On Resigning from the British Museum’s Board of Trustees

Ahdaf Soueif

The British Museum is one of the world’s few encyclopaedic museums: it tells the story of how civilisation was built; it boasts seven million visitors a year and is committed to free entry; it holds a unique place of authority in the nation’s – perhaps the world’s – consciousness. A few days ago I resigned from its Board of Trustees.

My resignation was not in protest at a single issue; it was a cumulative response to the museum’s immovability on issues of critical concern to the people who should be its core constituency: the young and the less privileged.

Public cultural institutions have a responsibility: not only a professional one towards their work, but a moral one in the way they position themselves in relation to ethical and political questions. The world is caught up in battles over climate change, vicious and widening inequality, the residual heritage of colonialism, questions of democracy, citizenship and human rights. On all these issues the museum needs to take a clear ethical position.

In early 2016, I raised the issue of BP’s very high profile sponsorship of public exhibitions with the museum’s board, the chair of trustees and the director. It was an education for me how little it seems to trouble anyone – even now, with environmental activists bringing ever bigger and more creative protests into the museum. The public relations value that the museum gives to BP is unique, but the sum of money BP gives the museum is not unattainable elsewhere. I can only think, therefore, that the museum, which has just reaffirmed its relationship with the oil giant, does not wish to alienate a section of the business community, and that this matters more than the legitimate and pressing concerns of young people across the planet – including the schoolchildren who are a target audience for the museum.

In January 2018, the giant service provider Carillion went bankrupt. Of the 138 museum staff who had been handed over to Carillion five years earlier, 60 remained. They kept coming in and doing the cleaning while being paid by the receiver. Some had worked for the museum for twenty years. Now they wanted to be rehired direct. The South Bank Centre and the Historic Royal Palaces rehired people. The museum would not even enter into discussions with the workers. A conversation I tried to start about this was shut down.

In November 2018, a French report commissioned by President Macron recommended the full restitution of looted African artworks. It burst open the debate over the repatriation of cultural artefacts. Museums, state officials, journalists and public intellectuals in various countries have stepped up to the discussion. The British Museum, born and bred in empire and colonial practice, is coming under scrutiny. And yet it hardly speaks. It is in a unique position to lead a conversation about the relationship of South to North, about common ground and human legacies and the bonds of history. Its task should be to help us all to imagine a better world, and – along the way – to demonstrate the usefulness of museums. This would go some way towards making the case for keeping its collection in London. But its credibility would depend on the museum taking a clear position as an ally of coming generations.

In its on-the-ground practice the museum cannot be faulted. Its curators are among the best in the profession; the research it produces is impressive in scope, rigour and volume. It has created a vibrant global network of curators through the World Training Programme it instituted 13 years ago. It helped found the Circulating Artefacts project, which enables the tracking of stolen artefacts as they appear on the market. It has embarked on a massive project of redeploying its collection to tell a more joined-up story of human civilisation – a necessary but not sufficient condition for it to remain relevant in the coming decades. Any story the museum chooses to tell must finally be judged in context: that is, in relation to how it behaves – where it gets its money, how it treats its workers, and who it considers partners.

The British Museum is not a good thing in and of itself. It is good only to the extent that its influence in the world is for the good. The collection is a starting point, an opportunity, an instrument. Will the museum use it to influence the future of the planet and its peoples? Or will it continue to project the power of colonial gain and corporate indemnity?

Schools bring children to the British Museum – the same children who are now living in existential dread of climate change. How do they respond to BP’s logo on the museum’s headline exhibitions? What does it mean when the employment policies of a free-to-enter museum push its workers into economic precarity? This is a museum of material objects that charts the way the world has been made and remade over history: will it be involved in making a world that is habitable, just, interconnected and open for the next generation; or will it continue to collaborate with those who are unmaking the world before our eyes?

I was sad to resign; sad to believe that it was the most useful thing I could do.


  • 16 July 2019 at 6:11pm
    commonsense 171 says:
    You are right. It was the best thing you could do. You did everyone a favor as your one sided views are just what historical museums don't need. Good riddance.

    • 16 July 2019 at 6:46pm
      CarpeDiem says: @ commonsense 171
      How about a fair-minded rebuttal ? Or are you content with just branding Ms Soueif's views "one sided" and hoping that the rest of us will see that this is indeed the case ?

