Steve Finan, a veteran journalist, aims to prove one point: things which were successful in the past can be successful again. Material, attitudes and values.
While compiling a book of thrifty and useful household tips from those strong, ultra-capable, very clever housewives of the 1950s: “TEA-WISE — Don’t discard empty tea packets without unfolding the bottom. About a teaspoonful of tea is generally tucked away within the folds. —Mrs M. Young, 425 Clifton Road, Aberdeen.” he came across a tip from my own grandmother, with her name and address, from 1952. This posed an odd, perhaps devastating question for Steve — was his grandmother talking to him?
It reminded him of the resourceful, clever, admirable woman she had been when she was in her pomp. It made him remember her when she was a person to be admired.
He’s a journalist of 40 years’ standing, having worked for seven newspapers and fulfilled every role it is possible to do in a newspaper. But now Steve writes and create books, all while delivering a weekly podcast on his work. This has led him to many discoveries about the falling circulations of newspapers, and the parallel drop-off in membership of institutions such as the Boys Brigade, Round Tables, and churches.
This talk ultimately poses the question: do those from the past send messages to those of the future?
It’s getting to that point — and proving it — that lies at the heart of this illuminating discussion.
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