Talk:David Starkey

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Good articleDavid Starkey has been listed as one of the History good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
September 28, 2011Good article nomineeListed


Johst's famous remark about culture and revolvers is actually "Wenn ich das Wort Kultur höre, unentsichere ich mein Browning," i.e. ... I release the safety catch of my revolver. Bukovets (talk) 14:41, 28 April 2009 (UTC)

I know almost nothing about Starkey but I happened to see him on television on 27 April 2009 making two statements about an inscription on one of Henry VIII's coastal forts. He said that it sounded "semper vivet anima Henrici" and that the sense was: may Henry's spirit live for ever. I mean no disrespect to a successful entertainer but I cannot help noting that these statements about the inscription are mutually inconsistent and wondering how seriously Starkey's ability to read old documents is taken by historians. If time has eroded the fourth letter of a word which might be vivet or vivat would a serious historian not say so? Bukovets (talk) 14:56, 28 April 2009 (UTC)

David Starkey on Question Time[edit]

I had to complain to the BBC about his comment on HIV. Not only did I find his comments offensive, but discriminatory.

His quips were bad comedy, not history, stating that a PM should reveal his own private life is appalling and shows IGNORANCE of key legal concepts. One CAN reveal one's own private life but should not be pressured into it. It's a right guaranteed by our legal system, which he doesn't seem to know at all.

As to HIV, there is a law that states that HIV positive people are not meant to disclose their status, and expecting to do so is discrimination.

He should go back to school and learn the meaning of free will and take his exams in legal history again.

On Roman Polanski, David Starkey, apart from using itas an excuse to attack the government, he says that the girl had 'forgiven him'. So what? Then he asks why the girl was alone with Polanski at the age of 13. Is he suggesting that if one doesn't protect oneself then one deserves rape? APPALLING —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:09, 2 October 2009 (UTC)

Hi 91. Please see WP:NOTFORUM. Other than that, if his Question Time appearance was controversial (as your comment seems to suggest), can you find a reliable source discussing it? If so, we can work about including something about it in the article. Thanks. :) Dreaded Walrus t c 21:40, 2 October 2009 (UTC)
Check the BBC complaint log. It wasn't controversial, it was the quibntessence of ignorance —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:12, 30 October 2009 (UTC)
"I find his comments offensive" - I find it offensive that you find it offensive, ad-nauseum. (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 14:30, 27 February 2012 (UTC).

Current appointment?[edit]

Unless I missed something, the article does not say whether he holds a current academic appointment. Or if not, when he left LSE (or whatever his last post was). (talk) 06:25, 14 August 2010 (UTC)


Do we not have a more up to date photo. Afterall he does appear quite frequently on tv without the mustache.

Jamie's Dream School[edit]



Seeing as there seems to be lots of edits going on without any accompanying discussion I'd thought I'd explain why I inserted the section about controversy that has now been removed. Clearly there was controversy as the comments had been described a racist. However I take the point that there was no source actually saying that - there is now This also refers to both the twitter source that was objected to (why?) and the comments by Owen Jones so I trust it is safe to reinsert the offending passage. Regarding it being biased commentary, I would dispute this. It may make Starkey look pretty bad but I can't find a reputable source that defends what he said so surely it should be included? It's hard to make it balanced if there is nothing to balance it with... Robinr22 (talk) 16:08, 13 August 2011 (UTC)

