Quote of the day 30th January 2021

 "Imperial college won't half be upset when they find out what 'Imperial" means!"

(Anonymous wag on twitter, referring to the decision by Imperial College, London, to drop a Latin motto because it has associations with Empire. You couldn't make it up, could you?)


Paul Holdsworth said…
This turns out to be a rather cheap dig when you look at the announcement from the College's president, which makes it pretty clear this is part of an ongoing process. Adjusting the college crest is a quick and easy fix - changing the name will be much more complex, but I'd be staggered if that wasn't part of the journey to come. Facing up to our imperialist past, rather than whitewashing it (as the Colston statue did), is surely the right way to go. Sniggering at the first baby steps being taken by Imperial College doesn't seem very mature to me, Chris.
Chris Whiteside said…
There are two possible opinions about that.

Of course I did read what the President said - it's in the piece I linked to.

For an organisation whose very name is Imperial College - an open, direct, obvious and stunningly incontrovertible reference to the Empire - to drop a far less obvious and overt latin motto because one possible interpretation of it is a reference to the Empire may seem to some like "baby steps" but it may appear to others to be an absurd piece of virtue signalling which invites and deserves ridicule.

I would even suspect that there might be both people who approve of renaming thing to take out references to the Empire and people who disagree with that idea who can see the joke.

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