    • 19 July 2019 at 5:20pm
      Xarljarg says: @ commonsense 171
      One sidedness? Where is your Commonsense, 171?
      Climate denial is not common sense.
      Extinction of species including human beings makes no sense. How is there another side to the science? Common sense?
      We will all be history if something is not done. Wake up!!
      There will be no museums... Common sense?
      You have been lied to and are misinformed.
      (B.P. pays a lot of money for these lies...) Common sense?
      Live oup to your name, Commonsense or please rename yourself -something more appropriate.
      And climate change aside, let's rememeber our history, lets remember Deepwater Horizon...
      BP = Big Profits; Before People...

      Well done Ahdaf!!!
      We applaud you for your integrity over your personal advancement.
      Well done!!!!

  • 16 July 2019 at 6:11pm
    Mark Haworth-Booth says:
    Well done Ahdaf Soueif. I’m sorry it has been necessary for you to resign. The BM’s trustees must do better. I am a member of Extinction Rebellion, a recent arrestee, and no longer visit exhibitions sponsored by fossil fuel companies.

    • 19 July 2019 at 12:29am
      roberte says: @ Mark Haworth-Booth
      Are you Tim the Househusband>

  • 16 July 2019 at 6:41pm
    Justin O'Hagan says:
    Thank you for doing this, and for writing about it. More people need to raise (and break) these links between culture and corporations. Business as usual is only an option if we don't care about the future.

  • 16 July 2019 at 6:58pm
    David Thomas says:
    I thought this was a bit ungenerous. The BM’s current Manga exhibition has done more to attract visitors from different age groups and ethnicities than anything they have ever done. Maybe staying on and encouraging that sort of bold exhibition would have been better.

  • 16 July 2019 at 7:06pm
    Rosie Britton says:
    I really applaud your courage and your selfless altruism. However, as someone who cannot afford an electric car, who heats the house with oil, takes occasional flights to visit family, depends on produce that requires road haulage and sometimes air carriage, I am not happy with demonising the whole of the oil industry so long as we are all totally dependent on it.

    • 16 July 2019 at 9:03pm
      Ipaul321 says: @ Rosie Britton
      BP sells its products to people who need or choose to use them. It is a company that does a great deal of social good. It issues an annual sustainability report and more many years has expressed concern in regard to ethical practice. If you feel you are somehow above using oil and gas go ahead. If not it’s time to influence, persuade and change your personal practices. Turning down sponsorship achieves little beyond a headline.

    • 17 July 2019 at 10:12am
      ptrptr says: @ Ipaul321
      So you claim.

    • 19 July 2019 at 5:33pm
      Xarljarg says: @ Rosie Britton
      We thought we were all "totally dependent" on slavery at one moment in history Rosie. But we saw past our "dependence". The use of this word allows us to evade responsibility for change. It's a word that suggests things are fixed. They are not. We can change.

      Big Oil does not need you defending it. (Unless you are one of the many paid writers who these companies employ to write supportive statements on social media.)

      We are nearing the end of the world Rosie... It's not you who is to blame but the systems that are responsible. Systems that companies like BP set up and can change by closing down and stopping carbon emitting production.

      Trillions in subsidies go to the Oil business. The UK subsidises more than any other European Country. That money could pay for your electric car... Your cosy warm zero carbon passiv hus; (no bills for heating necessary).

      Don't let your sense of personal guilt protect BP. You feel guilty because you are a good person. You have values that companies like BPO do not. Because of companies like this do had few options and made the best choices you could... They had a huge influence over the information you received forming your beliefs...

      Don't feel guilty: Join the rebellion!

    • 20 July 2019 at 4:51pm
      pgillott says: @ Rosie Britton
      I’ve wondered about this point in relation to the divestment movement, which similarly targets the entire fossil fuel industry, when they are producing something on which the majority of people in the UK, and I guess the world, are dependent. Such a campaign seems to suggest that the problem with these companies is not where they’re going but what they are. If somewhere there exists a fossil fuel company which is seriously aiming for a trajectory where it reduces its production in line with a 2 C or 1.5 C target, it would seem both unfair and counterproductive to hit it in this way.

      BP’s chief executive Bob Dudley has claimed sustainability as a concern of BP’s. I heard on Radio 4 today that they’ve set up a network of charging points for electric cars, so this isn’t nonsense.

