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Tang of Blood

Christian Lorentzen: Something to Do with Capitalism

4 June 2014
... But she has kind words for Holmes’s ‘ebullient prose’. Jeanette Winterson calls the book ‘brilliant’ in the Telegraph; Rosemary Ashton in the Literary Review points up its ‘brio’; LisaJardine in the Financial Times says Holmes’s ‘fresh and vital style’ renders Eleanor ‘unforgettable’. None of them quotes the book at length; as usual with biographies, it’s the subject ...

Cold Front in Arden

Michael Dobson

31 October 1996
Reading Shakespeare Historically 
by Lisa Jardine.
Routledge, 207 pp., £40, April 1996, 0 415 13490 0
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Purpose of Playing: Shakespeare and the Cultural Politics of the Elizabethan Theatre 
by Louis Montrose.
Chicago, 228 pp., £39.95, May 1996, 0 226 53482 0
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Shakespeare from the Margins: Language, Culture, Context 
by Patricia Parker.
Chicago, 392 pp., £41.50, April 1996, 0 226 64584 3
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Impersonations: Gender and Performance in Shakespear’s England 
by Stephen Orgel.
Cambridge, 179 pp., £30, February 1996, 0 521 56842 0
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... to the male-male relationships with which the comedies’ betrothals often compete, the question of how central marriage is to Shakespearean drama looks quite different. For a British feminist like LisaJardine, no less than for the three Californian colleagues represented here, the most important relationships in the Elizabethan theatre are now less likely to be between husbands and wives than ...


Peter Burke

15 October 1987
Patronage, Art and Society in Renaissance Italy 
edited by F.W. Kent and Patricia Simons.
Oxford/Humanities Research Centre, 331 pp., £35, June 1987, 0 19 821978 4
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Pienza: The Creation of a Renaissance City 
by Charles Mack.
Cornell, 250 pp., $43.95, June 1987, 9780801416996
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Piety and Patronage in Renaissance Venice: Bellini, Titian and the Franciscans 
by Rona Goffen.
Yale, 285 pp., £30, July 1986, 0 300 03455 5
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Venetian Humanism in an Age of Patrician Dominance 
by Margaret King.
Princeton, 524 pp., £42.90, April 1986, 0 691 05465 7
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The Venetian Patriciate: Reality versus Myth 
by Donald Queller.
Illinois, 386 pp., $29.95, September 1986, 0 252 01144 9
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Tradesman and Traders: The World of the Guilds in Venice and Europe, c.1250-c.1650 
by Richard MacKenney.
Croom Helm, 289 pp., £35, January 1987, 0 7099 1763 5
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Florence, Rome and the Origins of the Renaissance 
by George Holmes.
Oxford, 273 pp., £25, November 1986, 0 19 822576 8
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From Humanism to the Humanities: Education and the Liberal Arts in 15th and 6th-Century Europe 
by Anthony Grafton and Lisa Jardine.
Duckworth, 224 pp., £29.95, January 1987, 0 7156 2100 9
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Renaissance and Revolt: Essays in the Intellectual and Social History of Early Modern France 
by J.H.M. Salmon.
Cambridge, 306 pp., £30, June 1987, 0 521 32769 5
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... of patronage’, notably ‘the interaction of urban Tuscany and ecclesiastical Rome’. The lively new study of Renaissance Humanism by two scholars separated by the Atlantic, Anthony Grafton and LisaJardine, has much in common with the other books discussed here, despite an attempt by the authors to distance themselves from what they call ‘the new social history’ and to concern themselves ...
18 August 1983
Homosexuality in Renaissance England 
by Alan Bray.
Gay Men’s Press, 149 pp., £7.95, September 1982, 0 907040 16 0
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Comic Women, Tragic Men: A Study of Gender and Genre in Shakespeare 
by Linda Bamber.
Stanford, 211 pp., $18.50, June 1982, 0 8047 1126 7
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Still Harping on Daughters: Women and Drama in the Age of Shakespeare 
by Lisa Jardine.
Harvester, 202 pp., £18.95, June 1983, 0 7108 0436 9
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... in Sonnet 20, while remaining obsessed with a young man whose character also left much to be desired, but whose physical beauty he evidently found tantalising. Although her main interest is feminist, LisaJardine is also concerned with the question of homosexuality in Renaissance England. Still Harping on Daughters sets out to explode the idea that Elizabethan and Jacobean women enjoyed any ...
4 November 1993
Erasmus: His Life, Work and Influence 
by Cornelis Augustijn, translated by J.C. Grayson.
Toronto, 239 pp., £16.25, February 1991, 0 8020 5864 7
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Erasmus: A Critical Biography 
by Léon-E. Halkin, translated by John Tonkin.
Blackwell, 360 pp., £45, December 1992, 0 631 16929 6
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Erasmus, Man of Letters: The Construction of Charisma in Print 
by Lisa Jardine.
Princeton, 278 pp., £19.95, June 1993, 0 691 05700 1
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... from Erasmus’s own works, though he has no pictures. He too succeeds in giving a strong sense of Erasmus’s personality, in its attractive and less attractive features, and of his achievement. LisaJardine draws most heavily, as the pun in her title suggests, on the Latin letters by which Erasmus established the portrait of himself he wished international posterity to have, and especially on ...

