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A Capitalist’s Dream

Andrew Ross: Interns

19 May 2011
Intern Nation: How to Earn Nothing and Learn Little in the Brave New Economy 
by Ross​ Perlin.
Verso, 258 pp., £14.99, May 2011, 978 1 84467 686 6
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... only is interning the fastest-growing job category, it is also fashionable, with Kanye West signed on at the Gap and Lady Gaga in line to be taught about millinery by Philip Treacy. In Intern Nation, Ross Perlin, a survivor of serial internships on three continents, describes the lengths to which graduates must go to secure an unpaid intern position (often the first of many) that might help them build ...


John Gray

20 April 1995
The Fading of the Greens: The Decline of Environmental Politics in the West 
by Anna Bramwell.
Yale, 224 pp., £18.95, September 1994, 0 300 06040 8
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The Chicago Gangster Theory of Life: Nature’s Debt to Society 
by Andrew Ross.
Verso, 308 pp., £18.95, October 1994, 0 86091 429 1
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Green Delusions: An Environmentalist Critique of Radical Environmentalism 
by Martin Lewis.
Duke, 288 pp., $12.95, February 1994, 0 8223 1474 6
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... of a paradox, in that the preferred mode of explanation for American neo-liberalism has always previously been economic. It is to the surprising, and perhaps ominous, recrudescence of biologism that AndrewRoss devotes some of the most interesting chapters of The Chicago Gangster Theory of Life. Ross makes some shrewd and witty criticisms of recent exclusions by natural scientists into sociobiology ...

It looks so charming

Tom Vanderbilt: Sweatshops

29 October 1998
No Sweat: Fashion, Free Trade, and the Rights of Garment Workers 
edited by Andrew Ross.
Verso, 256 pp., £14, September 1997, 1 85984 172 4
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... and are restricted to the image itself, as if that were the final arbiter of social justice: ‘positive’ representations equal ‘positive’ social change. Even the editor of No Sweat, AndrewRoss, slips into this thinking. Commenting on the black models who have begun to appear in ads for Hilfiger and other companies, he notes that ‘such images, presented as the epitome of beauty, are ...

Thank you, Disney

Jenny Diski: The Town that Disney Built

24 August 2000
The Celebration Chronicles: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Property Value in Disney’s New Town 
by Andrew Ross.
Verso, 340 pp., £17, June 2000, 1 85984 772 2
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Celebration, USA: Living in Disney’s Brave New Town 
by Douglas Frantz and Catherine Collins.
Holt, 342 pp., £18.99, September 1999, 0 8050 5560 6
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... Great empire-builders in the past have wanted to leave monuments, and so perhaps did Eisner, who described the architect Aldo Rossi’s office building at Celebration as ‘our own La Défense’. AndrewRoss relates that a few years before that Rossi had broken off discussions with Eisner about designing a building for Euro Disney, declaring: ‘I realise I am not Bernini. But you are not the King ...

Grunge Futurism

Julian Loose

4 November 1993
Virtual Light 
by William Gibson.
Viking, 336 pp., £14.99, September 1993, 0 670 84081 5
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Terminal Identity: The Virtual Subject in Post-Modern Science Fiction 
by Scott Bukatman.
Duke, 416 pp., £15.95, August 1993, 0 8223 1340 5
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... is a relief to come across a critic who dares to suggest that today’s grunge futurism might be just as naive as anything that appeared in Amazing Stories. In his essay ‘Cyberpunk in Boystown’, AndrewRoss observes that for all its radical gloss, the movement offers only ‘a one-way ticket to a future that we must try to make obsolescent as quickly as possible’. He chides cyberpunk for its ...


Andrew​ O’Hagan: The Good Traitor

24 September 2014
No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA and the Surveillance State 
by Glenn Greenwald.
Hamish Hamilton, 259 pp., £20, May 2014, 978 0 241 14669 9
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... a dramatic onscreen graphic carrying the legend ‘Should Glenn Greenwald be prosecuted?’ Walter Pincus of the Washington Post felt it was all Julian Assange’s doing (which it wasn’t), while AndrewRoss Sorkin of the New York Times used his CNBC show to say he would arrest Greenwald for seeming to want to get Snowden to Ecuador. Perhaps we should just be grateful that these commentators didn ...

Not Enough Delilahs

Andrew​ O’Hagan: Lillian Ross

4 July 2019
by Lillian Ross.
NYRB, 219 pp., £14.99, June, 978 1 68137 315 7
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... I’ve never met​ anybody who hated as many people as Lillian Ross did. She would count their names off on her fingers, regularly within spitting distance of them, and her voice wasn’t quiet and she wasn’t shy. Bending back each digit and making a face, she’d ...

