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Sheng Yun: ‘Finnegans Wake’ in China, 2 April 2014

... and was already a good way in by 2012, when the ‘restored’ Penguin edition by Danis Rose and John O’Hanlon came out, with more than 9000 corrections. How much of a difference this will make to readers in China isn’t obvious: the linguistic complexity of the work is probably lost for ever in Chinese. As far as I know, Dai hasn’t said anything ...

Turning down O’Hanlon

Mark Ford, 7 December 1989

In Trouble Again: A Journey between the Orinoco and the Amazon 
by Redmond O’Hanlon.
Penguin, 368 pp., £3.99, October 1989, 0 14 011900 0
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Our Grandmothers’ Drums: A Portrait of Rural African Life and Culture 
by Mark Hudson.
Secker, 356 pp., £12.95, June 1989, 0 436 20959 4
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Borderlines: A Journey in Thailand and Burma 
by Charles Nicholl.
Secker, 320 pp., £12.95, October 1988, 0 436 30980 7
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... of naturally diverse events, or the performance of a long and intricate ritual’. Redmond O’Hanlon sees his own career as a bird-watcher originating along similar lines to this but rather more romantically. It all began when he was four and three-quarters. A mistle-thrush dropped half of an empty eggshell at his feet on the lawn of the Wiltshire ...

Quashed Quotatoes

Michael Wood: Finnegans Wake, 16 December 2010

Finnegans Wake 
by James Joyce, edited by Danis Rose and John O’Hanlon.
Houyhnhnm, 493 pp., £250, March 2010, 978 0 9547710 1 0
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Joyce’s Disciples Disciplined 
edited by Tim Conley.
University College Dublin, 185 pp., £42.50, May 2010, 978 1 906359 46 1
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... grand schemes or total understanding that we find in the best recent criticism is very attractive. John Bishop, for example, says ‘the only way not to enjoy Finnegans Wake is to expect that one has to plod through it word by word making sense of everything in linear order.’ This is a brave claim, but it is true that the book is hard not to enjoy – it’s ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: 10,860 novels, 23 August 2001

... from other disciplines – Clive James, Craig Raine, James Fenton, Christopher Hitchens, Redmond O’Hanlon’. Together, novelists and ‘chums’ are not unlike a coterie of window-cleaners crowded onto a single boatswain’s chair (or rather bench): each time one of them tugs on his rope, they all move a little higher up the skyscraper of fame; each time ...

Behind the Waterfall

Lorna Scott Fox, 16 November 1995

The Creature in the Map: A Journey to El Dorado 
by Charles Nicholl.
Cape, 396 pp., £18.99, May 1995, 0 224 03333 6
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... for fresh marches of conquest. The ensuing adventures were narrated with devastating flatness by John Hemming in The Search for El Dorado. The gold-hunters got lost, ate grubs, grass and one another, were plagued by bugs and vampires, swelled or shrivelled or turned orange, devoured sweaty saddles in fits of salt-thirst, perished of ...

Best Remain Seated

Jeremy Harding: Travel guides, 1 January 1998

Kenya 
by Hugh Finlay and Geoff Crowther.
Lonely Planet, 376 pp., £11.99, April 1997, 0 86442 460 4
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Borneo 
by Robert Pelton Young.
Fielding, 632 pp., £13.95, December 1995, 1 56952 026 7
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Asia's Top Dive Sites 
edited by Fiona Nichols and Michael Stachels.
Fielding, 228 pp., £13.95, December 1996, 1 56952 129 8
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South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland 
by Jon Murray et al.
Lonely Planet, 658 pp., £13.99, January 1998, 0 86442 508 2
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Southern Africa 
by Richard Cox.
Thornton Cox, 474 pp., £11.95, July 1995, 0 7818 0388 8
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The World's Most Dangerous Places 
by Robert Pelton Young.
Fielding, 1048 pp., £13.95, December 1997, 1 56952 104 2
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South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland 
by Barbara McCrea et al.
Rough Guides, 697 pp., £12.99, October 1997, 1 85828 238 1
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The Good Honeymoon Guide 
by Lucy Horne.
Trailblazer, 320 pp., £11.95, March 1997, 1 873756 12 7
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Amnesty International Report 1997 
Amnesty International, 378 pp., £18, June 1997, 0 86210 267 7Show More
Morocco 
by Barnaby Rogerson.
Cadogan, 596 pp., £12.99, December 1997, 1 86011 043 6
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... moral and physical welfare of the tropical traveller. No recent guide has surpassed the excellent John Hatt’s remarks on underwear in The Tropical Traveller (1982). Hatt insists that this ‘must be of pure cotton’ and urges a change of attitude, or perhaps a readjustment, for anyone foolish enough to hit the tropics wearing ‘the “jockey” style of ...

Narco Polo

Iain Sinclair, 23 January 1997

Mr Nice: An Autobiography 
by Howard Marks.
Secker, 466 pp., £16.99, September 1996, 0 436 20305 7
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Pulp Election: The Booker Prize Fix 
by Carmen St Keeldare.
Bluedove, 225 pp., £12.99, September 1996, 0 9528298 0 0
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... expand into Romania and Czechoslovakia. Belinda was the wife of the eccentric traveller Redmond O’Hanlon. ‘Mac’ was a right-wing bigot, anti-Communist, interested in ‘preserving the traditional fabric of British life’. Marks’s account, at this point, takes a dive into the worst kind of fiction, the kind that’s true. ‘My first assignment for ...

Wrong Again

Bruce Cumings: Korean War Games, 4 December 2003

... Hyun back into the fold. I was in Seoul when Koizumi’s summit was announced, a day or two after John Bolton (the so-called ‘Under-Secretary of State for Arms Control’ in an Administration that has wrecked arms control) arrived to denounce Kim Jong Il personally and his regime more generally as evil, a menace to peace, the greatest security threat in the ...

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