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Rituals of the Full Moon

Caroline Humphrey, 27 February 1992

Blood Relations: Menstruation and the Origins of Culture 
by Chris Knight.
Yale, 581 pp., £40, October 1991, 0 300 04911 0
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... a way that the subject is indeed unknowable. But here is a book which calls discretion’s bluff. Chris Knight has come up with a new and startling theory: human culture originated with a sex strike by female primates, a revolutionary act of collective solidarity which transformed ‘females’ into women. Culture came into being, ...

In Farageland

James Meek, 8 October 2014

... summer, weeks before Farage went public on where he would fight, but Heale and his deputy, Aaron Knight, were already on full salaries. Heale, originally from north Devon, has been many things: an apprentice chef after leaving school at 17, a prison officer. Most recently, he trained and provided a large door-to-door sales force as a subcontractor for the ...

Who’s the alpha male now, bitches?

Andrew O’Hagan, 21 October 2015

... after dyeing his hair a kind of purple, went to a midnight screening of the Batman movie The Dark Knight Rises at the Century movie theatre in Aurora, Colorado, and sprayed the crowd with bullets, killing 12 and injuring 70. He had earlier thought that a mass shooting at an airport might be better but reckoned airport atrocities were too much associated with ...

What’s the point of HS2?

Christian Wolmar, 16 April 2014

... and compulsory purchase legislation is archaic and complex,’ says a leaflet produced by Knight Frank, the property consultancy on the scheme. Unfathomable would be a better way of putting it. In France, the state buys homes at full market price in a band of 150 metres on either side of land affected by a scheme of national importance, but in the UK ...

Narco Polo

Iain Sinclair, 23 January 1997

Mr Nice: An Autobiography 
by Howard Marks.
Secker, 466 pp., £16.99, September 1996, 0 436 20305 7
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Pulp Election: The Booker Prize Fix 
by Carmen St Keeldare.
Bluedove, 225 pp., £12.99, September 1996, 0 9528298 0 0
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... on to higher things. Old mates, such as Rick Lambert (future editor of the Financial Times) and Chris Patten (dog-fancier and last governor of Hong Kong). They needn’t have worried. Marks’s memories are doctored like Hansard. He reveals nothing that can’t be verified in some official report. ‘Thanks to the American Government,’ he says, ‘my life ...

A Solemn and Unsexual Man

Colin Burrow: Parson Wordsworth, 4 July 2019

Wordsworth and Coleridge: The Radical Years 
by Nicholas Roe.
Oxford, 352 pp., £25, November 2018, 978 0 19 881811 3
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Wordsworth’s Fun 
by Matthew Bevis.
Chicago, 264 pp., £22, September 2019, 978 0 226 65219 1
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... people at Cambridge and shared their views. Or he may not. I was at Cambridge at the same time as Chris Grayling, but I wouldn’t have recognised him in Sainsbury’s (I gather from those who did know him that he was known as Greything). But Roe’s achievement is not to name beyond a shadow of a doubt all those with whom Wordsworth took sherry or shared a ...

Ways to Be Pretentious

Ian Penman, 4 May 2016

M Train 
by Patti Smith.
Bloomsbury, 253 pp., £18.99, October 2015, 978 1 4088 6768 6
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Collected Lyrics 1970-2015 
by Patti Smith.
Bloomsbury, 303 pp., £20, October 2015, 978 1 4088 6300 8
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... Smith took a handful of favourite 1960s 45s – ‘We Like Birdland’ by Huey ‘Piano’ Smith, Chris Kenner’s ‘Land of a Thousand Dances’, Them’s ‘Gloria’ – and magicked their trashy pop into convincingly ecstatic art music. She threw a block party at which a straggly line of unlikely scenes (1960s garage rock, Warhol’s Factory stars, the ...

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