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Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: Looking Ahead, 18 May 2000

... playing strategy games. Someone who, in all likelihood, didn’t spend his adolescence on acid is Douglas Murray, a 21-year-old undergraduate at Magdalen College, Oxford, who’s written a biography of Lord Alfred Douglas. Tina Brown flew all the way from New York to meet young ...

Necrophiliac Striptease

Thomas Jones: Mummies, 6 February 2014

The Mummy’s Curse: The True History of a Dark Fantasy 
by Roger Luckhurst.
Oxford, 321 pp., £18.99, October 2012, 978 0 19 969871 4
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... too small a gun. Ingram is one of three men – the others are the amateur Egyptologist Thomas Douglas Murray (1841-1911) and the fifth Earl of Carnarvon, who died within weeks of opening the tomb of Tutankhamun in February 1923 – whose stories Roger Luckhurst reconstructs in his alluring book, which shows that the mummy’s curse is one of those ...

Too Young

James Davidson: Lord Alfred Douglas, 21 September 2000

Bosie: A Biography of Lord Alfred Douglas 
by Douglas Murray.
Hodder, 374 pp., £20, June 2000, 0 340 76770 7
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... whore’. Robbie Ross, guardian of Wilde’s memory, was a favourite target. At a party in 1912, Douglas (now 42 years of age) made a noisy entrance, strode across the room and declared ‘you are nothing but a bugger and a blackmailer.’ Ross ran into another room. Bosie pursued him, still shouting, and lunged at him. Luckily, a table intervened and Ross ...

What Is Great about Ourselves

Pankaj Mishra: Closing Time, 21 September 2017

The Retreat of Western Liberalism 
by Edward Luce.
Little, Brown, 240 pp., £16.99, May 2017, 978 1 4087 1041 8
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The Fate of the West: Battle to Save the World’s Most Successful Political Idea 
by Bill Emmott.
Economist, 257 pp., £22, May 2017, 978 1 61039 780 3
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The Road to Somewhere: The Populist Revolt and the Future of Politics 
by David Goodhart.
Hurst, 256 pp., £20, March 2017, 978 1 84904 799 9
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The Once and Future Liberal: After Identity Politics 
by Mark Lilla.
Harper, 143 pp., £20, August 2017, 978 0 06 269743 1
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The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam 
by Douglas Murray.
Bloomsbury, 343 pp., £18.99, May 2017, 978 1 4729 4224 1
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... politics and help liberalism become once more a ‘unifying force’ for the ‘common good’. Douglas Murray, associate editor of the Spectator, thinks that Trump might just save Western civilisation. The ideas and commitments of the new prophets of decline do not emerge from any personal experience of it, let alone adversity of the kind suffered by ...

Short Cuts

William Davies: Jordan Peterson, 2 August 2018

... back into his black leather regency armchair and turns again to his interlocutors, Sam Harris and Douglas Murray. I’d cheered for the first option, not least because I was interested to know how on earth it was going to work. The O2 was less than a third full, but even so, that’s an audience of six thousand people. This is a venue so vast that ...

Short Cuts

Daniel Soar: Sokal 2.0, 25 October 2018

... those most delighted by this episode have been Niall Ferguson, Steven Pinker, David Deutsch and Douglas Murray: weirdly few non-white non-men. I recommend that, on their next visit to Portland, these people spend some time in a dog park or ...

Short Cuts

Peter Geoghegan: At NatCon London, 1 June 2023

... a year to host a Friday night show. Anderson also spoke at NatCon. At the ‘gala dinner’, Douglas Murray (whose latest book is The War on the West) insisted that Britons should not be prevented from loving their nation just ‘because the Germans mucked up twice in a century’. The soi-disant anti-elitist tribune Matthew Goodwin – who ate ...

