Search Results

Advanced Search

16 to 30 of 50 results

Sort by:

Filter by:


Article Types


X marks the snob

W.G. Runciman, 17 May 1984

Caste Marks: Style and Status in the USA 
by Paul Fussell.
Heinemann, 202 pp., £8.95, May 1984, 9780434275007
Show More
Show More
... for all. It is not equality of opportunity which is the issue here. ‘Self-help’ as preached by Samuel Smiles was, after all, a catchword of Victorian England, and ‘the constitution under which we have the good fortune to live, which opens to every man having talents, energy, perseverance and good conduct any honours and distinctions which his turn ...

Sire of the Poor

Linda Colley, 17 March 1988

Victorian Values and 20th-Century Condescension 
by Gertrude Himmelfarb.
Centre for Policy Studies, 15 pp., £2.20, August 1987, 1 870265 10 6
Show More
Peel and the Victorians 
by Donald Read.
Blackwell, 330 pp., £27.50, August 1987, 0 631 15725 5
Show More
Suicide in Victorian and Edwardian England 
by Olive Anderson.
Oxford, 475 pp., £40, July 1987, 9780198201014
Show More
Show More
... to their efforts because they too genuinely aspired to these qualities, and believed with Samuel Smiles that they were a recipe for individual advancement. This is fair enough, and is indeed already something of a historical commonplace on this side of the Atlantic. More problematic, however, is Himmelfarb’s contention that ‘a single standard ...


V.G. Kiernan, 4 August 1983

The Working Class in Modern British History: Essays in Honour of Henry Pelling 
edited by Jay Winter.
Cambridge, 315 pp., £25, February 1983, 0 521 23444 1
Show More
The Chartist Experience: Studies in Working-Class Radicalism and Culture, 1830-60 
edited by James Epstein and Dorothy Thompson.
Macmillan, 392 pp., £16, November 1982, 0 333 32971 6
Show More
Bread, Knowledge and Freedom: A Study of 19th-Century Working Class Autobiography 
by David Vincent.
Methuen, 221 pp., £4.95, December 1982, 0 416 34670 7
Show More
Show More
... as partners in the quest. Vincent remarks that examples of ‘upward mobility’ such as delighted Samuel Smiles were rare: for one reason, because the grammar schools, which had furnished a ladder, were now less easy of access. There was some compensation in the ‘significant area of initiative in the field of schooling’ that was left to the working ...

Pepys’s Place

Pat Rogers, 16 June 1983

The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Vol X: Companion and Vol XI: Index 
edited by Robert Latham.
Bell and Hyman, 626 pp., £19.50, February 1983, 0 7135 1993 2
Show More
The Diary of John Evelyn 
edited by John Bowle.
Oxford, 476 pp., £19.50, April 1983, 0 19 251011 8
Show More
The Brave Courtier: Sir William Temple 
by Richard Faber.
Faber, 187 pp., £15, February 1983, 0 571 11982 4
Show More
Show More
... his prelims do not extend beyond antiquarian jottings entitled ‘Particulars of the Life of Samuel Pepys’, and he does not bother about such matters as cross-references or literary allusions. In general, he does not gloss obsolete phrases or special usages: he simply explains obsolete things (‘metheglin ... A liquor made of honey and water, boiled ...

Cropping the bluebells

Angus Calder, 22 January 1987

A Century of the Scottish People: 1830-1950 
by T.C. Smout.
Collins, 318 pp., £15, May 1986, 9780002175241
Show More
Living in Atholl: A Social History of the Estates 1685-1785 
by Leah Leneman.
Edinburgh, 244 pp., £15, April 1986, 0 85224 507 6
Show More
Show More
... employment in the Glasgow region was more or less skilled) was, but was not, radically-inclined. Samuel Smiles was a Scotsman, and self-help and thrift were in his native air, inspiring the growth of co-operative societies and a most significant Temperance Movement, which arguably played the same role in the origins and early days of the Labour Party as ...

Lawson’s Case

Peter Clarke, 28 January 1993

The View from No 11: Memoirs of a Tory Radical 
by Nigel Lawson.
Bantam, 1119 pp., £20, November 1992, 0 593 02218 1
Show More
Show More
... firm control over public expenditure, tax cuts, nationalism, “Victorian Values” (of the Samuel Smiles self-help variety), privatisation and a dash of populism.’ And the wrong definition? Why, of course, ‘whatever Margaret Thatcher herself at any time did or said’. She was, admittedly, ‘the indispensable element of the revolution which ...

It could be me

Joanna Biggs: Sheila Heti, 24 January 2013

How Should a Person Be? 
by Sheila Heti.
Harvill Secker, 306 pp., £16.99, January 2013, 978 1 84655 754 5
Show More
Show More
... Should a Person Be? she read a lot of self-help books, specifically one of the first: Self-Help by Samuel Smiles, published in 1859. The pragmatic Englishman gave details of great men’s lives – Walter Scott worked before breakfast, George Stephenson worked on his locomotive for 15 years before a breakthrough – as it was thought that copying them was ...