I wasn't aware of your previous addition about this subject, but noticed no mention of it in the article. I saw an IP editor had been reverted for trying to add it, so I restored what they wrote and added the Guardian source. After seeing this comment I reworded the IP editor's addition using your previous wording which was superior. The source is reliable. --Pontificalibus (talk) 16:28, 13 August 2011 (UTC)
My apologies for my over-enthusiastic editing as I re-added the text, then realised someone else had done so and moved it. Will leave it alone now... Robinr22 (talk) 16:37, 13 August 2011 (UTC)
The very definition of the word "controversy", which includes "a prolonged public debate", excludes this matter from being described in this manner. More importantly, however, none of the sources used made any real comment on the debate, and the section therefore clearly violated WP:NPOV. My guess is that this matter will prove a storm in a teacup, and that Starkey was clearly talking about culture, and not race. That's just my guess though, and does not reflect on any edits I might make here. Parrot of Doom 19:48, 13 August 2011 (UTC)
Your guesses are not relevant - what matters is what the reliable sources say. I have reinserted the paragraph with additional sourcing to clearly demonstrate that his comments are worthy of note. There is clearly no consensus here for your removal of this content, so I suggest you try and convince other editors of your opinion before attempting to remove it again. --Pontificalibus (talk) 09:36, 14 August 2011 (UTC)
I suggest you look at the version of the paragraph I removed before you make a fool of yourself. And please don't try to lecture me on what is and isn't relevant. Parrot of Doom 09:52, 14 August 2011 (UTC)

The comments made by Jeremy Corbyn and Owen Jones have been removed twice on the grounds that they are "irrelevent opinions"; rather than just reinstating them in a pointless edit war, does anyone have any thoughts as to whether they should stay? I would advocate that they are relevant as providing context to Starkey's comments and an idea of the response to them. I'd happily balance them with supporting comments but I can't find any. The fact is that two fairly high-profile people commented on the remarks in an extremely critical way and I don't really understand why their comments should be removed.Robinr22 (talk) 07:48, 14 August 2011 (UTC)

There are also articles in the press supporting what he said and rejecting any idea of racism, but I don't think the article should look like a debate on whether he is racist or not. e.g. Teppic74 (talk) 10:58, 14 August 2011 (UTC)
He is culturist, not racist. Kittybrewster 11:45, 14 August 2011 (UTC)

Any use of the word "controversy" is POV[edit]

Just add the facts, let the people decide. Common sense would suggest that the overuse of this "media word" is roundabout way of self generating a furore.

Why has there been such haste in adding the small rebuttal, a lot of papers are not calling him racist at all. The guardian should never be prioritised as it is almost always predictable in its stances. I suggest we remove it. Alexandre8 (talk) 10:25, 14 August 2011 (UTC)

I'd say a couple of minor reports in newspapers covering this doesn't really constitute 'controversy'. This is not front page material. That's not to say it won't develop into controversy, but right now some of this editing seems not so neutral and more a knee jerk reaction against his comments. Teppic74 (talk) 10:43, 14 August 2011 (UTC)

