Danny Bird

Freelance writer

United Kingdom

I'm a writer based in Bristol, UK. My greatest passion is history. I enjoy reviewing current affairs through a historical prism, analysing patterns with a view to offering perspective to contemporary events.

History Today
Published in History Today Volume 72 Issue 5 May 2022
No Dinner Party

As Mao Zedong put it, a revolution is 'not a dinner party, or writing an essay, or painting a picture', but 'an act of violence by which one class overthrows another'. Lenin would not have disagreed but preferred to extol revolution as 'the festival of the oppressed and the exploited'.

History Today
The Paris Commune's Bloody Week

In hiding and soon to be sentenced to death in absentia, Eugène Pottier completed a poem In June 1871 that still serves as the rallying cry for the Left worldwide: L'Internationale. Its themes of solidarity and universalism would enshrine the ambitions of the Paris Commune, a brief and extraordinary social experiment that unfolded during the spring of 1871 in what was then Europe's second-largest city.

History Today
The Afterlife of the Berlin Wall

Of the spectacular wave of events that unfolded across Eastern Europe 30 years ago this autumn, the fall of the Berlin Wall on 9 November 1989 has come to epitomise them all. Within days, this once foreboding partition between two bitterly opposed worlds began to disappear from the cityscape, as 'Wall-peckers' literally chiselled it away.

History Today
Black and White and Red all over

A flight of bombers from Nazi Germany's Condor Legion and Italy's Aviazione Legionaria pummelled the Basque town, Gernika for three hours on 26 April 1937. As incendiary bombs rained down on the defenceless settlement, civilians fled into the surrounding fields, where they were mercilessly strafed by the aircrafts' machine guns.

History Extra
Permanent Revolution

My article exploring the macabre decision to embalm Lenin in 1924 and the extraordinary cult that emerged in the Soviet Union around him.

History Extra
Spain's longest day

Exploring the shocking coup attempt on 23 February 1981, which nearly ended the Spanish transition to democracy.