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Maggie Doherty: Millennial Memoirists, 13 September 2018

Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis 
by J.D. Vance.
William Collins, 257 pp., £9.99, June 2017, 978 0 00 822056 3
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The Recovering: Intoxication and Its Aftermath 
by Leslie Jamison.
Granta, 544 pp., £20, May 2018, 978 1 78378 152 2
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How to Murder Your Life: A Memoir 
by Cat Marnell.
Ebury, 384 pp., £7.99, February 2018, 978 0 09 195736 0
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Everything I Know about Love 
by Dolly Alderton.
Fig Tree, 336 pp., £12.99, February 2018, 978 0 241 32271 0
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This Will Be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminist in (White) America 
by Morgan Jerkins.
Harper Collins, 272 pp., £10.99, February 2018, 978 0 06 266615 4
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Kids These Days: Human Capital and the Making of Millennials 
by Malcolm Harris.
Little Brown, 272 pp., £18.99, February 2018, 978 0 316 51086 8
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Educated: A Memoir 
by Tara Westover.
Hutchinson, 385 pp., £14.99, February 2018, 978 1 78633 051 2
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... lives saddled with debt, in jobs or internships that don’t provide enough money to live on. As Malcolm Harris puts it in Kids These Days, ‘for anyone who takes out a student loan – and that’s two-thirds of students – succeeding at contemporary American childhood now means contracting out hours, days, years of their future work to the ...

The Dignity of Merchants

Landeg White, 10 August 2000

In Search of Africa 
by Manthia Diawara.
Harvard, 288 pp., £17.50, December 1998, 0 674 44611 9
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... the end of his Native Stranger: A Black American’s Journey into the Heart of Africa (1991), Eddy Harris spends two despairing weeks waiting at Lisala on the banks of the Zaire river for a steamer to take him to Kisangani. Behind him are North Africa, Francophone and English-speaking Africa, and a disastrous foray into the former black American colony of ...

Strong Meat

John Lanchester, 11 January 1990

The Bellarosa Connection 
by Saul Bellow.
Secker, 102 pp., £11.95, January 1990, 0 436 19988 2
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The War Zone 
by Alexander Stuart.
Hamish Hamilton, 207 pp., £11.95, March 1989, 0 241 12342 9
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A Touch of Love 
by Jonathan Coe.
Duckworth, 156 pp., £9.95, April 1989, 0 7156 2277 3
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Do it again 
by Martyn Harris.
Viking, 220 pp., £11.95, October 1989, 0 670 82858 0
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... kind of novel – a jaunty, entertaining, unrereadable sexual comedy with some good one-liners (‘Malcolm was wearing one of his enormous Japanese suits that made him look like a crashed hang-glider’) and a healthy dose of unreconstructed wish-fulfilment. Alex, the main character, is a socialist publisher who has become rich by publishing The Republican ...

Policing the Police

Fredrick Harris: The Black Panthers, 20 June 2013

Black against Empire: The History and Politics of the Black Panther Party 
by Joshua Bloom and Waldo Martin.
California, 539 pp., £24.95, January 2013, 978 0 520 27185 2
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... party members carried guns in full display at San Francisco Airport while escorting Betty Shabazz, Malcolm X’s widow. There was a stand-off between Panthers and police officers. Six weeks later, the Panthers marched with guns into the state capitol building in Sacramento to protest against pending gun-control legislation that targeted the ...

One word says to its mate

Claire Harman: W.S. Graham, 4 October 2001

The Nightfisherman: Selected Letters of W.S. Graham 
edited by Michael Snow and Margaret Snow.
Carcanet, 401 pp., £12.95, November 1999, 1 85754 445 5
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... in little magazines throughout the 1960s, there was a 15-year silence between The Nightfishing and Malcolm Mooney’s Land, during which, it is said, his publisher, Faber, assumed (possibly hoped) the poet had died. Even within the brotherhood of the St Ives group, Graham’s poetry was little read or appreciated. The links between Graham and the painters ...

Punk Counterpunk

Bee Wilson, 20 November 2014

Vivienne Westwood 
by Vivienne Westwood and Ian Kelly.
Picador, 463 pp., £25, September 2014, 978 1 4472 5412 6
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... of Margaret Thatcher, Vivienne Westwood ‘lost interest’ in punk. She and her lover Malcolm McLaren had been at the heart of the British version: they had dreamed up much of the look, the attitude and the lyrics, though not the sound. A full year before David Bowie adopted the same hair style, Westwood had her hair bleached blonde and cut ...

