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Tearing up the Race Card

Paul Foot, 30 November 1995

The New Untouchables: Immigration and the New World Worker 
by Nigel Harris.
Tauris, 256 pp., £25, October 1995, 1 85043 956 7
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The Cambridge Survey of World Migration 
edited by Robin Cohen.
Cambridge, 570 pp., £75, November 1995, 0 521 44405 5
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... over the world, again and again, if rather apologetically, comes close to Harris’s conclusions. Robin Cohen’s article notes that ‘international migration’ has replaced Communism as a ‘key threat’ to Western security organisations such as Nato, and asks: ‘Are such organisations simply trying to stay in business? Does the world system of ...

Benetton Ethics

Nick Cohen: Treachery at the FO, 2 July 1998

First Annual Report on Human Rights 
by Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
56 pp., April 1998
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The Great Deception 
by Mark Curtis.
Pluto, 272 pp., £14.99, June 1998, 0 7453 1234 9
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... broke that it was difficult to know whether there had been a change of government: ‘Bollocks, Cohen. What about the landmines?’ What about the landmines? On 12 May Robin Cook announced the Government’s first leftward shift. Labour would abandon Tory foreign policy, whose futile cynicism had been dissected in the ...

Short Cuts

Jenny Diski: Melanie Phillips, 13 May 2010

... victimisation at the hands of almost everyone except the US neocons, another someone called Robin Shepherd, Nick Cohen and the Christian right; and the revived and almost universal hatred for the Jews. It’s not even her analysis of the Quran and the inevitable violence and hatred (again, lots of hatred) for the West ...

‘No view on it’

Paul Foot, 22 October 1992

Nuclear Ambiguity: The Vanunu Affair 
by Yoel Cohen.
Sinclair-Stevenson, 297 pp., £10.99, July 1992, 1 85619 150 8
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... for its forthright investigations in the Sixties and Seventies, but the Sunday Times, as Yoel Cohen points out, was a very different newspaper in 1986 from the one which fought for thalidomide children. When Andrew Neil became Rupert Murdoch’s surprise appointment as Sunday Times editor in 1983, almost his first act was to sack the editor of ...

Tilting the day

Lisa Cohen: Writing about Clothes, 7 November 2019

Dressed: The Secret Life of Clothes 
by Shahidha Bari.
Cape, 312 pp., £25, June 2019, 978 1 78733 149 5
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... includes, among other examples, the sane, sly, knowledgeable prose of the Washington Post’s Robin Givhan, who not only covers collections but also analyses the looks of American public figures. And there is more reporting on the working and living conditions of the people who make the clothes – from the growing and harvesting of plants (cotton and ...

At the Centre Pompidou

Jeremy Harding: Beat Generation, 8 September 2016

... the Road’ (original typescript, 1951) Jack Kerouac, ‘The Slouch Hat’ (c.1960) John Cohen, ‘Robert Frank, Alfred Leslie, Gregory Corso’ (1959) Wallace Berman, Untitled (Allen Ginsberg, c.1960)PreviousNext These names belong to the original small group of friends who met in New York in the early 1940s. Within ten years Ginsberg had moved to ...

Aids and the Polio Vaccine

Edward Hooper: New evidence, 3 April 2003

... and Science, and both journals made a big splash of the findings in editorials and commentaries. Robin Weiss’s piece in Nature was headed ‘Polio vaccines exonerated’, as if the safety of all such vaccines were in question, and ended with the claim that ‘some beautiful facts have destroyed an ugly theory.’ Weiss wrongly stated that the samples had ...
... Its team was systematically outclassed. * I arranged to meet some of the agents of the Robin Hood group, L’Association des Robins de Bois – a clandestine network of French subversives working within EDF on the company’s home territory – in Montbéliard, in Franche-Comté, where the Peugeot family began making things for sale, starting with ...

What is Tom saying to Maureen?