      On the other hand, the company is reported to have pushed to be allowed to drill for oil in the Arctic after Trump’s election, saying that developing new oil and gas fields is compatible with the Paris accords. In general terms that’s probably true, but more specifically, an analysis from 2015 (in Nature) is said to have “[found] no climate-friendly scenario in which any oil or gas is drilled in the Arctic”. And then there are those claims about lobbying against climate policy that Joe refers to further down this post.

      All told, is BP working to manage and reduce the undoubted need for fossil fuels it’s providing for? On my limited knowledge, it’s not at all clear that it is. Ahdaf Soueif’s move seems like it could well be a constructive one.

  • 16 July 2019 at 8:02pm
    EmilianoZ says:
    This is an important piece; however, it fails to mention that the paper in which it appears hosts its annual Winter lectures in the BP Lecture Theatre in the British Museum. This subscriber noted the irony years ago.

  • 16 July 2019 at 8:57pm
    Jeff says:
    As a Canadian who dislikes cold weather, I have to praise BP for helping to make my country a better place through global warming. The conventional climate-change scenario of uniform worldwide disaster glosses over the fact that in reality, its impact will be very different for different countries. Northern countries like Canada, Russia and northern Europe will have benefits greater than costs, while much of the tropical world will have costs greater than benefits. Do you see anyone complaining about reduced snowfall, road clearing and heating bills in my hometown of Toronto, other than ski hill operators who have to buy more snow machines? One paper, in the journal Ecological Economics, even predicts that high-latitude countries will see increases in self-reported levels of happiness due to climate change! All you have to do is stop reading the newspapers! Luckily, most people have already done that ...

    • 17 July 2019 at 10:01am
      ptrptr says: @ Jeff
      Should we, then, disregard the impacts on people (and other beings) in places that are already hot?

      Should we, despite the civilizational catastrophe in the scenarios ruled less probable in models (and despite reality repeating running toward and beyond the worst case in the models), simply assume the best?

      Will we welcome the refugees in their millions?

      What would be your sensibility about all this?

    • 17 July 2019 at 10:02am
      ptrptr says: @ Jeff
      *repeatedly* running

    • 19 July 2019 at 2:09am
      Jeff says: @ ptrptr
      There are millions right now who would come to Canada or the UK if they could. Maybe it would be ethical to let them all in, but nonetheless you and I pay border agents (through taxes) to keep them out at Heathrow and Pearson (the Toronto airport). It is commendable that so many politicians claim to care about the world as a whole, but nonetheless they represent only one country and its interests, which is perhaps why they avoid draconian measures.

    • 19 July 2019 at 11:51pm
      Xarljarg says: @ Jeff
      Jeff. O Jeff...
      You think climate change will be good for Canada?
      Think again. Global warming is set to wipe out all life on earth.
      That includes Canada, Jeff...
      In the interim don't get your hopes up:
      Remeber extreme weather?
      You are going to have brutal colder spells, not more pleasant winters, violent and extreme unpredicatable weather.
      Wetter and windier and more destructive to your homes and agriculture. Floods, droughts, forest fires and then too much rain... When you don't need it. That's climate change Jeff. Wake up!!! It's your world too.

  • 17 July 2019 at 10:45am
    Shackec says:
    It seems to me that this article demonstrates how well the British Museum is being managed. The only issue of substance is the acceptance of money from BP. BP seems to be an ethical and well managed company. They produce and process oil. They do this honestly and lawfully. The problem is not BP it is the population at large who will insist on driving cars and taking flights powered by oil!
    The BM is not a political institution and it is right not to involve itself in such issues. The writer of this article is right to resign as he clearly does not understand the duties of a trustee. It is to be hoped he uses his talents to become politically active in attaining a political solution to reliance on oil and climate change

    • 17 July 2019 at 3:26pm
      Joe says: @ Shackec
      Hard to tell if this is naivety or mendacity.

      We all use oil, and none of us are in a position to criticise, per se, the fact that it's produced. But oil companies are not in the business of passively supplying whatever demand happens to exist: they contain massive operations devoted to the maximisation of demand and to the minimisation of concerns over climate change. BP is reportedly one of the biggest spenders on lobbying aimed at blocking or delaying measures to curb climate change:

      As for the museum 'involving itself in such issues' – the preamble to its founding statutes and rules notes that "being founded at the expence of the public, it may be judged reasonable, that the advantages accruing from it should be rendered as general". Ensuring the museum's reputation not be leveraged to cleanse the image of an organization whose activities endanger the future of life on earth seems well in keeping with this goal.

