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It should have ended with Verdi

John Davis: The Battle of Adwa, 24 May 2012

The Battle of Adwa: African Victory in the Age of Empire 
by Raymond Jonas.
Harvard, 413 pp., £22.95, November 2011, 978 0 674 05274 1
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... Ababa (its construction was managed by his most trusted foreign adviser, a Swiss engineer named Alfred Ilg). Americans, Russians, Italians and even Arthur Rimbaud, the poet turned arms dealer, came to do business with the king of Shoa. There had been Italians in Ethiopia from much earlier, mainly missionaries like Father (later Cardinal) Guglielmo ...

Le Grand Jacques

R.W. Johnson, 9 October 1986

Jacques Doriot: Du Communisme au Fascisme 
by Jean-Paul Brunet.
Balland, Paris, 563 pp., August 1986, 2 7158 0561 6
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... in. Le Roy Ladurie, head of the Worms bank, was a notable contributor, but the Verre, BNCI and Dreyfus banks chipped in, as did Rothschilds, Lazard Frères, the Banque de I’ Indo-chine, all manner of employers’ associations and business pressure groups, the De Wendel empire, the Comité des Forges, Rhône Poulenc, Mazda Lamps, and so on. All this money ...

Jottings, Scraps and Doodles

Adam Shatz: Lévi-Strauss, 3 November 2011

Claude Levi-Strauss: The Poet in the Laboratory 
by Patrick Wilcken.
Bloomsbury, 375 pp., £30, November 2011, 978 0 7475 8362 2
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... was ‘no more than a memory’ at home. Still, as a Jew born in 1908, he felt the impact of the Dreyfus Affair. In a series of interviews conducted with Didier Eribon in the late 1980s and collected in De près et de loin, he spoke of being bullied at school, and of his embattled sense of difference as a member of a national community that didn’t fully ...

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