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So far, so-so

Peter Clarke

6 June 1996
One Hundred Years of Socialism 
by Donald Sassoon.
Tauris, 965 pp., £35, April 1996, 9781850438793
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... socialists who approved of its redistributive effects as much as by dry-eyed American opponents of Marshall Aid who feared that they were footing the bill, or by home-grown reactionaries who developed paranoid theories about a tax-and-spend New Jerusalem. Yet what Britain was doing, in ways that accorded with its own traditions of social legislation, was ...

Boy Gang

Peter Prince

19 January 1984
Minor Characters 
by Joyce Johnson.
Collins, 262 pp., £7.95, May 1983, 0 00 272511 8
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Neurotica: The Authentic Voice of the Beat Generation 1948-1951 
edited by Jay Landesman and G. Legman.
Jay Landesman, 535 pp., £19.95, July 1981, 0 905150 26 0
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Memory Babe: A Critical Biography of Jack Kerouac 
by Gerald Nicosia.
Grove, 767 pp., £14.95, October 1983, 0 394 52270 2
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... perished in New York at the end of 1951. It carried the early work of such future luminaries as Marshall McLuhan, Anatole Broyard, Allen Ginsberg, Kenneth Patchen, Chandler Brossard. But out of over eighty ‘authentic’ voices, exactly nine were female, and none of these was destined for future fame. As Joyce Johnson remembers it, these were voices that ...

London Review of Crooks

Robert Marshall-Andrews

15 July 1982
Rough Justice: The Extraordinary Truth about Charles Richardson and his Gang 
by Robert Parker.
Fontana, 352 pp., £1.95, October 1981, 0 00 636354 7
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Web of Corruption: The Story of John Poulson and T. Dan Smith 
by Raymond Fitzwalter and David Taylor.
Granada, 282 pp., £12.50, October 1981, 0 246 10915 7
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Inside Boss: South Africa’s Secret Police 
by Gordon Winter.
Penguin, 640 pp., £7.95, October 1981, 9780140057515
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Crime in Wartime: A Social History of Crime in World War II 
by Edward Smithies.
Allen and Unwin, 219 pp., £12.50, January 1982, 0 04 364020 6
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... demonstrations (backed by the use of a clandestine camera), he was prominent in the prosecution of Peter Hain for conspiracy, and was actually called as a prosecution witness, only to turn hostile at Pretoria’s bidding in order to preserve his cover. He began the Jeremy Thorpe scandal, which he leaked to the People before the 1974 election. No less ...
7 April 1994
Inside Culture 
by David Halle.
Chicago, 261 pp., £23.95, January 1993, 0 226 31367 0
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Buildings of the United States: The Buildings of Michigan 
by Kathryn Bishop Eckert.
Oxford, 603 pp., £27.50, June 1993, 0 19 506149 7
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Buildings of the United States: The Buildings of Iowa 
by David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim.
Oxford, 565 pp., £27.50, June 1993, 0 19 506148 9
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... photograph on the jacket gives the story a sharper edge: Halle bears some resemblance to Peter Sellers in one of his manic roles. That Pei, architect of the Louvre Pyramid, thought Halle’s study out of order is not surprising, but he was mistaken if he thought it crudely reductionist. As a prelude to his analysis Halle describes the kinds of house ...

Tortoises with Zips

David Craig: The Snow Geese by William Fiennes

4 April 2002
The Snow Geese 
by William Fiennes.
Picador, 250 pp., £14.99, March 2002, 0 330 37578 4
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... he finds in a cabin west of Winnipeg. The seemingly exhaustive transcript of the reminiscences of Marshall the railroad hobo, who talked at him continuously for the thousand miles from Winnipeg to Churchill via Thompson. The furnishings, food and remarkable happenings in Dally’s Diner on Logan Street, Aberdeen, South Dakota, as our hero waits for the snow ...


Linda Colley

21 September 1995
All the Sweets of Being: The Life of James Boswell 
by Roger Hutchinson.
Mainstream, 238 pp., £17.50, May 1995, 1 85158 702 0
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James Boswell’s ‘Life of Johnson’ 
edited by Marshall Waingrow.
Edinburgh, 518 pp., £75, March 1995, 0 7486 0471 5
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Johnson and Boswell: The Transit of Caledonia 
by Pat Rogers.
Oxford, 245 pp., £30, April 1995, 0 19 818259 7
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... as a foolish parasite on Johnson’s greatness, a ‘tomtit twittering on an eagle’s back’, as Peter Pindar had called him. Then, in 1925, the seesaw that had always been Boswell’s fate tilted once again. That year saw the beginning of one of three remarkable American initiatives, all linked in some way to Yale University, that would considerably enrich ...

