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Lost in the Void

Jonathan Littell: In Ciudad Juárez, 7 June 2012

... is sitting on a segment of the border, and for now things are relatively quiet, though more than forty policemen have been killed this year, including a number of commanders, some of them members of La Línea, the others defectors to El Chapo’s side. But it’s a complicated affair. A former Juárez sicario, currently in hiding in the US, testifies ...

Last Night Fever

David Cannadine: The Proms, 6 September 2007

... the London Symphony Orchestras, and as Wood himself began to share the heavy conducting load with Adrian Boult and Basil Cameron. Boult and Cameron (along with Constant Lambert) conducted the Proms in the 1945 season, including the final concert, but this was an occasion which neither enjoyed, as they were ‘pelted with flowers’ by the audience. Nor were ...

Bunnymooning

Philip French, 6 June 1996

The Fatal Englishman: Three Short Lives 
by Sebastian Faulks.
Hutchinson, 309 pp., £16.99, April 1996, 0 09 179211 8
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... met Jeremy in December 1954, at the end of our first term, when the editor-designate of Isis, Adrian Mitchell, appointed me as the next term’s deputy news editor and Jeremy as one of his two Union reporters (the other being Christopher Driver). I knew him by reputation. There were people quite as clever as Jeremy, several of them his friends, but ...

Why should you be the only ones that sin?

Colm Tóibín, 5 September 1996

Thomas Mann: Eros and Literature 
by Anthony Heilbut.
Macmillan, 636 pp., £20, June 1996, 9780394556338
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Thomas Mann: A Biography 
by Ronald Hayman.
Bloomsbury, 672 pp., £20, March 1996, 0 7475 2531 5
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Thomas Mann: A Life 
by Donald Prater.
Oxford, 554 pp., £20, September 1995, 0 19 815861 0
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... destinies of most of his heroes – Hanno Buddenbrooks, Tonio Kröger, Aschenbach, Hans Castorp, Adrian Leverkuhn, Felix Krull – are shaped by their uneasy and ambiguous homosexuality. For Mann being German came first, and he learned, as Anthony Heilbut rather quaintly puts it, to read German history as one long queer epic – he alluded to Frederick the ...

Rough Trade

Steven Shapin: Robert Hooke, 6 March 2003

The Man Who Knew Too Much: The Strange and Inventive Life of Robert Hooke 1635-1703 
by Stephen Inwood.
Macmillan, 497 pp., £18.99, September 2002, 0 333 78286 0
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... at once wholly natural and deeply problematic in Restoration scientific circles. As Rob Iliffe and Adrian Johns have shown, it was the norm for mechanics and tradesmen vigorously to contest intellectual property rights and to withhold secrets that might lead to financial gain: after all, their business was at stake. Mathematicians followed similar ...

You Muddy Fools

Dan Jacobson: In the months before his death Ian Hamilton talked about himself to Dan Jacobson, 14 January 2002

... lot of in East Anglia. He was also in the Royal Observer Corps. Well, he’d have been then about forty. He was born in 1900. I think I was about twelve when we moved to the North. After the war he was on short contracts all around the place and was rarely at home. Then – in 1951 – came this opportunity to get a longer contract in Darlington, County ...

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