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Soldier, Sailor, Poacher

E.S. Turner, 3 October 1985

Great Britons: 20th-Century Lives 
by Harold Oxbury.
Oxford, 371 pp., £14.95, September 1985, 0 19 211599 5
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The Oxford Book of Military Anecdotes 
edited by Max Hastings.
Oxford, 514 pp., £9.50, October 1985, 0 19 214107 4
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The Long Affray: The Poaching Wars in Britain 
by Harry Hopkins.
Secker, 344 pp., £12.95, August 1985, 9780436201028
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... but to uphold the sanctity of England’s game laws. His trial, in 1822, is minutely examined by Harry Hopkins in The Long Affray, a masterly account of the poaching wars of last century. In France the game laws were scrapped in the Revolution and the gentlemen of England greatly feared for their own coverts. ...

Churchill’s Jackal

Kenneth O. Morgan, 24 January 1980

Brendan Bracken 
by Charles Edward Lysaght.
Allen Lane, 372 pp., £10, September 1980, 0 7139 0969 2
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... indirect – though one with much influence, as in his negotiations on Churchill’s behalf with Harry Hopkins in early 1941 (Bracken was always an ardent apostle of the Anglo-American alliance). He was, however, sent by Churchill to the Ministry of Information in July 1941, by far the most important episode in his career and one covered with ...

Mansions in Bloom

Ruth Richardson, 23 May 1991

A Paradise out of a Common Field: The Pleasures and Plenty of the Victorian Garden 
by Joan Morgan and Alison Richards.
Century, 256 pp., £16.95, May 1990, 0 7126 2209 8
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Private Gardens of London 
by Arabella Lennox-Boyd.
Weidenfeld, 224 pp., £25, September 1990, 0 297 83025 2
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The Greatest Glasshouse: The Rainforest Recreated 
edited by Sue Minter.
HMSO, 216 pp., £25, July 1990, 0 11 250035 8
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Religion and Society in a Cotswold Vale: Nailsworth, Gloucestershire, 1780-1865 
by Albion Urdank.
California, 448 pp., $47.50, May 1990, 0 520 06670 7
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... over enclosure of common lands, and to the poaching wars so well described by Edward Thompson and Harry Hopkins? What is the history of the plant auction? Was there a Victorian market in topsoil, peat, turf? When was the sprinkler introduced? What happened to experiments using human guano as a fertiliser? Weren’t a lot of the innovations which are here ...

Her Guns

Jeremy Harding, 8 March 1990

The View from the Ground 
by Martha Gellhorn.
Granta, 459 pp., £14.95, September 1989, 0 14 014200 2
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Towards Asmara 
by Thomas Keneally.
Hodder, 320 pp., £12.95, September 1989, 0 340 41517 7
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... that she was staying in a brothel. By 1934, she was back in the United States looking for work. Harry Hopkins, the director of the Federal Emergency Relief Administration, agreed to see her. ‘I painted my face like Parisian ladies, lots of eye shadow, mascara and lipstick, which was not at all the style for American ladies then and certainly not for ...

No One Leaves Her Place in Line

Jeremy Harding: Martha Gellhorn, 7 May 1998

... researching the effects of the Federal Emergency Relief Administration for the head of the agency, Harry Hopkins; fifty years later in Britain, she watched the gap between the rich and the poor widen again, and she railed against the spirit of Thatcherism. Two days before she died, at the age of 89, she was denouncing the Clinton Administration’s ...

Had he not run

David Reynolds: America’s longest-serving president, 2 June 2005

Franklin Delano Roosevelt 
by Roy Jenkins.
Pan, 208 pp., £7.99, May 2005, 0 330 43206 0
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Franklin D. Roosevelt 
by Patrick Renshaw.
Longman, 223 pp., $16.95, December 2003, 0 582 43803 9
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Franklin Delano Roosevelt: Champion of Freedom 
by Conrad Black.
Weidenfeld, 1280 pp., £17.99, October 2004, 0 7538 1848 5
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... around him, including his ‘Brains Trust’ of Columbia University academics and advisers such as Harry Hopkins, a former social worker who became the president’s confidant after the death of Louis Howe in April 1936. Inventive, loyal and industrious, Hopkins worked himself to death in Roosevelt’s service at home ...

Pork Chops

John Bayley, 25 April 1991

Gerard Manley HopkinsA Very Private Life 
by Robert Bernard Martin.
HarperCollins, 448 pp., £18, April 1991, 0 00 217662 9
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... On a walking tour in 1866, just before his conversion, Hopkins visited Tintern Abbey, and paid it the highest compliment he could think of by saying it reminded him of the architecture of Butterfield, designer of Keble College. When we say X has no sense of humour it means he has one different from our own, but Hopkins’s idea of fun is very Victorian, very religious, very remote indeed ...

