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Karl Miller: Football Tribes, 1 June 1989

... man, I don’t know what does.’ He is of reiver stock, as lots of people are, and so is Bryan Robson, who plays like a warrior for moneymongering Manchester United, a team which has learnt to play with a scowl, as if they felt they were being robbed of the results to which financial outlays and impatient fans entitle them. Bobby Robson, the England ...

Eating people is right

Paul Delany, 21 February 1985

Modern Times 
by Peter York.
Heinemann, 128 pp., £7.95, October 1984, 0 434 89260 2
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Face Value: The Politics of Beauty 
by Robin Tolmach Lakoff and Raquel Scherr.
Routledge, 312 pp., £12.95, November 1984, 0 7100 9742 5
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... Fairisle Years’ (Chariots of Fire, Brideshead Revisited), with passing looks at Babytime, Bryan Ferry, Reactionary Chic, and Not Shaving. The most substantial part of York’s book is ‘Designtime’, an anatomy of the people he calls ‘the square men’, after their favourite motif. They have outstripped their traditional rivals, the ...

Taking back America

Anatol Lieven: The right-wing backlash, 2 December 2004

What’s the Matter with America? The Resistible Rise of the American Right 
by Thomas Frank.
Secker, 306 pp., £12, September 2004, 0 436 20539 4
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... as Republicans. The great populist wave of the 1890s which led to the adoption of William Jennings Bryan as the Democratic presidential candidate was imbued with fundamentalist Protestantism. Bryan’s ‘leftism’ did not take precedence over his fundamentalist Christianity; nor in his own mind was there any tension ...

One word says to its mate

Claire Harman: W.S. Graham, 4 October 2001

The Nightfisherman: Selected Letters of W.S. Graham 
edited by Michael Snow and Margaret Snow.
Carcanet, 401 pp., £12.95, November 1999, 1 85754 445 5
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... Tate Gallery St Ives exhibition catalogue for 1995 there is a comical photograph of the painter Bryan Wynter and some friends at Zennor in themid-1950s. They are seated round a bottle-strewn table. Wynter is smiling absently, Karl Weschke is looking down at his hands or the tablecloth, a woman lies slumped in an armchair and a young man holds his head in an ...

Beau Beverley

George Melly, 27 June 1991

Beverley Nichols 
by Bryan Connon.
Constable, 320 pp., £20, March 1991, 0 09 470570 4
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... sentimentality. What I read was a fascinating account of a very English tragi-comedy. The author, Bryan Connon, was invited to take it on by Nichols before his death, and assured there would be no restraints. ‘You must tell the truth as you see it. However unflattering it may be.’ I wonder, had he lived to read it, if he would have regretted this carte ...

The Passing Show

Ian Hacking, 2 January 1997

On Blindness: Letters between Bryan Magee and Martin Milligan 
Oxford, 188 pp., £16.99, September 1995, 0 19 823543 7Show More
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... Bryan Magee is a brilliant philosophical entrepreneur, host of two BBC television series in which he interviewed live philosophers and dead ones (the latter mediated by other live ones). The late Martin Milligan was a talented philosopher, one who was blind, not from birth but early in life. Magee, with characteristic panache, had a splendid idea: let’s get at some philosophical issues about perception by pursuing a dialogue ...


Anne Enright: Boys’ Aliens and Girls’ Aliens, 21 September 1995

... details are roughly the same but the emotional effect on the abductee varies. According to C.D.B. Bryan’s incredibly lazy book, * in which he details the findings of a recent conference on the phenomenon, abductees are 94 per cent Caucasian, 75 per cent female, and have 1.9 children. All of them arrive at the therapist’s frightened, distressed, and with a ...

Music and Beyond

Hans Keller, 21 October 1982

Hanns Eisler: Political Musician 
by Albrecht Betz, translated by Bill Hopkins.
Cambridge, 326 pp., £25, June 1982, 0 521 24022 0
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Music and Political: Collected Writings 1953-81 
by Hans Werner Henze, translated by Peter Labanyi.
Faber, 286 pp., £15, July 1982, 0 571 11719 8
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Vindications: Essays on Romantic Music 
by Deryck Cooke and Bryan Magee.
Faber, 226 pp., £12.50, July 1982, 0 571 11795 3
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... from my intra-musical position. ‘Conceptually communicable’: I choose my words with care. In Bryan Magee’s otherwise profoundly sensitive and knowledgeable ‘memoir’ of Deryck Cooke, there is a single gravely misleading sentence: ‘As a conceptual thinker, in the academic sense, he was competent but unremarkable, though he kept himself up to ...

