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22 March 2018
The Weeping Time: Memory and the Largest Slave Auction in American History 
by Anne C. Bailey.
Cambridge, 197 pp., £19.99, November 2017, 978 1 316 64348 8
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... lot was spoken for and then, Thomson reported, handed out ‘one whole dollar, in specie’, to each of the slaves who had been sold. The Savannah auction is the starting point of The Weeping Time by AnneC.Bailey, who teaches African-American and African history at Binghamton University in New York State. Her opening chapter recounting the sale of the Butler slaves is riveting but somewhat brief ...

F for Felon

Roy Porter: Policing and Punishment in London 1660-1750: Urban Crime and the Limits of Terror by J.M. Beattie.

4 April 2002
Policing and Punishment in London 1660-1750: Urban Crime and the Limits of Terror 
by J.M. Beattie.
Oxford, 491 pp., £48, July 2001, 0 19 820867 7
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... the privileged interests of landed capitalism. Such simplistic readings of the criminal justice system were decisively challenged a generation ago by the bold reformulations of E.P. Thompson and his co-workers. In a series of inspirational writings – an edited volume, Albion’s Fatal Tree: Crime and Society in 18th-Century England (1975), and a brace of books: Whigs and Hunters: The Origin of ...
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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... change was rapidly undermining the high rationalist humanism of Late Victorian social reform. At this stage, one of Toryism’s least secret weapons was the Young Conservative organisation. Anthony Bailey, then a schoolboy in Hampshire, recalls: ‘I did a number of things purely because they provided a way of meeting girls. I joined the local branch of the Young Conservatives for that purpose. Labour ...
15 September 1988
... I spent ten days in May in Russia on a visit arranged by the Great Britain-USSR Society. My colleagues were the novelists Paul Bailey, Christopher Hope and Timothy Mo (who also writes for Boxing News), the poet Craig Raine (who doesn’t) and the playwright Sue Townsend of Adrian Mole fame. I had many misgivings about the trip ...

My Cat All My Pleasure

Gillian Darley: Georgian Life

19 August 2010
Behind Closed Doors: At Home in Georgian England 
by Amanda Vickery.
Yale, 382 pp., £20, October 2009, 978 0 300 15453 5
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... Vickery finds a great deal of information about everyday life, much of it previously hidden. ‘Access to privacy,’ she notes, ‘was an index of power.’ Her examining of records from the Old Bailey brings to light the formerly blanked-out domestic detail of rough lodging houses and servants’ quarters. The testimonies offered in cases of breaking and entering tell of scant furnishings and ...
7 March 1991
The Theatre of Embarrassment 
by Francis Wyndham.
Chatto, 205 pp., £15, February 1991, 0 7011 3726 6
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... He was also writing pieces in his own highly original style – pieces that were often regarded as frivolous and camp, and whichcertainly broke the rules. It never leaked out, fortunately, that Bailey had suggested doing a piece with Wyndham about a Martian who was working in the wallpaper department at Sanderson’s – this at a time when Merlin was seen walking out of Waitrose in the King’s ...

True Stories

Michael Irwin

30 March 1989
Have the men had enough? 
by Margaret Forster.
Chatto, 251 pp., £12.95, March​ 1989, 0 7011 3400 3
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Aurora’s Motive 
by Erich​ Hackl, translated by Edna McCown.
Cape, 117 pp., £10.95, March​ 1989, 0 224 02584 8
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The Open Door 
by Alan Sillitoe.
Grafton, 358 pp., £11.95, February 1989, 0 246 13422 4
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... t like men’ and hence loved her sons less than she loved her daughter. Neither of these possibilities is dramatised with sufficient energy to make it interesting, but in any case the two can hardly co-exist. Aurora’s Motive’, more baldly, is a true story: in fact, Erich Hackl concludes by listing his main sources. His tale is startling and intriguing. Aurora Rodriguez, born 1890, daughter of a ...

Killing Stripes

Christopher Turner: Suits

31 May 2017
Sex and Suits: The Evolution of Modern Dress 
by Anne​ Hollander.
Bloomsbury, reissue, 158 pp., £19.99, August 2016, 978 1 4742 5065 8
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The Suit: Form, Function and Style 
by Christopher Breward.
Reaktion, 240 pp., £18, May 2016, 978 1 78023 523 3
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... I went​ to Henry Poole & Co, the oldest tailor on Savile Row, for a fitting. Suits start at £5500, and I couldn’t afford to have one made, but the firm had agreed to teach me the principles of bespoke tailoring by measuring ...