Shoot them to be sure

Richard Gott: The Oxford History of the British Empire

25 April 2002
The Oxford History of the British Empire. Vol. I: The Origins of Empire 
edited by William Roger Louis and Nicholas Canny.
Oxford, 533 pp., £14.99, July 2001, 0 19 924676 9
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The Oxford History of the British Empire. Vol. II: The 18th Century 
edited by William Roger Louis and P.J. Marshall.
Oxford, 639 pp., £14.99, July 2001, 0 19 924677 7
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The Oxford History of the British Empire. Vol. III: The 19th Century 
edited by William Roger Louis and Andrew Porter.
Oxford, 774 pp., £14.99, July 2001, 0 19 924678 5
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The Oxford History of the British Empire. Vol. IV: The 20th Century 
edited by William Roger Louis and Judith Brown.
Oxford, 773 pp., £14.99, July 2001, 0 19 924679 3
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The Oxford History of the British Empire. Vol. V: Historiography 
edited by William Roger Louis and Robin Winks.
Oxford, 731 pp., £14.99, July 2001, 0 19 924680 7
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... contributions from Jane Ohlmeyer on Ireland and Scotland as ‘laboratories of Empire’, and from Peter Mancall on the troubled relationship between Europeans and Native Americans in the 16th and 17th centuries. The second volume, concerned principally with slavery and the American Revolution, has a sparkling chapter on Native Americans by Daniel Richter, and ...

Saint or Snake

Stefan Collini: Ann Oakley on Richard Titmuss

7 October 2015
Father and Daughter: Patriarchy, Gender and Social Science 
by Ann Oakley.
Policy, 290 pp., £13.99, November 2014, 978 1 4473 1810 1
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... in 1950. We have numerous testimonies to the galvanising power of what the sociologist T.H. Marshall termed ‘a flawless masterpiece’: ‘Everyone who read the book shared my excitement,’ the American social analyst Eveline Burns recalled. Yet revisiting it today one is immediately struck by the density of information and the lack of any ...

What does she think she looks like?

Rosemary Hill: The Dress in Your Head

28 March 2018
... post-feminist or anti-feminist film, or just in some baffling way French. In the Guardian, Peter Bradshaw went for ‘provocative’, before deciding it was a ‘startlingly strange rape-revenge black comedy’. I didn’t think it was as strange as all that and I did think it was funny, but what really struck me was that every woman I knew who had ...

Wright and Wrong

Peter Campbell

10 November 1988
Many Masks: A Life of Frank Lloyd Wright 
by Brendan Gill.
Heinemann, 544 pp., £20, August 1988, 0 434 29273 7
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... but a glance from the corner of my eye showed me that an expansive mood was descending on him. At Marshall Field’s he saw a chair that struck his fancy.   ‘One hundred and twenty-five dollars,’ read the sales person from the ticket that dangled from the arm.   ‘I’ll lake a dozen, send them up to Taliesin.’ Next he ordered a dozen Chinese ...


Peter Clarke

21 September 1995
LSE: A History of the London School of Economics and Political Science 
by Ralf Dahrendorf.
Oxford, 584 pp., £25, May 1995, 0 19 820240 7
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... outlook, at a time when liberal economists – the majority – looked to the Cambridge of Alfred Marshall for a lead. In resisting the Marshallian hegemony in the establishment of economics as an academic discipline, the LSE made room for dissenters who resisted the all-embracing claims of a theoretical model in favour of ...
21 March 1991
Ever Closer Union: Britain’s Destiny in Europe 
by Hugh Thomas.
Hutchinson, 96 pp., £7.99, January 1991, 0 09 174908 5
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The Challenge of Europe: Can Britain win? 
by Michael Heseltine.
Pan, 226 pp., £5.99, February 1991, 9780330314367
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... of a United States of Europe in his Zurich speech of 1946, Bevin who was the chief begetter of the Marshall Plan. But European unity was for others: Britain still operated the three intersecting circles, of which the Atlantic and the Commonwealth loomed larger than Europe. We did not refuse economic co-operation with the Continent, as at first ...

A Bit of Ginger

Theo Tait: Gordon Burn

5 June 2008
Born Yesterday: The News as a Novel 
by Gordon Burn.
Faber, 214 pp., £15.99, April 2008, 978 0 571 19729 3
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... book, Somebody’s Husband, Somebody’s Son (1984), was a painstaking re-creation of the life of Peter Sutcliffe, the Yorkshire Ripper. He topped that with an account of Fred and Rosemary West’s killing careers, Happy like Murderers (1998). The first resembles a documentary; the second is more like a novel in the sense of being more artfully shaped and ...

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