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7 November 1985
... implications. The Webbs were well-known for their lack of political instinct and this appeared to be a fine example of that disability. What, for example, could have seemed more wide of the mark than her prediction of 1925 that the Liberal Party would only re-emerge as a force in the country once it had formed an entirely new party by allying itself to disaffected Labour supporters, creating ...

Doctors’ Orders

Ruth Bernard Yeazell

18 February 1982
‘All that summer she was mad’: Virginia Woolf and Her Doctors 
by Stephen Trombley.
Junction, 338 pp., £12.50, November 1981, 9780862450397
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... diagnosis itself. Arguing that the doctors in question were incapable of distinguishing medical judgments from social and moral ones, that ‘the manner in which Virginia’s madness is discussed by Leonard Woolf, Quentin Bell or the editors of the Letters and Diary shows that their use of the term is at best uncritical, and at worst irresponsible,’ Trombley sets out to show that there is no ...

Short Cuts

Rory Scothorne: Class before Nation

14 December 2017
... dangers of self-determination. But after three excruciating decades, these divisions eventually resolved themselves into a Scottish Parliament which has struggled to live up to expectations. Richard Leonard, elected as the new leader of Scottish Labour last month, ran on a platform condemning the ‘managerialism’ that has characterised both Labour and the SNP’s approach to devolved government since ...

Ah, la vie!

Ruth Bernard Yeazell: Lytton Strachey’s letters

1 December 2005
The Letters of Lytton Strachey 
edited by Paul Levy.
Viking, 698 pp., £30, March 2005, 0 670 89112 6
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... did, while nothing feels more remote than the idea that Moore’s work could make a difference. ‘Only two things I find amuse me (and perhaps everyone) – wit and the flesh,’ Strachey wrote to Leonard Woolf from Cambridge in 1904. This is partly bravado, of course, but the exercise of his own wit on the vicissitudes of the flesh was clearly one of Strachey’s favourite forms of love-making. From ...

Presentable

Emma Tennant

20 August 1981
Lenare: The Art of Society Photography 1924-1977 
by Nicholas de Ville and Anthony Haden-Guest.
Allen Lane, 136 pp., £15, May 1981, 0 7139 1418 1
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... Lenare was founded in 1924 by Leonard Green, whose portrait baptises this collection of society photographs. Facing him is an Unknown Woman, captured at the War’s end in an inverted pigeon’s nest and furs: she was presumably the ...

Sonata for Second Fiddle

Penelope Fitzgerald

7 October 1982
A Half of Two Lives: A Personal Memoir 
by Alison Waley.
Weidenfeld, 326 pp., £10.95, September 1982, 0 297 78156 1
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... knowing the Farjeons, knowing the Sitwells) which would have recommended her. And she did not fit into the role for which Arthur’s friends had cast him. The part of serious Jews (Waley himself, Leonard Woolf, Mark Gertler) was to be in attendance on disaster, and to pick up the brilliant pieces. All that Alison could do, after she had separated from her husband, was to bring up her child and wait ...

Depicting Europe

Perry Anderson

20 September 2007
... for all to emulate’.1 The reputation, he assures us, is ‘well-earned’. The same vision grips the seers of New Labour. Why Europe Will Run the 21st Century declaims the title of a manifesto by MarkLeonard, the party’s foreign policy wunderkind.2 ‘Imagine a world of peace, prosperity and democracy,’ he enjoins the reader. ‘What I am asking you to imagine is the “New European Century ...

Sinomania

Perry Anderson

28 January 2010
When China Rules the World: The Rise of the Middle Kingdom and the End of the Western World 
by Martin Jacques.
Allen Lane, 550 pp., £30, June 2009, 978 0 7139 9254 0
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Capitalism with Chinese Characteristics: Entrepreneurship and the State 
by Yasheng Huang.
Cambridge, 348 pp., £15.99, November 2008, 978 0 521 89810 2
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Against the Law: Labour Protests in China’s Rustbelt and Sunbelt 
by Ching Kwan Lee.
California, 325 pp., £15.95, June 2007, 978 0 520 25097 0
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... the Birth of a New Global Order’. Sightings of this sort seem to have become a late British speciality: Jacques’s version is only a little less absurd than Why Europe Will Run the 21st Century by MarkLeonard, a fellow seer of the Demos think tank Jacques helped to found. But there is another side to When China Rules the World at odds with its generally upbeat story. Internationally, China has ...

