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Christopher Tayler: Beckett’s Letters, 19 March 2015

Letters of Samuel Beckett: 1957-65 
by George Craig, Martha Dow Fehsenfeld, Dan Gunn and Lois More Overbeck.
Cambridge, 771 pp., £30, September 2014, 978 0 521 86795 5
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... by this stage, craggily photogenic. He ‘looks like a magnificent Mexican sculpture now’, Nancy Cunard wrote in 1956 after meeting him for the first time since the 1930s. In a letter to A.J. Leventhal quoted by Knowlson, Beckett says of the same lunch date that Cunard was looking ‘very wraithy’, and one ...

A Great Wall to Batter Down

Adom Getachew, 21 May 2020

Insurgent Empire: Anticolonial Resistance and British Dissent 
by Priyamvada Gopal.
Verso, 607 pp., £25, June 2019, 978 1 78478 412 6
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... Marxist George Padmore, but also on comrades within the British establishment: Sylvia Pankhurst, Nancy Cunard and Fenner Brockway, sometime Labour MP and leader in the 1930s of the Independent Labour Party, which, in its various publications, amplified colonial voices on the British left.After the Italian invasion of Ethiopia in 1935, and with another ...

Lithe Pale Girls

Robert Crawford: Richard Aldington, 22 January 2015

Richard Aldington: Poet, Soldier and Lover 1911-29 
by Vivien Whelpton.
Lutterworth, 414 pp., £30, January 2015, 978 0 7188 9318 7
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... Patmore, while continuing his relationship with Yorke and flirting with other women, including Nancy Cunard. In 1928 he travelled with Yorke and Patmore to the island of Port Cros, off the French Mediterranean coast; Frieda and D.H. Lawrence were there too. Nude bathing parties helped kept the sexual excitement high. Sharing a bedroom with ...

He was the man

Robert Crawford: Ezra Pound, 30 June 2016

Ezra Pound: Poet: A Portrait of the Man and his Work: Vol. III: The Tragic Years, 1939-72 
by A. David Moody.
Oxford, 654 pp., £30, September 2015, 978 0 19 870436 2
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... to bring damage to his circle. Since marrying Dorothy Shakespear in 1914, he had had affairs with Nancy Cunard and Olga Rudge; the latter had given birth to Pound’s daughter, Mary, in 1925, and Dorothy had given birth to Omar (Pound’s legal, but probably not biological son) in 1926. While Pound was in St Elizabeths, Dorothy lived in poverty nearby so ...

Astrid, Clio and Julia

Alan Bell, 17 July 1980

The Wanton Chase 
by Peter Quennell.
Collins, 192 pp., £8.95, May 1980, 0 00 216526 0
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... and social themes, The Sign of the Fish. Many of his portraits are of the beau monde: Lady Cunard and Nancy, Lord Berners, the Duff Coopers, Mrs Fleming and her successive husbands Lord Rothermere and Ian Fleming (who ‘good-naturedly accepted me, no doubt because I was neither a wild bohemian nor a rampant ...

Sorry to be so vague

Hugh Haughton: Eugene Jolas and Samuel Beckett, 29 July 1999

Man from Babel 
by Eugene Jolas.
Yale, 352 pp., £20, January 1999, 0 300 07536 7
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No Author Better Served: The Correspondence of Samuel Beckett and Alan Schneider 
edited by Maurice Harmon.
Harvard, 486 pp., £21.95, October 1998, 0 674 62522 6
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... glimpses of the ‘Trinity scholard’, the young Joycean in the Paris of transition, the lover of Nancy Cunard, the interwar cultural tourist, the Londoner in therapy with Bion, the wartime evacuee in Southern France, the French writer in chastened post-World War Two Paris, the lover. If we are to judge from the extracts in biographies and the best ...

You better not tell me you forgot

Terry Castle: How to Spot Members of the Tribe, 27 September 2012

All We Know: Three Lives 
by Lisa Cohen.
Farrar Straus, 429 pp., £22.50, July 2012, 978 0 374 17649 5
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... Here it must be that arresting phrase, the right to play. Like Beaton, the Sitwells, Cole Porter, Nancy Cunard, Noël Coward, Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald, Lady Diana Cooper and countless other hedonistic Jazz Age types, Murphy, de Acosta and Garland took the right to play for granted, as well they might. Puritanism was an anachronism and in some renovated ...


E.S. Turner, 3 July 1986

Augustus Hare: Victorian Gentleman 
by Malcolm Barnes.
Allen and Unwin, 240 pp., £20, May 1986, 9780049201002
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Midway on the Waves 
by James Lees-Milne.
Faber, 248 pp., £10.95, October 1985, 0 571 13723 7
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... in asking for a ‘drink’, instead of ‘something to drink’, which may well have stimulated Nancy Mitford to write her essay on Hare.) Sir Osbert Sitwell has testified to the mild panic which met Hare’s arrival at a garden party at Renishaw, when ‘the ladies held their hats to their heads and fled, fearing that he might include them in his next ...

Pilgrim’s Progress

Michael Davie, 4 December 1980

The Letters of Evelyn Waugh 
edited by Mark Amory.
Weidenfeld, 664 pp., £14.95, September 1980, 0 297 77657 6
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... Church, deprived him of a settled base, and transferred to him the important friendship of Nancy Mitford, a close friend of his wife’s who had broken with her when she ran off. Partly through the Mitford family, and partly through the patronage of Lady Cunard (whom he detested), he was now able to launch himself, a ...

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