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2 March 1989
Tocqueville: A Biography 
by André Jardin, translated by Lydia Davis and Robert Hemenway.
Peter Halban, 550 pp., £18, October 1988, 1 870015 13 4
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... model of revolution, and has been excessively relied on as a counter to Marxian claims about the revolutionary consequences of the immiseration of the working class. The great merit of AndréJardin’s Toc queville is its reminder of how much more there was to Tocqueville than his books. Though the two great books occupied an important place in Tocqueville’s life, and rightly occupy a good ...

At the Fondation Louis Vuitton

Julian Barnes: The Shchukin Collection

19 January 2017
... of indistinct greenery, apart from a gesture of leaves in the top left-hand corner, like a gigantic verdant ear of corn. At the Vuitton it is placed between two Picassos: the 1908 Maisonette dans un jardin and the 1909 L’Usine à Horta de Ebro. Art is not a competition (except when it is), but the Braque quietly gives the other two pictures a lesson in harmony (not that they were aiming at harmony ...

Report from Sirius B

Jeremy Harding: ‘Phantom Africa’

22 March 2018
Phantom Africa 
by Michel Leiris, translated by Brent Hayes Edwards.
Seagull, 711 pp., £42, January 2017, 978 0 85742 377 1
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... a strong, musky smell’. Two days later: ‘The hyenas are smelling worse and worse … Griaule dreamed that his bed was full of snakes (by association with the smell of the snake house at the Jardin des Plantes).’ The thought of France is never far away: both a place of venomous danger, festering between two wars, and the great repository to which all cultures must pay tribute by yielding up ...
15 June 2016
The Other Paris: An Illustrated Journey through a City’s Poor and Bohemian Past 
by Luc Sante.
Faber, 306 pp., £25, November 2015, 978 0 571 24128 6
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How the French Think: An Affectionate Portrait of an Intellectual People 
by Sudhir Hazareesingh.
Allen Lane, 427 pp., £20, June 2015, 978 1 84614 602 2
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... following year. During the siege, Sante reminds us, hunger drove Parisians to extremes: mouse pâté with fur in the mix; cats and rats; ‘dog-liver brochettes’. Eventually the specimens in the Jardin d’Acclimatation were ‘sacrificed in inverse order to their popularity: yaks, zebras and water buffalo in late October; antelopes a week later; in mid-November boars, reindeer, the kangaroo, the ...

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