Search Results

Advanced Search

16 to 27 of 27 results

Sort by:

Filter by:


Article Types


She gives me partridges

Bee Wilson: Alma Mahler, 5 November 2015

Malevolent Muse: The Life of Alma Mahler 
by Oliver Hilmes, translated by Donald Arthur.
Northeastern, 360 pp., £29, May 2015, 978 1 55553 789 0
Show More
Show More
... light, and told false stories about their life together. (‘The silence of the famous dead,’ as Janet Malcolm put it, ‘offers an enormous temptation to the self-promoting living.’) Alma even interfered with Mahler’s compositions, demanding – based on her authority as the widow – that the middle movements of his Sixth Symphony be reordered ...

‘This is not a biography’

Jacqueline Rose: Sylvia Plath, 22 August 2002

... that they take sides. In The Silent Woman (1994), her openly partisan study of Plath biography, Janet Malcolm insists that this is unavoidable: ‘As the reader knows, I, too, have taken a side.’ One flier for her book stated: ‘A writer finds Ted Hughes innocent but biographies as a group guilty,’ which suggests the process is interminable and ...

Sorrows of a Polygamist

Mark Ford: Ted Hughes in His Cage, 17 March 2016

Ted Hughes: The Unauthorised Life 
by Jonathan Bate.
William Collins, 662 pp., £30, October 2015, 978 0 00 811822 8
Show More
Show More
... which has been roundly condemned not only by the estate but in reviews by such as Craig Raine and Janet Malcolm, is yet further evidence that accusations of betrayal and threats of violence are likely to engulf anyone who tries to interpret the Hughes-Plath saga and its aftermath. Jacqueline Rose inspired a ferocious epistolary assault from Hughes for ...

It’s Been a Lot of Fun

David Runciman: Hitchens’s Hitchens, 24 June 2010

Hitch-22: A Memoir 
by Christopher Hitchens.
Atlantic, 435 pp., £20, June 2010, 978 1 84354 921 5
Show More
Show More
... detail. Was there really no note for Peter? And why does Christopher feel the need to tell us so? Janet Malcolm recently published a short fragment from an abandoned autobiography, explaining why journalists should not memorialise themselves. Another obstacle in the way of the journalist turned autobiographer is the pose of objectivity into which ...

Sisyphus at the Selectric

James Wolcott: Undoing Philip Roth, 20 May 2021

Philip Roth: The Biography 
by Blake Bailey.
Cape, 898 pp., £30, April, 978 0 224 09817 5
Show More
Philip Roth: A Counterlife 
by Ira Nadel.
Oxford, 546 pp., £22.99, May, 978 0 19 984610 8
Show More
Here We Are: My Friendship with Philip Roth 
by Benjamin Taylor.
Penguin, 192 pp., £18, May 2020, 978 0 525 50524 2
Show More
Show More
... Ass, Copper: Rereading Philip Roth) and the fictionalised portraits of Roth in his former lover Janet Hobhouse’s The Furies, his former protégé Alan Lelchuk’s Ziff: A Life? and his former protégée-lover Lisa Halliday’s Asymmetry – it may feel at times as if we’ve made this expedition before, with Claire Bloom hovering overhead.But buoyancy ...

Mother! Oh God! Mother!

Jenny Diski: ‘Psycho’, 7 January 2010

‘Psycho’ in the Shower: The History of Cinema’s Most Famous Scene 
by Philip Skerry.
Continuum, 316 pp., £12.99, June 2009, 978 0 8264 2769 4
Show More
Show More
... Hitchcock said that this revolution in movie habits was necessary because having seen Janet Leigh’s starry name on the awning, people who arrived halfway through the movie would spend the rest of the film wondering where she was. I remember it clearly, although I wasn’t old enough to get in to see the X-rated Psycho when it came out. In the ...

Unnatural Rebellion

Malcolm Gaskill: ‘Witches’, 2 November 2017

The Witch: A History of Fear, from Ancient Times to the Present 
by Ronald Hutton.
Yale, 360 pp., £25, August 2017, 978 0 300 22904 2
Show More
Show More
... bothered with the law. In 1705 in the fishing village of Pittenweem in Fife a mob set about Janet Cornfoot, who they believed had cast spells on the community. They dragged her to the harbour, hung her by the ankles, pelted her with stones, crushed her under a door piled with rocks, then ran her over with a cart. Cornfoot’s lynching may seem ...

There isn’t any inside!

Adam Mars-Jones: William Gaddis, 23 September 2021

The Recognitions 
by William Gaddis.
NYRB, 992 pp., £24, November 2020, 978 1 68137 466 6
Show More
by William Gaddis.
NYRB, 784 pp., £20, October 2020, 978 1 68137 468 0
Show More
Show More
... hangs up male and female laundry to dry separately. When Reverend Gwyon takes on simple-minded Janet as a kitchen maid, the household is able to match the Starkadders of Cold Comfort Farm for individual and collective oddity, though comedy here is an uninvited guest.Any account of an oppressive religious upbringing risks being overshadowed by Gosse’s ...


David Runciman: Occupy, 25 October 2012

The Occupy Handbook 
edited by Janet Byrne.
Back Bay, 535 pp., $15.99, April 2012, 978 0 316 22021 7
Show More
Show More
... common with the second. Direct democracy and representative democracy remain poles apart. In 2010, Malcolm Gladwell was widely criticised for an article he wrote in the New Yorker about the Iranian ‘green’ revolution, which disputed the far-reaching political effects of social networking. ‘The revolution will not be tweeted,’ Gladwell insisted. The ...

Sophie missed the train

Samuel Earle: Carrère’s Casual Presence, 4 February 2021

97,196 Words: Essays 
by Emmanuel Carrère, translated by John Lambert.
Vintage, 304 pp., £9.99, December 2020, 978 1 78470 582 4
Show More
Show More
... down to killing someone.’One of the shorter pieces in the collection is Carrère’s review of Janet Malcolm’s The Journalist and the Murderer (1989). He admires the way Malcolm exposes the games writers play to entrap their subjects. But he has one objection: his own innocence. ‘At the risk of transforming this ...

If everybody had a Wadley

Terry Castle: ‘Joe’ Carstairs, the ‘fastest woman on water’, 5 March 1998

The Queen of Whale Cay: The Eccentric Story of ‘Joe’ Carstairs, Fastest Woman on Water 
by Kate Summerscale.
Fourth Estate, 248 pp., £12.99, August 1997, 1 85702 360 9
Show More
Show More
... a beautiful man, smoked cigars, and was pursued from race to race by a gaggle of female fans. (Sir Malcolm Campbell of Bluebird fame called her – apparently without irony – ‘the greatest sportsman I know’.) Special ‘friends’ included the lesbian actresses Tallulah Bankhead and Gwen Farrar. Carstairs, the Evening News reported in 1925, could ...

Courage, mon amie

Terry Castle: Disquiet on the Western Front, 4 April 2002

... point, early in 1915, when Brittain, still at Somerville, contemplates enlisting as a VAD nurse: Janet Adie came to tea to help me learn to typewrite. She is feeling very busy because she now has the secretaryship of one of those soup-kitchen affairs on her shoulders. It does not sound very strenuous occupation; these people who never had anything to do ...

Read anywhere with the London Review of Books app, available now from the App Store for Apple devices, Google Play for Android devices and Amazon for your Kindle Fire.

Sign up to our newsletter

For highlights from the latest issue, our archive and the blog, as well as news, events and exclusive promotions.

Newsletter Preferences