/ people/ events etc. whilst my friend gives the centre one colour, the first branch a second colour, the second branch another colour etc.

If you prefer lists over brain storming, write the list. It’s the same concept but a different layout.

What you need: Pens/ Pencils; Paper
When to use:
Start of writing an assessment; studying for an exam.
(You should already have the resources at this point, this is a way to organise your essay plan or research, unless you’re making it whilst doing research)
1- Write the essay question/ subject topic into the middle of the paper and draw a bubble/ box around it.
2- Decide how many branches you need from the mind map, and how much weight they all need. You can either write these subheadings down on a separate piece of paper and write them in when you come to the next point, or give each point an educated guess as to how much room you’ll need. 3- Don’t forget the introduction/ conclusion.
4- Go round filling each branch of the brainstorm – include people of note/ events/ important years/ important works etc.
5- You can also use this as a form of revision too, if you’re using it for essay plans for an exam. Write the question or subject topic in the middle, and then fill out the mind map without looking at your notes.
Advantages: Able to organise thoughts; can get in lots of information; add information;
If revising with other people, they may not understand it; can’t incorporate large chunks of text.

6 – Flash Cards

These are one of my favourite forms of revision, because they can fit anywhere and they’re handy for commuting to university.
Like mind maps I associate 1 colour per topic/ subject. I keep my colour codes across all revision pieces.

What you need: Flash cards (If you don’t want to buy them/ can’t afford them fold a piece of A4 into 4 and then cut on the folds); pens/ pencils; highlighters; rubber bands (or hair bobbles); treasury tags and a hole puncher (optional). Depending on how you learn best, have different coloured flash cards so you can make better associations.
When to use:
Between 1-2 months – 1 week before the exam (I say 2 months because I find flash cards exhausting and time consuming to make…)
1- Admire beauty of flash cards.
1- Go through your notes and find suitable headings for the flash cards, and mark which notes should go onto what card.
2- Write notes onto flash cards – use your colour for key points/ dates/ people etc.
3- Test yourself, or get others to test with you.
4- Whilst you’re making your flash cards label them. They will get dropped and you’ll forget what order they go in.. I tend to order mine in the top right corner. The number is what order number the card is, and the letter is the subject. So my first flash card on topic one is ordered 1A, so my 10th card on my 6th exam topic would be 10F.
5- Restart the numbering for each exam; or module. (This one is up to you).
6- If you have more than 26 modules/topics swap the ‘1’ and the ‘A’ round.

- How to use as revision
7- You can self-test or give it to someone to ask you about the material on the card. I find it easier to study with my course friends as they phrase questions about the material a lot better than people who aren’t on the course.

8- You can also use flash cards for essay plans – aim for one flash card for one paragraph.
Organised notes; portable; effective when used.
Can cost lots of money; notes may only make sense to you. (I tend to write in abbreviations, or put it information that wasn’t taught)

7- Mock Tests

I have changed how I use mock tests over the years. And this is good. Depending on your level depends on how you use them. I have found that questions at university are easier because they’re not trick questions and as long as we bridge the introduction right we can talk about whatever we want (within reason), so I only use mock exams as elaborate essay plans.

Mock exams are best used AFTER or DURING doing other forms of revision. Do not do it before hand because you won’t get very far, unless it’s a multi-choice question… Then I hate you (kidding) because there should be more of those on this side of education…

What you need: Pens/ Pencils; Paper; Mock papers (and answer booklet/ criteria). (Depending on what level, a nice teacher who will mark your mock papers and give constructive criticism)
When to use:
At university, I tend to use these a week before the exam (because that’s when I start to heavily focus on exams). When I did my GCSE’s and A-Level my teachers did mock exams throughout the year, but I focused on mock exams a month before the actual exam.
1- For your first early mock exams, give yourself extra time and have your notes (or at least an essay plan) For your extra time – if it’s 30 minutes, give yourself 40-45 to complete. If it’s a 45 minute question, give yourself 60 minutes. Then decrease the time as you do more essays.
2- Once you’re feeling confident, take away your notes/ essay plans/ aids (unless you’re allowed them in the exam), and do a couple of mocks.
3- Take 5-10 minutes planning. Even if you don’t get to the end of the exam, if the marker can see your essay plan they may be more lenient. It also saves you repeating yourself when you’re writing, which may detract points.

4- If you don’t want to write out essay after essay, write detailed essay plans on the question, using the same timing method. Start with your notes, so you have a ‘perfect’ essay; then take away your notes and write the essay plan.
Advantages: You know your weak points; you know what you’re facing when you enter the exam; you also have a rough idea about how much you can write in the time period given.
Time consuming;

8- With friends/ family/ your plant or pillow or pet
I think that this method is great when you know some / most of the topic material as you can see exactly where your strong and weak points are. 

What you need: Notes on your topic; a person to speak to; sweets
When to use:
1 week before the exam
1- Find someone to talk to.
2- Give them your revision/ study materials.
3- Get them to question you on all the material you’ve written.
4- If you get a question right, have a sweetie.
5- I’ve found that this method works best with people doing the same exam as you as you can discuss things in more depth.

6- With someone or something that can’t speak.
7- Have your material with you
8- Write a brief prompt – what are you going to discuss?
9- Explain and teach them/ it what’s on the exam.
10- Look at notes if you get stuck.
Advantages: Teaching other people your material is one of the best ways to learn and retain information.

Disadvantages: Can get very frustrating with people who just read the information when you don’t know an answer rather than prompting you.