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Not Not To Be

Malcolm Schofield: Aristotle’s legacy, 17 February 2005

A New History of Western Philosophy. Vol. I: Ancient Philosophy 
by Anthony Kenny.
Oxford, 341 pp., £17.99, June 2005, 0 19 875273 3
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... genial and highly accessible book – first of a projected quartet – is Aristotle. What prompts Anthony Kenny’s admiration above all is evidence for the first time in Aristotle of detailed observations of natural phenomena; a sound and pioneering grasp of the roles of observation and theory in scientific method; the invention of the notion of a ...

An End to Anxiety

Barry Stroud, 18 July 1985

by A.J. Ayer.
Weidenfeld, 155 pp., £14.95, May 1985, 0 297 78612 1
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The Legacy of Wittgenstein 
by Anthony Kenny.
Blackwell, 150 pp., £12.50, September 1984, 9780631137054
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Wittgenstein on Meaning 
by Colin McGinn.
Blackwell, 202 pp., £12.50, December 1984, 0 631 13764 5
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Understanding Wittgenstein: Studies of ‘Philosophical Investigations’ 
by J.M.F. Hunter.
Edinburgh, 248 pp., £20, March 1985, 0 85224 497 5
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... at the end of this book, that verdict reads like a lukewarm judgment of 20th-century philosophy. Anthony Kenny’s The Legacy of Wittgenstein is a collection of ten papers he has published separately over the last twenty years. Some are interpretations of difficult parts of Wittgenstein’s philosophy, mostly from the early and middle periods, and some ...

Grisly Creed

Patrick Collinson: John Wyclif, 22 February 2007

John Wyclif: Myth and Reality 
by G.R. Evans.
Lion, 320 pp., £20, October 2005, 0 7459 5154 6
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... constant and often irritating parallels drawn from modern Oxbridge. A later master of Balliol, Anthony Kenny, drew more useful parallels in his 1985 study of Wyclif: ‘Contemporary Oxford philosophy resembles the philosophy of Wyclif’s day more than it matches the Oxford of the 19th century or the Paris of the 20th century. Like Wyclif’s ...

Nuclear Argument

Keith Kyle, 18 April 1985

Objections to Nuclear Defence: Philosophers on Deterrence 
edited by Nigel Blake and Kay Pole.
Routledge, 187 pp., £5.95, September 1984, 0 7102 0249 0
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Reagan and the World: Imperial Policy in the New Cold War 
by Jeff McMahan.
Pluto, 214 pp., £3.95, August 1984, 0 86104 602 1
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A future that will work 
by David Owen.
Viking, 192 pp., £12.95, August 1984, 0 670 80564 5
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The Most Dangerous Decade: World Militarism and the New Non-Aligned Peace Movement 
by Ken Coates.
Spokesman, 211 pp., £15, July 1984, 9780851244051
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... often repetitive of each other and some seem to differ little from political polemics, but with Anthony Kenny, Michael Dummett, Roger Ruston and Bernard Williams among the contributors there is much that is worth considering. All four of these philosophers reject the notion that it is meaningful to have the bomb without having the hypothetical ...

Dr Küng’s Fiasco

Alasdair MacIntyre, 5 February 1981

Does God exist? 
by Hans Küng, translated by Edward Quinn.
Collins, 839 pp., £12, November 1980, 0 00 215147 2
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... in this area whose achievement Dr Küng feels free to overlook: Robert M. Adams, Peter Geach, Anthony Kenny, Terence Penelhum, Alvin Plantinga, James Ross and Richard Swinburne, for example, have all made contributions far too substantial to be thus ignored. Dr Küng’s enormous apparatus of bibliography and references gives no evidence that he even ...

