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Writing the Night

Hugh Haughton, 25 January 1996

Selected Poems 
by David Gascoyne.
Enitharmon, 253 pp., £8.95, November 1994, 1 870612 34 5
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... the three ‘internationalist’ poets singled out by Samuel Beckett – Thomas MacGreevey, Denis Devlin and Brian Coffey – all stuttered to a standstill in mid-career: MacGreevey turned away from poetry altogether; Devlin never published another collection after Lough Derg and Other Poems (1946), though his best ...

Particularly Anodyne

Richard Norton-Taylor: One bomb in London, 15 July 2021

The Intelligence War against the IRA 
by Thomas Leahy.
Cambridge, 356 pp., £18.99, March 2020, 978 1 108 72040 3
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... Haggarty was released in May 2018, after four months’ imprisonment. Leahy picks out the case of Denis Donaldson, a member of Sinn Féin who was recruited as an informer by the RUC Special Branch. He was arrested in 2002 by the PSNI (which had replaced the RUC the year before) for suspected involvement in a spy ring at Stormont. Charges against him were ...
Who Framed Colin Wallace? 
by Paul Foot.
Macmillan, 306 pp., £12.95, May 1989, 0 333 47008 7
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... of Hugh Gaitskell; lists were drawn up of such notorious Communists or Communist sympathisers as Brian Walden, David Owen, Robert Mellish, John Stonehouse, Roy Hattersley and Reg Prentice; and even a bogus pamphlet on ‘revolutionary strategy’ for the installation of socialism in Britain was contrived for off-the-record briefing of American ...
Western Diseases: Their Emergence and Prevention 
edited by H.C. Trowell and D.P. Burkitt.
Arnold, 456 pp., £28.50, March 1981, 0 7131 4373 8
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The Diseases of Civilisation 
by Brain Inglis.
Hodder, 371 pp., £10.95, September 1981, 0 340 21717 0
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... it is suggested should follow from it, are quite different in the two cases. Hugh Trowell and Denis Burkitt are a distinguished physician and surgeon who have spent most of their professional lives in Africa; with T.L. Cleave and G.D. Campbell, they have probably contributed more than anyone else to our understanding of the relation between the health ...

Keep the baby safe

Stephen Sedley: Corrupt and Deprave, 10 March 2022

A Matter of Obscenity: The Politics of Censorship in Modern England 
by Christopher Hilliard.
Princeton, 320 pp., £28, September 2021, 978 0 691 19798 2
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... either confusing or boring). But nothing availed against the combined hostility of the prosecutor, Brian Leary, and the judge, Michael Argyle QC. The jury convicted, and the accused were jailed. They were bailed pending appeal, and in November 1971 their appeals were allowed on the ground that Argyle had failed to give the jury an adequate direction on the ...

Let them cut grass

Linda Colley, 16 December 1993

The Downing Street Years 
by Margaret Thatcher.
HarperCollins, 914 pp., £25, October 1993, 0 00 255049 0
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... a couple of incontinent pet dogs. But foreign statesmen could fare little better. That same year, Brian Mulroney and Rajiv Gandhi scurried to show her ‘their best efforts’ on a draft communiqué on South Africa, ‘Alas, I could not give them high marks’ is her verdict. Of course, this is only her version of events. But that’s what makes it ...

Is this successful management?

R.W. Johnson, 20 April 1989

One of Us: A Biography of Margaret Thatcher 
by Hugo Young.
Macmillan, 570 pp., £16.95, April 1989, 0 333 34439 1
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... traditional Tory worthies on the 19th green can hardly have been easy, and it’s not certain that Denis would have been altogether an asset. All we know for certain is that a new Tory agent was hired in 1962 with the mission of rebuilding the constituency party organisation almost from scratch and that in 1964 Mrs Thatcher managed to hold the anti-Tory swing ...

Outbreak of Pleasure

Angus Calder, 23 January 1986

Now the war is over: A Social History of Britain 1945-51 
by Paul Addison.
BBC/Cape, 223 pp., £10.95, September 1985, 0 563 20407 9
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England First and Last 
by Anthony Bailey.
Faber, 212 pp., £12.50, October 1985, 0 571 13587 0
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A World Still to Win: The Reconstruction of the Post-War Working Class 
by Trevor Blackwell and Jeremy Seabrook.
Faber, 189 pp., £4.50, October 1985, 0 571 13701 6
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The Issue of War: States, Societies and the Far Eastern Conflict of 1941-1945 
by Christopher Thorne.
Hamish Hamilton, 364 pp., £15, April 1985, 0 241 10239 1
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The Hiroshima Maidens 
by Rodney Barker.
Viking, 240 pp., £9.95, July 1985, 0 670 80609 9
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Faces of Hiroshima: A Report 
by Anne Chisholm.
Cape, 182 pp., £9.95, August 1985, 0 224 02831 6
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End of Empire 
by Brain Lapping.
Granada, 560 pp., £14.95, March 1985, 0 246 11969 1
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by Simon Winchester.
Hodder, 317 pp., £12.95, October 1985, 0 340 33772 9
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... stroke play. There was nothing austere in the manner in which London’s favourite pro, Denis Compton, amassed runs in 1947, and by the end of the decade rare ‘class’ was being shown by such public-school amateurs as Peter May and David Sheppard. In 1949, such was the craze for sport, 90,000 people turned up to watch the FA Amateur Cup Final. As ...


Alan Bennett: Notes on 1997, 1 January 1998

... could scarcely do better (or worse) than the one which circumstances have devised.6 March. Sir Denis Mahon has been paying frequent visits to Discovering the Italian Baroque, the exhibition of his collection at the National Gallery, to whom he has bequeathed many of the pictures that are on show. The other day a warder watched him for some time then came ...

Criminal Justice

Ronan Bennett, 24 June 1993

... not only each other but many others, three of whom were charged: Paul Colman, John McGuinness and Brian Anderson. These three did not make any incriminating statements and were released before the trial because of lack of evidence, but the detectives’ barristers in Court Eight could just as easily have been talking about the ‘so-called innocent Guildford ...

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