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A Billion Years a Week

John Ziman, 19 September 1985

Turing’s Man: Western Culture in the Computer Age 
by David Bolter and A.J. Ayer.
Duckworth, 264 pp., £12.95, October 1984, 0 7156 1917 9
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... machine at the other end of a telex line could be distinguished from a human reasoner. Bolter is somewhat scornful of the AI movement. He sees it as yet another instance of the age-old project of ‘making a human being by other than the ordinary reproductive means’, by which man seeks to ‘raise himself above the status that nature seems to ...

The Bart

Gabriele Annan, 10 December 1987

Broken Blood: The Rise and Fall of the Tennant Family 
by Simon Blow.
Faber, 224 pp., £14.95, October 1987, 0 571 13374 6
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... who consequently failed to develop a heart and turned into another kind of monster, a bolter. (She was, in fact, one of the models for Nancy Mitford’s famous Bolter in The Pursuit of Love.) She abandoned her children and had an insatiable ‘need to be noticed’. Blow rather imprudently describes this failing ...

Unsluggardised

Charles Nicholl: ‘The Shakespeare Circle’, 19 May 2016

The Shakespeare Circle: An Alternative Biography 
edited by Paul Edmondson and Stanley Wells.
Cambridge, 358 pp., £18.99, October 2015, 978 1 107 69909 0
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... mentioned by Nicholas Rowe in 1709) adds force. The book opens with a brisk pair of essays by David Fallow and Michael Wood on the subject of his parents: John Shakespeare, born in about 1530, the son of a tenant farmer in the outlying village of Snitterfield, and Mary née Arden, some years younger, of a more prosperous family from Wilmcote. Neither of ...

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