Currently the article does not present a neutral point of view, simply stating his comments but giving no indication of opposing views detailed in multiple reliable sources including both right and left wing newspapers and the views of two MPs:[1][2][3][4][5]
  1. ^ "David Starkey claims 'the whites have become black' during UK riots Newsnight debate -". Daily Mirror. London: Trinity Mirror. 14 August 2011. ISSN 9975-9950. OCLC 223228477. Retrieved 14 August 2011. Historian David Starkey has sparked controversy after claiming 'the whites have become black' in a discussion on Newsnight about the UK riots.
  2. ^ "Video: David Starkey provokes storm with 'whites have become black' comment". The Daily Telegraph. London: TMG. 14 August 2011. ISSN 0307-1235. OCLC 49632006. Retrieved 14 August 2011. The historian drew criticism after making the remarks
  3. ^ Hastings, Chris (14 August 2011). "David Starkey says Enoch Powell was right with infamous 'rivers of blood' speech". Retrieved 14 August 2011. Historian David Starkey remained defiant last night after provoking a race storm by claiming the recent riots happened because too many young white people had ‘now become black’.
  4. ^ Quinn, Ben (14 August 2011). "David Starkey claims 'the whites have become black' | UK news | The Guardian". The Guardian. London: GMG. ISSN 0261-3077. OCLC 60623878. Retrieved 14 August 2011. Historian provokes storm of criticism after remarks during a televised discussion about the riots on BBC2's Newsnight
  5. ^ Lammy, David (14 August 2011). "David Lammy: Prejudices of the few eclipsed by civic pride". The Independent. London: INM. ISSN 0951-9467. OCLC 185201487. Retrieved 14 August 2011. This talk is as misleading as it is dangerous and divisive
I suggest some attempt is made to incorporate these views in the article.--Pontificalibus (talk) 11:15, 14 August 2011 (UTC)
I agree, but the problem is (and not only linked to this article) Precedence is given to the guardian because it always takes an opinion (however predictable it maybe) on these matters. The other papers often just report what happened, and so what you get is only one opinion, that of, that He is racist or whatever. The other articles just say that he's sparked debate or controversy. So far two telegraph bloggers have explicitly said what he said was NOT racist, but bloggers are never given particular noteworthiness. I agree some reaction should be made Alexandre8 (talk) 11:22, 14 August 2011 (UTC)
Controversy is POV. So is scandal. Kittybrewster 11:33, 14 August 2011 (UTC)
HOw about a suggestion for improvement? Alexandre8 (talk) 12:27, 14 August 2011 (UTC)
How about starting with the content you reverted. It included opposing views widely reported in reliable sources.--Pontificalibus (talk) 13:16, 14 August 2011 (UTC)
As things stand, the article mentions that his words were condemned (including a vague reference to 'by others'); it does not state that his words have also been supported and defended. This is not neutral. My revert has been removed despite this. Teppic74 (talk) 15:13, 15 August 2011 (UTC)
No, it states that they have been condemned by the Leader of the Opposition (as well as others, which is supported by the link). The Leader of the Opposition condemning them is notable. If you can find a reliable source for people of similar stature to Ed Milliband supporting Starkey's comments, please add it. Harry the Dog WOOF 15:24, 15 August 2011 (UTC)
I fully agree that condemnation from Ed Milliband is relevant, but it is very clear that it is not universal condemnation, and some of the press has supported him. Prior to the edit it was plain facts, now it only mentions condemnation. Hence I don't consider this neutral. I also believe that it was said there needed to be agreement on this before any edits to this section. Teppic74 (talk) 15:33, 15 August 2011 (UTC)
If it's relevant, well-sourced and notable, it remains. You don't need agreement to add such material to an article. As i said, if you want balance, add well-sourced relevant examples of notable people supporting him. If you can't, that is no reason to remove properly sourced material from the article. Harry the Dog WOOF 15:41, 15 August 2011 (UTC)
Since edits were already being added and reverted due to the same arguments, and thus the article locked, I'm not sure it was a good idea to start this all over again. The section is no longer balanced in my view, but I'll leave it for others to decide what to do. Teppic74 (talk) 15:46, 15 August 2011 (UTC)
The citation used for Milliband's comments was updated to include a counter view, which I have now referenced directly in the article, so as not to give only one side. Teppic74 (talk) 18:19, 17 August 2011 (UTC)

However you think about "controversy," grammatically, this is a really really awful sentence: "On 12 August 2011, Starkey stated during a panel discussion for Newsnight that some of the predictions of Enoch Powell's Rivers of Blood speech had been borne out in the 2011 England riots, but rather than "inter-community violence"[15] he said that "the whites have become black", and that this widespread acceptance of "a particular sort of violent, destructive, nihilistic gangster culture" by white youth[16] had lead to the rioting." Spiculalinguae (talk) 19:34, 14 August 2011 (UTC)

The whole article is awful. I'm working my way through it. Take a look in a few days, it should at least be in English then. Parrot of Doom 20:00, 14 August 2011 (UTC)

"The remarks were condemned by Labour Leader Ed Miliband and others." -- you guys are really pussyfooting around here by seeking to remain "balanced." "Condemned as racist" should be in there at the very least. You are making your readers do the work of figuring out what is offensive about the remark rather than telling the reader what others found offensive about it. Both are factual but only the latter is truly helpful. Cheers Spiculalinguae (talk) 03:52, 16 August 2011 (UTC)

Certainly do not want to to reignite any edit war. I just want to mention that the BBC has an article with both pro and con opinions on the matter, which might be of use if there is any interest in renewing this section. --CristiCbz (talk) 16:32, 8 November 2011 (UTC)

