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Got to go make that dollar

Alex Abramovich: Otis Redding, 3 January 2019

Otis Redding: An Unfinished Life 
by Jonathan Gould.
Crown, 544 pp., £12.99, May 2018, 978 0 307 45395 2
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... joined a group called Pat T. Cake and His Mighty Panthers. Soul music was coming into its own. Ray Charles was recording for Atlantic Records; Sam Cooke had left the Soul Stirrers; James Brown was touring with his Famous Flames. But Otis Redding wasn’t a soul singer yet. Billed as Otis ‘Rockin’ Redding or ‘Rockhouse Redding’, he sang rock and ...

The Only True Throne

John Pemble: ‘Muckraker’, 19 July 2012

Muckraker: The Scandalous Life and Times of W.T. Stead 
by W. Sydney Robinson.
Robson, 281 pp., £20, May 2012, 978 1 84954 294 4
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... feminists; the public disgrace and political ruin of Parnell and the rising political star Charles Dilke following high-profile divorce cases; and, most sensational of all, the wave of moral rearmament that landed Britain with a regime of censorship, surveillance and repression. In 1885, following Stead’s revelations about child prostitution in ...

Diary

Julian Girdham: Mansergh v. Arnold, 21 June 1984

... and English readers will get some idea of Mansergh’s consequent relationship with his leader, Charles Haughey, if they consider Mephistopheles and Faust. Bruce Arnold is English, and has lived here for many years. His weekly column in the Independent is undoubtedly pro-Government in taste and bias or, more accurately, anti-Fianna Fail. This has become ...

Todd Almighty

Peter Medawar, 16 February 1984

A Time to Remember: The Autobiography of a Chemist 
by Alexander Todd.
Cambridge, 257 pp., £15, November 1983, 0 521 25593 7
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... of anthocyanins (the red and blue colouring matters of flowers) under the brilliant Professor Robinson, a professorial Fellow of Magdalen, where he was treated with undisguised contempt by his fellow Fellow C.S. Lewis, who regarded Robinson as a typical scientist and an object of almost automatic censure. Todd himself ...

Someone Else’s

Matthew Reynolds: Translating Cesare Pavese, 6 October 2005

Disaffections: Complete Poems 1930-50 
by Cesare Pavese, translated by Geoffrey Brock.
Carcanet, 370 pp., £14.95, April 2004, 1 85754 738 1
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The Faber Book of 20th-Century Italian Poems 
edited by Jamie McKendrick.
Faber, 167 pp., £12.99, June 2004, 0 571 19700 0
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... for each poet, but they are little help: a poem by Sandro Penna (1906-77) translated by Blake Robinson on page 66 seems close to some lines by Giuseppe Ungaretti (1888-1970) translated by Marcus Perryman and Peter Robinson on page 38: but is there really an echo? If so, which way does it run? And is it in the originals ...

Unmistakable

Michael Rogin, 20 August 1998

Celebrity Caricature in America 
by Wendy Wick Reaves.
Yale, 320 pp., £29.95, April 1998, 0 300 07463 8
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... Al Capone and a white-haired/eyebrowed/moustachioed, black-coated Supreme Court Chief Justice, Charles Evans Hughes. There’s Harpo again, this time with cotton-wool locks, alongside his brothers – Groucho’s moustache, glasses, cigar, wing-tipped head of hair, Chico’s sly open mouth and steel-wool hair identifying the ersatz Italian Jew. The three ...

A Childhood on the Edge of History

Charles van Onselen: J.M. Coetzee’s boyhood, 5 February 1998

Boyhood: Scenes from Provincial Life 
by J.M. Coetzee.
Secker, 171 pp., £12.99, September 1997, 0 436 20448 7
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... private, at home in the world of the Children’s Encyclopaedia, The Swiss Family Robinson or make-believe Test Matches involving a bowling contraption which removes the need for other corporeal players. Sometimes it seems as if the boy came into the world fully formed – a world where birthdays, gifts, films and radio appear to have little ...

Hats One Dreamed about

Tessa Hadley: Rereading Bowen, 20 February 2020

Collected Stories 
by Elizabeth Bowen.
Everyman, 904 pp., £18.99, October 2019, 978 1 84159 392 0
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... look up. Her bowed back looked narrow and virginal; Eleanor half-laughed elatedly.In ‘Joining Charles’, from the third collection, Charles’s disenchanted young wife stays with her husband’s mother and sisters before setting off to meet him in their new home in France. She falls in love with the women’s gentle ...

Crusoe was a gentleman

John Sutherland, 1 July 1982

The Gentleman in Trollope: Individuality and Moral Conduct 
by Shirley Letwin.
Macmillan, 303 pp., £15, May 1982, 0 333 31209 0
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The Idea of the Gentleman in the Victorian Novel 
by Robin Gilmour.
Allen and Unwin, 208 pp., £10, October 1981, 0 04 800005 1
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... that Trollope’s actual fiction has gone the oblivious way of Surtees’s, or Mrs Oliphant’s or Charles Lever’s. The Penguin English Library, the Dover reprint series and the new paperback World’s Classics have returned an impressive number of the 47 novels to print. A new and complete edition of the letters (edited by N. John Hall) is about to take ...

