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Pint for Pint

Thomas Laqueur: The Price of Blood

14 October 1999
Blood: An Epic History of Medicine and Commerce 
by Douglas Starr.
Little, Brown, 429 pp., £20, February 1999, 0 316 91146 1
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... prosecutions and political recriminations that followed the transfusion of whole blood or blood products wittingly or unwittingly tainted with HIV – has renewed our interest in the sanguinary, and DouglasStarr has now set this interest in context. He describes his book as ‘the story of blood – the chronicle of a resource, the researchers who have studied it, the businessmen who have traded it ...


Victor Mallet

8 December 1988
Constructive Drinking: Perspectives on Drink from Anthropology 
edited by Mary Douglas.
Cambridge, 291 pp., £25, September 1987, 0 521 33504 3
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For Prayer and Profit: The Ritual, Economic and Social Importance of Beer in Gwembe District, Zambia, 1950-1982 
by Elizabeth Colson and Thayer Scudder.
Stanford, 147 pp., $32.50, August 1988, 0 8047 1444 4
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... of a ritual; and its main purpose is to make sad people happy. In that sense it is an international equaliser. Alexander the Great, according to one controversial researcher, was no better than Ringo Starr and suffered progressive drinking problems before dying in withdrawal. There is not much difference between a Scottish drunk dripping blood from a head wound and tottering through Euston Station and ...


Pat Rogers

6 November 1986
Hume and the Heroic Portrait: Studies in 18th-Century Imagery 
by Edgar Wind, edited by Jaynie Anderson.
Oxford, 139 pp., £29.50, May 1986, 0 19 817371 7
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Augustan Studies: Essays in honour of Irvin Ehrenpreis 
edited by Douglas​ Lane Patey and Timothy Keegan.
University of Delaware Press, 270 pp., £24.50, May 1986, 9780874132724
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The 18th Century: The Intellectual and Cultural Context of English Literature 1700-1789 
by James Sambrook.
Longman, 290 pp., £15.95, April 1986, 0 582 49306 4
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... Miss Lascelles describes as ‘to be expected where countless people ... respond to a common prompting’. Most of the other contributors are Americans, and they too provide substantial fare. G.A. Starr is provocatively wide-ranging on ‘sentimental de-education’ (some nice turns: ‘The sentimental hero ... learns nothing and forgets nothing’); whilst Leopold Damrosch makes a wise appraisal of ...

The Power of Sunshine

Alexander Cockburn

10 January 1991
City of Quartz: Excavating the Future of Los Angeles 
by Mike Davis.
Verso, 462 pp., £18.95, November 1990, 0 86091 303 1
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... walk from Ohio to Los Angeles and was hired on arrival by the patron of the Los Angeles Times, Colonel (later General) Harrison Gray Otis. Lummis helped to forge the booster image described by Kevin Starr in his book Inventing the dream: ‘a mélange of mission myth (originating in Helen Hunt Jackson’s Ramona), obsession with climate, political conservatism (symbolised in the open shop), and thinly ...

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