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Upside Down, Inside Out

Colin Kidd: The 1975 Referendum, 25 October 2018

Yes to Europe! The 1975 Referendum and Seventies Britain 
by Robert Saunders.
Cambridge, 509 pp., £24.99, March 2018, 978 1 108 42535 3
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... Mary Peters; from subsidiary groupings such as Actors for Europe, which included Arthur Lowe and Richard Briers, and Writers for Europe, whose membership ranged from Agatha Christie to Tom Stoppard. Ogres such as Benn, Paisley and Powell were no match for these recruits. The 1975 referendum has attracted the attention of various political ...

The Pills in the Fridge

Adam Mars-Jones: ‘Christodora’, 30 March 2017

by Tim Murphy.
Picador, 432 pp., £16.99, February 2017, 978 1 5098 1857 0
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... the Upper East Side. His son Jared, an art student specialising in industrial sculpture (the next Richard Serra, even), started to make it his home. Young Jared took pleasure in the neighbourhood, dirty and dangerous as it was, with homeless people and intravenous drug users camping out in Tompkins Square Park, and was surprised when a contingent of ...

I just let him have his beer

Christopher Tayler: John Williams Made it Work, 19 December 2019

The Man who Wrote the Perfect Novel: John Williams, ‘Stoner’ and the Writing Life 
by Charles Shields.
Texas, 305 pp., £23.99, October 2018, 978 1 4773 1736 5
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Nothing but the Night 
by John Williams.
NYRB, 144 pp., $14.95, February 2019, 978 1 68137 307 2
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... suddenly he would break into a big smile. He was gracious, but he said what he thought.’ Like Richard Yates, a near contemporary and friend who was also famous on the writing-school circuit for not being famous, Williams served in the war and had a few unsuccessful marriages, drank too much, promoted a writerly ideal of Flaubert-like strenuousness, and ...

Travels with My Mom

Terry Castle: In Santa Fe, 16 August 2007

... over all the drawers in the work table in the spare room. Blakey rolls her eyes, sits down, pulls Richard Rorty out of her bag and prepares to wait for several hours.I guess I left this part out earlier: that I’m as ‘arty’ as my old mum. Can’t help it: it’s a mutant gene, like homosexuality. And though I can neither draw nor paint I’m fairly good ...

Loafing with the Sissies

Colm Tóibín: The Trials of Andy Warhol, 10 September 2020

Warhol: A Life as Art 
by Blake Gopnik.
Allen Lane, 931 pp., £35, March, 978 0 241 00338 1
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... it hosted some of the first public appearances together of the composer John Cage and dancer Merce Cunningham, who had only recently become partners in art and life.’ Outlines opened in 1941 and for the next six years put on work by Calder, Cornell, Berenice Abbott, Cartier-Bresson, Klee, Cocteau and Duchamp. It also had an exhibition of silkscreen prints ...

Memoirs of a Pet Lamb

David Sylvester, 5 July 2001

... there by Laurence Olivier in Macbeth and, at the Golders Green Hippodrome, by John Gielgud in Richard II. I was also taken to things picked out by myself: the Crazy Gang in OK for Sound at the London Palladium and Eliot’s Murder in the Cathedral, after I had heard part of a broadcast of it. I found it long, apart from the murderers’ apologias, but was ...

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