    • 20 July 2019 at 12:06am
      Xarljarg says: @ Shackec
      Shackek... Did you read Ahdaf Soueif's letter?

      "The only issue of substance is the acceptance of money from BP" -Seriously?

      She mentions the cleaning staff: I guess to an important person like yourself, low status people, menial workers don't count. The issues that affect their lives, such as their jobs and so on not substantive enough for you Shackek?

      Then there are the issues of colonisation...
      Are the histories of injustice to millions of people of colour not substantive enough for you Shackek?

      And the destruction of the planet for the powerful and greedy to enjoy substantially more carbon than the planet can sustain... to the point of mass species extinction, not an issue of substance for you Shackek?

      The problem is individuals? Really? Not big organised entities? Individuals? No one is convinced.
      The cleaners for instance. Suddenly the little bit of carbon they burn has substance, (for you...)

      What would be an issue of real substance for you Shackek?
      What are your values, please?
      They must be so very substantive if by comparrison, none of what Ahdaf Soueif resigned for matters...

      What have you ever resigned from?
      What principle have you ever made a sacrifice for?
      We are keen to know and admire you...

  • 17 July 2019 at 12:34pm
    LB says:
    I can only applaud your decision to resign, not because of your principles but because that's a place freed up for someone who actually cares about the Museum, its collections and its future.

    I'm sad to see that the Museum, like almost all of our institutions, has fallen to post-modern, Common Purpose progressivism. Ridiculous ideas about empire, the role of corporations in funding, returning artefacts and social justice have nothing to do with the core business of the Museum. Of course, it's easy to lose sight of core business and go on flights of self-aggrandising virtue signalling when the funding comes from government in the main and there is no profit imperative.

    With the money from DMCS, by far the largest chunk of income received, the Museum has been entrusted with taxpayer money and as such has a responsibility to give taxpayers what they want which, I would wager, is not spending money considering 'public benefit, sustainability, social and community issues' or contemplating the return of artefacts etc.

    I'm hoping that the next incumbent will focus solely on the Museum, it's future, it's collections and presenting these to the public in the most engaging and intellectually stimulating way, and dump all of the politically correct nonsense which appears to have infested the organisation.

  • 17 July 2019 at 12:39pm
    LB says:
    The Museum needs to give taxpayers value for the vast amount of money which is received in grant aid. Spending time and money discussing non-core issues means that money is not being used to best benefit of the Museum, its collections and also the money it receives from friend organisations and legacies.

    I can't see one thing for which Mr Soueif was advocating which would have garnered widespread public support. Just another quixotic social justice warrior.

    • 17 July 2019 at 3:34pm
      Joe says: @ LB
      The core mission of the BM, as it stands by this point, is to document the development of human civilization; the oldest item in its collection is a 1,800,000-year-old stone cutting tool said to be 'the first known technological invention'. It is presumably in keeping with this mission to take reasonable steps to avoid colluding in the extinction of humanity.

    • 20 July 2019 at 12:14am
      Xarljarg says: @ LB
      Quixotic LB.
      The public are pretty much behind surviving the next mass extinction.
      Ahdaf Soueif has not tilted at windmills.
      Ahdaf Soueif has done something great.
      This issue has been highlighted, thanks to her brave and selfless action.

      Got you trolling about it even. Makes you what?
      -Wind blowing itself?

      Ahdaf Soueif has done something.
      What will you do to make the world a better place?

  • 17 July 2019 at 2:52pm says:
    How dreadful to think that the beloved BM treats its faithful employees so disgracefully.

  • 17 July 2019 at 2:54pm
    Geoff Hatherick says:
    One or two odd assertions here. Are the young and under-privileged the BM’s “core constituency”? Not really, I’m afraid. Need a museum take a “clear, ethical position” on democracy, citizenship etc. ? Again, no. And I suspect, having seen the frolics of luvvies jetting in from Hollywood to save the planet, that you may be in a little glass house of your own on climate change. Thoroughly agree about staff rights, though.

  • 17 July 2019 at 3:27pm
    roberte says:
    If you so disapprove of the “oil giants”, without whose work our civilisation currently could not function, I assume that you walk everywhere and never heat your home .

    If you are genuinely concerned about colonialism, why not take issue with what China is doing in Africa today?

    This is a classic exercise in pernicious tick-the-box bogus eco-fashion-speak. An example to virtue-signallers everywhere.