Minor errors[edit]

Since the page is locked, I'll leave this for someone else to deal with when it becomes possible. Starkey's place of birth is given as "Kendall" with two Ls and linked to a disambiguation page for that spelling. He was actually born in Kendal in Cumbria --Edwin Greenwood (talk) 10:29, 14 August 2011 (UTC)

I've changed it, but are you sure? Alexandre8 (talk) 10:32, 14 August 2011 (UTC)
It was definitely Kendal, Cumbria (then Westmorland). We were at school together at Kendal Grammar School (and the fact that he was at KGS is sourced in the article). - David Biddulph (talk) 08:27, 15 August 2011 (UTC)

Starkey vs Lammy[edit]

Without getting involved in an edit war, can someone explain why Lammy's and Starkey's comments were so different? Both placed some of the blame at gang/gangster culture. Is the problem because Starkey went one step further and mentioned the roots of this gang culture? Surely the editors here can read beyond the headline to the meat of what was actually said? Rather than take a statement out of context and ignoring the rest? Heywoodg 10:12, 16 August 2011 (UTC)

WP:SYNTHESIS. Parrot of Doom 10:17, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
OK, so there there was an article that linked the two, that would (possibly) be acceptable? Thanks (if I understand that correctly!). Heywoodg 10:21, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
Lammy did not say that "whites had become black", for example, a clear suggestion that gangs are a product of "black culture", whatever that is, and if whites had not been exposed to "black culture" they would not have joined gangs. Starkey said a lot of other things that Lammy didn't say. In fact, Lammy has repudiated Starkey's remarks ( If they were "similar", he would hardly have done that. The fact that they both blamed gang violence for part of the problem does not mean that you can imply that all of what both men said is "similar". The issue is not that gang violence was involved (something both did say), it's that Starkey said that gang violence is a product of "black culture" (whatever that is). Thus blacks are responsible. That is what people are objecting to, and it is certainly not what Lammy said. Remember this is a BLP (as is Lammy's article) so extra care is needed. Harry the Dog WOOF 10:24, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
I'm sorry but Lammy repudiating Starkey's remarks doesn't really mean much, it could simply mean he is a hypocrite! And to be precise, Starkey said that this modern gang culture that we see is a product of a particular sub-set of "black culture". To say that this modern gang culture is at least heavily influence but the crips/blood of LA doesn't seem a stretch to me (and I would argue Lammy would feel the same going by his GTA comments!). I think you are synthesising(?) by claiming that he said blacks are responsible. He didn't. But, as per POD's link above, I won't put the edit back in, in it's current state. Thanks for coming here to explain your POV! Heywoodg 10:46, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
Starkey said a part of black culture, not all of black culture. Parrot of Doom 10:29, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
But still unique to blacks, and therefore racist unless it can be empirically demonstrated. The words "whites have become black" in the context are pretty unambiguous. If they hadn't "become black" they wouldn't be being violent. What else could he have meant? To suggest that Lammy's words were similar to that is ridiculous.Harry the Dog WOOF 10:30, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
Again, you are putting words into his mouth. He clearly said "whites and black", so to claim he said that gang culture is unique to blacks is just nonsense. 10:46, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
No I am not. He said (it's a direct quote) "whites have become black". Of course that means, by extension, that both whites and blacks were involved in the violence. But what he was clearly saying is that if whites hadn't "become black" they would not have been involved. His words are unambiguous, and to try to suggest that they are what Lammy said or that Lammy is any way agrees with Starkey (when he has in fact repudiated Starkey's comments) is what is nonsense. Harry the Dog WOOF 10:50, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
Well, again, you are drawing your own conclusions which are just not supported. He is talking about different reasons for the violence (including commercialism if you listen to it). To say that he claims that "whites" wouldn't riot if they had not "become black" is incorrect, and you are stretching. In fact when he is asked if he is equating black culture with criminality, he says "no, it is a particular sort.." before being cut off. Heywoodg 11:02, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
I've listened to the debate twice, and nowhere can I find any suggestion that Starkey considers black people, or black culture, inferior to white people, or white culture. He clearly bemoans the particular "yeah bruv innit" language adopted by some black or white youths, and he blames that on what he calls an imported Jamaican patois together with a gang culture we all know exists in some form or other. When challenged by the Chavs author that he was equating "black culture with criminality" he very clearly and determinedly rejected that argument. In fact, several times during the debate, he repeated that he blamed a particular form, or part of black culture, and not black culture in general. In my opinion Starkey was talking about specifics, whereas the other two contributors, and the host, were attempting to generalise his observations. I found the whole thing rather distasteful. Parrot of Doom 11:00, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