Inside Every Foreigner

Jackson Lears: America Intervenes, 21 February 2019

Franklin D. Roosevelt: A Political Life 
by Robert M. Dallek..
Allen Lane, 692 pp., £30, November 2017, 978 0 241 31584 2
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... shies away from the ambiguities and resorts to conventional wisdom. His list of leaders includes Harry Truman and John Kennedy – two presidents who risked war by exacerbating tensions with the Soviet Union. Dallek views FDR from the perspective of a mid-century liberal who has apparently made his peace with the warfare state. As Dallek sees him, FDR, like ...
Secret Affairs: Franklin Roosevelt, Cordell Hull and Sumner Welles 
by Irwin Gellman.
Johns Hopkins, 499 pp., $29.95, April 1995, 0 8018 5083 5
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Closest Companion: The Unknown Story of the Intimate Friendship between Franklin Roosevelt and Margaret Suckley 
edited by Geoffrey Ward.
Houghton Mifflin, 444 pp., $24.95, April 1995, 0 395 66080 7
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No Ordinary Time. Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt: The Home Front in World War Two 
by Doris Kearns Goodwin.
Simon and Schuster, 759 pp., £18, June 1995, 0 671 64240 5
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The End of Reform 
by Alan Brinkley.
Knopf, 371 pp., $27.50, March 1995, 0 394 53573 1
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... troops in Europe and the desire to get the Soviet Union into the Pacific war, not because he or Harry Hopkins were tired and ill or because they lacked wise State Department counsel. The political significance of the Welles-Hull debacle lies, for Irving Gellman, in FDR’s ‘divisive management style’, his habit of under-cutting his aides by being ...

Subject, Spectator, Phantom

J. Hoberman: The Strangest Personality Ever to Lead the Free World, 17 February 2005

Nixon at the Movies: A Book about Belief 
by Mark Feeney.
Chicago, 422 pp., £19.50, November 2004, 0 226 23968 3
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... a Western. FDR was known to admire Myrna Loy and Ike to enjoy watching shoot-’em-ups; underdog Harry Truman had been inspired by Frank Capra’s 1948 State of the Union and, as the son of a sometime Hollywood mogul, Kennedy was groomed for glamorous stardom. But no American president before Nixon had ever made a public pronouncement based on his experience ...

Made in Algiers

Jeremy Harding: De Gaulle, 4 November 2010

Le mythe gaullien 
by Sudhir Hazareesingh.
Gallimard, 280 pp., €21, May 2010, 978 2 07 012851 8
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The General: Charles de Gaulle and the France He Saved 
by Jonathan Fenby.
Simon and Schuster, 707 pp., £30, June 2010, 978 1 84737 392 2
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... with the Allies could be imminent. But with gentle persuasion from his senior diplomatic adviser, Harry Hopkins, Roosevelt began to think that the general might, after all, serve as joint head of the prospective committee, alongside Giraud. In asparagus mode, De Gaulle posed with Giraud for the cameras at Roosevelt’s request and left for London with ...

Not Recommended Reading

Eliot Weinberger, 7 September 2017

... by the sight of a beautiful Venusian female, whom he kept watching. A Weird Appointment (1901) by Harry S. Tedrow    At the local diner, a waitress tells the narrator that a Martian has moved into town. Going by the name of Miss Dora Wolf, she is part of a team studying human institutions. Miss Wolf’s particular interest is the post office. The Thought ...

Updike’s Innocence

Craig Raine, 25 January 1990

Just Looking: Essays on Art 
by John Updike.
Deutsch, 210 pp., £19.95, November 1989, 0 233 98501 8
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... yet misleading. Lavishly illustrated, sometimes with pictures that aren’t actually discussed (by Hopkins, Poe and Oscar Wilde), apparently effortless, occasional, these pieces are freighted with the chronic preoccupations evident since the beginning of this intelligent writer’s long career. They are not the innocent reports they seem to be. Witness ...

Pound & Co.

August Kleinzahler: Davenport and Kenner, 26 September 2019

Questioning Minds: Vols I-II: The Letters of Guy Davenport and Hugh Kenner 
edited by Edward Burns.
Counterpoint, 1817 pp., $95, October 2018, 978 1 61902 181 5
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... on Pound’s Cantos. When he answered Kenner’s letter he complained to him about ‘the dread [Harry] Levin’, his supervisor, who seemed unimpressed by his choice of subject and methodology. ‘Damn Levin,’ Kenner wrote to Davenport in April 1961, annoyed that Levin’s behaviour might block Davenport’s PhD, which would mean he couldn’t recruit ...

Roaming the Greenwood

Colm Tóibín: A History of Gay Literature: The Male Tradition by Gregory Woods, 21 January 1999

A History of Gay Literature: The Male Tradition 
by Gregory Woods.
Yale, 448 pp., £24.95, February 1998, 0 300 07201 5
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... most of the figures who recreated modern writing were gay, or Irish, or Jewish: Melville, Whitman, Hopkins, James, Yeats, Kafka, Woolf, Joyce, Stein, Beckett, Mann, Proust, Gide, Firbank, Lorca, Cocteau, Auden, Forster, Cavafy. But he would have been slightly unsettled, I think, by the thought of the gay element in this list, and by the idea that in place of ...

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