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Mandelson’s Pleasure Dome

Iain Sinclair, 2 October 1997

... control, tax: chaos. When the dials go back to zero, they won’t know how to behave. Memory banks will be wiped. A new beginning (like the tag on the side of the tourist riverboats chugging downstream to Greenwich, promising to carry ticket-holders ‘to where Time begins’). Colourwill bleed from the computer-enhanced visions. Crocodiles will emerge ...

The Colossus of Maroussi

Iain Sinclair: In Athens, 27 May 2010

... was equivalent to the amount financial experts reckoned investors were syphoning out of Greek banks to bury in Cyprus or Switzerland when the collapse finally came, just as I visited Athens early in 2010. The people I talked to, students, academics, film-makers, all agreed: it had been a monumental, epoch-defining opening ceremony. The children of the ...


Iain Sinclair: Out of Essex, 8 January 2004

... beneath a fast stream. John Clare, in ‘Recollections after a Ramble’, writes of sitting by the banks of a river and thinking: ‘If I tumbled in/I should fall direct to heaven.’ The wet colour is hazy, soft; it does its best to subvert the over-emphatic actuality of the borrowed original. Memories are elective, not involuntary. More like dreams or ...

Blessed, Beastly Place

Douglas Dunn, 5 March 1981

Precipitous City 
by Trevor Royle.
Mainstream, 210 pp., £6.95, May 1980, 0 906391 09 1
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RLS: A Life Study 
by Jenni Calder.
Hamish Hamilton, 362 pp., £9.95, June 1980, 0 241 10374 6
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by J. MacDougall Hay.
Canongate, 450 pp., £4.95, November 1979, 0 903937 79 4
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Scottish Satirical Verse 
edited by Edwin Morgan.
Carcanet, 236 pp., £6.95, June 1980, 0 85635 183 0
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Collected Poems 
by Robert Garioch.
Carcanet, 208 pp., £3.95, July 1980, 0 85635 316 7
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... Unwashed’, Thom is vigorously political, while the radical Rodger opens his satire on savings banks with this: Ho! ye worthless, thriftless trash; Worthless, because ye haenae cash – Thriftless, because ye try to dash             Like your superiors; Come hither, till I lay the lash             To your posteriors. Norman ...

England’s End

Peter Campbell, 7 June 1984

English Journey 
by J.B. Priestley.
Heinemann, 320 pp., £12.95, March 1984, 0 434 60371 6
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English Journey, or The Road to Milton Keynes 
by Beryl Bainbridge.
Duckworth/BBC, 158 pp., £7.95, March 1984, 0 563 20299 8
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Crisis and Conservation: Conflict in the British Countryside 
by Charlie Pye-Smith and Chris Rose.
Penguin, 213 pp., £3.95, March 1984, 0 14 022437 8
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Invisible Country: A Journey through Scotland 
by James Campbell.
Weidenfeld, 164 pp., £8.95, April 1984, 0 297 78371 8
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Literary Britain 
by Bill Brandt.
Victoria and Albert Museum in association with Hurtwood Press, 184 pp., £8.95, March 1984, 0 905209 66 4
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... to history’. It is hard to imagine anyone in England hating the power of the Church as Iain Crichton Smith told Campbell that he did (‘When I see one of those Free Church ministers on the street in Lewis I feel like walking across the road and hitting him in the face ... It’s power they want, that’s all it is’), or any injustice of the last ...

All change. This train is cancelled

Iain Sinclair: The Dome, 13 May 1999

... in the black stuff. The single word, RUBY, sprayed on a brick wall. The real Greenwich. Banks of TV monitors on the station platform and a nostalgic red postbox outside with a black and yellow ribbon across its mouth: NOT IN USE. On the scarlet pole of a surveillance camera is another notice: SECURE YOUR VALUABLES NOW! THIEVES OPERATE IN THIS ...

The Man in the Clearing

Iain Sinclair: Meeting Gary Snyder, 24 May 2012

... café, a big US flag fluttering outside, and all the convenience stores shuttered, along with the banks. There is a piece in Danger on Peaks (2004) set on the road we will drive to San Francisco, then Los Angeles. Snyder’s sister, Anthea Corinne Snyder Lowry, noticed that a pickup ahead of her had lost a grass-mower from the back. ‘She pulled onto the ...

The Last London

Iain Sinclair, 30 March 2017

... over from the Reagan era … and propped up in a temporary kind of way by ailing US and Japanese banks that couldn’t afford to let him expire completely … If Trump was in the White House which, as he was rash enough to hint in those undiminished days, he might well be before too long, then he could follow the examples of Presidents Reagan and ...

Nigels against the World

Ferdinand Mount: The EU Referendum, 19 May 2016

... blood between the rival Leave organisations. is financed by the insurance tycoon Arron Banks and blessed by Nigel Farage and Ukip. Vote Leave is led by Michael Gove, Gisela Stuart and Boris Johnson, with the support of other longstanding Eurosceptic ministers and former ministers, such as Iain Duncan Smith, Nigel ...


Will Self: Walking out of London, 20 October 2011

... In the first few years of the last decade I undertook a series of what I called – with a nod to Iain Sinclair’s circumambulation of London – ‘radial walks’. These were tramps of between three and five days from my home near the city’s centre out into its hinterland, following either a cardinal or an ordinal point of the compass, depending on which direction most appealed to me at the time ...


Mary Wellesley: The Wyldrenesse of Wyrale, 26 April 2018

... This rare enclave of medieval red sandstone, nestled on Birkenhead’s urbanised, industrialised banks, is a metaphor for the ebb and flow of human activity. The priory is flanked on either side by dry docks operated by Cammel Laird. I was told these once employed 2000 workers but that now just 700 people work there. In Pearl (the first poem in the ...

Into the Underworld

Iain Sinclair: The Hackney Underworld, 22 January 2015

... down Mare Street to the nexus of commercial enterprises, the betting shops that used to be banks, around Hackney Central station. Funds provided by central government for regeneration were siphoned into factory outlets for Burberry, Aquascutum and Pringle of Scotland in neighbouring Chatham Place. In some unsuspected way, the Hole in the rectory lawn ...

Where are we now?

LRB Contributors: Responses to the Referendum, 14 July 2016

... UK. Both of these claims, as leading figures in the Leave campaign have now admitted, were false. Iain Duncan Smith distanced himself from Vote Leave’s assertion that Brexit would free up £350 million for reinvestment in the NHS; Nigel Farage agreed that the claim had been ‘a mistake’. Daniel Hannan, the Conservative MEP, told the BBC that Leave voters ...

The Strange Death of Municipal England

Tom Crewe: Assault on Local Government, 15 December 2016

... People blame the bankers, but I think big government is just as much to blame as the big banks.’ This line of argument has allowed the government to present the slow strangulation of local government as a helpful nudge towards reform, a prompt for councils to make much needed efficiencies and ‘innovations’ in the way they provide services. When ...

We Are Many

Tom Crewe: In the Corbyn Camp, 11 August 2016

... is the most unpopular opposition leader on record, polling worse than Michael Foot, William Hague, Iain Duncan Smith, Michael Howard and Ed Miliband, all of whom went on to lose general elections by significant margins, or did not get to contest them. There are 230 Labour MPs; on 28 June, 172 of them voted in favour of a no confidence motion in Corbyn, and ...

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