What else can "whites have become blacks mean", especially in the context? He is not saying that black culture is "inferior" (I never said he did) but that whites "becoming black" was the cause of those whites getting involved in gangs and violence. It's a pretty clear statement. If he wasn't saying that, he should have been more specific, or clarified his remarks subsequently. Are gangs only found in black culture? If he meant "gang culture" (which is what Lammy is talking about without reference to race), he should have said so, and left race out of it. In any event, in the context of what we are debating here, the suggestion that Lammy has the same views as Starkey on this cannot be substantiated, especially since Lammy has repudiated Starkey's views as irrelevant. Harry the Dog WOOF 11:10, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
"If he wasn't saying that, he should have been more specific, or clarified his remarks subsequently." To be fair, I think he did! He did also mention "gangster culture" specifically. Perhaps it is worth listening to the interview again? Heywoodg 11:20, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
This is what annoys me about these discussions. Rather than focussing on what was actually said, people tend to look for some angle, some hidden truth, something which supports their prejudices. It's pathetic. Parrot of Doom 11:29, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
If he had said something undoubtedly racist there would be little discussion and certainly no mainstream press support. It's absolutely clear that his comments are interpreted in very different ways, and the article shouldn't be slanted one way or another. Most of the comments here and the edits taking place are indicating anything but a neutral view. Teppic74 (talk) 11:54, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
I have listened to it again. If he had only said "gang culture" (which is what Lammy said) that would not have been an issue (as Lammy's comments are not an issue). But he went further than that. There is no way you can deny that. So to say that Lammy and Starkey's comments were "similar" without any qualification is simply wrong. Lammy never mentioned race; Starkey did. He (more than) implied that gang culture was unique to blacks, and that to become gangsters whites had to "become black". That is simply a fact that cannot be denied or spun into something else. All of his other comments about "gangster culture" have to start from that premise, because he introduced it. And it's the fact that he mentioned race that people are objecting to (whether those objections are justified or not) and that is what makes Starkey's comments different to Lammy's. Which is what we are discussing here. Harry the Dog WOOF 11:57, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
He clearly isn't talking about white (or black, or any colour) people changing skin colour, so when he says "become black", he is talking about from a cultural point of view. That should be obvious. He then clarifies this further (as already discussed) by talking about "a particular sort of violent, destructive, nihilistic gangster culture". True, he says "gangster", rather than "gang", but both him and Lammy are talking about the same thing, gang culture. It is people jumping on the "whites have become black" bandwagon (understandably getting riled up by the headlines) that seems to be the only difference here. No where did he state that gang culture was unique to blacks, as already mentioned, he was talking about "a particular sort of violent, destructive, nihilistic gangster culture", as was, interestingly enough, Lammy. So yes, I agree that is is the fact that he mentioned "race" that people object to, and that, is actually the problem. Not the message, but the fact that he dared to mention race. Heywoodg 12:21, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
He is suggesting that gang violence is unique to black culture, or a subset thereof. Why else use the phrase "whites become black"? If he doesn't think that gang violence is unique to black culture he would not have put it in those terms. He did. No amount of post-event spin can change that. The point is, he raised the issue of race. Lammy didn't. Therefore you should not imply that their comments are "similar". You can say "both mentioned gang culture as a cause" but Starkey went much further than that. Harry the Dog WOOF 12:33, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
At no time does he say or imply that gang violence is unique to black culture. He is talking about a specific type of gang culture which originated as a sub-set of black culture. There is a big difference, and I surprised that you fail to see this. Anyway we are going around in circles and the main point has already been addressed and the edit has not been applied. However, if there are no objections, I will remove the unsupported "by white youth" addition to the paragraph, since this is not supported by the link. In fact, as we have discussed, he clearly states in the same sentence "and black and white, boy and girl, operate in this language together" Heywoodg 12:39, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
