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Seamus Perry: George Meredith

17 June 2015
Modern Love and Poems of the English Roadside, with Poems and Ballads 
by George Meredith, edited by Criscillia Benford and Rebecca Mitchell.
Yale, 390 pp., £40, April 2015, 978 0 300 17317 8
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... in verse of robust rural characters and examples of Meredith’s vigorous landscape poetry: Modern Love and Poems of the English Roadside, with Poems and Ballads is the awkwardly titled text that RebeccaMitchell and Criscillia Benford have edited in handsome style. ‘Modern Love’ is a sort of dark sister-piece to the sunshine of ‘Love in a Valley’, and not at all what his contemporaries ...

Short Cuts

Christopher Tayler: Costume Drama

11 October 2012
... Costume drama audiences are widely reckoned to respond to obliquity of the kind Ford specialised in as Wyndham Lewis did in 1914: ‘What balls!’ So even given the participation of Tom Stoppard, Rebecca Hall and Benedict Cumberbatch, it was surprising to see a Ford adaptation given five hours on BBC2. Ford was last unloosed in this way in 1981, when Julian Mitchell adapted The Good Soldier for ...

The Tarnished Age

Richard Mayne

3 September 1981
David O. Selznick’s Hollywood 
by Ronald Haver.
Secker, 425 pp., £35, December 1980, 0 436 19128 8
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My Early life 
by Ronald Reagan and Richard Hubler.
Sidgwick, 316 pp., £7.95, April 1981, 0 283 98771 5
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Naming Names 
by Victor Navasky.
Viking, 482 pp., $15.95, October 1980, 0 670 50393 2
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... costs on low-budget quickies: but before long he was known as a lavish, relentless perfectionist, intent on shaping every detail himself. This upset ambitious directors. When Alfred Hitchcock made Rebecca, Spell-bound and The Paradine Case, he was told to stop ‘cutting in the camera’, and to shoot enough film for Selznick to control the editing. Not surprisingly, these were three of Hitchcock’s ...

Mother-Haters and Other Rebels

Barbara Taylor: Heroine Chic

3 January 2002
Inventing Herself: Claiming a Feminist Intellectual Heritage 
by Elaine Showalter.
Picador, 384 pp., £16.99, June 2001, 0 330 34669 5
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... Fuller, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Olive Schreiner, Simone de Beauvoir – but also women less often eulogised as feminist foremothers: Margaret Mead and her fellow anthropologists of the 1920s, Rebecca West and the pioneers of British ‘New Feminism’, Emma Goldman, Mary McCarthy and Hannah Arendt (the last two, both openly hostile to feminism, qualify on the grounds that as ‘trouble-makers and ...

Death in Plain Sight

Marina Warner: Emily Davison, Modern Martyr

4 July 2013
... writing plays and journalism in London, and in 1906 joined the WSPU, the Women’s Social and Political Union, but her independent – and extreme – militancy caused a breach. In the words of David Mitchell, a biographer of Christabel Pankhurst, she became ‘an incorrigible freelance’. In the summer of 1913, newsreel cameras captured her running across the course of the most popular race of the year ...
26 July 2017
... by Irish tenors, but it had not always been so. In the 1840s I found 25 performances of the song by male soloists, and only five by women; but over the next forty years some celebrated contraltos, Rebecca Isaacs, Louisa Pyne, Antoinette Sterling and Janet Patey, achieved almost exclusive ownership of the song: the databases show Patey performing it at least 43 times. Between 1850 and 1890 I found only ...

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