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Dealing in futures

W.R. Mead, 21 March 1985

The 2024 Report: A Concise History of the Future 1974-2024 
by Norman Macrae.
Sidgwick, 198 pp., £9.95, September 1984, 0 283 99113 5
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The Resourceful Earth: A Response to ‘Global 2000’ 
edited by Julian Simon and Herman Kahn.
Blackwell, 585 pp., £14.95, September 1984, 0 631 13467 0
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... it is the bureaucratic compilers of the Report against whom these reproaches are made. To a man, Julian Simon’s independent team of scientists challenge them for the assurance with which they create their mirage of certain doom and offer their own reassuring, though by no means complacent assessments of the world environmental situation. Besides using ...

Ecoluxury

John Gray, 20 April 1995

The Fading of the Greens: The Decline of Environmental Politics in the West 
by Anna Bramwell.
Yale, 224 pp., £18.95, September 1994, 0 300 06040 8
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The Chicago Gangster Theory of Life: Nature’s Debt to Society 
by Andrew Ross.
Verso, 308 pp., £18.95, October 1994, 0 86091 429 1
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Green Delusions: An Environmentalist Critique of Radical Environmentalism 
by Martin Lewis.
Duke, 288 pp., $12.95, February 1994, 0 8223 1474 6
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... libertarianism of Herbert Spencer and F.A. Hayek, and the technological optimism of Herman Kahn or Julian Simon, post-scarcity anarchism asserts that, given existing and prospective technologies, there are no insuperable natural limitations to the growth of human population, and no forms of scarcity that cannot be overcome by scientific innovation and ...

Libel on the Human Race

Steven Shapin: Malthus, 4 June 2014

Malthus: The Life and Legacies of an Untimely Prophet 
by Robert Mayhew.
Harvard, 284 pp., £20, April 2014, 978 0 674 72871 4
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... described the Cold War world as ‘Malthus’s nightmare come true’. His brother, the biologist Julian Huxley, wrote that underdeveloped countries like Egypt, Haiti and India exhibited ‘the general unwantedness of the swarming population’. The notion appealed to American Cold Warriors who, Mayhew says, feared a causal sequence leading ‘from ...

At Tate Modern

Julian Stallabrass: Conflict, Time, Photography, 19 February 2015

... is to show a great deal of contrasting art photography – by Luc Delahaye, Agata Madejska, Simon Norfolk, Stephen Shore, Shomei Tomatsu, Jane and Louise Wilson and many others – in skilful juxtaposition.) McCullin reappears later in the show, this time photographing in Berlin in 1961 as the Wall is erected: curious US troops peer over the new ...

Diary

Julian Evans: What might Larbaud have thought?, 31 July 1997

... to Larbaud I was able to find in any text on Nabokov was a letter to a Professor John Kenneth Simon at the University of Illinois, sent from Montreux in February 1971, in which Nabokov says he does not remember ‘having ever read anything by Valery Larbaud – even in my youth when I absorbed a lot of contemporaneous French stuff’. Why was Professor ...

How much?

Ian Hamilton: Literary pay and literary prizes, 18 June 1998

Guide to Literary Prizes, 1998 
edited by Huw Molseed.
Book Trust, 38 pp., £3.99, May 1998, 0 85353 475 6
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The Cost of Letters: A Survey of Literary Living Standards 
edited by Andrew Holgate and Honor Wilson-Fletcher.
W Magazine, 208 pp., £2, May 1998, 0 9527405 9 1
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... as a model for this new investigation. In 1946, George Orwell, Stephen Spender, Herbert Read and Julian Maclaren-Ross each testified that he could manage on £1000 a year net. V.S. Pritchett needed a bit more. Elizabeth Bowen raised a few eyebrows at the time by confessing that ‘I would like to have £3500 a year net’ and Cyril Connolly, who organised ...

Hobnobbing

Simon Hoggart, 24 April 1997

Michael Heseltine: A Biography 
by Michael Crick.
Hamish Hamilton, 496 pp., £20, February 1997, 0 241 13691 1
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... to Noel Picarda, a Liberal, though I’m fairly certain it was said by Heseltine’s old friend Julian Critchley. These speeches take an enormous amount out of him. He was desperate to prove that his heart attack in the summer of 1993 was caused by a blockage rather than a weakness in the heart itself. However, he took his doctors’ advice and skipped his ...

Rigging and Bending

Simon Adams: James VI & I, 9 October 2003

The Cradle King: A Life of James VI & I 
by Alan Stewart.
Chatto, 438 pp., £20, February 2003, 0 7011 6984 2
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... of Scots – this is the theme of The Reign of James VI (2000), a collection of essays edited by Julian Goodare and Michael Lynch. The most radical suggestion has been made by Jenny Wormald, who regards James’s reign overall as a ‘triumphant success’, and any problems after 1603 as a consequence of English xenophobia and the outbreak of the Thirty ...

