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Short Cuts

David Bromwich: Alexander Hamilton’s Worst Idea, 24 October 2019

... his post on 27 September. ‘Counting on you to be right about this interview, Gordon,’ William Taylor, the chargé d’affaires at the US Embassy in Kiev, texted Sondland on 9 September at 12.34 a.m. Three minutes later Sondland replied: ‘Bill, I never said I was “right”. I said we are where we are and believe we have identified the best pathway ...

State of the Art

John Lanchester, 1 June 1989

Manchester United: The Betrayal of a Legend 
by Michael Crick and David Smith.
Pelham, 246 pp., £14.95, May 1989, 0 7207 1783 3
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Football in its Place: An Environmental Psychology of Football Grounds 
by David Canter, Miriam Comber and David Uzzell.
Routledge, 173 pp., £10.95, May 1989, 0 415 01240 6
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... rhyme, occurred. Elton John bought Watford Football Club and appointed the energetic Graham Taylor as manager. Taylor, looking for a way of fulfilling his boss’s ambition of making Watford into a First Division team, came across a statistical survey which showed that the majority of goals comes, not from ...

Irving, Terry, Gary and Graham

Ian Hamilton, 22 April 1993

Behind Closed Doors 
by Irving Scholar and Mihir Bose.
Deutsch, 367 pp., £14.99, November 1992, 0 233 98824 6
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Sick as a Parrot: The Inside Story of the Spurs Fiasco 
by Chris Horrie.
Virgin, 293 pp., £4.99, August 1992, 0 86369 620 1
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Gary Lineker: Strikingly Different 
by Colin Malam.
Stanley Paul, 147 pp., £12.99, January 1993, 0 09 175424 0
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... Spurs had a vacancy when they did – a vacancy created by the resignation of Tel’s predecessor, David Pleat. Pleat had been fingered by the Sun as a kerb-crawler and there was much bar-room speculation at the time about tip-offs, fit-ups, Sun stringers on the Met. The first Sun revelations came in July 1987, and Pleat survived these. The second round came ...

Festschriftiness

Susan Pedersen, 6 October 2011

Structures and Transformations in Modern British History 
edited by David Feldman and Jon Lawrence.
Cambridge, 331 pp., £50, January 2011, 978 0 521 51882 6
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The Peculiarities of Liberal Modernity in Imperial Britain 
edited by Simon Gunn and James Vernon.
California, 271 pp., £20.95, May 2011, 978 0 9845909 5 7
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Classes, Cultures and Politics: Essays on British History for Ross McKibbin 
edited by Clare Griffiths, John Nott and William Whyte.
Oxford, 320 pp., £65, April 2011, 978 0 19 957988 4
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... A layman might be forgiven for assuming that those two at least were on the same side. But when David Mayfield and Susan Thorne, two young American scholars, cited Stedman Jones and Joyce as exemplars of social history’s ‘linguistic turn’ in an essay published in Social History in 1992, a tempest ensued. Jon Lawrence and Miles ...

Short Cuts

Paul Laity: A west-country Man U supporter speaks, 22 June 2006

... on my parents’ shelves, the one I remember taking down first was The Day a Team Died, by Frank Taylor. The title was so dramatic, and on the spine the letters d i e d were coloured red and arranged out of line like skittles that had just been hit. My father was memorably solemn as he told me the book was about the Munich Air Disaster of February 1958, when ...

Heart-Stopping

Ian Hamilton, 25 January 1996

Not Playing for Celtic: Another Paradise Lost 
by David Bennie.
Mainstream, 221 pp., £12.99, October 1995, 1 85158 757 8
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Achieving the Goal 
by David Platt.
Richard Cohen, 244 pp., £12.99, October 1995, 1 86066 017 7
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Captain’s Log: The Gary McAllister Story 
by Gary McAllister and Graham Clark.
Mainstream, 192 pp., £14.99, October 1995, 9781851587902
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Blue Grit: The John Brown Story 
by John Brown and Derek Watson.
Mainstream, 176 pp., £14.99, November 1995, 1 85158 822 1
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Kicking and Screaming: An Oral History of Football in England 
by Rogan Taylor and Andrew Ward.
Robson, 370 pp., £16.95, October 1995, 0 86051 912 0
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A Passion for the Game: Real Lives in Football 
by Tom Watt.
Mainstream, 316 pp., £14.99, October 1995, 1 85158 714 4
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... of pace’ might seem to be the problem with this dual strike-force, but happily the author – David Bennie – does not say so. Nick Hornby cannot be blamed for writing of this kind, although Fever Pitch has helped to set the tone. In some ways, Hornby has links with the old school. He knows and cares that there is something ‘moronic’ about his ...

