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Boys will be girls

Clive James, 1 September 1983

Footlights! A Hundred Years of Cambridge Comedy 
by Robert Hewison.
Methuen, 224 pp., £8.95, June 1983, 0 413 51150 2
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... help them lick is the one that will stick to you longest. Nevertheless, or perhaps therefore, Mr Hewison has produced a respectable book: sensible, well-researched and solid enough to be unexciting. If the publishers thought they were going to get the kind of sputtering firework that one of David Frost’s script associates might help him deliver into a ...
... A chorus of woe prompted by the recession of 1980? No, all remarks made in 1948, and quoted by Robert Hewison in his forthcoming cultural history of the period, In Anger. Publishers are like farmers. When times are good – as they were spectacularly during the years after 1974 when the pound was weakest abroad – it’s difficult to get them to ...

Interdisciplinarity

Dinah Birch, 27 June 1991

The Desire of My Eyes: A Life of John Ruskin 
by Wolfgang Kemp, translated by Jan Van Huerck.
HarperCollins, 526 pp., £20, March 1991, 0 00 215166 9
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... to many aspiring Ruskin scholars, is British, but his teaching has not been in a university. Robert Hewison, one of the driving forces behind the revival that dates from the foundation of the Ruskin Association in 1969, has always steered clear of an academic career. So has Tim Hilton, whose biography of Ruskin’s early years (published in ...

Aunt Twackie’s Bazaar

Andy Beckett: Seventies Style, 19 August 2010

70s Style and Design 
by Dominic Lutyens and Kirsty Hislop.
Thames and Hudson, 224 pp., £24.90, November 2009, 978 0 500 51483 2
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... but overabundance. Lutyens and Hislop are not the first to notice this. In 1986, the historian Robert Hewison called his fine study of British culture between 1960 and 1975 Too Much. In Mike Leigh’s play Abigail’s Party, the claustrophobic lounge, crammed with 1970s products (like a cruder suburban version of Peter Cook’s showy living-room) is ...

Retrochic

Keith Thomas, 20 April 1995

Theatres of Memory. Vol. I: Past and Present in Contemporary Culture 
by Raphael Samuel.
Verso, 479 pp., £18.95, February 1995, 0 86091 209 4
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... artist Joseph Nash, not the architect John; the authority on Hadrian’s Wall is Robin Birley, not Robert; William III’s historiographer was Thomas Rymer, not Edward; it was in the ruins of the Capitol, not the Colosseum, that Gibbon conceived the idea of the Decline and Fall; and Rothesay is not an island. It would be wrong, however, to allow pedantic ...

Skimming along

Ross McKibbin, 20 October 1994

The Major Effect 
edited by Anthony Seldon and Dennis Kavanagh.
Macmillan, 500 pp., £20, September 1994, 0 333 62273 1
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... be. And the governments in which he has served have done some very un-nice things indeed. As Robert Taylor points out in his trenchant essay on industrial relations, ‘prime ministerial words of compassion were often belied by harshness of executive action.’ Indeed, the Government seems largely insensitive to the poverty its policies have created and ...

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