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Burke and History

Owen Dudley Edwards, 22 January 1981

Edmund Burke and the Critique of Political Radicalism 
by Michael Freeman.
Blackwell, 250 pp., £12.50, September 1980, 0 631 11171 9
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by C.B. Macpherson.
Oxford, 83 pp., £4.50, October 1980, 0 19 287518 3
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... making: among other points he has established significant common ground between Burke and Marx. Mr Michael Freeman’s position in all of this is initially uncertain. The blurb seems to imply that he shows what a powerful case Burke makes for radicals to answer. But in fact Mr Freeman is much more interested in ...

Back home

Mary Warnock, 1 September 1983

Cohabitation without Marriage 
by Michael Freeman and Christina Lyon.
Gower, 228 pp., £15, April 1983, 0 566 00455 0
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A Prison of Expectations: The Family in Victorian Culture 
by Steven Mintz.
New York, 234 pp., $32.50, May 1983, 0 8147 5388 4
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What is to be done about the family? 
edited by Lynne Segal.
Penguin, 237 pp., £2.50, April 1983, 0 14 006596 2
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‘Autistic’ Children: New Hope for a Cure 
by N. Tinbergen and E.A. Tinbergen.
Allen and Unwin, 362 pp., £19.50, April 1983, 0 04 157010 3
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Thicker than water? Adoption: Its Loyalties, Pitfalls and Joys 
by Alice Heim.
Secker, 211 pp., £8.95, May 1983, 0 436 19155 5
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The Artificial Family: A Consideration of Artificial Insemination by Donor 
by R. Snowden and G.D. Mitchell.
Counterpoint, 138 pp., £2.95, April 1983, 0 04 176002 6
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... to be defended. One thing is certain: the family is the norm. In Cohabitation without Marriage Michael Freeman and Christina Lyon argue that the law constantly assimilates non-marriage to marriage, the setting up of a ‘free’ non-marital household to the establishment of a regular legitimate family. The consequence is a tendency to impose on ...

Going Wrong

Michael Wood, 7 March 1996

directed by Martin Scorsese.
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directed by Michael Mann.
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directed by David Fincher.
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... hasn’t got is a plot or a point, so it feels like three hours of exposition. Casino shares with Michael Mann’s Heat the curious contemporary sense that your really classy crime movie doesn’t have to worry about suspense or story. It’s as if The Godfather, or rather its retrospective status, had made the genre so respectable that we need to be a little ...

At the Movies

Michael Wood: ‘The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard’, 15 July 2021

... he seems more a curser than a killer. Reynolds, as Jackson’s supposed protector, the bodyguard Michael Bryce, says he has ‘single-handedly ruined the word motherfucker’. I don’t know about the ruin, but he certainly uses the word a lot. We may have thought there was going to be a bit of metaplay in the film when we learned that the Japanese ...

At the Movies

Michael Wood: ‘The Long Good Friday’, 2 July 2015

The Long Good Friday 
directed by John MacKenzie.
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... seeing films through the lens of the meantime. We didn’t know in 1980, as we know now, that Paul Freeman, who plays the murdered Colin, would appear the next year in Raiders of the Lost Ark, and that Pierce Brosnan, representing the person who kills Colin and later stares at Shand in the car, would go on to become Remington Steele and James Bond. Here he is ...

Consider Jack and Oskar

Michael Rossi: Twin Studies, 7 February 2013

Born Together – Reared Apart: The Landmark Minnesota Twin Study 
by Nancy Segal.
Harvard, 410 pp., £39.95, June 2012, 978 0 674 05546 9
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... as a means of further clarifying the effects of heritability. In 1937, Horatio Newman, Frank Freeman and Karl Holzinger introduced the idea of using twins raised in different households, in a study of 19 pairs of twins. And three studies by Cyril Burt between 1943 and 1966 put a number on the heritability of IQ (77.1 per cent). In the early decades of ...

Trains in Space

James Meek: The Great Train Robbery, 5 May 2016

The Railways: Nation, Network and People 
by Simon Bradley.
Profile, 645 pp., £25, September 2015, 978 1 84668 209 4
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... rare sight in Britain before the railways. Suddenly they were everywhere. Writing in the 1960s, Michael Robbins said: ‘The Victorians who created the railway look like a race imbued with some demonic energy.’ In the prologue to Railways and the Victorian Imagination (1999), Michael Freeman prints three maps of ...

