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By San Carlos Water

Neal Ascherson

18 November 1982
Authors take sides on the Falklands 
edited by Cecil Woolf and Jean Moorcroft Wilson.
Cecil Woolf, 144 pp., £4.95, August 1982, 0 900821 63 9
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The Falklands War: The Full Story 
by the Sunday Times ‘Insight’ Team.
Deutsch and Sphere, 276 pp., £2.50, October 1982, 0 233 97515 2
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The Winter War: The Falklands 
by Patrick Bishop and John Witherow.
Quartet, 153 pp., £2.95, September 1982, 0 7043 3424 0
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Iron Britannia: Why Parliament waged its Falklands war 
by Anthony Barnett.
Allison and Busby, 160 pp., £2.95, November 1982, 0 85031 494 1
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Falklands/Malvinas: Whose Crisis? 
by Martin Honeywell.
Latin American Bureau, 135 pp., £1.95, September 1982, 0 906156 15 7
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Los Chicos de la Guerra 
by Daniel Kon.
Editorial Galerna, Buenos Aires, August 1982
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A Message from the Falklands: The Life and Gallant Death of David Tinker, Lieut RN 
compiled by Hugh Tinker.
Junction, 224 pp., £3.50, November 1982, 0 86245 102 7
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... supply, the Hebrideans can despair. The ‘marginality’ argument also snaps the point off the damaging question of Diego Garcia, raised, in this group of books, by the Latin American Bureau and by AnthonyBarnett. If the kelpers were too few and boring to be rescued, what was wrong with throwing the population of Diego Garcia out of their homes to make way for an American air base? The Diego Garcians ...

Jailbreak from the Old Order

David Edgar: England’s Brexit

25 April 2018
The Lure of Greatness: England’s Brexit and America’s Trump 
by Anthony Barnett.
Unbound, 393 pp., £8.99, August 2017, 978 1 78352 453 2
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... investigation. In the eyes of most commentators, there were two prime suspects: the responsibility for the Brexit vote lay with either economic privation or cultural loss. In The Lure of Greatness, AnthonyBarnett, the founder of Charter 88 and co-founder of Open Democracy, has identified a third: the constitution. Those who focus on the economic explanation, for Brexit as for the election of Donald ...

Excellent Enigmas

Christopher Reid

24 January 1980
Lies and Secrets 
by John Fuller.
Secker, 70 pp., £3.50, October 1980, 0 436 16753 0
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Crossing 
by John Matthias.
Anvil, 125 pp., £3.25, October 1980, 0 85646 035 4
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Growing Up 
by Michael Horovitz.
Allison and Busby, 96 pp., £4.95, October 1980, 0 85031 232 9
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Report to the Working Party. Asylum. Otiose [preceded by] After 
by Anthony Barnett.
Nothing Doing, 121 pp., £4.80, August 1980, 0 901494 17 8
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... underground magazines of the Sixties, where clutter and muddle were the major aesthetic aims. The title, Report to the Working Party. Asylum. Otiose [preceded by] After, is the most verbose part of AnthonyBarnett’s latest book. No logorrhoea here: this writer specialises in costive miniatures, hard little pellets of incommunicativeness, that flummoxed me. In a previous volume, AnthonyBarnett showed ...

A Long Forgotten War

Jenny Diski: Sheila Rowbotham

6 July 2000
Promise of a Dream: A Memoir of the 1960s 
by Sheila Rowbotham.
Allen Lane, 262 pp., £18.99, July 2000, 0 7139 9446 0
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... the Ox is Oppression’ with ‘I disagree with you 100 per cent,’ she couldn’t face the next discussion on her paper ‘Cinderella Organises Buttons’. She cowered in the pub lavatory to escape AnthonyBarnett, who had been detailed by the board to fetch her, while he stood outside demanding that she come out and discuss her article ‘rationally and politically’. A week later the board received ...

Here come the judges

Conor Gearty: The constitution

4 June 1998
This Time: Our Constitutional Revolution 
by Anthony Barnett.
Vintage, 371 pp., £6.99, December 1997, 0 09 926858 2
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The Voice of the People: A Constitution for Tomorrow 
by Robert Alexander.
Weidenfeld, 214 pp., £17.99, September 1997, 0 297 84109 2
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The Making and Remaking of the British Constitution 
by Lord Nolan and Stephen Sedley.
Blackstone, 142 pp., £19.95, November 1997, 1 85431 704 0
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... baby in one hand and a cappuccino in the other. Now the trendier of our politicians and intellectuals carry the People in their rucksacks. Primus inter people is the founding director of Charter 88, AnthonyBarnett, whose book attempts to recapture for his constitutionalist tendency the drama of ‘our constitutional revolution’: ‘“we the people” – to use a long-coined phrase that may finally ...

