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Whacks

D.A.N. Jones

4 March 1982
The Works of Witter Bynner: Selected Letters 
edited by James Kraft.
Faber, 275 pp., £11, January 1982, 0 374 18504 2
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A Memoir of D.H. Lawrence: The Betrayal 
by G.H. Neville, edited by Carl Baron.
Cambridge, 208 pp., £18, January 1982, 0 521 24097 2
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... of his parents. In trying to defend Lawrence, Neville recognises that he might be guilty of the same offence, telling the world about private conversations and events in the Lawrence family home. CarlBaron, introducing Neville’s memoir, suggests that Neville was not the most tactful of local journalists: he was sacked by the Staffordshire Advertiser in 1929, with a curt note saying that ‘his ...
10 September 1992
‘Sons and Lovers’: The Unexpurgated Text 
by D.H. Lawrence, edited by Helen Baron and Carl Baron.
Cambridge, 675 pp., £70, September 1992, 0 521 24276 2
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D.H. Lawrence: The Early Years, 1885-1912 
by John Worthen.
Cambridge, 464 pp., £14.95, September 1992, 0 521 43221 9
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‘Sons and Lovers’ 
by Michael Black.
Cambridge, 126 pp., £19.95, September 1992, 0 521 36074 9
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... stories, particularly in ‘The Captain’s Doll’, but it disappears from the novels. Cambridge have now published the unexpugated text of Sons and Lovers in their edition of Lawrence. Helen and CarlBaron have also produced a less annotated version of the same complete text, before Edward Garnett’s editing of it, ‘in a form and at a price intended for anyone who appreciates great literature ...
7 January 1993
Pause and Effect: An Introduction to the History of Punctuation in the West 
by M.B. Parkes.
Scolar, 327 pp., £55, September 1992, 0 85967 742 7
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... surprisingly, this process generated errors which have vexed literary critics jealous of their authors’ creative and interpretative autonomy. In their recent edition of Sons and Lovers, Helen and CarlBaron point out that Lawrence’s punctuation was extensively revised by the printers of the first edition, and that their revisions occasionally resulted in blatant changes of meaning. Lawrence ...

Empire of Signs

James Wood: Joseph Roth

4 March 1999
The String of Pearls 
by Joseph Roth, translated by Michael Hofmann.
Granta, 224 pp., £12.99, May 1998, 1 86207 087 3
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... Battle of Solferino in 1859. Thanks to this, the Captain is ennobled and the doomed, quixotic Trotta line established, each generation less heroic, but more absurdly quixotic, than its predecessor. Baron Trotta’s son, Franz, is only a dutiful district captain in a garrison town in Austrian Silesia; but Franz’s son, Lieutenant Carl Joseph Trotta, who is the novel’s real protagonist, is more ...
9 May 1991
Goethe: The Poet and the Age. Vol. I: The Poetry of Desire, 1749-1790 
by Nicholas Boyle.
Oxford, 827 pp., £25, May 1991, 0 19 815866 1
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... matter – his own life – will never be available to him simply as material but always in the only half-objectified form of “myself not myself”.’ In November 1775 Goethe joined the court of Carl August, Duke of Saxe-Weimar, and became the youngest of the three Privy Councillors; he was to stay there until his death in 1832. Why he remained has been a subject of debate. It was not the ...

Tomorrow they’ll boo

John Simon: Strindberg

25 October 2012
Strindberg: A Life 
by Sue Prideaux.
Yale, 371 pp., £25, February 2012, 978 0 300 13693 7
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... Duncan. One might say that his was either the maddest form of sanity or the sanest form of madness. Arthur Miller called him ‘the mad inventor of modern theatre’, in a useful oversimplification. Carl Larsson’s portrait of Strindberg, on the book jacket, essentially in sepia but with rosy lips and penetratingly blue eyes (‘the most beautiful sapphire blue eyes I have ever seen,’ Shaw called ...
20 February 1986
Music and Civilisation: Essays in Honour of Paul Henry Lang 
edited by Edmond Strainchamps, Maria Rika Maniates and Christopher Hatch.
Norton, 499 pp., £35, March 1985, 0 393 01677 3
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The Farthest North of Humanness: Letters of Percy Grainger 1901-1914 
edited by Kay Dreyfus.
Macmillan, 542 pp., £25, December 1985, 0 333 38085 1
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Musicology 
by Joseph Kerman.
Collins/Fontana, 255 pp., £10.95, March 1985, 0 00 197170 0
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... link (as the late 18th century probably saw it) between a young genius and a revered master, and sets the tone of Lang’s Festschrift with some cogent remarks on the diplomat and music patron Baron Gottfried van Swieten, the guardian angel of Mozart’s late style. Richard Taruskin accuses Stravinsky of lying about the original idea of The Rite of Spring, which was visual and frankly ...
20 March 1980
On Historians 
by J.H. Hexter.
Collins, 310 pp., £6.95, September 1979, 0 00 216623 2
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... is much eroded. Though if I still preserve some traces of my belief in that doctrine, I owe it to the high abilities of such ci-devant Marxist historians as Hill. The other heroes of Hexter’s book, Carl Becker, Wallace Ferguson, Hiram Hayden and J.G.A. Pocock, were, I have to admit, infinitely less familiar to me. Thus it is thanks to Hexter that I have learnt that, around 1930, Becker was a ...
6 November 2008
Napoleon’s Cursed War: Popular Resistance in the Spanish Peninsular War 
by Ronald Fraser.
Verso, 587 pp., £29.99, April 2008, 978 1 84467 082 6
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... In March 1962, the German far-right intellectual Carl Schmitt visited Spain. It was a homecoming of sorts, for while Germany now shunned this brilliant jurist, who had given enthusiastic support to the Nazis, the land of Franco still revered him (he ...