Benevolent Mr Godwin

E.P. Thompson, 8 July 1993

Political Justice 
by William Godwin, introduced by Jonathan Wordsworth.
Woodstock, £150, November 1992, 1 85196 019 8
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The Political and Philosophical Writings of William Godwin 
edited by Mark Philp.
Pickering & Chatto, £395, March 1993, 1 85196 026 0
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Political Writings 
by Mary Wollstonecraft, edited by Janet Todd.
Pickering & Chatto, 411 pp., £39.95, March 1993, 1 85196 019 8
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Memoirs of Wollstonecraft 
by William Godwin, introduced by Jonathan Wordsworth.
Woodstock, 199 pp., £8.95, April 1993, 1 85477 125 6
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... which inspired those young enthusiasts. We open them beside the solicitor’s clerk, Henry Crabb Robinson, who later recalled: ‘It made me feel more generously. I had never before, nor ... have I ever since felt so strongly the duty of not living to one’s self, but of having for one’s sole duty the good of the community.’ The 1793 edition sold 3000 ...

Franklin D, listen to me

J. Hoberman: Popular (Front) Songs, 17 September 1998

Songs for Political Action: Folk Music, Topical Songs and the American Left, 1926-53 
edited by Ronald Cohen and Dave Samuelson.
Bear Family Records, DM 390, June 1996
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... which made such preservation possible, his younger colleague, the composer-musicologist, Charles Seeger, took a less purist – and more activist – view of what folk music might be. Radicalised by the Depression, Seeger became a member of the Composers’ Collective – a New York-based Communist cell which included among its associates Mark ...

A Magazine of Wisdom

Linda Colley, 4 September 1997

Edmund Burke: A Life in Caricature 
by Nicholas Robinson.
Yale, 214 pp., £30, October 1996, 0 300 06801 8
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The Writings and Speeches of Edmund Burke. Vol. III: Party, Parliament and the American War 1774-80 
edited by Warren Elofson and John Woods.
Oxford, 713 pp., £75, September 1996, 0 19 822414 1
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Edmund Burke and India: Political Morality and Empire 
by Frederick Whelan.
Pittsburgh, 384 pp., £39.95, December 1996, 0 8229 3927 4
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... of wisdom’, as Gladstone put it. They are not Burke. One of the strengths of Nicholas Robinson’s highly original and attractive survey is that it conveys the controversial, fallible man rather than the icon, the way that Burke struck irreverent observers in his own time, over time. The British Museum possesses 293 satires of Burke drawn between ...

Burning Witches

Michael Rogin, 4 September 1997

Raymond Chandler: A Biography 
by Tom Hiney.
Chatto, 310 pp., £16.99, May 1997, 0 7011 6310 0
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Raymond Chandler Speaking 
edited by Dorothy Gardiner and Kathrine Sorley Walker.
California, 288 pp., £10.95, May 1997, 0 520 20835 8
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... and periodically subject to extreme physical abuse, the Marlowe of the novels, unlike Edward G. Robinson’s insurance investigator in Double Indemnity, is trapped in the dark underside of American life and never acquires the insurance man’s protective armour, his forceful, single-minded menace. But whereas in Woman in the Window Lang directed ...

Into the Second Term

R.W. Johnson: New Labour, 5 April 2001

Servants of the People: The Inside Story of New Labour 
by Andrew Rawnsley.
Hamish Hamilton, 434 pp., £17.99, September 2000, 0 241 14029 3
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Mandelson and the Making of New Labour 
by Donald Macintyre.
HarperCollins, 638 pp., £6.99, September 2000, 0 00 653062 1
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Mo Mowlam: The Biography 
by Julia Langdon.
Little, Brown, 324 pp., £16.99, September 2000, 0 316 85304 6
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Ann Widdecombe: Right from the Beginning 
by Nicholas Kochan.
Politico’s, 302 pp., September 2000, 1 902301 55 2
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The Paymaster: Geoffrey Robinson, Maxwell and New Labour 
by Tom Bower.
Simon and Schuster, 272 pp., £17.99, March 2001, 0 7432 0689 4
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The Future of Politics 
by Charles Kennedy.
HarperCollins, 235 pp., £17.99, September 2000, 0 00 710131 7
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... Bower has concentrated his efforts on Robert Maxwell and (the intimately connected) Geoffrey Robinson, many more are encompassed by the allegations he raises – it is not just a matter of Peter Mandelson but of Bernard Donoghue, Gordon Brown, Helen Liddell, Alistair Campbell and Charlie Whelan. Stephen Byers and ...

Who Cares?

Jean McNicol, 9 February 1995

The Report of the Inquiry into the Care and Treatment of Christopher Clunis 
by Jean Ritchie, Donald Dick and Richard Lingham.
HMSO, 146 pp., £9.50, February 1994, 0 11 701798 1
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Creating Community Care: Report of the Mental Health Foundation into Community Care for People with Severe Mental Illness 
by William Utting.
Mental Health Foundation, 76 pp., £9.50, September 1994, 0 901944 17 3
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Finding a Place: A Review of Mental Health Services for Adults 
HMSO, 94 pp., £11, November 1994, 0 11 886143 3Show More
The Falling Shadow: One Patient’s Mental Health Care. Report of the Committee of Inquiry into the Events Leading up to and Surrounding the Fatal Incident at the Edith Morgan Centre, Torbay, on 1 September 1993 
by Louis Blom-Cooper, Helen Hally and Elaine Murphy.
Duckworth, 230 pp., £12.99, January 1995, 0 7156 2662 0
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... of others – a measure motivated at least in part by cases such as Clunis’s and that of Andrew Robinson, a schizophrenic who murdered Georgina Robinson, an occupational therapist in the unit where he was an inmate. The Falling Shadow, the report of the official inquiry into her murder, contends that the under-used ...

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