The (Women's) Long March
A book to look out for, The Long March by Sun Shuyun:
The day her period came, a few weeks later, "I felt as if a millstone had been lifted from my neck. I promptly climbed up a mulberry tree and got a wad of leaves. Standing there, I wanted to shout to the world, 'I'm not pregnant! I'm not pregnant!'" The women, she said, "dreaded pregnancy more than the plague".
Recalling those times, Wang, now 91, still had a look of pain on her gentle face, when I tracked her down at the start of my journey retracing the Long March. ...
Wang saw one woman go into labour while marching, with the baby's head dangling out. Another had a difficult birth with Chiang's troops in hot pursuit, and bombs dropping like rain. As if afraid of the violent world, the baby refused to come out. A whole regiment of the rearguard was ordered to put up a fierce fight for more than two hours and lost a dozen men. After all their pain, however, the women were not allowed to keep their babies. It was the rule with the First Army: a crying baby could endanger the troops. The tiny boy whose arrival cost a dozen soldiers's lives was left on a bed of straw in the abandoned house where he was born.
And if you're not going to find time to read the book, at least check out the article; it is a wonderful example of oral history.
Who'd have thought it, Anatole Kaletsky, very well-informed, but right-wing economist, is effectively: advocating a boycott of the supermarkets.
As one of the prosperous burghers of Central London, I sorely miss the freshly baked bread, high-quality charcuterie and organic smoked salmon that used to be available in my local grocer’s and do not appreciate Tesco’s alternative "offer" of a dozen varieties of cheap washing powder, tinned tuna and sliced bread. I therefore yield to no one in my dislike of Tesco’s bullying tactics and its philistinism towards food.