Then why say "whites have become blacks"? Why not say, "Some white people have adopted the gang culture"? You have to look at all his subsequent statements about blacks and whites in the light of that initial statement. It is simple. He brought race into it; Lammy did not. Therefore you cannot say that their comments are "similar". Whether the furore over his comments is justified or not is an entirely separate issue. (But I have no problem with the current version.) Harry the Dog WOOF 13:28, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
I think for the same reason he mentioned Powell. Controversy. Strip that away and both messages are about the harm caused by the faux gang(ster) culture Heywoodg 13:39, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
Because white gang culture in Britain was never known for this sort of behaivour, that's why. His point is that young white British kids have adopted characteristics of black gang culture, because it's cool. White gang culture historically avoided this sort of blatant conduct in most cases, and while extremely violent was never permeated by the same sort of nihilistic worldview. Really, it is sort of obvious. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:55, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
So the fact that Starkey's comments caused controversy should not be surprising! And that fact that Lammy's comments, which he did not make to cause controversy, aren't controversial shouldn't be surprising either. That's what we are discussing, why Starkey's comments cause controversy and Lammy's didn't. Harry the Dog WOOF 13:49, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
Yes. However, the difference is that I still think the underlying message is the same :) Heywoodg 13:54, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
A very small part of the message is the same. Many people who disagree with each other may say a few things in common. But you cannot seize on that to imply that their views are similar. It was not what was said in this case but how it was said that separates the two and why some people find Starkey's words objectionable but not Lammy's. Harry the Dog WOOF 14:02, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
"It was not what was said in this case but how it was said that separates the two". That is the point though, I don't consider the "how" to be important, it is the "what" that is. It is the contents of the message that should be important. They both said that gang culture was a contributing factor. Starkey did so while also evoking Enoch Powell, Lammy did so while envoking "|Grand Theft Auto", but the message was the same; the urban gang culture which is so common amongst many of those involved in the riots is destructive and divisive. Lammy did it in the words of a politician. Starkey did so in the words of someone who courts controversy, but they were both delivering the same message once you get past the headlines. Heywoodg 14:18, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
No, the how is important. The reason that Lammy's words about gangs did not cause controversy is precisely because he did not express his views in the same way as Starkey. If you want and explanation of why Lammy hasn't been criticised and Starkey has, that is it - they expressed themselves differently and people took offence to how Starkey expressed himself. You may think they were wrong do do so, but they did. To say that neither or both should be criticised because they "hold similar views" is a red herring. The controversy is not about what was said (that gangs are part of the problem which I imagine most would agree with) but how it was said by Starkey (and not by Lammy). Harry the Dog WOOF 14:28, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
I think we will have to respectfully disagree! We both agree that it is the "how" that is different, but differ as to it's importance! If the message is the same, it should be treated the same, and people should be able/willing to look past the sound-bite headlines. In general, in the papers and the internet, it certainly isn't the "how" that people are complaining about, he is being labelled with all sorts of tags because people are not able/willing to get to the meat of what he was saying. He clearly said that doesn't equate black culture with crime/riots etc, and he clearly said that "it's not skin colour, it's cultural." Heywoodg 14:48, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
This comment may provide a better comparison for Starkey's remarks: Teppic74 (talk) 22:26, 16 August 2011 (UTC)
I've tidied that section up, merged it with his, erm, forthright comments made on other programmes, and added condemnation and support in equal measures. I'm not qualified at the moment to say where the balance lies between condemnation and support, so I think for now one critical comment, and one supportive comment, is probably all that's needed. Parrot of Doom 21:38, 17 August 2011 (UTC)
The reason I added two citations was because the source that was listed for condemnation was a news summary with a few references, so I picked two showing opposing individual views, not to show more weight, but I can see the problem. I don't think I'd personally like to find any common ground with Liddle, but he's a very prominent media figure, and he provides a comparison that may have some credit.Teppic74 (talk) 21:53, 17 August 2011 (UTC)
Yes that's better now. It leaves it up to the reader to decide whether or not "a particular form of black culture" is a racist statement in the context of the other things he said Harry the Dog WOOF 08:33, 18 August 2011 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:David Starkey/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Ruby2010 (talk · contribs · count) 05:20, 26 September 2011 (UTC)

