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Knobs, Dots and Grooves

Peter Campbell: Henry Moore, 8 August 2002

Henry Moore: Writings and Conversations 
edited by Alan Wilkinson.
Lund Humphries, 320 pp., £35, February 2002, 0 85331 847 6
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The Penguin Modern Painters: A History 
by Carol Peaker.
Penguin Collectors’ Society, 124 pp., £15, August 2001, 0 9527401 4 1
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... made by way of exhibitions and the publicity that accompanies them. Nearly half a century later, Kenneth Clark, writing to Eunice Frost at Penguin about the inclusion of Braque in the Modern Painters series, which had until then featured only British artists, said: The old scheme seemed to me valuable because it helped people to understand painters whose ...

What difference did she make?

Eric Hobsbawm, 23 May 1991

A Question of Leadership: Gladstone to Thatcher 
by Peter Clarke.
Hamish Hamilton, 334 pp., £17.99, April 1991, 0 241 13005 0
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The Quiet Rise of John Major 
by Edward Pearce.
Weidenfeld, 177 pp., £14.99, April 1991, 0 297 81208 4
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... range from newspaper editors to political historians, it may make very little difference. As John Kenneth Galbraith has observed, changing the top man in important business corporations rarely affects the price of their shares on the market. A rapid glance at the history of the USA also suggests scepticism about the impact of individual leaders. That great ...

Young Ones

Hugh Barnes, 5 June 1986

Damaged Gods 
by Julie Burchill.
Century, 152 pp., £8.95, March 1986, 0 7126 1140 1
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Love it or shove it: The Best of Julie Burchill 
Century, 148 pp., £3.95, September 1985, 0 7126 0746 3Show More
Girls on Film 
by Julie Burchill.
Virgin, 192 pp., £5.99, March 1986, 9780863691348
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Less than Zero 
by Bret Easton Ellis.
Picador, 208 pp., £2.95, February 1986, 0 330 29400 8
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... xenophobia hardly ever slips, and each year she more closely resembles her political hero, Enoch Powell, from whose speeches she quotes liberally in her texts. From the outset Burchill’s career described an upward curve. She arrived in London immediately after leaving school in the mid-Seventies. She won a contest for cub contributors to the NME and landed ...

Aliens

John Sutherland, 21 January 1982

Brave Old World 
by Philippe Curval, translated by Steve Cox.
Allison and Busby, 262 pp., £6.95, November 1981, 0 85031 407 0
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The Insider 
by Christopher Evans.
Faber, 215 pp., £6.95, November 1981, 0 571 11774 0
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Genetha 
by Roy Heath.
Allison and Busby, 185 pp., £6.95, November 1981, 0 85031 410 0
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From the Heat of the Day 
by Roy Heath.
Allison and Busby, 159 pp., £6.50, October 1979, 0 85031 325 2
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One Generation 
by Roy Heath.
Allison and Busby, 202 pp., £2.50, March 1981, 9780850312546
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Sardines 
by Nuruddin Farah.
Allison and Busby, 250 pp., £7.95, November 1981, 0 85031 408 9
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... the EEC (so much for Curval) and compulsory repatriation of ‘aliens’. He is not called Enoch Powell. The SPG has just been enlarged to regimental strength. The outgoing Tory government has denationalised the Health Service. England are doing badly in the Test series against South Africa. The insider of the title is an outsider – an alien. He came from ...

Early Hillhead Man

Paul Addison, 6 May 1982

Churchill’s Political Philosophy 
by Martin Gilbert.
Oxford, 119 pp., £8, November 1981, 0 19 726005 5
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Winston Churchill: The Wilderness Years 
by Martin Gilbert.
Macmillan, 279 pp., £8.95, September 1981, 0 333 32564 8
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Churchill and de Gaulle 
by François Kersaudy.
Collins, 476 pp., £12.95, September 1981, 0 00 216328 4
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The Diaries of Sir Robert Bruce Lockhart 
edited by Kenneth Young.
Macmillan, 800 pp., £30, October 1981, 0 333 18480 7
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Churchill’s Indian Summer 
by Anthony Seldon.
Hodder, 667 pp., £14.95, October 1981, 0 340 25456 4
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... has to be reconstructed as he appeared at the time in the eyes of respectable opinion: the Enoch Powell of the day. Alas, biographers often confine their sympathy to a single individual and his allies, and so it is here. The wealth of research is flawed by a determination to prosecute ‘the guilty men’ on Churchill’s behalf. But if the function of ...

Noddy is on page 248

Jay Griffiths: On the streets, 10 June 1999

The Penguin Book of 20th-Century Protest 
edited by Brian MacArthur.
Penguin, 440 pp., £20, October 1998, 0 670 87052 8
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DIY Culture: Party and Protest in Nineties Britain 
edited by George McKay.
Verso, 310 pp., £11, July 1998, 1 85984 260 7
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... not by the peasants who felt her fist in their faces. There are protests by Ronald Reagan, Enoch Powell and Adolf Hitler. There are two pieces about the Titanic, two about the Lusitania and two on the abdication of Edward VIII. Considering what MacArthur omits, repetitions are irritating. (There is also a repeated typo. You may wonder who Sylvia Pankhurt ...