Waiting for Something Unexpected

Sophie Pinkham: Gaito Gazdanov, 6 March 2014

The Spectre of Alexander Wolf 
by Gaito Gazdanov, translated by Bryan Karetnyk.
Pushkin, 167 pp., £7.99, November 2013, 978 1 78227 072 0
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... without a sense of living speech, and though it is often beautiful, it is at times colourless. Bryan Karetnyk’s translation is readable and sometimes elegant, but small inaccuracies, in a highly philosophical text, where precision is essential, make the underlying ideas sound more vague than they should. One of Gazdanov’s central themes is the absence ...

Rachel and Her Race

Patrick Parrinder, 18 August 1994

Constructions of ‘the Jew’ in English Literature and Society: Racial Representations, 1875-1945 
by Bryan Cheyette.
Cambridge, 301 pp., £35, November 1993, 0 521 44355 5
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The Jewish Heritage in British History: Englishness and Jewishness 
edited by Tony Kushner.
Cass, 234 pp., £25, January 1992, 0 7146 3464 6
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... Jew, like Karl Marx or Lord Beaconsfield. On the other hand, she did not originate what Bryan Cheyette would call a ‘semitic discourse’, though she certainly became the object of one. Disraeli rhapsodised over the ‘semitic principle’ which, he thought, ensured that true Jews were also true-blue Conservatives. Marx, most notoriously in his ...

Political Purposes

Frances Spalding: Art in postwar Britain, 15 April 1999

New Art New World: British Art in Postwar Society 
by Margaret Garlake.
Yale, 279 pp., £35, July 1998, 0 300 07292 9
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Cultural Offensive: America’s Impact on British Art since 1945 
by John Walker.
Pluto, 304 pp., £45, September 1988, 0 7453 1321 3
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... proof of Britain’s postwar vitality. The Whitechapel Art Gallery became a major venue after Bryan Robertson took over there, and the British Council, founded in 1934, also held important exhibitions, though it operated mostly abroad, becoming, as Garlake observes, an unacknowledged arm of the Foreign Office. Garlake quotes a letter, first brought to ...


Andrew O’Hagan: The Hearing of Rosemary West, 9 March 1995

... seeing the van away one night, we walked up the hill to the Springfield Estate, where she and Bryan lived, and where I’d been staying this week. It was just about to turn dark, there was a smell of fire, and you could see quite clearly, from the top of the road, the layers of hills and woodland going all the way down to the Severn. The Estate was clean ...


Ian Hacking, 4 February 1988

The False Prison: A Study of the Development of Wittgenstein’s Philosophy, Vol. I 
by David Pears.
Oxford, 202 pp., £19.50, September 1987, 0 19 824771 0
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Wittgenstein’s Nephew 
by Thomas Bernhard.
Quartet, 120 pp., £8.95, February 1987, 0 7043 2611 6
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... drawn) may have followed this pattern, but he encourages continuity. He is not one to say, with Mr Bryan Magee in his recent BBC series The Great Philosophers,* that ‘since Wittgenstein repudiated his own early philosophy, and since in any case it is now his later philosophy that is much the more influential, I don’t think we ought to devote too much of ...

What a Lot of Parties

Christopher Hitchens: Diana Mosley, 30 September 1999

Diana Mosley: A Biography 
by Jan Dalley.
Faber, 297 pp., £20, October 1997, 0 571 14448 9
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... a Waugh. Auberon’s father dedicated his novel Vile Bodies, and his travel-book Labels, to Bryan and Diana Guinness. He was certainly in love with the latter and probably derived the scene in A Handful of Dust about the complaisant husband’s fakery of a compromising situation in Brighton from Bryan Guinness’s ...

Going for Gould

R.W. Johnson, 23 July 1987

Apocalypse 2000: Economic Breakdown and the Suicide of Democracy 1989-2000 
by Peter Jay and Michael Stewart.
Sidgwick, 254 pp., £12.95, June 1987, 0 283 99440 1
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... again. It was not to be. On the Opposition side the sole Oxford don to remain in Labour’s ranks, Bryan Gould, rose like a rocket to effective number two or three status in the Party. The young Oxbridge SDP hopefuls were scythed down in their scores and now find their party in ruins. Politically, they are a homeless group. A lot will depend on where they turn ...

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