GA review (see here for what the criteria are, and here for what they are not)
  1. It is reasonably well written.
    a (prose): b (MoS for lead, layout, word choice, fiction, and lists):
  2. It is factually accurate and verifiable.
    a (references): b (citations to reliable sources): c (OR):
  3. It is broad in its coverage.
    a (major aspects): b (focused):
  4. It follows the neutral point of view policy.
    Fair representation without bias:
  5. It is stable.
    No edit wars, etc.:
  6. It is illustrated by images, where possible and appropriate.
    a (images are tagged and non-free images have fair use rationales): b (appropriate use with suitable captions):
  7. Overall:

I've been watching this one sit in the GAN queue for a while now. Will review in next day or two. Ruby comment! 05:20, 26 September 2011 (UTC)

Cmguy777's comments[edit]

One paragraph I found ambiguous was the paragraph on Starkey's homosexuality. What is "London's gay scene"? Was Starkey ever a heterosexual? How is "mother's intensity" defined? What caused Starkey to be "bored at Cambridge"? Cmguy777 (talk) 18:25, 27 September 2011 (UTC)

Ruby 2010's Comments[edit]

  • In the lead I think you could mention his many published books
    • Done
  • In infobox add "radio" in occupation
    • That would imply he's a radio presenter - he hasn't done anything like that for quite some time. He's more an occasional contributor, but I wouldn't put that in the infobox for the same reason I wouldn't put his newspaper and magazines pieces in the infobox.
  • Sentences with direct quotes need citations directly at their end (i.e. "He later criticised his mentor, who he says with age became "tetchy" and "arrogant".")
    • In this article, any time a quotation isn't cited, the citation may be found at the end of the sentence, or section. I'm not a fan of citing every last quote, its not necessary in relatively simple articles like this. Practically every quote here is from Starkey.
  • That quote box about the Tudors - attribute it to Starkey and add quotation marks
    • Done.
  • Date when William and Kate: Romance and the Royals came out
    • Done
  • "He has worked as curator on several exhibitions, including a 2003 exhibit on Elizabeth I, following which he had lunch with the queen. " You jump from one queen to another, which may be slightly confusing for some readers. Perhaps change "the queen" to Elizabeth II (or something similar)?
    • A fair point, done.
  • "...during one of many appearances on the BBC's Question Time he attacked Jeffrey Archer over his views on the age of homosexual consent.[30] Mike Russell, then Scottish government minister for culture and external affairs, called on him to apologise for comments made on the programme in 2009, when he declared Scotland, Ireland and Wales "feeble little countries".[31][32]" Was this all in the same episode of Question Time?
    • No, I'm not certain when he criticised Archer, so I've rearranged the section to try and clarify the difference in dates.
  • This link won't seem to load on my browser
    • It worked fine when I added it. Perhaps the site is down. I'd try again in a day or two.
  • Why are the titles of all your references italicized? I'd use Cite web or Cite news for your ref templates, but that's just a personal preference thing
    • I use the citation template for everything. It keeps things simple.
  • Ref 19: dash error

Interesting man and an interesting article. Will place on hold for seven days, though I'm sure the above comments can be resolved before then. Best regards, Ruby comment! 18:46, 27 September 2011 (UTC)

While I think Cmguy777's comments make some helpful points, I feel the article meets the GA criteria as is. Nice work, Ruby comment! 04:07, 28 September 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for the review :) Parrot of Doom 06:03, 28 September 2011 (UTC)


So Starkey had a little spat with a 25-year-old "journalist", reported only in the paywalled Times, The Independent (who she writes for) and esteemed publications like the Daily Mail. While the argument deserves mention, I most strongly object to using Laurie Penny's version of events as a neutral source, as claimed by one editor here. I suggest certain people take particular notice of wp:recentism, which this incident most certainly falls under.

