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Stuck with Your Own Face

Bee Wilson: The Beauty Industry, 8 July 2010

Beauty Imagined: A History of the Global Beauty Industry 
by Geoffrey Jones.
Oxford, 412 pp., £25, February 2010, 978 0 19 955649 6
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... industry over the span of my grandmother’s life is fairly remarkable. In 1916, according to Geoffrey Jones, a business historian, only ‘one fifth of Americans may have used any toiletry or cosmetics.’ This would mean that four fifths of Americans used neither toothpaste nor shampoo, never mind moisturiser or deodorant, lipstick or hair gel. In ...

Napoleon was wrong

Ian Gilmour, 24 June 1993

Capitalism, Culture and Decline in Britain 1750-1990 
by W.D. Rubinstein.
Routledge, 182 pp., £25, April 1993, 0 415 03718 2
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British Multinational Banking 
by Geoffrey Jones.
Oxford, 511 pp., £48, March 1993, 0 19 820273 3
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Going for Broke: How Banking Mismanagement in the Eighties Lost Thousands of Billions of Pounds 
by Russell Taylor.
Simon and Schuster, 384 pp., £17.50, April 1993, 0 671 71128 8
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... dichotomy between industry, on the one hand, and finance and commerce, on the other. As Geoffrey Jones points out in his clear, sober and authoritative history of British multinational banking, the strength of those banks in the 19th century rested on British economic and political pre-eminence. Their core market was British business, whose ...

Peroxide and Paracetamol

Adam Mars-Jones: Alison MacLeod, 12 September 2013

Unexploded 
by Alison MacLeod.
Hamish Hamilton, 340 pp., £16.99, July 2013, 978 0 241 14263 9
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... likely to be his first port of call. MacLeod’s main characters are the Beaumonts: dependable Geoffrey, whose mother died in an asylum, so that he longs for a solid conventional life, and clever, arty Evelyn, in revolt against her oppressively snobbish parents. Her choice of Geoffrey, a bank manager, secured their ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: Sedan Stories, 8 August 2002

... with sedan chairs. According to Poles Apart: The Public Sedans of Bygone London, a pamphlet by Geoffrey Wilson (Connor and Butler, £5.95), ‘the first public hire chairs in Britain appeared in London in 1634, after Charles I had granted a warrant to Sir Saunders Duncombe, a gentleman-pensioner of the King, giving him the sole right to build covered ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: Flirtation, Seduction and Betrayal, 5 September 2002

... the best subjects,’ which would explain the contents (James Hewitt to Henry Kissinger by way of Geoffrey Boycott, Charlton Heston, Dave Lee Travis and Norman Tebbit), but you have to wonder how much of a coincidence it is that men over forty not only ‘make the best subjects’ but also make the best Telegraph readers. Farndale justifies his title by ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: Aristocrats, 20 May 2004

... her friends and relations in high places, one of whom happened then to be the editor of the Times, Geoffrey Dawson, who, finding a likely lad with the right connections in the anteroom to his office, had, in the way things used to happen in those days, taken me out to supper at Pratts. The rest, as they say, is history. These days, Aunt Nell’s nephews have ...

Memoriousness

E.S. Turner, 15 September 1988

Memories of Times Past 
by Louis Heren.
Hamish Hamilton, 313 pp., £15.95, July 1988, 0 241 12427 1
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Chances: An Autobiography 
by Mervyn Jones.
Verso, 311 pp., £14.95, September 1987, 0 86091 167 5
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... born in the East End of London, was taken on as a messenger boy in Printing House Square when Geoffrey Dawson was at the helm. If, fifty years on, he had succeeded to the editorship, he would have known better than to cast himself as an unofficial member of the Cabinet, which was where Dawson, the villain of this book, went wrong. Dawson intrigued to ...