Memory Failure

Pankaj Mishra: Germany’s Commitment to Israel, 4 January 2024

Subcontractors of Guilt: Holocaust Memory and Muslim Belonging in Postwar Germany 
by Esra Özyürek.
Stanford, 264 pp., £25.99, March, 978 1 5036 3556 2
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Never Again: Germans and Genocide after the Holocaust 
by Andrew Port.
Harvard, 352 pp., £30.95, May, 978 0 674 27522 5
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... symbiosis, the German health minister, Karl Lauterbach, approvingly retweeted a video in which Douglas Murray, a mouthpiece of the English far right, claims that the Nazis were more decent than Hamas. ‘Watch and listen,’ retweeted Karin Prien, deputy chair of the Christian Democratic Union and education minister for Schleswig-Holstein. ‘This is ...

Settling accounts

Keith Walker, 15 May 1980

‘A heart for every fate’: Byron’s Letters and Journals, Vol. 10, 1822-1823 
edited by Leslie Marchand.
Murray, 239 pp., £8.95, March 1980, 0 7195 3670 7
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... 1823) Byron was settling his accounts with his creditors, with his public, with his publisher John Murray, with his mistress, and making arrangements to settle his accounts with life and fame. Late in this volume we see Byron discussing a collected edition of his poems with J.W. Lake. Elsewhere Byron says he wants to amass enough money to be able to leave ...


Amia Srinivasan: Can I speak freely?, 29 June 2023

... for a job in Oxford’s geography department wasn’t idle: in a recent essay in the Times, Douglas Murray, a director of Toby Young’s Free Speech Union, took as a sign of our putative crisis over free speech the difficulty someone who opposes a net zero emissions goal has in becoming a university vice chancellor. As Lord Wallace of Saltaire ...

Rare, Obsolete, New, Peculiar

Daisy Hay: Dictionary People, 19 October 2023

The Dictionary People: The Unsung Heroes who Created the Oxford English Dictionary 
by Sarah Ogilvie.
Chatto, 384 pp., £22, September, 978 1 78474 493 9
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... Banbury Road in Oxford, said to have been installed by the Royal Mail to ease the labours of James Murray at the helm of the Oxford English Dictionary. With a magnificent incuriosity, I never thought to wonder at the strangeness of a post box positioned to enable a dictionary – it was simply where I deposited weekly letters to my friend Marian, who lived two ...

Stay away from politics

William Davies: Why Weber?, 21 September 2023

Nihilistic Times: Thinking with Max Weber 
by Wendy Brown.
Harvard, 132 pp., £19.95, April, 978 0 674 27938 4
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... white people that is now infecting schools and public services. Reactionary intellectuals such as Douglas Murray have identified Black feminist theories of ‘intersectionality’ as the root of the West’s current malaises. This rhetoric is far from harmless, as attested by the censorship of gender studies by Viktor Orbán’s government in ...

‘John Betjeman: A Life in Pictures’

Gavin Ewart, 6 December 1984

... peers! All other poets so much less friended, uncouther. He had great talent – but Lord Alfred Douglas and Evelyn Waugh (less awful) – really, who needs them?5 Lord Alfred needed selling to the smugglers6 for a few beers, with his ghastly poems (and who, now, reads them?). I’d rather they honoured Grigson or Bunting7 or anyone less televised. Someone ...

The market taketh away

Paul Foot, 3 July 1997

Number One Millbank: The Financial Downfall of the Church of England 
by Terry Lovell.
HarperCollins, 263 pp., £15.99, June 1997, 0 00 627866 3
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... very soon started to show signs of the malaise it was set up to cure. One man, Charles Knight Murray, assumed great power over the Church estates, but forgot to tell the Commissioners that he was a director of the London, Chatham and Dover Railway and an eager speculator in railway shares. To pay for his prodigious share purchases, he intercepted and ...

Ecclefechan and the Stars

Robert Crawford, 21 January 1988

The Crisis of the Democratic Intellect 
by George Davie.
Polygon, 283 pp., £17.95, September 1986, 0 948275 18 9
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... Blair tried to inscribe a marked Scottish presence. But works such as the Ossianic poems, Home’s Douglas, Ramsay’s The Gentle Shepherd and Wilkie’s Epigoniad dropped away, and the emphasis that remained was almost exclusively on English (with Classical) texts and standards. Scottish literature, like all writing done outside England, was seen as an ...

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