Pow-Wow

Mary Beard

26 October 1989
After Thatcher 
by Paul Hirst.
Collins, 254 pp., £7.99, September 1989, 0 00 215169 3
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Out of Apathy: Voices of the New Left Thirty Years On 
Verso, 172 pp., £22.95, August 1989, 0 86091 232 9Show More
Essays on Politics and Literature 
by Bernard Crick.
Edinburgh, 259 pp., £25, August 1989, 0 85224 621 8
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... the stuff of John Cleese TV commercials, but not really a bona fide left-wing issue. Likewise a written Bill of Rights has not had a big place on the agenda of the Left. To be fair, Lord Scarman and Anthony Lester (also founder signatories of Charter 88) have long argued that such a Bill was a necessary step in the protection of civil liberties. But the recent history of the campaign for a Bill of ...

Palmerstonian

Bernard Porter: The Falklands War

20 October 2005
The Official History of the Falklands Campaign. Vol. I: The Origins of the Falklands War 
by Lawrence Freedman.
Routledge, 253 pp., £35, June 2005, 0 7146 5206 7
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The Official History of the Falklands Campaign. Vol. II: War and Diplomacy 
by Lawrence Freedman.
Routledge, 849 pp., £49.95, June 2005, 0 7146 5207 5
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... exploit, rule; Britain wasn’t motivated by these things. There was, to repeat, nothing for it in the Falklands. For the broad mass of the people this wasn’t an imperialist war. Freedman quotes AnthonyBarnett on some of the ‘symbols’ that surrounded it: ‘an island people, the cruel seas, an Anglo-Saxon democracy challenged by a dictator, and finally the quintessentially Churchillian posture ...

Every three years

Blake Morrison

3 March 1988
Fifty Poems 
by Ian Hamilton.
Faber, 51 pp., £4.95, January 1988, 0 571 14920 0
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A Various Art 
edited by Andrew Crozier and Tim Longville.
Carcanet, 377 pp., £12.95, December 1987, 0 85635 698 0
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Between Leaps: Poems 1972-1985 
by Brad Leithauser.
Oxford, 81 pp., £5.95, September 1987, 0 19 282089 3
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Eldorado 
by William Scammell.
Peterloo, 71 pp., £4.50, October 1987, 0 905291 88 3
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Disbelief 
by John Ash.
Carcanet, 127 pp., £6.95, September 1987, 0 85635 695 6
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The Automatic Oracle 
by Peter Porter.
Oxford, 72 pp., £4.95, November 1987, 0 19 282088 5
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Voice-over 
by Norman MacCaig.
Chatto, 64 pp., £5.95, February 1988, 0 7011 3313 9
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... Cambridge poets), but with a rather cold admiration for all the seeming austerity, which is evident, too, in the beautifully produced, unostentatious separate recent collections by Douglas Oliver and AnthonyBarnett,* contributors to the Carcanet volume. ‘America’ is one acknowledged influence on these poets, though ‘America’ turns out to mean chiefly Ashbery, Olson and Pound. That there are ...

On with the Pooling and Merging

Neal Ascherson: The Incomparable Tom Nairn

17 February 2000
After Britain: New Labour and the Return of Scotland 
by Tom Nairn.
Granta, 336 pp., £15.99, January 2000, 1 86207 293 0
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... constitution, a second chamber, proportional representation for Westminster and so on – are coming to look like essentially English problems. They are worthwhile contests; this book is dedicated to AnthonyBarnett, founding spirit of Charter 88, and it glows with admiration for This Time (1997), Barnett’s vain appeal to carry through the momentum of constitutional reform far beyond devolution. But ...

