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Pious Girls and Swearing Fathers

Patricia Craig, 1 June 1989

English Children and their Magazines 1751-1945 
by Kirsten Drotner.
Yale, 272 pp., £16.95, January 1988, 0 300 04010 5
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Frank Richards: The Chap behind the Chums 
by Mary Cadogan.
Viking, 258 pp., £14.95, October 1988, 0 670 81946 8
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A History of Children’s Book Illustration 
by Joyce Irene Whalley and Tessa Rose Chester.
Murray/Victoria and Albert Museum, 268 pp., £35, April 1988, 0 7195 4584 6
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Manchester Polytechnic Library of Children’s Books 1840-1939: ‘From Morality to Adventure’ 
by W.H. Shercliff.
Bracken Books/Studio Editions, 203 pp., £25, September 1988, 0 901276 18 9
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Children’s Modern First Editions: Their Value to Collectors 
by Joseph Connolly.
Macdonald, 336 pp., £17.95, October 1988, 0 356 15741 5
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... like Anne Anderson and Honor Appleton get in, but not the more distinctive Gladys Peto; Robert Lawson is here but not Lawson Wood; A.E. Bestall (briefly) but not Thomas Henry. In compiling the book – which is, in fact, very nearly comprehensive – the authors have drawn on the holdings of the Victoria and Albert Museum, in particular the Guy ...

I live in my world

Barry Schwabsky: Willem de Kooning, 22 September 2016

Willem de Kooning Nonstop: Cherchez la femme 
by Rosalind Krauss.
Chicago, 154 pp., £22.50, March 2016, 978 0 226 26744 9
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... and post-minimalist sculptors of her own generation or slightly older – figures such as Robert Morris, Sol LeWitt and Richard Serra – and then with the promotion, through the journal October, which she co-founded in 1976, of a somewhat younger group of postmodern artists who substituted photographic imagery for painting, among them James ...

Diary

David Bromwich: A Bad President, 5 July 2012

... American Enterprise Institute. These people – including Cofer Black, Michael Chertoff, Robert Kagan and Dan Senor – have their eyes on a goal beyond victory in Syria and Iran: they look forward to a militarised approach to Russia and China. As for Romney’s economic ideas, every backward step towards the finance economy of 1920 which Obama has ...

The Old, Bad Civilisation

Arnold Rattenbury: Second World War poetry, 4 October 2001

Selected Poems 
by Randall Swingler, edited by Andy Croft.
Trent, 113 pp., £7.99, October 2000, 1 84233 014 4
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British Writing of the Second World War 
by Mark Rawlinson.
Oxford, 256 pp., £35, June 2000, 0 19 818456 5
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... the poems he introduces any good? Swingler is an awkward poet to categorise because he lacks any quirk or personal oddity of style. Croft sees his earlier, rather rhapsodic verse – Poems (1932), Reconstruction (1933) – as Georgian, countryside-centred and influenced by Robert Bridges, changing swiftly to Auden’s ...

Take out all the adjectives

Jeremy Harding: The poetry of George Oppen, 6 May 2004

New Collected Poems 
by George Oppen, edited by Michael Davidson.
Carcanet, 433 pp., £14.95, July 2003, 1 85754 631 8
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... on Maud, the remarriageable reader of French novels in Henry James’s ‘The Story of It’: a quirk Oppen chose not to change in later editions. Yet the drift is clear and exhilarating, and there is a cold precision, no less exhilarating, in the way the poem gets where it’s going, in a single, almost coherent sentence parodying James, the ‘Of’ at ...

Follow-the-Leader

Colm Tóibín: Bishop v. Lowell, 14 May 2009

Words in Air: The Complete Correspondence between Elizabeth Bishop and Robert Lowell 
edited by Thomas Travisano and Saskia Hamilton.
Faber, 875 pp., £40, November 2008, 978 0 571 24308 2
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... Robert Lowell wrote the poem ‘Water’ about being on the coast of Maine in the summer of 1948 with Elizabeth Bishop; he put it first in his collection For the Union Dead, which he published in 1964. He sent Bishop a draft of the poem in March 1962, explaining that it was ‘more romantic and grey than the whole truth, for all has been sunny between us ...

Diary

David Denby: Deaths on Camera, 8 September 2016

... is spooky and upsetting in the way that it links the act of witnessing to homicide. But that is a quirk of technology, not a moral failing of the viewer. And the potential charge of voyeurism gives way to the likelihood that looking at the videos pushes the white viewer into a new relationship with power and race. The videos demonstrate white dominance ...

Maurice Thomson’s War

Perry Anderson, 4 November 1993

Merchants and Revolution: Commercial Change, Political Conflict and London’s Overseas Traders 1550-1653 
by Robert Brenner.
Cambridge, 734 pp., £40, March 1993, 0 521 37319 0
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TheNature of the English Revolution 
by John Morrill.
Longman, 466 pp., £32, June 1993, 0 582 08941 7
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... Merchants and Revolution, dedicated to Stone, comprehensively overturns that judgment. Its author, Robert Brenner, belongs to that rare group of historians who have given their name to a whole literature – the ‘Brenner Debate’ on the origins of agrarian capitalism in Europe recalling the ‘Pirenne Thesis’ of old. His new book, in which the name of ...

Societies

Perry Anderson, 6 July 1989

A Treatise on Social Theory. Vol. II: Substantive Social Theory 
by W.G. Runciman.
Cambridge, 493 pp., £35, February 1989, 0 521 24959 7
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... the hour of its overthrow. Can a state of this kind be usefully termed ‘absolutist’? A final quirk of the discussion here, it may be noted, concerns England. Having contested that Angevin or Plantaganet rule were ever feudal, he goes on to deny that Stuart government was ever absolutist. ‘England alone evolved from a patrimonial to a bourgeois ...

The Tower

Andrew O’Hagan, 7 June 2018

... and Kerr-Bell suggest, however, that the TMO became more intermeshed with the council under Robert Black, who was chief executive at the time of the refurbishment. ‘He instilled a culture where you couldn’t complain,’ I was told. I contacted Black, trying to get him to respond to this allegation, but he preferred not to. The Grenfell Action ...

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