Page 401. " What about kumquats, today? "

Kumquats, or cumquats, look like very small, oval oranges.

The humble Kumquat
Public DomainThe humble Kumquat - Credit: Serg!o

Like oranges, they can be eaten raw. The centre is sour, but the rind is sweet.

Page 408. " Why is Ted Heath such a dog-in-the-manger? "

Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom and Prime Minister Edward Heath are joined by U.S. President Richard Nixon and First Lady Pat Nixon during the Nixons' visit to the United Kingdom
Public DomainQueen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom and Prime Minister Edward Heath are joined by U.S. President Richard Nixon and First Lady Pat Nixon during the Nixons' visit to the United Kingdom - Credit: White House photo by Ollie Atkins
Sir Edward Richard George ‘Ted’ Heath (1916-2005) led the British Conservative Party from 1965 to 1975. He served as Prime Minister from 1970 until 1974 and was an MP from 1950 to 2001.

It was Heath who took the UK into the EU, and Heath who introduced the contentious Industrial Relations Act. The Act evoked outrage from trades unions and led to a miner’s strike in 1973.

Because of the strike, Heath was forced to implement a three-day working week in order to save electricity. Unable to secure a coalition government in the hung parliament that resulted from the February 1974 general election, Heath conceded power to the minority Labour party under Harold Wilson.

Page 410. " outside a village called Sainte-Sabine "

If this is a real village, it might be Saint-Sabine-Born (see setting page), a commune in the Dordogne department.

 

Landscape in Pyrénées-Atlantiques, Aquitaine
Creative Commons Attribution Share AlikeLandscape in Pyrénées-Atlantiques, Aquitaine - Credit: France64160

 

 

 

 

 

 

Page 414. " the Pecksniff family's trip to London in Martin Chuzzlewit "
Cover of serial,
Public DomainCover of serial, "Martin Chuzzlewitt" by Charles Dickens.(1843) - Credit: Chapman and Hall

The Life and Adventures of Martin Chuzzlewit is a book by Charles Dickens.

Mr. Pecksniff and his daughters
Public DomainMr. Pecksniff and his daughters - Credit: Solomon Eytinge Jr. (1833-1905)

The picaresque novel paints a satirical picture of a lower class rogue/hero who gets by on his wits despite the undesirable state of the society he lives in. The key theme throughout is selfishness, as portrayed via the various Chuzzlewit family members.

The story, which like most of Dickens’ work was published in monthly instalments, pleased the author. Indeed, he considered it one of his best works, but it was not so well received by his readers.

Seth Pecksniff is a particularly hypocritical figure, an architect "who has never designed or built anything".

 

 

 

Page 416. " quoting John Francis Byrne, Joyce's friend "

Francis John Byrne is an Irish historian, known for his 1973 publication, Irish Kings and High-Kings.

 

Page 418. " Paula gave me a St Christopher's medal "
Woodcut of St Christopher
Public DomainWoodcut of St Christopher - Credit: Anonymous

Saint Christopher, martyred in the third century by the Roman Emperor Decius, is revered by both Roman Catholics and Orthodox Christians.  It is said that Christopher once carried a small child across a swollen river; during the crossing the child grew impossibly heavy, and he later revealed himself to be Christ.

 

An image of Saint Christopher, such as is worn or is placed in a vehicle, for protection on long journeys
Creative Commons Attribution Share AlikeAn image of Saint Christopher, such as is worn or placed in a vehicle, for protection on long journeys - Credit: Andreas -horn- Hornig

 

Medals of the saint, depicting his name and image, are said to bring travellers protection.

Page 421. " with Anglepoise lamps on them "
A white Angelpoise lamp
Public DomainA white Angelpoise lamp - Credit: Northernhenge

The Anglepoise lamp was created in 1932 by British designer George Carwardine.

Page 423. " Debord and Vaneigam mean anything to you? "

Raoul Vaneigem and Guy Debord were both key participants in the Situationist Movement of the 1960s. Indeed, their theories and ideas held immense weight in Situationist International.

Vaneigem (who is still alive) is a Belgian writer and philosopher, whilst Frenchman Debord (who died in 1990) made films and was a hypergraphist (combining the written word with different media).

 

Page 423. " Have you ever heard of the Situationists? "

Situationists coming out from the British Sailors Society during the 4th Conference of the Situationist International, including Debord.
Public DomainSituationists coming out from the British Sailors Society during the 4th Conference of the Situationist International, including Debord. - Credit: Situationist International
The Situationist International (SI), a group of revolutionaries inspired by the Marxist Movement, was formed in 1957. It was mixed up in the May 1968 strikes in Paris.

They took their name from their penchant for creating situations which sought to usurp Capitalism. To them, life was for passionate living, but of the superior sort...

In a bid to overthrow the system they so disliked, Situationist International subsequently organised the Paris protest. The Movement lasted until 1972.

 

     

Page 423. " Ulrike Meinhof? Nanterre 1968? "

German journalist and left-wing militant Ulrike Marie Meinhof (1934-1976) co-founded the Red Army Faction in 1970. She was arrested two years later, and subsequently died in prison before her trial ended.

In May 1968, Paris saw a staggering 11 million workers go on a two-week strike, almost bringing President Charles de Gaulle's government to its knees.

Car barricades in Paris in 1968.
Creative Commons Attribution Share AlikeCar barricades in Paris in 1968. - Credit: Unknown. Source:laborpartypraxis.org/economicpolitic.html

Meanwhile, students from the city’s Sorbonne University erected obstacles on May 3 in support of their peers at the University of Paris at Nanterre, which had closed after months of tension and trouble.

By May 6, the Union Nationale des Étudiants de France (UNEF) had joined forces with the union of university teachers. They marched in protest against the police who had entered the Sorbonne in a bid to restore calm. Hundreds of students were arrested and many barricades and obstacles were erected in an attempt to keep the police out.

Page 423. " had I heard of the Red Army Faction? "

 

Logo of the Red Army Faction (RAF).
Public DomainLogo of the Red Army Faction (RAF). - Credit: Ratatosk

The Red Army Faction (RAF) was a terrorist left-wing group formed in Germany in 1970.

It was originally known as the Baader-Meinhof Group and was extremely violent, causing at least 34 deaths. It lasted for 30 years (1970 to 1998).