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Norman​ Bread

Christopher Holdsworth

16 October 1980
The Norman​ Conquest of the North 
by William Kapelle.
Croom Helm, 329 pp., £14.95, March 1980, 0 7099 0040 6
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Consul of God 
by Jeffrey Richards.
Routledge, 309 pp., £9.75, March 1980, 0 7100 0346 3
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Martin of Tours 
by Christopher Donaldson.
Routledge, 171 pp., £8.95, March 1980, 0 7100 0422 2
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by Steven Runciman.
Thames and Hudson, 160 pp., £9.50, March 1980, 0 500 25071 5
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... is built around the life of another monk bishop, this time a Roman aristocrat who became pope about two hundred years after Martin’s time and is best-known to English readers as the man who sent Augustine and some monks to convert the heathen English – Gregory the Great. The third book, William Kapelle’s The Norman Conquest of the North considers a wider period than its short title indicates, for ...


Patrick Wright

21 May 1987
Creating excellence: Managing corporate culture, strategy and change in the New Age 
by Craig Hickman and Michael Silva.
Allen and Unwin, 305 pp., £12.50, April 1985, 0 04 658252 5
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Intrapreneuring: Why you don’t have to leave the corporation to become an entrepreneur 
by Gifford Pinchot.
Harper and Row, 368 pp., £15.95, August 1985, 0 06 015305 9
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The IBM Way: Insights into the World’s Most Successful Marketing Organisation 
by Buck Rodgers.
Harper and Row, 224 pp., £12.95, April 1986, 0 06 015522 1
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Innovation: The Attacker’s Advantage 
by Richard Foster.
Macmillan, 316 pp., £14.95, September 1986, 0 333 43511 7
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by Robert Lacey.
Heinemann, 778 pp., £15, July 1986, 0 434 40192 7
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Company of Adventurers: The Story of the Hudson’s Bay Company 
by Peter Newman.
Viking, 413 pp., £14.95, March 1986, 0 670 80379 0
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Augustine’s Laws 
by Norman Augustine.
Viking, 380 pp., £12.95, July 1986, 9780670809424
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Peak Performers: The New Heroes in Business 
by Charles Garfield.
Hutchinson, 333 pp., £12.95, October 1986, 0 09 167391 7
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Going for it: How to Succeed as an Entrepreneur 
by Victor Kiam.
Collins, 223 pp., £9.95, May 1986, 0 00 217603 3
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Take a chance to be first: The Secrets of Entrepreneurial Success 
by Warren Avis.
Macmillan, 222 pp., £9.95, October 1986, 0 02 504410 9
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The Winning Streak 
by Walter Goldsmith and David Clutterbuck.
Weidenfeld/Penguin, 224 pp., £9.95, September 1984, 0 297 78469 2
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The Roots of Excellence 
by Ronnie Lessem.
Fontana, 318 pp., £3.95, December 1985, 0 00 636874 3
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The New Management of Local Government 
by John Stewart.
Allen and Unwin, 208 pp., £20, October 1986, 0 00 435232 7
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... The eight basics of ‘excellence’ (‘Hands-on, value driven,’ ‘Stick to the knitting’ etc) are all very well, but these advocates of ‘Management by Walking Around’ (MBWA) are topped by NormanAugustine, a former President of the American Institute of Aeuronautics and Astronautics, who has come up with 52, one for each week of the year. Augustine’s Laws uses its axioms to mock ...