Nutmegged

Frank Kermode: The War against Cliché: Essays and Reviews 1971-2000 by Martin Amis., 10 May 2001

The War against Cliché: Essays and Reviews 1971-2000 
by Martin Amis.
Cape, 506 pp., £20, April 2001, 0 224 05059 1
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... and Aristophanes can procure a pardon for that sort of thing. Other reviewers may commend Thomas Harris for committing ‘not a single ugly or dead sentence’ but Amis finds enough of them to label Harris ‘a serial murderer of English sentences’ and Hannibal ‘a necropolis of prose’. He finds the opposite response ...

Diary

A.J.P. Taylor: No doubt I am old-fashioned, 1 April 1982

... such varied activities as the riots at Toxteth and the manufacture of nuclear weapons. When Malcolm Muggeridge and I were young we used to speculate about the end of civilisation. Little did we expect it would come in our lifetimes. I regard myself as a loyal member of the Labour Party. By this I mean that I usually disagree with what it does. Take the ...

Too Young

James Davidson: Lord Alfred Douglas, 21 September 2000

Bosie: A Biography of Lord Alfred Douglas 
by Douglas Murray.
Hodder, 374 pp., £20, June 2000, 0 340 76770 7
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... specifically a ‘horsewhipping’ or a ‘dog-whipping’, depending on their rank. When Frank Harris falls out of favour he becomes ‘a dirty skunk and as crooked as a corkscrew’. When the Duke of Richmond refuses him entrance to the private stand at Goodwood, he gets a letter from Bosie regretting that he himself does not enjoy the ‘Privilege ...
England’s dreaming: The Sex Pistols and Punk Rock 
by Jon Savage.
Faber, 602 pp., £17.50, October 1991, 0 571 13975 2
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... Sex Pistols Story is pure rock’n’roll, right up there with Marilyn Monroe and John And Yoko. Malcolm McLaren, a pranky, arty small businessman, spots a boy in his shop wearing a Pink Floyd T-shirt with the words I HATE scrawled on it. The band get thrown off their first label, EMI, after a chain of embarrassing publicity starts with a Pistol saying ...

Good enough for Jesus

Charlotte Brewer, 25 January 1990

The State of the Language: 1990 Edition 
edited by Christopher Ricks and Leonard Michaels.
Faber, 531 pp., £17.50, January 1990, 9780571141821
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Clichés and Coinages 
by Walter Redfern.
Blackwell, 305 pp., £17.50, October 1989, 0 631 15691 7
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Rhetoric: The Wit of Persuasion 
by Walter Nash.
Blackwell, 241 pp., £25, October 1989, 0 631 16754 4
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... last section, ‘Rectitudes’, takes us into the area of explicit public debate on language. Roy Harris investigates swear-words and their place in those ‘litmus-paper areas of British culture’, poetry and cricket, in a discussion of the controversy which surrounded the reporting of two major linguistic events of the Eighties: the broadcasting on Channel ...

Memories of Lindsay Anderson

Alan Bennett, 20 July 2000

... so not expecting anyone else to either. The great loves of his life map out his career: Richard Harris (This Sporting Life), Albert Finney (Billy Liar), Malcolm McDowell (If ...) and Frank Grimes. None of them seems to have come across (if that, indeed, was what he wanted). They were all incorrigibly male and not all were ...

Mockney Rebels

Thomas Jones: Lindsay Anderson, 20 July 2000

Mainly about Linsay Anderson 
by Gavin Lambert.
Faber, 302 pp., £18.99, May 2000, 0 571 17775 1
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... for his life beside a car in which a woman has been shot dead. At one point, Travis, played by Malcolm McDowell, passing the vodka to his friends, Johnny and Wallace (David Wood and Richard Warwick), asks: ‘When do we live? That’s what I want to know.’ Elsewhere in the film, when the three of them are fencing together, playing at fighting, Travis ...

Utterly in Awe

Jenny Turner: Lynn Barber, 5 June 2014

A Curious Career 
by Lynn Barber.
Bloomsbury, 224 pp., £16.99, May 2014, 978 1 4088 3719 1
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... for the South Bank Show, ‘smiling, simpering, giggling, looking down at his nails’. Richard Harris at the Savoy in 1990, ‘playing pocket billiards’ through his tracksuit bottoms. Rafael Nadal in Rome in 2011, ‘lying on a massage table with his flies undone, affording me a good view of his Armani underpants – Armani being one of his many ...

Wedded to the Absolute

Ferdinand Mount: Enoch Powell, 26 September 2019

Enoch Powell: Politics and Ideas in Modern Britain 
by Paul Corthorn.
Oxford, 233 pp., £20, August 2019, 978 0 19 874714 7
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... that seemed to mock what you hadn’t yet said, the villain’s moustache he had grown, he told Malcolm Muggeridge in 1940, in imitation not of Ronald Colman but of Friedrich Nietzsche, whom he adored and to whom he bore a resemblance. Above all, that harsh, thrilling, unnaturally slowed-down voice. Has anyone else ever made the loveable Brummie accent ...

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