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Unfair to gays

Simon Raven, 19 June 1980

The Homosexual as Hero in Contemporary Fiction 
by Stephen Adams.
Vision, 208 pp., £10.95, March 1980, 0 85478 204 4
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... dump in which (it is implied) mere heterosexuals are content to fret and rot from crib to coffin. Stephen Adams does not propose a general or ‘encompassing’ thesis. Having insisted that methods and messages are diverse and individual, he settles down to record them, beginning with Gore Vidal and ending with Jean Genet. His manner is to give detailed ...

Diary

Stephen Smith: Peace in Our Lunchtime, 6 October 1994

... independent North would be the only homeland that many could abide. As to negotiating with Gerry Adams and other Republicans, for Peter Robinson it is literally a case of over my dead body. He said: ‘You’re talking about many, many years. It’s probably generational.’ ‘You mean after you’re dead?’ ‘That’s right.’ In a vox pop I heard on ...

The Iceman Cometh

Ross McKibbin: Tony Adams, 6 January 2000

Addicted 
by Tony Adams and Ian Ridley.
HarperCollins, 384 pp., £6.99, August 1999, 0 00 218795 7
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... almost bulldog British: in its ageing but still formidable defence. Which brings us to Tony Adams. Of those bulldogs Adams is the most redoubtable; a man of immense pertinacity and skill who has saved both Arsenal and England on many occasions. And he has been in the game long enough to see it transformed within his ...

Crypto-Republican

Simon Adams: Was Mary Queen of Scots a Murderer?, 11 June 2009

Burghley: William Cecil at the Court of Elizabeth I 
by Stephen Alford.
Yale, 412 pp., £25, May 2008, 978 0 300 11896 4
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... standard life, by Conyers Read, is in two volumes (published in 1955 and 1960), each larger than Stephen Alford’s new book. Alford, the author of The Early Elizabethan Polity: William Cecil and the British Succession Crisis (1998), has chosen to focus his study on the controversial subject of the Queen of Scots. Mary Stuart always claimed she was the ...

Diary

Stephen Smith: Encounters at Holy Cross, 18 November 1993

... to be paid’ by the Nationalist community after talks between the Sinn Fein president, Gerry Adams, and the SDLP leader, John Hume. Milltown was thus the feared or presumed setting for a showpiece atrocity, the funeral a shop-window for Loyalist marksmanship and ordnance-nous. It was a cold afternoon, but tension just shaded it, driving out the cold. The ...

Sing Tantarara

Colin Kidd, 30 October 1997

Secret and Sanctioned: Covert Operations and the American Presidency 
by Stephen Knott.
Oxford, 258 pp., £19.50, November 1996, 0 19 510098 0
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The Long Affair: Thomas Jefferson and the French Revolution, 1785-1800 
by Conor Cruise O’Brien.
Sinclair-Stevenson, 367 pp., £25, December 1996, 1 85619 637 2
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American Sphinx: The Character of Thomas Jefferson 
by Joseph Ellis.
Knopf, 365 pp., $26, February 1997, 0 679 44490 4
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Slave Laws in Virginia 
by Philip Schwarz.
Georgia, 253 pp., $40, November 1996, 0 8203 1831 0
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... Jefferson has even won new converts among the ranks of the hawks. In Secret and Sanctioned, Stephen Knott, aware of the difficulty of reconciling necessary covert government operations with an open democracy, invokes the history of clandestine activities from the Founding era through to 1882. Not only does he explode the legend of pre-Cold War ...

A Pride of Footnotes

Robert M. Adams, 17 November 1983

The Collected Works of Samuel Taylor Coleridge. Vol. VII: ‘Biographia Literaria’ 
edited by James Engell and Walter Jackson Bate.
Routledge/Princeton, 306 pp., £50, May 1983, 0 691 09874 3
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... from the sense it gives of having been thrown together with a pitchfork (in the phrase of Leslie Stephen), Biographia Literaria conceals idiosyncrasies not so easy to recognise. Coleridge writes in part to answer imputations about his marriage, but silently and completely omits from his life story any mention of it (or of the three children resulting from ...

Round the (Next) Bend

Simon Adams: Sir Walter Ralegh, 6 July 2000

The Letters of Sir Walter Raleigh 
edited by Agnes Latham and Joyce Youings.
Exeter, 403 pp., £45, July 1999, 0 85989 527 0
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... he has become a central subject in New Historicist approaches to Elizabethan studies, notably in Stephen Greenblatt’s Sir Walter Ralegh: The Renaissance Man and His Roles, the most stimulating modern study of Ralegh. This collection of letters was assembled by the late Agnes Latham, who edited Ralegh’s poems in 1951. It was originally intended as a ...

