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Rock goes to College (patriotically)

Imagine if OfS had the final say over the bands that performed at English universities, and could veto any that did not sing about the glory of the proposed regulatory framework Paul Greatrix examines a very surprising case from India.
This article is more than 6 years old

Paul Greatrix is Registrar at The University of Nottingham, author and creator of Registrarism and a Contributing Editor of Wonkhe.

I’ve reported here (and here) before on the lost bands of HE and those legendary gigs at the University of Nottingham (the list of which has since been completely eclipsed by the simply awesome UEA gig archive).

But all of these higher ed music stories are as nothing alongside the news that in India universities have been asked to host ‘patriotic’ gigs with government selected bands headlining:

The government notice

In a recent circular sent to all the central universities and IITs across the country, the HRD ministry has asked them to host rock shows. However, there is a twist – the shows will have a patriotic theme. As part of the ‘Ye India Ka Time Hai’ programme, the government will identify certain bands which will be performing at different universities across the country.

It’s fair to say this has not terribly well-received in the country’s universities and students are sceptical about the ability of government appointed bands to foster patriotic fervour.


It does seem a quite extraordinary proposition. Imagine the OfS being charged with drawing up a list of bands to perform in universities to win support for changes to the fee regime. It does appear rather far-fetched but it is nevertheless irresistible to consider, if such a bizarre policy were to be introduced, which bands might be on their list?

Number 1 for me would be Morrissey – sounds a bit dangerous and edgy, will appeal to the 80s nostalgists across the sector and is extremely patriotic (with some quite idiosyncratic/disturbing takes on current political issues). He also has a song featuring a university staircase (see this helpful commentary on its slightly confusing narrative).

So which artists do you think should be appointed by the OfS to make Britain great again?

One response to “Rock goes to College (patriotically)

  1. You may also be interested in ‘When Rock went to College’, by Barry Lucas and Paul Tomlinson, which chronicles the great and the good who played Lancaster University in days of Yore.

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