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Juiced

David Runciman: Winners Do Drugs, 3 August 2006

Game of Shadows: Barry Bonds, Balco and the Steroids Scandal That Rocked Professional Sports 
by Mark Fainaru-Wada and Lance Williams.
Gotham, 332 pp., $26, March 2006, 1 59240 199 6
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... in America even before he began taking steroids? The answer, according to Mark Fainaru-Wada and Lance Williams, is a simple one: respect. Bonds had always felt underappreciated by both baseball fans and his fellow professionals, and much of their indifference to his achievements he put down to racism. This view was reinforced when he saw the adulation ...

Dear boy, I’d rather see you in your coffin

Jon Day: Paid to Race, 16 July 2020

To Hell and Back: An Autobiography 
by Niki Lauda.
Ebury, 314 pp., £16.99, February, 978 1 5291 0679 4
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A Race with Love and Death: The Story of Britain’s First Great Grand Prix Driver, Richard Seaman 
by Richard Williams.
Simon and Schuster, 388 pp., £20, March, 978 1 4711 7935 8
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... million a year developing their vehicles, or £380 million if you include engines. ROKiT Williams Racing, the lowest-spending team of the last few years, had a budget of £106 million in 2019; its car was the slowest on the grid by far. Most drivers start young, racing in go-karts from the age of five or six and moving up through Formulas 4, 3 and 2 ...

Cadmus and the Dragon

Tom Paulin, 8 April 1993

... to be masculine he’s all straight lines he’s rule and measure a rigid prick or as Carlos Williams notes there are plenty men whose heads resemble nothing so much as the head of a dick which is how I came to see John Cadmus III sitting at the wheel of his pickup truck in a parking lot outside a Safeway foodstore in Tucumcari New Mexico – he looked a ...

A Hammer in His Hands

Frank Kermode: Lowell’s Letters, 22 September 2005

The Letters of Robert Lowell 
edited by Saskia Hamilton.
Faber, 852 pp., £30, July 2005, 0 571 20204 7
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... former lover, Gertrude Buckman, a sentence to George Santayana and two sentences to William Carlos Williams. Of these communications, those to Bishop, Buckman and Williams are certified as ‘written during an acute manic episode’, but the others are not. A few days later everything again becomes manic for a while. How ...

Shop Talk

John Lennard, 27 January 1994

Jargon: Its Uses and Abuses 
by Walter Nash.
Blackwell, 214 pp., £16.99, September 1993, 9780631180630
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... jammed and the Colonel dead, And the regiment blind with dust and smoke. Nash is eager to lance the ‘analogy it proposes – that fighting the Mahdists or the Fuzzy-Wuzzies is a game, just like a school cricket match. (The “broken square”, we presume, being somewhat like a disastrous collapse of the middle-order batsmen.)’ He presumes ...

Corbyn in the Media

Paul Myerscough, 21 October 2015

... resignation. A scattering of dissident voices on the payroll – Seumas Milne, Owen Jones, Zoe Williams, George Monbiot – were drowned out by a host of detractors, from within the paper and without: Tim Bale, Nick Cohen, Anne Perkins, Michael White, Martin Kettle, Peter Hain, Alan Johnson, Tony Blair (twice), Jonathan Jones, Frank Field, David Miliband ...

Living with Monsters

Ferdinand Mount: PMs v. the Media, 22 April 2010

Where Power Lies: Prime Ministers v. the Media 
by Lance Price.
Simon & Schuster, 498 pp., £20, February 2010, 978 1 84737 253 6
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... secretary: ‘I think the basic dishonesty of the whole thing was a trouble.’ Now, 30 years on, Lance Price, himself a former BBC reporter who then worked as a media adviser to Tony Blair, has brought the story up to the present (his title and subtitle are on much the same lines as Margach’s). At first blush, it is hard to see that much has changed. Price ...

‘We prefer their company’

Sadiah Qureshi: Black British History, 15 June 2017

Black and British: A Forgotten History 
by David Olusoga.
Pan Macmillan, 624 pp., £25, November 2016, 978 1 4472 9973 8
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... draws on new research that supports the argument made in Capitalism and Slavery (1944) by Eric Williams, the future prime minister of Trinidad and Tobago, that the wealth generated by enslavement contributed to 19th-century industrialisation and thus to the reshaping of British culture and society.In the Victorian era black people weren’t an unusual ...

Did Harold really get it in the eye?

Patrick Wormald: The Normans, 3 June 2004

The Battle of Hastings, 1066 
by M.K. Lawson.
Tempus, 288 pp., £16.99, October 2003, 0 7524 1998 6
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The Normans: The History of a Dynasty 
by David Crouch.
Hambledon, 345 pp., £25, July 2002, 1 85285 387 5
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Domesday Book: A Complete Translation 
edited by Ann Williams and G.H. Martin.
Penguin, 1436 pp., £18.99, October 2003, 0 14 143994 7
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... was not so much that northern French chivalry perfected the technique of the mounted charge with lance at rest (only one or two combatants in the tapestry do anything like that), or that this was a freshly ‘feudal’ society confronting ploughboys carrying superannuated kit. More to the point was the all-round professionalism and esprit honed by constant ...

Seductress Extraordinaire

Terry Castle: The vampiric Mercedes de Acosta, 24 June 2004

‘That Furious Lesbian’: The Story of Mercedes de Acosta 
by Robert Schanke.
Southern Illinois, 210 pp., £16.95, June 2004, 0 8093 2579 9
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Women in Turmoil: Six Plays 
by Mercedes de Acosta, edited by Robert Schanke.
Southern Illinois, 252 pp., £26.95, June 2003, 0 8093 2509 8
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... Michael Strange and Eva Le Gallienne in the 1920s and 1930s to Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich, Hope Williams, Libby Holman, Ona Munson (Belle Watling in Gone with the Wind), Poppy Kirk (a Schiaparelli model and prominent diplomat’s wife) and many others in Hollywood, Paris and New York in the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s. She had ‘a small white body, like a small ...

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