Platz Angst

David Trotter: Agoraphobia

24 July 2003
Repressed Spaces: The Poetics of Agoraphobia 
by Paul Carter.
Reaktion, 253 pp., £16.95, November 2002, 1 86189 128 8
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... remain familiar and not very frightening. Phobia’s somatic convictions are knowingly whimsical. Its asymmetry might be thought to permit a certain ‘mobility of perspectives’ after all. In 1871, Carl Otto Westphal, a psychologist in Berlin, offered the first comprehensive account of the nature and possible causes of a disorder to which he gave the name ‘agoraphobia’ because its symptoms arose ...

The Man Who Knew Everybody

Jonathan Steinberg: Kessler’s Diaries

23 May 2013
Journey to the Abyss: The Diaries of Count Harry Kessler, 1880-1918 
edited and translated by Laird Easton.
Knopf, 924 pp., £30, December 2011, 978 0 307 26582 1
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... gigantic steel business, led to the first of a wave of suicides. Krupp had used his palatial house on Capri to create a cult of beauty, staffed by willing Neapolitan waiters. In Locarno, the Baltic Baron Elisar von Kuppfer erected a temple, the Elisarion, to celebrate the worship of the male body, complete with giant murals in pastel colours in which women turned out on closer inspection to be men. A ...

Mere Life or More Life?

Glen Newey: Bad Arguments

14 July 2011
Great Books, Bad Arguments: ‘Republic’, ‘Leviathan’ and ‘The Communist Manifesto’ 
by W.G. Runciman.
Princeton, 127 pp., £13.95, March 2010, 978 0 691 14476 4
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Emergency Politics: Paradox, Law, Democracy 
by Bonnie Honig.
Princeton, 197 pp., £15.95, August 2011, 978 0 691 15259 2
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... Hobbes spent virtually all his adult life in the service of the Cavendish family, of the earldom (now duchy) of Devonshire. Even Marx, a Rhineland Jew, managed to cop off with the daughter of the Baron von Westphalen. It can all make one feel a bit déclassé, or indeed jamais classé. And our form guide is Walter Garrison, 3rd Viscount Runciman, the former president of the British Academy, whose ...

Whiter Washing

Richard J. Evans: Nazi Journalists

6 June 2019
Journalists between Hitler and Adenauer: From Inner Emigration to the Moral Reconstruction of West Germany 
by Volker Berghahn.
Princeton, 277 pp., £35, December 2018, 978 0 691 17963 6
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... right. As Bernhard Fulda concluded in his study of Press and Politics in the Weimar Republic (2009), newspaper ownership didn’t always bring the political dividends it seemed to promise: the press baron Alfred Hugenberg was unable to prevent the almost complete collapse of support for his right-wing nationalist party, the DNVP, just as the liberal press couldn’t stop votes migrating from the ...

The Man without Predicates

Michael Wood: Goethe

20 July 2000
Goethe: The Poet and the Age. Volume II: Revolution and Reunciation, 1790-1803 
by Nicholas Boyle.
Oxford, 964 pp., £30, February 2000, 0 19 815869 6
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Faust: The First Part of the Tragedy 
by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, translated by John Williams.
Wordsworth, 226 pp., £2.99, November 1999, 1 84022 115 1
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... seeks a different public and a different relation to the world. He moves to Weimar in 1775, where he becomes confidential adviser and then minister and privy councillor to the Duke. He is made a baron in 1782. Weimar at this time is a city of 6000 inhabitants, compared with Frankfurt’s 36,000. But Weimar is also the centre of a duchy, which includes the territories of Jena, Eisenach and Ilmenau ...
17 October 1985
Secret Service: The Making of the British Intelligence Community 
by Christopher Andrew.
Heinemann, 616 pp., £12.95, October 1985, 0 434 02110 5
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The Secret Generation 
by John Gardner.
Heinemann, 453 pp., £9.95, August 1985, 0 434 28250 2
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Two Thyrds 
by Bertie Denham.
Ross Anderson Publications, 292 pp., £7.95, September 1983, 0 86360 006 9
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The Ultimate Enemy: British Intelligence and Nazi Germany 1933-1939 
by Wesley Wark.
Tauris, 304 pp., £19.50, October 1985, 1 85043 014 4
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... services are no longer heroic. Gone are the days when Sapper’s Jim Maitland would sun-bathe himself to a frazzle in order to pass in a burnous as an Arab in Tripoli or thwart the machinations of Baron Stockmar in the Sudan (‘It’s the game, Dick: The Great Game. The only game in the world worth playing’). The rot set in with that lacklustre fellow Ashenden. His adventures, while accurate in ...

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