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By Angus Calder

Images of battle and its commemoration are a regular presence in modern tradition, from the embedded reporter within the box to the final publish on the Menin Gate.  Disasters and Heroes: On warfare, reminiscence and Representation revisits campaigns from the plains of Troy to fresh occasions within the Balkans, studying how wars are represented and remembered.  Angus Calder indicates how the 'facts'of conflict are remodeled into myths that later responses to warfare, and the way the development of reminiscence starts off with wartime occasions themselves.
 
Beginning with a bit dedicated to warfare memorials and the general public remembrance of warfare, equivalent to D-Day commemorations, the essays accumulated in Disasters and Heroes then examine the lived adventure of conflict for 'ordinary' humans, whereas the ultimate part offers with literary illustration of struggle, from The Iliad to T.E. Lawrence and directly to Christa Wolf's CassandraDisasters and Heroes is a thought-provoking assortment facing problems with significant importance which contemporary occasions have made painfully topical.

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D’O. Pilkington Jackson (1887–1973) contributed this, along with many other items – bosses, keystones, memorial bays with all the lettering in stone and bronze. Lorimer recruited fine collaborators. 1870–1934) he employed Alexander Carrick (1882–1966) and Phyllis Bone (1894–1972) among his sculptors. Douglas Strachan (1875–1950) designed all the stained glass. The overall effect includes our sense that a distinguished generation of artists, affected by the Arts and Crafts Movement, lavished their skill proudly on a project ennobling their whole society and the Scottish nation.

Hokum is truth, truth hokum – that is all ye know of World War II, if you are less than sixty years old, and all ye need to know. The sombre truth is that in twentieth-century history war cannot be separated from everyday life in the countries which have enlisted vast conscript armies. In the eighteenth century young men died of smallpox, in the nineteenth century of tuberculosis. In the first half of the twentieth they killed each other in very large numbers. With the exception of the notorious ‘Spanish Flu’ of 1918–19, high explosive, machine guns, bayonets and torpedoes replaced germs and viruses as the Grim Reaper’s chief means of attacking young men.

In 1980, Finlay transformed this gallery into a ‘Garden Temple’, but Strathclyde refused him the rates exemption given to religious buildings. A body named the Saint-Just Vigilantes, after a previous invention of Finlay’s, rallied to defend Stonypath, now known as Little Sparta in homage to the most austere and militant of ancient Greek city states. The first battle of Little Sparta occurred in the presence of the media on 4 February 1983, when a sheriff officer acting for Strathclyde attempted to seize, for warrant sale, work in the Temple.

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