Short Cuts

Andrew​ O’Hagan: Voices from Beyond the Grave

20 November 2008
... as if he were questioning him with a view to offering him something at the Foreign Office. Which just goes to show that broadcasting vices existed long before the days of Russell Brand and Jonathan Ross. None of the English writers on the British Library CD has a regional accent: Joe Orton doesn’t sound like a boy from Leicester, but like someone from Rada, which claimed only a few years of his ...


Ian Hamilton

28 September 1989
Wartime: Understanding and Behaviour in the Second World War 
by Paul Fussell.
Oxford, 330 pp., £15, September 1989, 0 19 503797 9
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War like a Wasp: The Lost Decade of the Forties 
by Andrew​ Sinclair.
Hamish Hamilton, 312 pp., £17.95, October 1989, 0 241 12531 6
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... 10,000 pages of exquisite poetry and prose’ in a publication of ‘almost unbelievable excellence’. Tell that to the Marines. Paul Fussell’s book from time to time seems hasty and ill-judged. Andrew Sinclair’s War like a Wasp reads as if it was composed in an air-raid shelter, under heavy bombardment. On its jacket we read that Sinclair’s ‘involvement with his childhood and adolescence in ...
5 April 1984
Home and Dry: Memoirs III 
by Roy Fuller.
London Magazine Editions, 165 pp., £8.95, February 1984, 0 904388 47 6
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... he enjoys a ‘Hibernian idyll’. Since on other evidence the poet is a football fan, it may be that he was long ago misled by the name of a Scottish team: but can it be that his publisher, Alan Ross, suffers the same inveterate delusion? Perhaps this is one of those tiny harmless in-jokes of which the author is so fond, and which contribute so much to one’s entertainment. This last volume is ...

Living the Life

Andrew​ O’Hagan

5 October 2016
Powerhouse: The Untold Story of Hollywood’s Creative Artists Agency 
by James Andrew​ Miller.
Custom House, 703 pp., £20, August 2016, 978 0 06 244137 9
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... would require storytellers – and that’s before we even get to the internet. In the age of ‘streaming’, of Netflix, Amazon and YouTube, there are 700 agents at CAA, but the story told in James Andrew Miller’s riveting book is really about the personalities who invented the game. It is, more particularly, the story of what Michael Ovitz gave to the world and what that world took away from him ...

Is that it for the NHS?

Peter Roderick: Is that it for the NHS?

3 December 2015
... Initiative. Clarke was able to say on the sixtieth birthday of the NHS in 2008 that ‘in the late 1980s I would have said it is politically impossible to do what we are now doing.’ Then came Andrew Lansley’s Health and Social Care Act 2012. No longer does the government – or anybody else – have a legal duty to provide hospital services throughout England. The hundred or so NHS trusts were ...

The Mess They’re In

Ross​ McKibbin: Labour’s Limited Options

20 October 2011
... he made a mess of the negotiations that led to the formation of the coalition, and a mess of the AV referendum (from which, however, he has ‘moved on’ with great speed); he saw no difficulty with Andrew Lansley’s health legislation until first the medical professions, then his party, cut up rough; he has acquiesced in educational proposals that will do nothing to promote his stated aim of social ...

No Longer Merely the Man Who Ate His Boots

Thomas Jones: The Northwest Passage

27 May 2010
Arctic Labyrinth: The Quest for the Northwest Passage 
by Glyn Williams.
Allen Lane, 440 pp., £25, October 2009, 978 1 84614 138 6
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Franklin: Tragic Hero of Polar Navigation 
by Andrew​ Lambert.
Faber, 428 pp., £20, July 2009, 978 0 571 23160 7
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... Wars over, two expeditions were simultaneously sent out by the Admiralty, with the support of the Prince Regent and large financial rewards promised by Parliament for even partial success. John Ross was to look for a northwest passage through Baffin Bay; David Buchan was to head north past Spitsbergen, with luck into the open polar sea and out the Bering Strait into the Pacific. On 29 August ...
16 December 1993
Aren’t We Due a Royalty Statement? 
by Giles Gordon.
Chatto, 352 pp., £16.99, August 1993, 0 7011 6022 5
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Yesterday Came Suddenly 
by Francis King.
Constable, 336 pp., £16.95, September 1993, 9780094722200
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Excursions in the Real World 
by William Trevor.
Hutchinson, 201 pp., £16.99, September 1993, 0 09 177086 6
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... this book, I must be missing a lot of jokes. When Gordon speaks of other writers, ‘including he who was to become Lord Archer’, and a little later tells us that he was employed to teach Prince Andrew to write grammatically, I am at a loss. I feel there must be a joke in there somewhere. Of course it is a perfectly acceptable ploy for a writer to be deliberately silly but I simply cannot decide ...

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