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She was of the devil’s race

Barbara Newman: Eleanor of Aquitaine, 2 November 2023

Eleanor of Aquitaine, as It Was Said: Truths and Tales about the Medieval Queen 
by Karen Sullivan.
Chicago, 270 pp., £36, August, 978 0 226 82583 0
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... rumour from their sources, or use them with caution. In her new book about Eleanor of Aquitaine, Karen Sullivan does the opposite. She looks at what friends, enemies, troubadours and chroniclers as late as the 16th century had to say, often relaying it with the phrase ut dicebatur, ‘as it was said’. Eleanor has been many things to many people, from ...

What a Woman!

J.L. Nelson: Joan of Arc, 19 October 2000

Joan of Arc 
by Mary Gordon.
Weidenfeld, 168 pp., £12.99, April 2000, 0 297 64568 4
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Joan of Arc: A Military Leader 
by Kelly DeVries.
Sutton, 242 pp., £20, November 1999, 0 7509 1805 5
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The Interrogation of Joan of Arc 
by Karen Sullivan.
Minnesota, 208 pp., £30, November 1999, 0 8166 3267 7
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... back’. If Joan ‘constantly demands new revisions’, Gordon offers one for this generation. Karen Sullivan’s is a different kind of book, certainly the most intellectually taut and challenging of the three considered here. Though he uses rehabilitation evidence retrospectively, DeVries’s narrative stops before Joan’s trial: ...

Antigone on Your Knee

Terry Eagleton, 6 February 2020

A Cultural History of Tragedy: Vols I-VI 
edited by Rebecca Bushnell.
Bloomsbury Academic, 1302 pp., £395, November 2019, 978 1 4742 8814 9
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... ethico-political education for the city state as a whole, not just a night out for the toffs. As Karen Sullivan notes in the first v0lume, it was also a form in which women figured prominently. During the festival of Dionysus, at which tragic drama was first performed, the city turned itself into a theatre, as the citizens who had learned to assess ...

Pain, No Gain

William Davies: Inflation Fixation, 13 July 2023

... Andrew Bailey, governor of the Bank of England, has refused to state things quite so bluntly (as Karen Ward of JPMorgan Chase, a member of Hunt’s economic advisory council, did recently when she told the BBC’s Today programme that the bank’s decision-makers ‘have to … create a recession. They have to create uncertainty and frailty’), but concern ...

What I heard about Iraq in 2005

Eliot Weinberger: Iraq, 5 January 2006

... are starting to take care of their own situation.’ I heard Rear Admiral William Sullivan report to Congress that there were 145,000 ‘combat-capable’ Iraqi forces. I heard Sabah Hadum, a spokesman for the Iraqi Ministry of the Interior, say: ‘We are paying about 135,000, but that does not necessarily mean that 135,000 are actually ...

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