Rome’s New Mission

Diarmaid MacCulloch: Early Christianity

2 June 2011
Christians and Pagans: The Conversion of Britain from Alban to Bede 
by Malcolm Lambert.
Yale, 329 pp., £30, September 2010, 978 0 300 11908 4
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... Alcock and Henry Mayr-Harting. The literary sources have attracted much idiosyncratic talent, for they possess the fascination of a cryptic crossword in which one must sift fact from propaganda, post-Norman Conquest forgery from dimly glimpsed ancient original. At one pole, there is the sixth-century Welshman Gildas, whose gloomy rhetoric in De Excidio et Conquestu Britanniae testifies to the survival ...
19 December 1991
In Search of Conrad 
by Gavin Young.
Hutchinson, 304 pp., £17.99, October 1991, 0 09 173524 6
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... of Conrad’s travels and readings, thereby tying the fiction to real places and personages, and, whenever possible, actual books and ideas, that help explain the mysterious novels and stories. Norman Sherry famously does this in Conrad’s Eastern World and Conrad’s Western World, remarkable works of sleuthing rediscovery that respectively cover Conrad’s Indian and Pacific Ocean voyages, and ...
10 March 1994
Cosmos, Chaos and the World to Come: The Ancient Roots of Apocalyptic Faith 
by Norman​ Cohn.
Yale, 271 pp., £20, October 1993, 0 300 05598 6
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... can be demythologised in this way, few texts fit the theory very neatly, and it is far from clear that his hypothesis is widely applicable. It should, however, be of some relevance to those who, like Norman Cohn, are concerned with the dynamics of persecution. Cohn’s classic, The Pursuit of the Millennium, posited a connection between millenarian thought and the persecuting impulse, and one of the ...
23 April 1992
Sexual Dissidence: Augustine​ to Wilde, Freud to Foucault 
by Jonathan Dollimore.
Oxford, 388 pp., £35, August 1991, 0 19 811225 4
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Inside/Out: Lesbian Theories, Gay Theories 
by Diana Fuss.
Routledge, 432 pp., £40, March 1992, 0 415 90236 3
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... subversion, dissidence, and othering.’ Sexual Dissidence is an ambitious contribution towards such a theory. For Dollimore, sexual dissidence is the way gender upsets hierarchies. Going back to Augustine and Milton for the semantic and theological origins of the perverse, he shows how ‘perversion was (and remains) a concept bound up with insurrection,’ whether it applied to Elizabethan vagrants ...

I had no imagination

Christian Lorentzen: Gerald Murnane

4 April 2019
Tamarisk Row 
by Gerald Murnane.
And Other Stories, 281 pp., £10, February, 978 1 911508 36 6
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Border Districts 
by Gerald Murnane.
And Other Stories, 144 pp., £8.99, January, 978 1 911508 38 0
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... horse-racing, Catholicism and sin into the birth of its hero. Clement Killeaton is conceived the evening his father’s horse Clementia wins her maiden race, netting him a small fortune. Jean and Augustine aren’t yet married: a Protestant, she still has to finish her catechism and be baptised into the Catholic Church. The sex takes place in the grass by a horse trough behind her family’s ‘untidy ...

Weimar in Partibus

Norman​ Stone

1 July 1982
Hannah Arendt: For Love of the World 
by Elizabeth Young-Bruehl.
Yale, 563 pp., £12.95, May 1982, 0 300 02660 9
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Hannah Arendt and the Search for a New Political Philosophy 
by Bhikhu Parekh.
Macmillan, 198 pp., £20, October 1981, 0 333 30474 8
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... which had had such an extraordinarily fertile period in the 1890s, formed the mind of Hannah Arendt. She worked, curiously enough, on theology. Her dissertation concerned the concept of Love in St Augustine, and it is perhaps not too much to claim that she was, during the Twenties, not too far from conversion to the austere Protestantism of which Königsberg has been a citadel. The middle ground of ...

His Generation

Keith Gessen: A Sad Old Literary Man

19 June 2008
Alfred Kazin: A Biography 
by Richard Cook.
Yale, 452 pp., £25, March 2008, 978 0 300 11505 5
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... by Philip Roth’s “Defender of the Faith”, a story with such extraordinary guts to it that I walked around for days exhilarated by the change in the literary weather.’ He was encouraging of Norman Mailer without puffing him up, and he was also worried for him: ‘Mailer’s performance here’ – in Advertisements for Myself – ‘reminds me of the brilliant talker who impresses the hell out ...

Suffering Souls

Marina Warner: Ghosts in the middle ages.

18 June 1998
Ghosts in the Middle Ages: The Living and the Dead in Medieval Society 
by Jean-Claude Schmitt, translated by Theresa Lavender Fagan.
Chicago, 290 pp., £26.50, May 1998, 0 226 73887 6
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... lord of the dead, about which he had heard many stories. The account is dated 1 January 1091 and is the earliest extant literary telling of this phantom army, taken down by Orderic Vitalis, an Anglo-Norman monk, from the report of his colleague, the eyewitness. Walchelin related how he thought he wouldn’t be believed if he didn’t bring back proof, so he left his hiding place and tried to catch and ...

Still Superior

Mark Greif: Sex and Susan Sontag

12 February 2009
Reborn: Early Diaries, 1947-64 
by Susan Sontag, edited by David Rieff.
Hamish Hamilton, 318 pp., £16.99, January 2009, 978 0 241 14431 2
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... indeed only the part of high culture that was progressive, experimental and ahead of its time could form the ‘avant-garde’ that did it. Kitsch, a different kind of highly technical object (one of Norman Rockwell’s cute and realistic illustrations, one of Tin Pan Alley’s homogenised, hummable songs), reproduced the world and viewers’ emotions so cleanly and realistically on its own surface that ...

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