Hayden White and History

Stephen Bann, 17 September 1987

The Content of the Form: Narrative Discourse and Historical Representation 
by Hayden White.
Johns Hopkins, 248 pp., £20.80, May 1987, 0 8018 2937 2
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Post-Structuralism and the Question of History 
edited by Derek Attridge, Geoff Bennington and Robert Young.
Cambridge, 292 pp., £27.50, February 1987, 0 521 32759 8
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... results of such a project can already be foreseen in the acute analysis of The Education of Henry Adams, by way of Denis Brogan’s 1961 introduction, with which White brings this essay, and the collection as a whole, to an end. It is quite evident that The Content of the Form was written under the sign of Roland Barthes, whose essay on ‘The Discourse of ...

Big Ben

Stephen Fender, 18 September 1986

Franklin of Philadelphia 
by Esmond Wright.
Harvard, 404 pp., £21.25, May 1986, 0 674 31809 9
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... the shape of the Townshend Acts of 1767 (to which other Americans like John Dickinson and Samuel Adams responded with ever more ingenious arguments like the right of Parliament to legislate for the colonies, as against tax them), Franklin wrote his son William ‘that no middle doctrine can be well maintained ... Something might be made of either of the ...

At Tate Britain

Peter Campbell: How We Are, 5 July 2007

... a barn owl with a mouse in its beak, caught by Eric Hosking in 1948, a brown rat photographed by Stephen Dalton as it jumped from a bin in 1983. Curiosity about the look of exotic tribes was not limited to pictures from abroad. The four performers of the Abbot’s Bromley Horn Dance, taken by Benjamin Stone in 1899, stare at the camera as grimly as Papuan ...

A Preference for Strenuous Ghosts

Michael Kammen: Theodore Roosevelt, 6 June 2002

Theodore Rex 
by Edmund Morris.
HarperCollins, 772 pp., £25, March 2002, 0 00 217708 0
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... Truman (1992) was on the bestseller lists for the better part of a year, and his John Adams (2001) is providing an astonishing repeat performance. Robert Caro’s dramatically detailed look at The Years of Lyndon Johnson has been unfolding since 1982, and large chunks of Volume Three have been serialised in the New Yorker. In the meantime, Robert ...

State Theatre

Peter Burke, 22 January 1987

The Rome of Alexander VII: 1655-1667 
by Richard Krautheimer.
Princeton, 199 pp., £16.80, November 1985, 9780691040325
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Firearms and Fortifications: Military Architecture and Siege Warfare in 16th-century Siena 
by Simon Pepper and Nicholas Adams.
Chicago, 245 pp., £21.25, October 1986, 0 226 65534 2
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... be regarded as a theatre state, from the England of the early Stuarts (especially as analysed by Stephen Orgel), to the Spain of Philip IV and the France of Louis XIV (at least after his permanent move to Versailles), but the Papacy has the best claim of all. Leaving aside such possibly more superficial analogies as the sacred mountain, the immobile ‘icon ...

Diary

Alan Hollinghurst: In Houston, 18 March 1999

... buildings there. Houston’s Pevsner, and my main means of imaginative entry to the city, is Stephen Fox, a professor at both the large and unlovely University of Houston, where I am teaching, and the élite Rice University, which has a beautiful campus laid out by the Boston architect Ralph Adams Cram just before the ...

Dislocations

Stephen Fender, 19 January 1989

Landscape and Written Expression in Revolutionary America: The world turned upside down 
by Robert Lawson-Peebles.
Cambridge, 384 pp., £35, March 1988, 0 521 34647 9
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Mark Twain’s Letters. Vol. I: 1853-1866 
edited by Edgar Marquess Branch, Michael Frank and Kenneth Sanderson.
California, 616 pp., $35, May 1988, 0 520 03668 9
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A Writer’s America: Landscape in Literature 
by Alfred Kazin.
Thames and Hudson, 240 pp., £15.95, September 1988, 0 500 01424 8
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... lived in at least thirty parts of the United States, not to mention Cuba, Paris and the Riviera. Stephen Crane’s birthplace is now a children’s playground in New Jersey, William Faulkner’s a Presbyterian parsonage. The Oxford Illustrated Literary Guide to the United States, from which these titbits come, provides further unwitting refutations of its ...

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