Half-Way up the Hill

Frank Kermode, 7 July 1988

Young Betjeman 
by Bevis Hillier.
Murray, 457 pp., £15.95, July 1988, 0 7195 4531 5
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... starl. No sense of starl.’ He was taken up by Maurice Bowra, and through him grew friendly with Kenneth Clark, John Sparrow, Henry Yorke, Alan Pryce-Jones, Osbert Lancaster, Robert Byron, Anthony Powell, Peter Quennell, Tom Driberg, Harold Acton, Christopher Sykes, Randolph Churchill, W.H. Auden, and lots of ...

Happy Knack

Ian Sansom: Betjeman, 20 February 2003

John Betjeman: New Fame, New Love 
by Bevis Hillier.
Murray, 736 pp., £25, November 2002, 0 7195 5002 5
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... ends meet. Betjeman’s bumbling, bluffing exterior and his sterling war work as assistant to Sir Kenneth Clark at the Films Division of the Ministry of Information, and then as a press attaché to Sir John Maffey, the senior British diplomat in Ireland, where he was possibly a spy for the British Government. The poems tossed off on the back of envelopes, and ...

Why did it end so badly?

Ross McKibbin: Thatcher, 18 March 2004

Margaret Thatcher. Vol. II: The Iron Lady 
by John Campbell.
Cape, 913 pp., £25, October 2003, 0 224 06156 9
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... touching institutions that enjoyed wide public support. She was, for example, much less ready than Kenneth Clarke to reform the NHS. The enforced sale of council housing was part of her original programme, but it was assumed to be risk-free and had long been contemplated by the party. It was the success of the privatisation – a word she did not particularly ...

‘Wisely I decided to say nothing’

Ross McKibbin: Jack Straw, 22 November 2012

Last Man Standing: Memoirs of a Political Survivor 
by Jack Straw.
Macmillan, 582 pp., £20, September 2012, 978 1 4472 2275 0
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... poor and teachers unwilling to admit this (he isn’t a fan of the NUT); he was a supporter of Kenneth Baker’s 1988 Education Reform Act, even though it was a dog’s breakfast, because it introduced a national curriculum and student testing. He early on argued for the elimination of Clause IV, partly because it was anachronistic, partly because he ...

Snobs v. Herbivores

Colin Kidd: Non-Vanilla One-Nation Conservatism, 7 May 2020

Remaking One Nation: The Future of Conservatism 
by Nick Timothy.
Polity, 275 pp., £20, March, 978 1 5095 3917 8
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... to any single position. Its founding members included proto-Thatcherite free marketeers like Enoch Powell and Angus Maude alongside consensual modernisers sceptical of market-based solutions like Iain Macleod and Edward Heath. The diversity has continued: later members have included ostensible one-nation Tories – ...

First Puppet, Now Scapegoat

Inigo Thomas: Ass-Chewing in Washington, 30 November 2006

State of Denial: Bush at War 
by Bob Woodward.
Simon and Schuster, 560 pp., £18.99, October 2006, 0 7432 9566 8
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... to his plans for Saddam Hussein in January 2003. So he had and so he did.In Plan of Attack *, Kenneth Adelman tells Woodward about a celebratory dinner party given by Cheney soon after the invasion of Iraq had begun. Adelman is a neo-con activist, who until 2005 was on the Pentagon’s Defense Policy Board, and in the two-year run-up to the war appeared ...

Diary

Alan Bennett: What I did in 1998, 21 January 1999

... recording ‘Nights in the Gardens of Spain’ with Penelope Wilton, directed by Tristram Powell. She does it beautifully and Tristram keeps it simple and static, which is exactly right. [Predictably, when it comes to be transmitted it is this monologue, the simplest in form and entirely perfect in execution, which the sad creatures who preview TV ...

Brief Encounters

Andrew O’Hagan: Gielgud and Redgrave, 5 August 2004

Gielgud's Letters 
edited by Richard Mangan.
Weidenfeld, 564 pp., £20, March 2004, 0 297 82989 0
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Secret Dreams: A Biography of Michael Redgrave 
by Alan Strachan.
Weidenfeld, 484 pp., £25, April 2004, 0 297 60764 2
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... audiences howling into their tumblers for years. To someone like me who grew up thinking Kenneth Williams was the perfect English gentleman (and imagining Russell Harty and Lily Savage to be the perfect Northern blokes), the words of Norman Tebbit are not just mad in the way you’d expect from him, but also profoundly at odds with something ...

Ideologues

Peter Pulzer, 20 February 1986

The Redefinition of Conservatism: Politics and Doctrine 
by Charles Covell.
Macmillan, 267 pp., £27.50, January 1986, 0 333 38463 6
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Thinkers of the New Left 
by Roger Scruton.
Longman, 227 pp., £9.95, January 1986, 0 582 90273 8
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The Idea of Liberalism: Studies for a New Map of Politics 
by George Watson.
Macmillan, 172 pp., £22.50, November 1985, 0 333 38754 6
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Socialism and Freedom 
by Bryan Gould.
Macmillan, 109 pp., £25, November 1985, 0 333 40580 3
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... coherent syndrome call it populist authoritarianism, and date its rise from the emergence of Enoch Powell as a national hero after his ‘river of blood’ speech in 1968. I wonder whether it is all as simple as that. The question is not whether there is a logical connection between these attitudes, libertarian in economic and repressive in constitutional ...

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