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Half-Infidels

Mark Mazower: Greece and Turkey’s Population Exchange, 3 August 2006

Twice a Stranger: How Mass Expulsion Forged Modern Greece and Turkey 
by Bruce Clark.
Granta, 274 pp., £20, March 2006, 1 86207 752 5
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... worked. But the stories provided by the now elderly refugees – ‘Lausanne’s children’, as Bruce Clark calls them – shed a different light on the legacy of the 1923 Treaty of Lausanne. If these modern ruins now force themselves on our attention, it’s because of what happened in the Balkans in the 1990s. ‘The hour of Europe has ...

Sweetly Terminal

Edward Pearce, 5 August 1993

Diaries 
by Alan Clark.
Weidenfeld, 421 pp., £20, June 1993, 0 297 81352 8
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... I might say that to Pinochet if I get to see him on Friday. We opened a bottle of Palmer ‘61. Bruce (Anderson) laid down the law on personalities and ratings. My own shares are down badly after that slip on the Channel Tunnel. She was not going to keep Paul (Channon) on. Bernard had the briefing to hand ... Bruce was ...

Diary

Paul Foot: The Impotence of Alan Clark, 5 August 1993

... No junior minister more aptly represented that mood than the patrician Thatcherite Alan Clark. A big landowner, a poor QC and a minor historian, the jolly Clark decided to write a diary while in office. From 1983 to 1991, during which time he occupied three offices – Under Secretary at the Department of ...

Hey, that’s me

Hal Foster: Bruce Mau, 5 April 2001

Life Style 
by Bruce Mau.
Phaidon, 626 pp., £39.95, November 2000, 0 7148 3827 6
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... members were Marxists, had in mind, but such is often ‘the bad dream of Modernism’, as T.J. Clark once termed it. Beware of what you wish, runs one moral of Modernism as seen from the present, because it may come true – in perverse form. And so, to take only the chief example, the old project to reconnect Art and Life, endorsed in different ways by ...

I do like painting

Julian Bell: The life and art of William Coldstream, 2 December 2004

William Coldstream 
by Bruce Laughton.
Yale, 368 pp., £30, July 2004, 0 300 10243 7
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... of all generations just stood around, uncertain of what to do next … It sort of petered out.’ Bruce Laughton’s William Coldstream is an attempt, 17 years on, to gather up the tatters of a wake held at University College London. The unnamed participant touches on a more general diffidence about how to remember or appraise William ...

Short Cuts

John Lanchester: Google Glass, 23 May 2013

... steps a day. I know this with such precision not because I’ve turned into a cross between Bruce Chatwin and Rain Man but because I’ve been using a Fitbit One, a fancy-schmancy pedometer which tracks how much I’ve been moving about and automatically synchronises it, via a Bluetooth dongle on my computer, with a website and an app on my phone. The ...

It’s Modern but is it contemporary?

Hal Foster, 16 December 2004

... such as Romare Bearden, Richard Hamilton and R.B. Kitaj in the Pop gallery, and Eva Hesse, Lygia Clark and Hélio Oiticica in the Minimalist and Post-Minimalist rooms. Some practices are still not an easy fit: an alcove of Conceptual and institution-critical work by Robert Morris, Marcel Broodthaers and others feels like an embarrassment, as if it were a ...

Buffed-Up Scholar

Stefan Collini: Eliot and the Dons, 30 August 2012

Letters of T.S. Eliot, Vol. III: 1926-27 
edited by Valerie Eliot and John Haffenden.
Faber, 954 pp., £40, July 2012, 978 0 571 14085 5
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... history of English as a discipline. Much his most substantial engagement was the delivery of the Clark Lectures in English Literature at Trinity College, Cambridge. Between late January and early March 1926 he gave eight lectures on ‘The Metaphysical Poetry of the 17th Century with Special Reference to Donne, Crashaw and Cowley’, lectures which, almost ...

Dysfunctional Troglodytes with Mail-Order Weaponry

Iain Sinclair: Edward Dorn, 11 April 2013

Collected Poems 
by Edward Dorn.
Carcanet, 995 pp., £25, November 2012, 978 1 84777 126 1
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... Allen’s anthology. At six foot eight or thereabouts, Olson was an inconvenient guest, as Tom Clark, another itinerant US poet and Essex academic, told me when I visited him in California. Sunset to sunrise, Olson would rumble, thump, burn, growl; whaling his chain of Camels, as Dorn said, in one gulp. He hibernated, postponing an expedition to Dorchester ...

The Amazing …

Jonathan Lethem: My Spidey, 6 June 2002

Spider-Man 
directed by Sam Raimi.
May 2002
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... and Batman’s deep whiteness that establishes Spider-Man’s metaphoric blackness. Clark Kent and Bruce Wayne live in palaces of privilege and operate from fantasy cities, Metropolis and Gotham, while working-class Spider-Man is a bridge-and-tunnel person, from Queens, in the real New ...