Ian Hacking: What We Know about Autism, 11 May 2006

The Science and Fiction of Autism 
by Laura Schreibman.
Harvard, 293 pp., £17.95, December 2005, 0 674 01931 8
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Send in the Idiots, or How We Grew to Understand the World 
by Kamran Nazeer.
Bloomsbury, 230 pp., £12.99, March 2006, 0 7475 7910 5
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... autism should be treated by psychoanalysis. Kanner was not wholly wrong, by the way. Simon Baron-Cohen, the best-known British autism researcher today, has a research programme to investigate the extent to which the family trees of autists are made up of engineers, scientists and other abstract thinkers whose lives revolve around cold structures rather than ...

Ideologues

Peter Pulzer, 20 February 1986

The Redefinition of Conservatism: Politics and Doctrine 
by Charles Covell.
Macmillan, 267 pp., £27.50, January 1986, 0 333 38463 6
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Thinkers of the New Left 
by Roger Scruton.
Longman, 227 pp., £9.95, January 1986, 0 582 90273 8
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The Idea of Liberalism: Studies for a New Map of Politics 
by George Watson.
Macmillan, 172 pp., £22.50, November 1985, 0 333 38754 6
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Socialism and Freedom 
by Bryan Gould.
Macmillan, 109 pp., £25, November 1985, 0 333 40580 3
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... Michael Oakeshott, John Casey, Maurice Cowling and Roger Scruton – with side-glances at Shirley Robin Letwin and the conservative potential in Wittgenstein, Elizabeth Anscombe and Philippa Foot. Other than that, some of the conservatives are closer to liberalism than others; some accept, other reject, ideas of a social contract and of natural law; all, to a ...
... I was not able to read the third. I also read some Eurocommunist writings, books by Roger Garaudy, Cohen’s biography of Bukharin and some copies of New Left Review. R.B.: Why do these questions of Soviet history loom so large in contemporary life? B.K.: In the West things happen very quickly. Before Thatcher or Reagan seems a long time ago. Brezhnev still ...

Strange, Angry Objects

Owen Hatherley: The Brutalist Decades, 17 November 2016

A3: Threads and Connections 
by Peter Ahrends.
Right Angle, 128 pp., £18, December 2015, 978 0 9532848 9 4
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Raw Concrete: The Beauty of Brutalism 
by Barnabas Calder.
Heinemann, 416 pp., £25, April 2016, 978 0 434 02244 1
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Space, Hope and Brutalism: English Architecture 1945-75 
by Elain Harwood.
Yale, 512 pp., £60, September 2015, 978 0 300 20446 9
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Concrete Concept: Brutalist Buildings around the World 
by Christopher Beanland.
Frances Lincoln, 192 pp., £18, February 2016, 978 0 7112 3764 3
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This Brutal World 
by Peter Chadwick.
Phaidon, 224 pp., £29.95, April 2016, 978 0 7148 7108 0
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Modern Forms: A Subjective Atlas of 20th-Century Architecture 
by Nicolas Grospierre.
Prestel, 224 pp., £29.99, February 2016, 978 3 7913 8229 6
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Modernist Estates: The Buildings and the People Who Live in Them 
by Stefi Orazi.
Frances Lincoln, 192 pp., £25, September 2015, 978 0 7112 3675 2
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Architecture an Inspiration 
by Ivor Smith.
Troubador, 224 pp., £24.95, November 2014, 978 1 78462 069 1
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... here: next to the clustered roof lights of the Zalman Aranne Library in Israel, Leonard Cohen tells us that ‘there is a crack, a crack, in everything, that’s how the light gets in’; underneath an image of the bluntly Expressionist Luckenwalde Hat Factory by Erich Mendelsohn, Nick Cave sings that ‘out of sorrow entire worlds have been ...

More a Voyeur

Colm Tóibín: Elton Took Me Hostage, 19 December 2019

Me 
by Elton John.
Macmillan, 376 pp., £25, October 2019, 978 1 5098 5331 1
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... funny’, as he had to be ready to do imitations of famous black singers, a football team or Robin Gibb of the Bee Gees.Elton and Bernie worked fast: ‘Bernie got the lyrics to “Your Song” over breakfast one morning in Frome Court, handed them to me and I wrote the music in 15 minutes flat.’ He didn’t go around with melodies in his head. ‘I ...

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