This is nothing short of a veiled attack on Starkey, criticism of whom I've tried hard to balance in this article. Starkey said something objectionable, Penny called him a bigot, Starkey reacted with aplomb. There's little more to be said about it than that. Parrot of Doom 19:54, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

Penny's account of her clash with Starkey is much of she describes it in the video evidence. The Sunday Times and Independent too are both reliable sources. The outbursts of 'Mr Rude' do not gain too much attention in this article, even with more details of the recent incident, and it is more telling of Starkey's character than any of the others. As "furious response" in the article is pretty strong, readers are surely likely to want more details as it passes into history. The point about recentism is thus not relevant here. So what if it is "nothing short of a veiled attack on Starkey", we have to cover all opinions and Penny is hardly a fringe figure. She is a notable young journalist who has already also worked for the New Statesman and contributed to The Guardian and is at least as high profile as almost all of his other cited critics. Philip Cross (talk) 20:41, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
She's a 25-year-old socialist reactionary who accused Starkey of being a racist, a bigot (anyone who reads his comments in detail would understand he is very far from that) and a tax-avoider (something she does not appear to be able to substantiate with any proof). But that's beside the point. What the argument amounted to was a minor spat. It was covered by only a small number of newspapers, the most notable of which are the Times and the Independent, the latter only because Penny writes for it. Go ahead, see if you can find an independent report of the argument on the Independent's website - you won't, because they obviously didn't consider it newsworthy enough to print.
So now you want is several sentences about an unimportant argument tacked onto the end of a much more serious argument on Starkey's cultural views. Your edits stink of recentism and are wholly representative of the tendency on Wikipedia to add "stuff" to articles without first considering its importance, or the wider context in which it appears. They're also massively biased against Starkey - the language used would leave the reader with the view that Penny was the voice of reason while Starkey was a spluttering racist bigot. I won't stand for this kind of bullshit.
It deserves nothing more than about 1.5 sentences. Compared to the man's years of contributions to historical discourse and public debate, it is almost irrelevant. If you think it's important, add it to Penny's article, not this one. Parrot of Doom 21:16, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
I agree with parrot of Doom. Philip Cross, please quit being such the radical liberal leftist partisan activist. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:09, 4 July 2012 (UTC)

Death of James Brown[edit]

It was reported today that James Brown, David Starkey's partner, has died. His references in this article will need to have their tenses changed.

Thank you, I will do this now. Parrot of Doom 22:09, 5 November 2015 (UTC)

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Is that Starkey on the photo?[edit]

The picture doesn't look like Starkey at all. Moreover, it is said to be from the early eighies, when Starkey was 35-37. The man on the picture looks much older than that, 45 at least. Is that even a photo of Starkey? (talk) 16:17, 13 January 2018 (UTC)

It is undeniably him, though I can't vouch for when he shaved off the moustache. The original description of the image states simply that it is from the 1980s, so he could have been as old as his mid-40s. Ghmyrtle (talk) 10:47, 14 January 2018 (UTC)
was just about to comment that maybe a more recent picture is needed. He doesn't look a thing like the person well known for his QT appearances — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2A00:23C5:352A:F400:952:B9C0:CF2E:86E (talk) 13:06, 10 September 2019 (UTC)

Why the request for "reliable sources" in the Work section?[edit]

The Work section lists the books published by David Starkey. Each of these books is in itself a source which can be verified by anyone interested. So I do not understand why there is a Wikipedia warning demanding sources for this section. I am removing the warning, and await a response or explanation by the editor who put it there. Thank you in advance. (talk) 09:42, 7 March 2018 (UTC)