It looks nothing like me

Adam Smyth: Dürer

5 July 2018
Albrecht Dürer: Documentary Biography 
by Jeffrey Ashcroft.
Yale, 1216 pp., £95, January 2017, 978 0 300 21084 2
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... or Jerome, constructing a version of personality, as Andrée Hayum wrote in 1985, that ‘resided in the cumulative effects of his printed works’: ‘the charisma of the absent professor’, as LisaJardine put it in Erasmus, Man of Letters (1993). Erasmus was acutely aware of Dürer’s potential as a maker of fame: he hung Dürer’s engraving of Pirckheimer on his bedroom wall, like a student ...

Making It

Melissa Benn: New Feminism?

5 February 1998
Different for Girls: How Culture Creates Women 
by Joan Smith.
Chatto, 176 pp., £10.99, September 1997, 9780701165123
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The New Feminism 
by Natasha Walter.
Little, Brown, 278 pp., £17.50, January 1998, 0 316 88234 8
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A Century of Women: The History of Women in Britain and the United States 
by Sheila Rowbotham.
Penguin, 752 pp., £20, June 1997, 0 670 87420 5
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...  Suzanne Moore, Linda Grant, Joan Smith, Beatrix Campbell, Susie Orbach, even Julie Burchill – have established a niche in newspaper and broadcast journalism. Others, like Lynne Segal and LisaJardine, have climbed the academic ladder. Even so, the shortage of media stars, as opposed to commentators, remains and New Labour women have stepped in to fill the vacuum. It is more likely to be Harriet ...

Unusual Endowments

Patrick Collinson

30 March 2000
Philip Sidney: A Double Life 
by Alan Stewart.
Chatto, 400 pp., £20, February 2000, 0 7011 6859 5
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... missing from more literary studies. But it is strange that it should have been written not by a historian but by a literary scholar who teaches Renaissance Studies. Only two years ago, Stewart joined LisaJardine in doing something similar with Francis Bacon: hundreds of pages on the snakes and ladders of Bacon’s political career, but very little on the contents of his extraordinary mind. There is ...

In the Know

Simon Schaffer

10 November 1994
Science and the Secrets of Nature: Books of Secrets in Medieval and Early Modern Culture 
by William Eamon.
Princeton, 490 pp., £38.50, July 1994, 0 691 03402 8
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The Business of Alchemy: Science and Culture in the Holy Roman Empire 
by Pamela Smith.
Princeton, 308 pp., £30, July 1994, 0 691 05691 9
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... which has since sustained the mixture of political impotence and co-option with which the erudite sometimes seem so content. According to the recent historians of this process, Anthony Grafton and LisaJardine, Early Modern humanism perfectly fitted the needs of the new system of court bureaucracy and helped ‘the constriction of society and polity’. The accounts of Eamon and Smith show some of ...


James Wood: ‘Life of Pi’

14 November 2002
Life of Pi 
by Yann Martel.
Canongate, 319 pp., £12.99, May 2002, 1 84195 245 1
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... If you stumble at mere believability, what are you living for?’ the survivor asks, once he has found land and is being interviewed by two investigators who do not credit his tale. According to LisaJardine, who chaired this year’s Booker judges, Martel has described his novel as one ‘that will make you believe in God’. Life of Pi is proud to be a delegate for magic realism, and wears a ...
30 October 1997
Sensation: Young British Artists from the Saatchi Collection 
by Norman Rosenthal.
Thames and Hudson, 222 pp., £29.95, September 1997, 0 500 23752 2
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... Adams is an American an journalist based in New York, who follows up with an outsider’s account, enthusiastically describing the works’ rather patchy reception in the United States. Finally, LisaJardine, an academic who doubles as an art journalist, writes in glowing terms about the historical role played by patrons in the formation of public taste, an encomium it would be difficult to read ...
19 November 2015
... except for Iain Banks who won the trophy by a mile – would be Oliver Sacks (announced 19 February – died 30 August), with Henning Mankell (announced 17 January – died 5 October) a close second. LisaJardine won a race of her own, staying shtum publicly, her death a surprise except to the few who knew. So Clive James (announced May 2011 – ?) and Diski (announced 11 September 2014 – ?) still ...

Making It Up

Raphael Samuel

4 July 1996
Raymond Williams 
by Fred Inglis.
Routledge, 333 pp., £19.99, October 1995, 0 415 08960 3
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... felt I had not got to the bottom of the story). Quotations, culled from the interviews, are given great prominence in Inglis’s text. They are printed, apparently, verbatim (though Stephen Heath, LisaJardine and others have protested they are garbled), and are treated as though they were primary sources. Yet the quotations are oddly at variance with the interpretation they are supposed to support ...

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