Margaret Anne​ Doody

5 August 1993
The Culture of Sensibility: Sex and Society in 18th-century Britain 
by G.J. Barker-Benfield.
Chicago, 520 pp., £39.95, October 1992, 0 226 03713 4
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Eighteenth-Century Sensibility and the Novel: The Senses in Social Context 
by Ann Jessie van Sant.
Cambridge, 143 pp., £27.95, January 1993, 0 521 40226 3
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Drunks, Whores and Idle Apprentices: Criminal Biographies of the 18th Century 
by Philip Rawlings.
Routledge, 222 pp., £40, October 1992, 0 415 05056 1
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Mother Clap’s Molly House: The Gay Subculture in England 1700-1830 
by Rictor Norton.
Gay Men’s Press, 302 pp., £12.95, September 1992, 0 85449 188 0
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... often thought of as super-civilised, a sign of corrupt refinement – in the belief that they could stamp it out. Their persecutions led to the prosecutions which Norton has followed through the Old Bailey Sessions Papers. The information he brings us from this source draws a new geography of London and offers a vision of a social world never discussed by conventional history. The public privies or ...
4 May 2016
‘Vogue’ 100: A Century of Style 
by Robin Muir.
National Portrait Gallery, 304 pp., £40, February 2016, 978 1 85514 561 0
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‘Vogue’ 100: A Century of Style 
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... serves seeded white grapes with little cubes of Dutchcheese (it’s ‘quite charming’) – before quickly retreating in the face of the abdication crisis. Once it was over, Vogue rushed to the Château de Candé. Beaton recorded the newly vulgarised Duke and Duchess of Windsor, as beautiful and brittle and un-majesté as any model or movie star. She was, Beaton said, ‘as compact as a ...

Is the lady your sister?

E.S. Turner: An innkeeper’s diary

27 April 2000
An Innkeeper's Diary 
by John Fothergill.
Faber, 278 pp., £23.95, January 2000, 0 571 15014 4
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... fellow is thinking of having an aeroplane landing-ground for the benefit of his clients and of Thame. This Folio Society reissue comes in the expected fine binding and with illustrations by Peter Bailey, but without any notes to identify all the one-time celebrities, half-celebrities or ‘significant people’, as Fothergill rates them, who throng the road to Thame. Many famous names are dropped ...


Thomas Jones: Death in Florence

21 June 2012
... Victorian house, which was divided into four flats in the early 1980s. According to the 1901 census, there were nine people living there at the turn of the last century: Richard Roberts, his wife Anne, their sons Robert, Richard E(llis) and Arthur, their daughter Margaret, and three servants – the cook, Sarah Reece, and two teenage housemaids, Emily Lunmir and Ethel Bailey. The eldest son ...

Sight, Sound and Sex

Adam Mars-Jones: Dana Spiotta

17 March 2016
Innocents and Others 
by Dana Spiotta.
Scribner, 278 pp., £17.95, March​ 2016, 978 1 5011 2272 9
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... Bestsellers achieve special ontological status on the screen, and the classics get retrospective plastic surgery, so that Jay Gatsby receives the looks first of Robert Redford then Leonardo DiCaprio. Anne Hathaway’s blandly pretty mask is tied with cinematic ribbon over Jane Austen’s blurry features – a criminal defacement however photogenic the impostor. Traffic the other way, taking cinema as ...
3 July 1980
Gramsci​ and Marxist Theory 
edited by Chantal Mouffe.
Routledge, 288 pp., £9.50, November 1979, 0 7100 0358 7
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Gramsci​ and the State 
by Christine Buci-Glucksmann.
Lawrence​ and Wishart, 470 pp., £14, February 1980, 9780853154839
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Gramsci’s Politics 
by Anne​ Showstack​ Sassoon.
Croom Helm, 261 pp., £12.95, April 1980, 9780709903260
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... for ever innocent of epistemological breaks or (Ms Buci-Glucksmann’s revelation) the ‘gnoseology of politics’. The question of translation is relevant here. In an earlier essay written with Anne Sassoon, Chantal Mouffe castigated English-language discussion of Gramsci as ‘naive’, because ignorant of Franco-Italian theoretical developments. The charge was justified, in spite of one ...
24 June 1993
... that he be released only in the event of grave illness or extreme old age. Paul Hill, aged 21, had in effect been sentenced to remain in prison until the morning of his death. Like Hill and his co-accused, I was released from my wrongful imprisonment by the Court of Appeal, mercifully after a much shorter time inside. I write, then, as a former prisoner, and I write as an Irishman, as someone ...

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