Behind the Gas Lamp

Julian Barnes: Félix Fénéon, 4 October 2007

Novels in Three Lines 
by Félix Fénéon, translated by Luc Sante.
NYRB, 171 pp., £7.99, August 2007, 978 1 59017 230 8
Show More
Show More
... had directed his sarcasm at more serious targets: Dead sick of himself after reading the book by Samuel Smiles (Know Thyself), a judge just drowned himself at Coulange-la-Vineuse. If only this excellent book could be read throughout the magistracy. Or: A policeman, Maurice Marullas, has blown out his brains. Let’s save the name of this honest man ...

The New Lloyd’s

Peter Campbell, 24 July 1986

Richard Rogers 
by Bryan Appleyard.
Faber, 271 pp., £9.95, March 1986, 0 571 13976 0
Show More
A Concrete Atlantis 
by Reyner Banham.
MIT, 265 pp., £16.50, June 1986, 0 262 02244 3
Show More
William Richard Lethaby 
by Godfrey Rubens.
Architectural Press, 320 pp., £30, April 1986, 0 85139 350 0
Show More
Show More
... account Appleyard gives of his life is much more than gossip. Rogers’s life is a subject Samuel Smiles might have relished. Fortune is kind one moment and frowns the next; great enterprises are undertaken, disabilities overcome. The six-year-old Richard Rogers arrived in England in 1938. His father, an Anglophile descendant of a North Country ...

I have no books to consult

Stephen Sedley: Lord Mansfield, 22 January 2015

Lord Mansfield: Justice in the Age of Reason 
by Norman Poser.
McGill-Queen’s, 532 pp., £24.99, September 2013, 978 0 7735 4183 2
Show More
Show More
... Mansfield’ by John Singleton Copley (1782) On one level, Mansfield’s was a model career and Samuel Smiles wrote of him with reverence. His wife, Elizabeth, to whom he was devotedly married for 46 years, was the daughter of an earl and the granddaughter of a lord chancellor. A dutiful but not excessively devout Anglican, he prospered at the ...

Let’s get the hell out of here

Patrick Parrinder, 29 September 1988

The Satanic Verses 
by Salman Rushdie.
Viking, 547 pp., £12.95, September 1988, 0 670 82537 9
Show More
The Lost Father 
by Marina Warner.
Chatto, 277 pp., £11.95, September 1988, 0 7011 3220 5
Show More
Nice Work 
by David Lodge.
Secker, 277 pp., £10.95, September 1988, 0 436 25667 3
Show More
Show More
... the end, are well-disguised personifications of old fashioned virtues – the Good Teacher and the Samuel Smiles hero – and better people than they at first seemed. Nice Work too, in an old-fashioned way, is just what it says it is. There is one further convention of the industrial novel, which Robyn conveniently expounds in her lecture on the ...

Is this successful management?

R.W. Johnson, 20 April 1989

One of Us: A Biography of Margaret Thatcher 
by Hugo Young.
Macmillan, 570 pp., £16.95, April 1989, 0 333 34439 1
Show More
Show More
... old-fashioned head of an established church than has Archbishop Runcie. Not only are his sermons Samuel Smiles homilies, attacking trade unions, preaching the gospel of work, advising the blacks to pull themselves up by their bootstraps like the Jews, but he has strongly attacked the Anglican document ‘Faith in the City’ as being, in effect, a ...

Was Swift a monster?

Denis Donoghue, 5 June 1986

Jonathan Swift: A Hypocrite Reversed 
by David Nokes.
Oxford, 427 pp., £14.95, October 1985, 0 19 812834 7
Show More
Show More
... to Edward Young’s Conjectures on Original Composition (1759). In short, was Swift a monster, as Samuel Johnson nearly said: ‘The greatest difficulty that occurs, in analysing his character, is to discover by what depravity of intellect he took delight in revolving ideas from which almost every other mind shrinks with disgust.’ Sixty years after ...

A Laugh a Year

Jonathan Beckman: The Smile, 18 June 2015

The Smile Revolution in Eighteenth-Century Paris 
by Colin Jones.
Oxford, 231 pp., £22.99, September 2014, 978 0 19 871581 8
Show More
Show More
... across the Channel. The first of these was the cult of sensibility, fuelled by the translation of Samuel Richardson’s novels. Weeping and smiling became evidence of sincerity and authenticity. The partition between emotion and its expression came down, and a person’s true self was supposedly revealed. If the face painted a picture of the soul, then it was ...

The Rise and Fall of Thatcherism

Peter Clarke: Eight years after, 10 December 1998

... firm control over public expenditure, tax cuts, nationalism, “Victorian values” (of the Samuel Smiles self-help variety), privatisation and a dash of populism.’ And the wrong definition? Why, of course, ‘whatever Margaret Thatcher herself at any time did or said’. What Lawson significantly does not include within his capacious definition ...

Read anywhere with the London Review of Books app, available now from the App Store for Apple devices, Google Play for Android devices and Amazon for your Kindle Fire.

Sign up to our newsletter

For highlights from the latest issue, our archive and the blog, as well as news, events and exclusive promotions.

Newsletter Preferences