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Ronald Bryden, 10 December 1987

The Life of Kenneth Tynan 
by Kathleen Tynan.
Weidenfeld, 407 pp., £16.95, September 1987, 9780297790822
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... dramaturg. ‘How shall we slaughter the little bastard?’ snorted Olivier, handing his letter to Joan Plowright, whom he had married in the interim. Tynan had contributed, Olivier believed, to his – Olivier’s – first wife’s mental breakdown by his derisive reviews. More recently, he had attacked the Chichester Festival, under cover of which Olivier ...


Alan Bennett: What I did in 2014, 8 January 2015

... upon a time when one saw an old couple walking along holding hands the thought was of Darby and Joan. Nowadays one just wonders which of them it is who has Alzheimer’s.1 June, Cambridge. On parade (on King’s Parade in fact) just after ten, where the calming presence of Richard Lloyd Morgan, the chaplain of ...

As Many Pairs of Shoes as She Likes

Jenny Turner: On Feminism, 15 December 2011

... perpetual sharp-elbowed jostle for the moral high ground. Looked at one way – in the manner of Joan Didion, for example, in her harsh, oddly clouded but startlingly acute essay of 1972 on the Women’s Movement – the idea of feminism is obviously Marxist, being about the ‘invention’, as Didion put it, ‘of women as a “class”’, a total ...

The Atmosphere of the Clyde

Jean McNicol: Red Clydeside, 2 January 2020

When the Clyde Ran Red: A Social History of Red Clydeside 
by Maggie Craig.
Birlinn, 313 pp., £9.99, March 2018, 978 1 78027 506 2
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Glasgow 1919: The Rise of Red Clydeside 
by Kenny MacAskill.
Biteback, 310 pp., £20, January 2019, 978 1 78590 454 7
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John Maclean: Hero of Red Clydeside 
by Henry Bell.
Pluto, 242 pp., £14.99, October 2018, 978 0 7453 3838 5
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... however, there was ‘no clear demarcation between “revolutionary” and “reformist”’, as Joan Smith points out in The ILP on Clydeside, 1893-1932, and, in Glasgow at least, the ILP and BSP ‘shared similar policies and held joint demonstrations’ and were involved in both political and industrial activism (nationally, the SDF/BSP was much less ...

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