  • 17 July 2019 at 3:52pm
    ptrptr says:
    Judging from the comments, this post must have made the rounds on, or made its way onto some high-profile place in, right-wing social media. Either that or – and let's be honest, this would hardly be shocking – BP is actually paying people to go out and attack critical voices.

    • 17 July 2019 at 4:38pm
      roberte says: @ ptrptr
      "some high-profile place in right-wing social media" ?
      Yes indeed: the LRB's own blog and - dare one speak its name - The Times.

    • 17 July 2019 at 5:36pm
      KitGrey says: @ ptrptr
      It's been featured on most of the major news websites and (possibly more to the point) spread widely on Twitter.

  • 17 July 2019 at 6:43pm
    zanna beswick says:
    This is a crucial statement and debate. I wish Souief had been able to stay on the BM Board to represent this argument and Extinction Rebellion's courage in speaking out when power can't see truth. We can and must take on the science of climate change together - not apart. Business and corporations have good R & D departments: they can and must be part of the solution. As must all of us, however unpalatable and inconvenient. We need to move on this NOW. Small actions and large ones, personal, political and business sacrifices have to be made. After all, this is not an elite discussion; it's about human survival. That's US, of whatever race, gender, creed, identity, class, age, background. Let's get on with working for an inhabitable future. Now.

  • 18 July 2019 at 7:20am
    LBudhoo says:
    I think you are a brave and courageous woman to leave your job for your principles . Thank you for all of the work you have done on behalf of a very grateful and frequent visitor. I have two daughters who are both concerned about their future and how to be involved citizens in a new world . I agree that the British Museum could take a lead in educating them .

  • 18 July 2019 at 2:14pm
    stuartf says:
    I don't understand the logic in resigning over funding from BP when the museum's sponsors also include Saudi oil company Saudi Aramco, Japan Tobacco International, Hakluyt (a business intelligence firm which has spied on environmental activists), and other environmentally unfriendly companies including airline Korean Air.

  • 18 July 2019 at 3:02pm
    Marina Vaizey says:
    I am very disappointed by this. Do all the BP protesters travel by foot or by bicycle? Do they protest in other ways or just about sponsorship? And restitution is an unbelievably complex situation. What for example might have happened to the (Elgin) marbles had they been left in situ. And to what part of Nigeria or which representatives of that complex country should Benin bronzes be returned? I have been involved in a repatriation of aboriginal remains and it was very complex working out the geographic destination and tribe, hardly clearcut with the complexity of those cultures. I am all for trying to stay if at all possible to fight for the causes one believes in rather than resigning. What about all the other oil companies some of which also behave despicably in terms of politics. Banks? Drug companies? It is hard to think of any company that can fulfill the ideals we would like, and we all know even how hard it is to behave ethically as consumers, even if we wish to try!! We don't even receive appropriate recycling labelling that we can follow!

  • 18 July 2019 at 3:04pm
    Marina Vaizey says:
    Apologies by the way I believe some Benin art has been LOANED ??? to Nigeria? Hope someone can correct me!

    • 19 July 2019 at 12:33am
      roberte says: @ Marina Vaizey
      Apologise for nothing, Marina. You make the points that any intelligent person would make.

  • 19 July 2019 at 1:47pm
    Geraldine Capper says:
    I'm so sorry you felt you had to resign Ahdaf as you clearly have a perspective that is needed by the British Museum. In this day and age the Museum needs to demonstrate a global vision and recognition of a changing view of countries and peoples. I'm also dismayed by the treatment of longstanding workers! Lastly, to continue to accept funding from BP is disgraceful.

  • 19 July 2019 at 3:03pm
    Deirdre Haslam says:
    You were absolutely right to do so. This is shameful practice on the part of the British Museum

  • 20 July 2019 at 1:29am
    twlldynpobsais says:


    What have you ever resigned from?
    What principle have you ever made a sacrifice for?
    We are keen to know and admire you...

    All these faux "sincere" questions....
    WE???? who are "We"???
    You sound like a religious maniac.
    You're not the Archbishop of Canterbury by any chance??

