Teachers who inspired me as an undergraduate, part 2: Stuart Corbridge

Stuart Corbridge is now a silver-haired Professor of International Development at the LSE (below left), but I still think of him as an intense, clench-fisted firebrand (below right) whose style I tried and failed to emulate when I started lecturing. (It took me a while to find a style I’m comfortable with – more relaxed, more humourous, not so stern.)


I still remember Corbridge’s presence, the inspiring way he lectured. I don’t remember him influencing my ideas as much. He did, I think, try to warn me away from methodological individualism, by linking it to Margaret Thatcher’s ‘no such thing as society’ comment. I loathed Thatcher and felt less keen on methodological individualism for a while. Eventually, though, I saw that I could accept methodological individualism without endorsing Thatcher.

Ultimately, Corbridge’s main influence on me was as a role model. Some young men wanted to be James Bond; I wanted to be Stuart Corbridge. And now I am, except with more jokes, less fist-clenching, and no such thing as society.

Leave a comment


  1. Sheila Magnus

     /  January 5, 2015

    funny that you think you are Corbridge already. Shouldn’t it be upto your students?

    • DMy fraternity back in college always made beer shakes for St. Patty’s Day. One simply combined vanilla ice cream, a pint of Killians or Guinness, and green food coloring, and blended until smooth.I love the idea of trying this with a christmas ale though!

  1. Teachers who inspired me as an undergraduate, part 4: Mark Goldie | BlauBlog

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