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Where will the judges sit?

Stephen Sedley: What will happen to the Law Lords?

16 September 1999
The House of Lords: Its Parliamentary and Judicial Roles 
edited by Brice Dickson and Paul Carmichael.
Hart, 258 pp., £30, December 1998, 1 84113 020 6
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Constitutional Futures: A History of the Next Ten Years 
edited by Robert Hazell.
Oxford, 263 pp., £17.99, January 1999, 0 19 829801 3
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The Law and Parliament 
edited by Dawn Olivier and Gavin Drewry.
Butterworth, 219 pp., £15.95, September 1998, 0 406 98092 6
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Crown Powers: Subject and Citizens 
by Christopher Vincenzi.
Pinter, 343 pp., £47.50, April 1998, 1 85567 454 8
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... criminal appeals from Scotland) and creating the office of Lord of Appeal in Ordinary to ensure that only real judges would sit in future. That it was, in Robert Stevens’s words in the Dickson and Carmichael volume, ‘the work of a group of right-wing Tory MPs who cared nothing for law, the courts or litigants, but were anxious to prop up the hereditary principle by creating a group of judges who might ...

Flub-Dub

Thomas Powers: Stephen Crane

16 July 2014
Stephen Crane: A Life of Fire 
by Paul​ Sorrentino.
Harvard, 476 pp., £25, June 2014, 978 0 674 04953 6
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... was essentially penniless. It was while lounging on the daybed in Linson’s studio that he began to think seriously about Red Badge. Crane’s life was so short – he didn’t reach thirty – that Paul Sorrentino, like the rest of Crane’s biographers, focuses on the episodes Crane barely had time to live: harum-scarum education; the writing of Red Badge; stints of war reporting first in Greece ...

Much like the 1950s

David Edgar: The Sixties

7 June 2007
White Heat: A History of Britain in the Swinging Sixties 
by Dominic Sandbrook.
Little, Brown, 878 pp., £22.50, August 2006, 0 316 72452 1
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Never Had It So Good: A History of Britain from Suez to the Beatles 
by Dominic Sandbrook.
Abacus, 892 pp., £19.99, May 2006, 0 349 11530 3
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... most famous example of the countercultural “happenings” of the mid-1960s’), he doesn’t mention the (equally chaotic) Dialectics of Liberation Congress of July 1967, at which Herbert Marcuse, Paul Goodman, Allen Ginsberg and Stokely Carmichael were brought together not by a university or a political party but by a group of dissident psychiatrists living in a commune in London’s East End. The ...

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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... and Third World Liberation, and whose vision was sustained over several years despite the state repression it met with, is, in retrospect, an extraordinary thing in itself. Like W.E.B. Du Bois, Paul Robeson, Charlotta Bass, Claudia Jones and William Patterson in the 1940s and 1950s, the Black Panther Party connected the oppression of black America to people of colour around the globe, linking ...

The smallest details speak the loudest

John Upton: The Stephen Lawrence inquiry

1 July 1999
The Stephen Lawrence Inquiry 
by Sir William Macpherson.
Stationery Office, 335 pp., £26, February 1999, 0 10 142622 4
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The Case of Stephen Lawrence 
by Brian Cathcart.
Viking, 418 pp., £16.99, May 1999, 0 670 88604 1
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... no further clues. Still these men, according to the prevailing wisdom, should be denied their rights in law. ‘I don’t normally think it’s right for people to be witch-hunted in this way,’ Paul Foot remarked, ‘but in this case the legal process had run its course and the case against these men was overwhelming.’ Peter Preston, the former editor of the Guardian, concluded that the ...

The Ticking Fear

John Kerrigan: Louis MacNeice

7 February 2008
Louis MacNeice: Collected Poems 
edited by Peter McDonald.
Faber, 836 pp., £30, January 2007, 978 0 571 21574 4
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Louis MacNeice: Selected Poems 
edited by Michael Longley.
Faber, 160 pp., £12.99, April 2007, 978 0 571 23381 6
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I Crossed the Minch 
by Louis MacNeice.
Polygon, 253 pp., £9.99, September 2007, 978 1 84697 014 6
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The Strings Are False: An Unfinished Autobiography 
by Louis MacNeice, edited by E.R. Dodds.
Faber, 288 pp., £9.99, September 2007, 978 0 571 23942 9
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... and rose-patterned paper and eating in the street that MacNeice praised in his 1937 radio talk ‘In Defence of Vulgarity’. Impurities like these were worth getting into poetry as a kick against St Paul. MacNeice says in Modern Poetry that ‘words like “gold” and “roses” tend to strike me as if written in block capitals.’ The bold, glamorous command of such words in ‘Snow’ is enhanced ...

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