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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... the Gentry or the Condition of England Question in the 1960s. One protagonist, the polymathic E.A. Freeman, echoed some famous words of Macaulay, celebrating the ‘cause for which Harold died on the field and Waltheof on the scaffold’ (Waltheof was the last survivor of the Old English aristocracy: he was executed for treason in 1076 after a rebellion ...

Dream Ticket

Peter Shore, 6 October 1983

The Diary of Hugh Gaitskell 1945-1956 
by Philip Williams.
Cape, 720 pp., £25, September 1983, 0 224 01911 2
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... defendant and Gaitskell as Treasury prosecutor. No one who has served in a Cabinet (including Mr Michael Heseltine today) would fail to recognise the reality of the problem and, given the political sensitivity of the National Health Service in the Labour Party (or of defence in the Conservative Party), its explosive potential. Bevan first fought a successful ...

Diamond Daggers

Stephen Wall, 28 June 1990

Death’s Darkest Face 
by Julian Symons.
Macmillan, 272 pp., £12.95, May 1990, 0 333 51783 0
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by Michael Dibdin.
Faber, 281 pp., £12.99, June 1990, 0 571 14332 6
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by Barbara Vine.
Viking, 296 pp., £13.99, March 1990, 0 670 83241 3
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... in old Daimlers, we might also be in a typical detective story of the period, expecting, say, Freeman Wills Crofts’s Inspector French to look in at any moment. Technically, what has to be explained is the disappearance of the bohemian and not over-scrupulous poet Hugo Headley. His clothes are found on the shore, but he is known to be a strong swimmer ...
The Shorter Strachey 
selected and introduced by Michael Holroyd and Paul Levy.
Oxford, 288 pp., £6.95, April 1980, 0 19 212211 8
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Lytton Strachey 
by Michael Holroyd.
Penguin, 1143 pp., £4.95, December 1979, 0 14 003198 7
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... 15 years earlier, had been more pithy: ‘There is much interest in it, but tiresomely told.’ Michael Holroyd’s admirable biography allows us to peep behind the bland phrases of public seemliness here. It suggests, conversely, that Trevelyan’s fulsome congratulations to Strachey upon his books masked his real views with a more calculated ...

Up the Garden Path

R.W. Johnson: Michael Foot, 26 April 2007

Michael Foot: A Life 
by Kenneth O. Morgan.
Harper, 568 pp., £25, March 2007, 978 0 00 717826 1
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... One day in 1993, I found myself on a bus in Oxford with Michael Foot. He looked shambolic even by my standards – donkey jacket, stick, long hair all over the place. But nobody minded. You don’t often see leading politicians on a bus and passenger after passenger came up to say hello. He smiled and was the soul of friendliness ...

Emotional Sushi

Ian Sansom: Tony, Nick and Simon, 9 August 2001

One for My Baby 
by Tony Parsons.
HarperCollins, 330 pp., £15.99, July 2001, 0 00 226182 0
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How to Be Good 
by Nick Hornby.
Viking, 256 pp., £16.99, May 2001, 0 670 88823 0
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Little Green Man 
by Simon Armitage.
Viking, 246 pp., £12.99, August 2001, 0 670 89442 7
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... of One for My Baby is called Alfie (Parsons seems to be paying homage to characters played by Michael Caine). Alfie’s wife is called Rose. Rose dies on him. She was working in Hong Kong. In Man and Boy Harry’s misfortune led him to reassess his relationship with his young son and his parents and to fall in love with a woman who had a young daughter of ...

The Miners’ Strike

Michael Stewart, 6 September 1984

... by leading members of the Revolutionary Communist Party, such as Frank Richards and Mike Freeman, but their vague rhetoric about uniting the working class and ‘taking control’ does not carry the menace that Mr Scargill does.* If the Government surrenders to the miners, agreeing to subsidise uneconomic pits indefinitely and to prevent any job ...

The Mole on Joyce’s Breast

Sean O’Faolain, 20 November 1980

Joyce’s Politics 
by Dominic Manganiello.
Routledge, 260 pp., £12.50, October 1980, 0 7100 0537 7
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... of an old man for past events of no apparent relevance to anybody else that I was once made a freeman of the city of Memphis in, I think, Tennessee – not Egypt. It happened because the local political boss that year was of Irish descent. He even presented me in public with a key to the city – that is to say, a three-quarter inch replica in painted ...

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