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Woman/Manly

Kristin Dombek: Kim Gordon, 19 March 2015

Girl in a Band 
by Kim Gordon.
Faber, 288 pp., £14.99, February 2015, 978 0 571 31383 9
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... in art school in LA – the New York of Judson Church and Yvonne Rainer, of Andy Warhol and Patti Smith and Lou Reed. It was disappearing as she arrived, as cities do. She wasn’t sure whether she should be a dancer or artist or filmmaker or writer or musician; what mattered was less what kind of artist than to be one, there. Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungen ...

Diary

Alan Bennett: What I did in 2000, 25 January 2001

... about having to put on so much make-up and even more about the bore of taking it all off, Maggie Smith seems to enjoy transforming herself into Miss Shepherd, today showing me her grey mottled legs as if they are a newly completed landscape. She’s particularly pleased with the ulcers she has incorporated into the decorative scheme, displaying them with the ...

God’s Own

Angus Calder, 12 March 1992

Empire and English Character 
by Kathryn Tidrick.
Tauris, 338 pp., £24.95, August 1990, 1 85043 191 4
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Into Africa: The story of the East African Safari 
by Kenneth Cameron.
Constable, 229 pp., £14.95, June 1990, 0 09 469770 1
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Burton: Snow upon the Desert 
by Frank McLynn.
Murray, 428 pp., £19.95, September 1990, 0 7195 4818 7
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From the Sierras to the Pampas: Richard Burton’s Travels in the Americas, 1860-69 
by Frank McLynn.
Barrie and Jenkins, 258 pp., £16.99, July 1991, 0 7126 3789 3
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The Duke of Puddle Dock: Travels in the Footsteps of Stamford Raffles 
by Nigel Barley.
Viking, 276 pp., £16.99, March 1992, 0 670 83642 7
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... effused one settler, ‘has ever left me with the impression of being a “whiter” man.’ Ian Smith’s Selous Scouts sustained his legend. Tidrick, however, can show that this model Rugbcian lied in order to promote the cause of white settlement and empire. In 1889 he stated, with bald falsehood, in the London press, that the high plateau of Mashonaland ...

Saint or Snake

Stefan Collini: Ann Oakley on Richard Titmuss, 7 October 2015

Father and Daughter: Patriarchy, Gender and Social Science 
by Ann Oakley.
Policy, 290 pp., £13.99, November 2014, 978 1 4473 1810 1
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... ascetic divine’, who ‘with his lean face and compelling eyes, might well have been painted by El Greco’. Saintliness can be an extremely irritating quality, especially when it seems too easily compatible with getting one’s own way. Titmuss appears, especially in the second half of his life, to have got his own way a good deal – in his role as ...

Customising Biography

Iain Sinclair, 22 February 1996

Blake 
by Peter Ackroyd.
Sinclair-Stevenson, 399 pp., £20, September 1995, 1 85619 278 4
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Collected Edition of William Blake’s Illuminated Books: Vol I: Jerusalem 
editor David Bindman, edited by Morton D. Paley.
Tate Gallery, 304 pp., £48, August 1991, 1 85437 066 9
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Collected Edition of William Blake’s Illuminated Books: Vol. II: Songs of Innocence and Experience 
series editor David Bindman, edited by Andrew Lincoln.
Tate Gallery, 210 pp., £39.50, August 1991, 1 85437 068 5
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Collected Edition of William Blake’s Illuminated Books: Vol III: The Early Illuminated Books 
series editor David Bindman, edited by Morris Eaves, Robert Essick and Joseph Viscomi.
Tate Gallery, 288 pp., £48, August 1993, 1 85437 119 3
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Collected Edition of William Blake’s Illuminated Books: Vol. IV: The Continental Prophecies: America, Europe, The Song of Los 
editor David Bindman, edited by D.W. Dörbecker.
Tate Gallery, 368 pp., £50, May 1995, 1 85437 154 1
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Collected Edition of William Blake’s Illuminated Books: Vol. V: Milton, a Poem 
series editor David Bindman, edited by Robert Essick and Joseph Viscomi.
Tate Gallery, 224 pp., £48, November 1993, 1 85437 121 5
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Collected Edition of William Blake’s Illuminated Books: Vol. VI: The Urizen Books 
 editor David Bindman, edited by David Worrall.
Tate Gallery, 232 pp., £39.50, May 1995, 9781854371553
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... gifted mechanic, someone who can précis the essence of a tale, highlight a convincing mise-en-scène. The checklist of publications – fiction, essay and epic biography – disproves that. The oddity of the Great Work is beginning to emerge: ‘No birth and no death, no beginning and no end, only perpetual pilgrimage within time.’ Everything that ...

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