Superchild

John Bayley

6 September 1984
The Diary of Virginia Woolf. Vol. V: 1936-1941 
edited by Anne Olivier Bell and Andrew McNeillie.
Chatto, 402 pp., £17.50, June 1984, 0 7012 0566 0
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Deceived with Kindness: A Bloomsbury Childhood 
by Angelica Garnett.
Chatto, 181 pp., £9.95, August 1984, 0 7011 2821 6
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... stay you are so fair, what will be one’s gain, dying? No: stay, this moment. No one ever says that enough. Always hurry. I am now going in, to see L. and say stay this moment. Her going in to see Leonard, and murmur to him her version of the line from Faust, moves us more than the idea itself. Ever since the Romantics the notion of being a passive recorder, a chameleon, a Proteus of the fire and ...

The Wrong Stuff

Christopher Hitchens

1 April 1983
The Purple Decades 
by Tom Wolfe.
Cape, 396 pp., £8.95, March 1983, 0 224 02944 4
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... period without being so square as to be left out of the party altogether. The summit of this style – its glass of fashion and its mould of form – was attained by Wolfe himself when he attended Leonard Bernstein’s never-to-be-forgotten cocktail party for the Black Panthers. ‘Radical Chic’ has passed so far into the Anglo-American argot that it may be futile, 13 years later, to attempt to ...

At the British Museum

Peter Campbell: American Prints

8 May 2008
... on paper. It is easier to see what you are doing when you work with black ink on a pale stone or plate than when you scratch away at a copper plate. Wherever lithographic chalk or ink leaves a mark on the stone, ink will stick and be transferred to the print; some processes add strength or regularity to drawn lines. Lithography may discourage fumbling, but essentially the plate gives back what ...
22 November 1990
Leonard​ Bernstein 
by Joan Peyser.
Bantam, 430 pp., £14.95, October 1987, 0 593 01454 5
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Leonard​ Bernstein 
by Michael Freedland.
Harrap, 273 pp., £12.95, October 1987, 0 245 54499 2
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Leonard​ Bernstein 
by Peter Gradenwitz.
Berg, 310 pp., £15, October 1987, 0 85496 510 6
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Make the music: The Life and Work of Marc Blitzstein 
by Eric Gordon.
St Martin’s, 605 pp., $29.95, March 1989, 0 312 02607 2
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... Among the names in Peyser’s list of acknowledgments is that of Eric Gordon, the author of a substantial critical biography of Blitzstein which was published last year, under the Shakespearean title Mark the music. Not surprisingly, Gordon’s view of Bernstein’s indebtedness to Blitzstein proves to be identical with her own: without argument or evidence, Gordon alleges that Bernstein had ...
30 April 2009
... of what he deems her fanciful, emotional, overdetermined reading of the trauma that was meted out on her in 1946 by the black dogs of the title. In The Innocent, set in Berlin in the mid-1950s, Leonard Marnham, a telephone communications specialist, is having an affair with Maria Eckdorf, a German. But they murder Maria’s ex-husband and dismember his body and find that their relationship can’t ...

Cardigan Arrest

Robert Potts: Poetry in Punglish

21 June 2007
Look We Have Coming to Dover! 
by Daljit Nagra.
Faber, 55 pp., £8.99, February 2007, 978 0 571 23122 5
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... exclusion, preservation, authenticity and vogueishness – have been dealt with explicitly by other writers: Douglas Dunn, Tony Harrison, Linton Kwesi Johnson, John Agard, Grace Nichols and Tom Leonard, to name a few. For some, ‘literary art’ is a territory to be attained (Harrison’s ‘we’ll occupy/ your lousy leasehold, poetry’), in others a rule-book to be torn up (Agard’s ‘mugging ...

Burbocentrism

Tom Shippey

23 May 1996
Beyond Uhura: ‘Star Trek’ and Other Memories 
by Nichelle Nichols.
Boxtree, 320 pp., £9.99, December 1995, 0 7522 0787 3
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I Am Spock 
by Leonard​ Nimoy.
Century, 342 pp., £16.99, November 1995, 0 7126 7691 0
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Science Fiction Audiences: Watching ‘Doctor Who’ and ‘Star Trek’ 
by Henry Jenkins and John Tulloch.
Routledge, 294 pp., £40, April 1995, 0 415 06140 7
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‘Star Trek’: Deep Space Nine 
by Mark​ Altman, Rob Davis and Tony Pallot.
Boxtree, 64 pp., £8.99, May 1995, 0 7522 0898 5
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... people immune to its seductive powers? Answers of a kind can be found in two autobiographies by actors cashing in on their fictional characters’ popularity – Nichelle Nichols’s Beyond Uhura and Leonard Nimoy’s I Am Spock – but they are not very convincing. Nichols claims that her character is a testimony to the series’ ‘multiculturalism’ and that multiculturalism is what made the series a ...

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