Bloody

Michael Church, 9 October 1986

The Children of the Souls: A Tragedy of the First World War 
by Jeanne Mackenzie.
Chatto, 276 pp., £14.95, June 1986, 9780701128470
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Voices from the Spanish Civil War: Personal Recollections of Scottish Volunteers in Republican Spain 1936-39 
edited by Ian MacDougall, by Victor Kiernan.
Polygon, 369 pp., £9.95, July 1986, 0 948275 19 7
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The Shallow Grave: A Memoir of the Spanish Civil War 
by Walter Gregory, edited by David Morris and Anthony Peters.
Gollancz, 183 pp., £10.95, June 1986, 0 575 03790 3
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Spanish Front: Writers on the Civil War 
edited by Valentine Cunningham.
Oxford, 388 pp., £15, July 1986, 0 19 212258 4
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The Spanish Cockpit 
by Franz Borkenau.
Pluto, 303 pp., £4.95, July 1986, 0 7453 0188 6
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The Spanish Civil War 1936-39 
by Paul Preston.
Weidenfeld, 184 pp., £10.95, June 1986, 0 297 78891 4
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Images of the Spanish Civil War 
by Raymond Carr.
Allen and Unwin, 192 pp., £14.95, July 1986, 0 04 940089 4
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... I adore war,’ Julian Grenfell reported to his mother from the Flemish trenches in 1914, in a letter which she proudly sent on for anonymous publication in the Times. Stalking Germans through the mud was not very different from stalking partridges, as he noted in his game book: ‘November 16th; 1 Pomeranian. November 17th; 2 Pomeranians ...

Politician’s War

Tam Dalyell, 3 March 1983

The Battle for the Falklands 
by Max Hastings and Simon Jenkins.
Joseph, 384 pp., £10.95, February 1983, 0 7181 2228 3
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... In the opening paragraph of their important book on the Falklands War, Max Hastings and Simon Jenkins write: ‘So extraordinary an event was it that, even after men began to die, many of those taking part felt as if they had been swept away into fantasy, that the ships sinking and the guns firing round them had somehow escaped from a television screen in the living-room ...

Fundamental Brainwork

Jerome McGann, 30 March 2000

Dante Gabriel Rossetti. Collected Writings 
edited by Jan Marsh.
Dent, 531 pp., £25, November 1999, 0 460 87875 1
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Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Painter and Poet 
by Jan Marsh.
Weidenfeld, 592 pp., £25, November 1999, 0 297 81703 5
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... his use of the artistic medium to carry an argument, than his famous Mary Magdalene at the Door of Simon the Pharisee. The drawing is a kind of dialogue between the claims and authority of a primitive style as against a realistic perspectivism. Rossetti represents worldliness as the illusionist space organised on the left of the drawing. This is the recessive ...

Tea with Medea

Simon Skinner: Richard Cobb, 19 July 2012

My Dear Hugh: Letters from Richard Cobb to Hugh Trevor-Roper and Others 
Frances Lincoln, 240 pp., £20, October 2011, 978 0 7112 3240 2Show More
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... to Private Eye. Introduced in his youth to Fitzrovia, he knew Dylan Thomas, Louis MacNeice and Julian Maclaren-Ross, and wrote with sufficient extra-historical purchase to make it into Margaret Drabble’s Oxford Companion to English Literature (to his immoderate delight). His memoirs were a Book at Bedtime. He received the Légion d’honneur, was an FBA ...

Kingsley and the Woman

Karl Miller, 29 September 1988

Difficulties with girls 
by Kingsley Amis.
Hutchinson, 276 pp., £11.95, September 1988, 9780091735050
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... and irresolute about it’. A linguistic point was made in the course of the review – that Julian Ormerod’s lounge-bar slang is ‘continuous, in a way, with Patrick’s cool utterance’ – and it also made out that Ormerod’s overdone good heart is continuous with Jenny’s. ‘No wonder we like them,’ said a poem of Amis’s once. The poem ...

Diary

Frank Kermode: Being a critic, 27 May 1999

... first chance in that pub. A few of the celebrants are, or have been, English dons – John Fuller, Simon Gray, Dan Jacobson; but even they arrived by what might be called the bohemian route. There are of course other ways in; anybody can see how much space the dons occupy in the respectable papers and magazines. Many moved in by routes that did not necessarily ...

Unreal Food Uneaten

Julian Bell: Sitting for Vanessa, 13 April 2000

The Art of Bloomsbury 
edited by Richard Shone.
Tate Gallery, 388 pp., £35, November 1999, 1 85437 296 3
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First Friends 
by Ronald Blythe.
Viking, 157 pp., £25, October 1999, 0 670 88613 0
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Bloomsbury in France 
by Mary Ann Caws and Sarah Bird Wright.
Oxford, 430 pp., £25, December 1999, 0 19 511752 2
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... of the overstretched Tate display – in a room of portraits where the French Bloomsbury associate Simon Bussy got a look-in; and elsewhere, intermittently, in the work of the possibly fey, possibly slippery, occasionally awesome Carrington; and yet further afield, if you bring to mind Stanley Spencer at his best – the painter is Adam: he looks at things and ...

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