Examples

Denis Donoghue

2 February 1984
Towards 2000 
by Raymond Williams.
Chatto, 273 pp., £9.95, October 1983, 9780701126858
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Writing in Society 
by Raymond Williams.
Verso, 268 pp., £18.50, December 1983, 0 86091 072 5
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Radical Earnestness: English Social Theory 1880-1980 
by Fred Inglis.
Martin Robertson, 253 pp., £15, November 1982, 0 85520 328 5
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... the second attempt he has made to review his The Long Revolution (1961) and refine its arguments. The first was Politics and Letters (1979), a big book of specific questions posed by Perry Anderson, AnthonyBarnett and Francis Mulhern, members of the editorial committee of New Left Review; and of answers, rarely as specific or pointed, offered by Williams. The second section of Politics and Letters ...
30 October 1997
... time Queen Elizabeth and her heir enjoyed much greater prestige: until 1990 the symbolic order remained largely intact, though many of its props had gone. Now, the alternative is a lot more serious. AnthonyBarnett puts this argument strongly in This Time, a study of constitutional revolution due out next month. Keeping the waxworks in business could be a way of concentrating even greater real authority ...

Moooovement

R.W. Johnson

8 February 1990
Resources of Hope: Culture, Democracy, Socialism 
by Raymond Williams, edited by Robin Gable.
Verso, 334 pp., £29.95, February 1989, 0 86091 229 9
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The Alien Mind of Raymond Williams 
by Jan Gorak.
Missouri, 132 pp., $9.95, December 1988, 0 8262 0688 3
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Raymond Williams: Writing, Culture, Politics 
by Alan O’Connor.
Blackwell, 180 pp., £27.50, June 1989, 0 631 16589 4
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Raymond Williams on Television: Selected Writings 
edited by Alan O’Connor.
Routledge, 223 pp., £7.95, April 1989, 9780415026277
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News from Nowhere: No 6. Raymond Williams: Third Generation 
edited by Tony Pinkney.
Oxford English Limited, 108 pp., £3.50, February 1989
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Raymond Williams: Critical Perspectives 
edited by Terry Eagleton.
Polity, 235 pp., £29.50, September 1989, 9780745603841
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... couldn’t bear to give other than full-hearted support to Welsh miners on strike. Very well, but then that’s just cheer-leading, not truth-telling – for which Williams was supposedly renowned. AnthonyBarnett, for example, writes that ‘Raymond Williams stands for a kind of truthfulness.’ To read Williams on the miners’ strike is to wonder about such a judgment. And it wasn’t just the ...
26 November 1987
Ruling Performance: British Governments from Attlee to Thatcher 
edited by Peter Hennessy and Anthony​ Seldon.
Blackwell, 344 pp., £25, October 1987, 0 631 15645 3
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The Blackwell Encyclopedia of Political Institutions 
edited by Vernon Bogdanor.
Blackwell, 667 pp., £45, September 1987, 0 631 13841 2
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Judges 
by David Pannick.
Oxford, 255 pp., £12.95, October 1987, 0 19 215956 9
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... than when British commentators contemplate the successes and failures of the post-war British polity. To celebrate the launching of the Institute of Contemporary British History, Peter Hennessy and Anthony Sheldon have edited an engaging collection of essays on post-war British governments, starting with Paul Addison on the wartime background to Attlee’s success, and ending with some surprisingly ...
20 November 1986
Bowie 
by Jerry Hopkins.
Elm Tree, 275 pp., £8.95, May 1985, 0 241 11548 5
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Alias David Bowie 
by Peter Gillman and Leni Gillman.
Hodder, 511 pp., £16.95, September 1986, 0 340 36806 3
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... have found the poems of Bowie’s grandmother and they are very similar: ‘In the land of make-believe, Children love to play ...’ Bowie sang his grandmotherly songs in a special voice, imitating Anthony Newley, an actor who used to sing posh and Yankee songs in a determined London accent: rather like Bowie, he later presented his personality in a desperately ambitious show called Stop the World – ...

Garbo & Co

Paul Addison

28 June 1990
1940: Myth and Reality 
by Clive Ponting.
Hamish Hamilton, 263 pp., £15.99, May 1990, 0 241 12668 1
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British Intelligence in the Second World War. Vol. IV: Security and Counter-Intelligence 
by F.H. Hinsley and C.A.G. Simkins.
HMSO, 408 pp., £15.95, April 1990, 0 11 630952 0
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Unauthorised Action: Mountbatten and the Dieppe Raid 1942 
by Brian Loring Villa.
Oxford, 314 pp., £15, March 1990, 0 19 540679 6
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... has appeared since 1945. ‘By the end of 1940 Britain was still a great power and firmly established on the road to victory.’ This may be a commonly held view, but a reading of Correlli Barnett’s Collapse of British Power (1969) ought to dispel it. It was Barnett who first argued that Britain’s financial crisis marked the end of independence and the conversion of Britain into an ...

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