Short Books on Great Men

John Dunn, 22 May 1980

by Humphrey Carpenter.
Oxford, 102 pp., June 1980, 0 19 283016 3
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by Anthony Kenny.
Oxford, 86 pp., June 1980, 0 19 287500 0
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by Alban Krailsheimer.
Oxford, 84 pp., June 1980, 0 19 287512 4
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by A.J. Ayer.
Oxford, 102 pp., June 1980, 0 19 287528 0
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by Peter Singer.
Oxford, 82 pp., June 1980, 0 19 287510 8
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... which they adopt towards their subjects. Much the most impressive essay in this vein is Dr Kenny’s study of Aquinas. It is hard to see how such a book could be done better. The racy and amusing portrayal of St Thomas’s life has an attack which may surprise readers of Kenny’s more strictly philosophical ...

You, Him, Whoever

Philip Connors: Anthony Giardina’s new novel, 7 September 2006

White Guys 
by Anthony Giardina.
Heinemann, 371 pp., £11.99, August 2006, 0 434 01605 5
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... Timmy O’Kane, the protagonist of Anthony Giardina’s fourth novel, lives in suburban Massachusetts and works as a salesman for an academic publisher. He visits universities and tries to persuade professors to buy the firm’s anthologies, the most popular of which he calls ‘White Guys’: ‘White Guys’ sells in the hundreds of thousands annually ...


Karl Miller: Edna O’Brien, 22 November 2012

Country Girl: A Memoir 
by Edna O’Brien.
Faber, 339 pp., £20, September 2012, 978 0 571 26943 3
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... restaurateurs. ‘You aul whore you, you can’t write,’ he informs her, reminding her ‘of how Anthony Burgess had slated me, had said that after Joyce and Yeats and Co, after the giants, came “the little people”, such as me’. Sean Kenny, the silent theatre designer, another compatriot, might have challenged ...

An Unreliable Friend

R.W. Johnson: Nelson Mandela, 19 August 1999

Mandela: The Authorised Biography 
by Anthony Sampson.
HarperCollins, 500 pp., £24.99, May 1999, 0 00 255829 7
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... I did the same thing myself. We knew just what we were doing and when the foreign visitor – Anthony Sampson, if you like – left the room, we relaxed immediately into more Marxist language and far more of a Party style. The truth was that Communist influence was pervasive – and how could it not be? The ANC was a shambles; only the small group of ...

Cod on Ice

Andy Beckett: The BBC, 10 July 2003

Panorama: Fifty Years of Pride And Paranoia 
by Richard Lindley.
Politico’s, 404 pp., £18.99, September 2002, 1 902301 80 3
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The Harder Path: The Autobiography 
by John Birt.
Time Warner, 532 pp., £20, October 2002, 0 316 86019 0
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... many cartoonish stories. Lindley’s account of how he and his colleagues, including the producer Anthony Summers, covered the Yom Kippur War is typical: Once in Tripoli Summers cut a comprehensive deal with a likely looking taxi driver which soon had the Lime Grove contingent speeding day and night across the desert, talking and bribing its way through ...

My Girls: A Memoir

August Kleinzahler: Parents, lovers and a poetic punch-up, 19 August 2004

... put me on to Whitley, a neighbourhood friend from Jersey whom I’ve known for over forty years. Kenny called me the other day on his cell phone, a filthy summer day in New York, you know the kind: not a breath of air, 90°, 90 per cent humidity, truck exhaust, the elderly and infirm dropping like bowling pins. ‘A Hungarian workman outside my ...

Four Moptop Yobbos

Ian Penman, 17 June 2021

One Two Three Four: The Beatles in Time 
by Craig Brown.
Fourth Estate, 642 pp., £9.99, March, 978 0 00 834003 2
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The Beatles and Sixties Britain 
by Marcus Collins.
Cambridge, 382 pp., £90, March 2020, 978 1 108 47724 6
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The Beatles in Context 
edited by Kenneth Womack.
Cambridge, 372 pp., £74.99, January 2020, 978 1 108 41911 6
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... ends up producing a fable very much in their own image.In​ June 1961, the Mancunian polymath Anthony Burgess and his first wife, Lynne, took a holiday in the USSR. In Cold War Leningrad there were echoes for Burgess of his backstreet Manchester childhood. The music of accents: voices that were exotic yet strangely familiar, a chorus of hard-tongued ...

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