Diary

A.J.P. Taylor: Magdalen College Portraits, 3 May 1984

... to the distant time when I read a book a day. They begin with Lloyd George and the Generals by David Woodward,* a professor at Marshall University, which is somewhere in the New World. The difficult relations between Lloyd George, when prime minister, and the British generals from Haig onwards during the First World War have been a topic of long ...

Diary

A.J.P. Taylor: The Mosleys and Other Affairs, 17 November 1983

... SDP will die before next time; there seem to be quite enough parties without it. I suppose that Dr David Owen now regrets going over to the SDP. If he had remained in the Labour Party he would now be its leader. The Liberals put on a spirited performance to as little effect as ever. The Labour Party Conference was overshadowed by the question of who was to ...

Carers or Consumers?

Barbara Taylor: 18th-Century Women, 4 November 2010

Women and Enlightenment in 18th-Century Britain 
by Karen O’Brien.
Cambridge, 310 pp., £17.99, March 2009, 978 0 521 77427 7
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... traditionally associated with women, and although Smith and other moral sentimentalists such as David Hume and Francis Hutcheson tried hard to purge the notion (Smith, for example, distinguished large-minded male generosities from ‘womanish lamentations’), femininity continued to be seen as social glue. Female soft-heartedness and sympathy were ...

On Wall Street

Astra Taylor, 25 October 2012

... the many small groups that filled the square. Movement veterans like the anarchist anthropologist David Graeber and Marina Sitrin, the author of a book about horizontal organising methods used in Argentina, conversed with twenty-somethings freshly radicalised by disappointment in the president they helped to elect. Not long after the police massed at the ...

Success and James Maxton

Inigo Thomas, 3 January 2008

... the next stage.’ At 60, he looked ghostly; a diet of tea and cigarettes hadn’t helped. A.J.P. Taylor said that Maxton had wasted his political life: ‘He was a politician who had every quality – passionate sincerity, unstinted devotion, personal charm, a power of oratory – every quality save one – the gift of knowing how to succeed.’ A flaw in ...

Gentlemen and ladies came to see the poet’s cottage

Tom Paulin: Clare’s anti-pastoral, 19 February 2004

John Clare: A Biography 
by Jonathan Bate.
Picador, 650 pp., £25, October 2003, 0 330 37106 1
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‘I Am’: The Selected Poetry of John Clare 
edited by Jonathan Bate.
Farrar, Straus, 318 pp., $17, November 2003, 0 374 52869 1
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John Clare, Politics and Poetry 
by Alan Vardy.
Palgrave, 221 pp., £45, October 2003, 0 333 96617 1
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John Clare Vol. V: Poems of the Middle Period 1822-37 
edited by Eric Robinson, David Powell and P.M.S. Dawson.
Oxford, 822 pp., £105, January 2003, 0 19 812386 8
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... was discovered in 1819, when Edward Drury, a young Stamford bookseller, wrote to his cousin John Taylor, who was also a bookseller – what we would now call a publisher – and told him that he had discovered a wholly untutored genius: Your hopes of good grammar and correct verse, depend on the inspiration of the mind; for Clare cannot reason; he writes ...

Thanks to the Fels-Naptha Soap King

Miles Taylor: George Lansbury, 22 May 2003

George Lansbury: At the Heart of Old Labour 
by John Shepherd.
Oxford, 407 pp., £35, September 2002, 0 19 820164 8
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... old George’ of Poplar had come to personify grassroots Labour in much the same way as David Blunkett of the ‘socialist republic’ of South Yorkshire did in the late 1970s. Shepherd sees Lansbury’s evolution into a Cockney icon as a parable of the working-class boy made good by a conversion to socialism. But some of the photographs which ...

When the Jaw-Jaw Failed

Miles Taylor: Company Rule in India, 3 March 2016

The Tears of the Rajas: Mutiny, Money and Marriage in India 1805-1905 
by Ferdinand Mount.
Simon & Schuster, 784 pp., £12.99, January 2016, 978 1 4711 2946 9
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... the summer of 2010, that is, when it was revealed that Low’s family was distantly related to David Cameron’s. Shortly after the prime minister returned from his first official visit to India, the Sunday Times broke the story that Low’s eldest son, Malcolm, had taken part in the brutal suppression of the rebels in 1857, leaving a graphic account in ...

Smoking for England

Paul Foot, 5 July 1984

Smoke Ring: The Politics of Tobacco 
by Peter Taylor.
Bodley Head, 384 pp., £9.95, March 1984, 0 370 30513 2
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... This theory later became the central slogan of the Thatcher-Reagan reaction of the Eighties. Peter Taylor’s marvellous book does awful damage to it. He deals with the power of the tobacco companies, especially the six giant ones which control the production, distribution and marketing of the crop all over the world. Tobacco has been around for some ...

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