Diary

Iain Sinclair: The Peruvian Corporation of London, 10 October 2019

... without the traditional raids and kidnappings. I remembered Herzog’s creed, as reported by Bruce Chatwin: ‘Walking is a virtue, tourism is deadly sin.’ This stern Bavarian dogma, repeated over many mesmeric interviews, lectures and presentations, became a little threadbare, itself a form of cultural tourism. A brand statement. Almost a slogan for ...

MacDiarmid and his Maker

Robert Crawford, 10 November 1988

MacDiarmid 
by Alan Bold.
Murray, 482 pp., £17.95, September 1988, 0 7195 4585 4
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A Drunk Man looks at the Thistle 
by Hugh MacDiarmid, edited by Kenneth Buthlay.
Scottish Academic Press, 203 pp., £12.50, February 1988, 0 7073 0425 3
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The Hugh MacDiarmid-George Ogilvie Letters 
edited by Catherine Kerrigan.
Aberdeen University Press, 156 pp., £24.90, August 1988, 0 08 036409 8
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Hugh MacDiarmid and the Russian 
by Peter McCarey.
Scottish Academic Press, 225 pp., £12.50, March 1988, 0 7073 0526 8
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... without unnecessary gloating. Still, one can’t help feeling at times that, understandably, the Clark Kent figure of Grieve is lost among the chorus of Stalinist MacDiarmidian Supermen. At those moments one is grateful for quotations from Valda Grieve, the poet’s widow. Her remarks can sketch a ‘Christopher’ whose human scale counterpoints the ...

Brief Shining Moments

Christopher Hitchens: Donkey Business in the White House, 19 February 1998

Pillar of Fire: America in the King Years 1963-65 
by Taylor Branch.
Simon and Schuster, 746 pp., $30, February 1998, 0 684 80819 6
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‘One Hell of a Gamble’: Khrushchev, Castro and Kennedy, 1958-64 
by Aleksandr Fursenko and Timothy Naftali.
Murray, 416 pp., September 1997, 0 7195 5518 3
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The Dark Side of Camelot 
by Seymour Hersh.
HarperCollins, 497 pp., £8.99, February 1998, 9780006530770
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Mutual Contempt: Lyndon Johnson , Bobby Kennedy and the Feud that Defined a Decade 
by Jeff Shesol.
Norton, 591 pp., £23.50, January 1998, 9780393040784
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The Year the Dream Died 
by Jules Witcover.
Warner, 512 pp., £25, June 1997, 0 446 51849 2
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Without Honor: The Impeachment of President Nixon and the Crimes of Camelot 
by Jerry Zeifman.
Thunder's Mouth, 262 pp., $24.95, November 1996, 9781560251286
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The Kennedy Tapes: Inside the White House during the Cuban Missile Crisis 
edited by Ernest May and Philip Zelikow.
Howard, 740 pp., £23.50, September 1997, 0 674 17926 9
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Lyndon B. Johnson’s Vietnam Papers: A Documentary Collection 
edited by David Barrett.
Texas A & M, 906 pp., $94, June 1997, 0 89096 741 5
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Taking Charge: The Johnson Whitehouse Tapes 1963-64 
edited by Michael Beschloss.
Simon and Schuster, 624 pp., £20, April 1998, 0 684 80407 7
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Abuse of Power: The New Nixon Tapes 
edited by Stanley Kutler.
Free Press, 675 pp., $30, November 1997, 0 684 84127 4
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The Other Missiles of October: Eisenhower, Kennedy and the Jupiters, 1957-63 
by Philip Nash.
North Carolina, 231 pp., £34.70, October 1997, 0 8078 4647 3
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... unwholesome adoration in his aptly-titled Underworld, and put it into the caustic mouth of Lenny Bruce, found here delivering a monologue during the Cuban missile crisis: ‘Kennedy makes an appearance in public and you hear people say, I saw his hair! Or, I saw his teeth! The spectacle’s so dazzling they can’t take it all in. I saw his hair! They’re ...

The Party in Government

Conor Gearty, 9 March 1995

... Nicholas Scott has consoled himself since his departure from office with a consultancy with Clark and Smith Industries, whose products include many aimed at the disabled, for whom Scott was the responsible minister when in office. John McGregor (afterwards Lord McGregor) has rejoined merchant bankers Hill Samuel since his departure from the Transport ...

Heart-Squasher

Julian Barnes: A Portrait of Lucian Freud, 5 December 2013

Man with a Blue Scarf: On Sitting for a Portrait by Lucian Freud 
by Martin Gayford.
Thames and Hudson, 248 pp., £12.95, March 2012, 978 0 500 28971 6
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Breakfast with Lucian: A Portrait of the Artist 
by Geordie Greig.
Cape, 260 pp., £25, October 2013, 978 0 224 09685 0
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... picture in a morning. Some found Freud’s stylistic switch alarming, or worse that that: Kenneth Clark, an early admirer, wrote to Freud suggesting that he was deliberately suppressing what made his work remarkable. ‘I never saw him again,’ Freud tells Gayford. Another one off the Tiberian cliff. This looser brushwork did not lead to any greater speed of ...

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