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Nuclear Family

Rudolf Peierls, 19 June 1980

Disturbing the Universe 
by Freeman Dyson.
Harper and Row, 283 pp., £6.95, November 1979, 0 06 011108 9
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... in the ‘Two Cultures’, this writing by a scientist would be hard to classify. Freeman Dyson is a scientist of great distinction. He is best-known for his share in laying the foundations of quantum electrodynamics, the discipline which describes the interplay of charged particles, such as electrons, with each other and with radiation. In the ...

Boiling Electrons

David Kaiser, 27 September 2012

Turing’s Cathedral: The Origins of the Digital Universe 
by George Dyson.
Allen Lane, 401 pp., £25, March 2012, 978 0 7139 9750 7
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... calculation would change for ever. The unlikely setting for the transformation – as detailed in George Dyson’s engaging history – was the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. The institute had been founded in 1930 with funding from the department-store magnate Louis Bamberger and his sister, Caroline Bamberger Fuld. Advised by the education ...


Nicholas Spice, 22 December 1983

Otto Klemperer: His Life and Times. Vol.I: 1885-1933 
by Peter Heyworth.
Cambridge, 492 pp., £15, October 1983, 0 521 24293 2
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Score and Podium: A Complete Guide to Conducting 
by Frederik Prausnitz.
Norton, 530 pp., £18.50, November 1983, 0 393 95154 5
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The New Oxford Companion to Music 
edited by Denis Arnold.
Oxford, 2017 pp., £37.50, October 1983, 0 19 311316 3
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... and Holland ... but have never had much hearing elsewhere,’ and gave twice as much space to George Dyson and Ebenezer Prout as to Webern. Unapologetically partial, this was the last ‘full’ account of musical history to be given in the British Imperial perspective. It was written for Wasps, says Denis Arnold, from a Waspish point of view and ...

Swift radiant morning

D.J. Enright, 21 February 1991

The Collected Letters of Charles Hamilton Sorley 
edited by Jean Moorcroft Wilson.
Cecil Woolf, 310 pp., £25, November 1990, 9780900821547
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Ivor Gurney: Collected Letters 
edited by R.K.R Thornton.
Mid-Northumberland Arts Group/Carcanet, 579 pp., £25, February 1991, 0 85635 941 6
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... a degree and teach in a Working Men’s College, an aspiration encouraged by the Music Master, George (later Sir George) Dyson. ‘One hates talking (I know it’s only silly shy self-consciousness) about anything one really feels,’ he added, to explain why he hadn’t mentioned it ...
Daring to Excel: The Story of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain 
by Ruth Railton.
Secker, 466 pp., £20, August 1992, 0 436 23359 2
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... their best and nastiest to try and stop her. ‘Too much faith and too few years,’ droned Sir George Dyson, Director of the Royal College of Music. ‘It would be a pity to ruin your reputation so early,’ threatened the sinister Dr Sydney Northcote, Director of the Carnegie Trust, ‘we’ll leave you to think about it’ – and he locked Railton ...

The Ugly Revolution

Michael Rogin: Martin Luther King Jr, 10 May 2001

I May Not Get there with You: The True Martin Luther King Jr 
by Michael Eric Dyson.
Free Press, 404 pp., £15.99, May 2000, 0 684 86776 1
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The Papers of Martin Luther King Jr. Vol. IV: Symbol of the Movement January 1957-December 1958 
edited by Clayborne Carson et al.
California, 637 pp., £31.50, May 2000, 0 520 22231 8
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... transformed these figures in national memory from trouble-makers into healers, as Michael Eric Dyson puts it in I May Not Get there with You, an attempt to bring King back to political life. But while Lincoln turned in his last months from racial justice to national reconciliation, King had been moving in the opposite direction at the time of his ...

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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... relocating unemployed men and their families to the coast. The inspiration behind the scheme was George Lansbury, the subject of John Shepherd’s biography, a book as meticulous as it is generous. It is nonetheless timely: just as the prison service has brown-filled this pleasant site, so, too, New Labour has trampled on the radical socialism of which ...


Alan Bennett: Notes on 1997, 1 January 1998

... first British self-service launderette is opened on Queensway, London 1949.’4 January. George F. tells me that when Andrew Lloyd Webber, the Lord Lloyd Webber, as we must now say, bought his Canaletto at Christie’s he paid the £10 million bill by Access in order to earn the air miles – enough presumably to last him till the end of his ...

Ruthless and Truthless

Ferdinand Mount: Rotten Government, 6 May 2021

The Assault on Truth: Boris Johnson, Donald Trump and the Emergence of a New Moral Barbarism 
by Peter Oborne.
Simon and Schuster, 192 pp., £12.99, February 2021, 978 1 3985 0100 3
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Political Advice: Past, Present and Future 
edited by Colin Kidd and Jacqueline Rose.
I.B. Tauris, 240 pp., £21.99, February 2021, 978 1 83860 120 1
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... who were purged by Johnson. No supposedly dictatorial previous prime minister, not Lloyd George, not Churchill, certainly not Thatcher, came anywhere close to this Stalinist ruthlessness.As we are now seeing, any centralisation of power tends also to centralise corruption. The lobbyists gather like flies or vultures round Number Ten, because no other ...

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