Passage to Africa

D.A.N. Jones, 7 July 1983

Africa Dances 
by Geoffrey Gorer.
Penguin, 218 pp., £2.95, January 1983, 0 14 009502 0
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Nigerian Kaleidoscope 
by Rex Niven.
Hurst/Archon, 278 pp., £13.50, January 1983, 0 905838 59 9
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Stepping-Stones 
by Sylvia Leith-Ross, edited by Michael Crowder.
Peter Owen, 191 pp., £10.95, February 1983, 0 7206 0600 4
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Female and Male in West Africa 
edited by Christine Oppong.
Allen and Unwin, 402 pp., £18.50, April 1983, 0 04 301158 6
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Memories of Our Recent Boom 
by Kole Omotoso.
Longman, 232 pp., £1.50, May 1983, 0 582 78572 3
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... One was picturesque and picaresque, Africa Dances: A Book about West African Negroes, published by Geoffrey Gorer in 1935 when he was 30, after a rather Waugh-like tour of French and British territories: he had been guided by Féral Benga, a ballet dancer from Senegal whom he had met in Paris. The striking pictures included a smoky painting of handsome Benga ...

Against Theory

Gerald Graff, 21 January 1982

Structuralism or Criticism? 
by Geoffrey Strickland.
Cambridge, 209 pp., £17.50, April 1981, 0 521 23184 1
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... In the noisy polemical atmosphere of contemporary literary criticism, Geoffrey Strickland’s quiet ‘thoughts on how we read’ may not have got a fair hearing. His book is an answer to the philosophical critics who have lately been questioning the assumption that literary and other texts have determinate meanings, meanings more or less under the control of their authors ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: Looking Ahead, 18 May 2000

... evolutionary psychology stable (ideologically aligned with Wilson) this year is The Mating Mind by Geoffrey Miller. It’s subtitled ‘How Sexual Choice Shaped the Evolution of Human Nature’, and the basic idea is that ‘the richness and subtlety of modern human psychology reflects a legacy of minds that evolved, like the peacock’s tail and the elk’s ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: Politicians v. the press, 22 July 2004

... status.’ As if his status made it more rather than less acceptable for him to borrow money from Geoffrey Robinson without declaring it, or to put in a word at the Home Office to help Srichand Hinduja get a passport. Readers might be forgiven at times for thinking that a more accurate title for the book would have been ‘How the Media Are Being Unfair to ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: In the Bunker, 2 July 2020

... Willows, or even the ‘safe pit of blackness’ in the Dorset countryside where the narrator of Geoffrey Household’s 1939 thriller Rogue Male goes to ground. As for the bunker under the White House that Donald Trump went to ‘inspect’ on 29 May, while Black Lives Matter protesters gathered near Lafayette Park – well, think what you will about that ...

At The Thirteenth Hour

William Wootten: David Jones, 25 September 2003

Wedding Poems 
by David Jones, edited by Thomas Dilworth.
Enitharmon, 88 pp., £12, April 2002, 1 900564 87 4
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David JonesWriter and Artist 
by Keith Alldritt.
Constable, 208 pp., £18.99, April 2003, 1 84119 379 8
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... David Jones was staying in the Chelsea flat of the BBC’s Assistant Director of Programme Planning, Harman Grisewood, as the bombs fell on London in the autumn of 1940. During one raid, a near miss blew a bus off course; it went through the window of Sainsbury’s on the King’s Road. ‘I was going out to see if I could do anything,’ Grisewood reported ...

swete lavender

Thomas Jones: Molesworth, 17 February 2000

Molesworth 
by Geoffrey Willans and Ronald Searle.
Penguin, 406 pp., £8.99, October 1999, 0 14 118240 7
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... custard’s which is the skool i am at’ – whose spelling is atrocious. His diaries, written by Geoffrey Willans (a one-time schoolmaster) and illustrated by Ronald Searle, originally appeared in Punch, as a kind of sequel about a boys’ school to Searle’s St Trinians drawings. They were published in book form as Down with Skool! (1953), How to be Topp ...

Half-Way up the Hill

Frank Kermode, 7 July 1988

Young Betjeman 
by Bevis Hillier.
Murray, 457 pp., £15.95, July 1988, 0 7195 4531 5
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... only forgotten Victorian architecture, but the verse of Philip Bourke Marston or that of Ebepezer Jones (whom Mr Hillier, by an un-Betjemanian slip, confounds with Ebenezer Elliott, the Corn Law Rhymer). In such matters it was good and original pedagogy to be droll. To be so on the subject of the extremely upper classes may seem less useful. They evidently ...

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