  • 20 July 2019 at 3:07pm
    TOM REES says:
    I suspect Ahdaf Soueif uses cars or taxis from time to time, maybe buses and diesel-electric trains, perhaps even aeroplanes. All these means of transport are powered by the fuel that companies like BP produce. They are providing not just a valuable, but a vital service to our and every other human society. We can all - even the oil companies - agree that we should use much less oil in future and develop alternative technologies and energy-saving measures as rapidly as possible. But in the meantime we desperately need a reliable supply of very large quantities of oil, and it is better to get it from companies over whose practices we have some control than from the oligarchs in Russia, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela and the like. Companies like BP and Shell also pay large amounts in tax and from their dividends make a really major contribution to the pension plans of the population. If they can be persuaded to support culture and education, so much the better. Let us make use of them while we can, while working hard to make their present activities redundant. Which will not happen tomorrow. Resigning as a trustee of the British Museum is not in any way going to affect the realities of the energy market, though I accept that it may make the resigning trustee feel somehow cleaner morally - until she takes the next taxi or catches the next aeroplane, at any rate.

  • 20 July 2019 at 5:08pm
    Seth Egham says:
    Rather a saddening experience ploughing through these comments. I used to feel that I might learn something from these discussions: thoughtful, informed and sometimes erudite, they gave me the sense of being involved in an intelligent conversation. Have I been deluding myself? What we seem to have here is largely a parade of prejudices being deployed in denial of this writer's views. Depressing. Whilst not unthinkingly agreeing with everything that Ahdaf Soueif has to say, those views- from an informed insider- would seem worth considering. What we seem to have here is little more than a series of prejudiced rebuttals, even featuring conspiracy theory. Contradiction is not refutation. It's the weak-brained, standard-issue, unreflecting conformity of the opposition that worries me. What's happened to the intellectual calibre of LRB readers? I really can't believe that right-wing trolls can really be bothered to register for access to the blog solely to fight a war of position over climate change and 'post-modern, Common Purpose progressivism'. Can they?

  • 20 July 2019 at 5:12pm
    Seth Egham says:
    It seems pretty obvious, even to me with my third-class History degree, that you're making an awful lot of assumptions about what historical museums are for and how they should do it; and by extension about what history is, and what it's for, commonsense 171.

  • 20 July 2019 at 5:12pm
    Seth Egham says:
    It seems pretty obvious, even to me with my third-class History degree, that you're making an awful lot of assumptions about what historical museums are for and how they should do it; and by extension about what history is, and what it's for, commonsense 171.

  • 21 July 2019 at 12:24pm
    immaculate says:
    Ms Soueif has resigned for a number of reasons, the first being her objection to the BM's being partly supported by money from BP (an "oil giant"). She objects to this on environmental grounds.

    I assume that she is consistent in her rejection of all things produced by the oil industry, including all products derived from petrochemicals.

    Naturally, she never flies, drives, or takes a bus. But also, she never buys food or products from any supermarket or shop that is supplied by truck or plane. She buys nothing packaged in plastic. She never uses the underground since plastics are used in fitting the carriages. She has no credit card (made of PVC). The water supply and sewage systems in her dwelling don't use PVC piping. Her electrical cabling isn't sheathed in PVC. None of her shampoos or cosmetics contains any petrochemicals. If she wears glasses, the frames aren't plastic. She doesn't wear soft contact lenses. She doesn't wear trainers or other footwear containing plastics. No parts of her clothing use plastics - the zips, buttons and thread are all made of natural materials. She doesn't have a mobile phone, a laptop or a printer. The books, newspapers and periodicals she reads don't use dyes and inks derived from petrochemicals. Her copy of the LRB isn't delivered in a plastic wrapper.

    I admire her consistency in living a life that completely avoids any contact with petrochemical products. She is so virtuous. I admire the consistency of those LRB readers who live their lives without any contamination by "big oil". They are so virtuous too.

  • 22 July 2019 at 12:47pm
    Anthony Coulson says:
    Sorry, I wasn't impressed with this grandstanding. For me it reeked of politically correct simple-mindedness. It's true that substantial arguments on one issue or the other could be made, but they aren't here. I wondered how the man got appointed to the Board of Trustees in the first place.

    • 24 July 2019 at 7:01am
      pgillott says: @ Anthony Coulson
      Ahdaf Soueif refers to three reasons for her resignation: BP’s “very high profile sponsorship”, the museum’s treatment of staff who’d been employed via Carillion, and its alleged unwillingness to enter a debate about where cultural artefacts belong. It seems to me that the second and third points are each gone through in sufficient detail to support her position. One can question her apparently taking it as more or less axiomatic that BP is a Bad Thing – as has been done in other comments on here – but to me it seems that what you’re saying could do with some more “substantial argument”.

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