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23 July 1987
An Affair of State: The Profumo Case and the Framing of Stephen​ Ward 
by Phillip Knightley and Caroline Kennedy.
Cape, 268 pp., £12.95, May 1987, 0 224 02347 0
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Honeytrap: The Secret Worlds of Stephen​ Ward 
by Anthony Summers and Stephen​ Dorril.
Weidenfeld, 264 pp., £12.95, May 1987, 0 297 79122 2
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... of a sting at the time.) The idea conveyed is that history is an oubliette down which you can throw episodes you would rather have forgotten. But the Profumo case, which should be called the Stephen Ward case, will not go down. The longer it is around, the uglier it gets. It is a shocking story, which will continue to discredit its participants, all the more so for as long as they pretend, like ...

One Small Moment

Christopher Tayler: Michael Frayn

21 February 2002
Spies 
by Michael Frayn.
Faber, 224 pp., £14.99, February 2002, 0 571 21286 7
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... be confronted and examined from the perspective of old age. In one sense, the book’s most obvious model is L.P. Hartley’s The Go-Between. Like Hartley’s narrator, Leo, Frayn’s protagonist, Stephen Wheatley, is tormented by a schoolboy code prohibiting sneaking, blubbing and emotional expression in general. Leo is bullied by ‘Jenkins and Strode’, Stephen by ‘Hanning and Neale’. Both ...

Beijing Envy

Joshua Kurlantzick: China in Africa

5 July 2007
China and Africa: Engagement and Compromise 
by Ian Taylor.
Routledge, 233 pp., £75, August 2006, 0 415 39740 5
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China and the Developing World: Beijing’s Strategy for the 21st Century 
edited by Joshua Eisenman, Eric Heginbotham and Derek Mitchell.
Sharpe, 232 pp., $29.95, April 2007, 978 0 7656 1713 2
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China’s African Policy 
Foreign Ministry of the People’s Republic of China, January 2006Show More
China’s Expanding Role in Africa: Implications for the United States 
by Bates Gill, Chin-hao Huang and J. Stephen​ Morrison.
Centre for Strategic and International Studies, February 2007
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Friends and Interests: China’s Distinctive Links with Africa 
by Barry Sautman.
Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, April 2006
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African Perspectives on China in Africa 
edited by Firoze Manji and Stephen Marks.
Fahamu, 174 pp., £11.95, March 2007, 978 0 9545637 3 8
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Africa’s Silk Road: China and India’s New Economic Frontier 
by Harry Broadman.
World Bank, 391 pp., $20, November 2006, 0 8213 6835 4
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... to African nations, would be more willing to help them acquire the technology and skills they need to develop, and to earn some of the wealth that industrialised nations now possess. Firoze Manji and StephenMarks’s book, the first attempt in recent years to examine African views of China, makes clear that there is hunger in Africa for a new partner. Though they are cautious about the negative impact ...
24 July 1986
Truth and Lies in Literature: Reviews and Essays 
by Stephen​ Vizinczey.
Hamish Hamilton, 399 pp., £12.95, June 1986, 0 241 11805 0
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In Praise of Older Women: The Amorous Recollections of A.V. 
by Stephen​ Vizinczey.
Hamish Hamilton, 192 pp., £8.95, February 1985, 0 241 11378 4
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... There is nothing enigmatic about Stephen Vizinczey. He has views, he shouts, cajoles, threatens and sneers. He worships Kleist and Stendhal, loathes William Styron and Sainte-Beuve, is conspicuously silent about Flaubert and seems to have a ...

Diary

Blake Morrison: On the Independent on Sunday 

27 May 1993
... dummy had been Motorcycle News; and, more seriously, that the 1986 launch of the daily Independent had been not a moral crusade but a calculated move to exploit a ‘market gap’. Or so I learn from Stephen Glover, originally foreign editor of the daily and later editor of the Independent on Sunday, whose book Paper Dreams* is a cross between a company report and W.E. Johns, a venture-capital story for ...

Outside Swan and Edgar’s

Matthew Sweet: The life of Oscar Wilde

5 February 1998
The Wilde Album 
by Merlin Holland.
Fourth Estate, 192 pp., £12.99, October 1997, 1 85702 782 5
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Cosmopolitan Criticism: Oscar Wilde’s Philosophy of Art 
by Julia Prewitt Brown.
Virginia, 157 pp., $30, September 1997, 9780813917283
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The Cambridge Companion to Oscar Wilde 
edited by Peter Raby.
Cambridge, 307 pp., £37.50, October 1997, 9780521474719
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Wilde The Novel 
by Stefan Rudnicki.
Orion, 215 pp., £5.99, October 1997, 0 7528 1160 6
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Oscar Wilde 
by Frank Harris.
Robinson, 358 pp., £7.99, October 1997, 1 85487 126 9
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Moab is my Washpot 
by Stephen​ Fry.
Hutchinson, 343 pp., £16.99, October 1997, 0 09 180161 3
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Nothing … except My Genius 
by Oscar Wilde.
Penguin, 82 pp., £2.99, October 1997, 0 14 043693 6
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... in the titles to ‘an original screenplay by Julian Mitchell from Oscar Wilde by Richard Ellmann’ – shows a phalanx of unpainted male prostitutes, leaning on some railings. Watching for a cab, Stephen Fry’s Wilde makes eye contact with one of them. ‘Looking for someone?’ asks the lad (identified as ‘Rent-boy’ in the closing credits), and Fry stares helplessly across the street. Gilbert ...

At the British Museum

Peter Campbell: American Prints

8 May 2008
... discourage fumbling, but essentially the plate gives back what it is given. Bellows’s Dance in a Madhouse, although it has its origin in a drawing made ten years earlier, sustains the urgency of marks made by a committed observer. In Charles Sheeler’s view of the blank side of the Delmonico Building, neat ruled lines and even shading in chalk emulate the crispness of his architectural ...

The Ultimate Novel

William Empson

19 August 1982
Ulysses 
by Hugh Kenner.
Allen and Unwin, 182 pp., £10, March 1980, 0 00 480003 6
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A Starchamber Quiry: A James Joyce Centennial Volume 1882-1982 
edited by E.L. Epstein.
Methuen, 164 pp., £9.50, February 1982, 0 416 31560 7
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... more material available for the centenary collection, A Starchamber Quiry, just after printing his own book. He puts a new idea of his own into both of these books, and it urgently needs refuting. Stephen, he says (Kenner’s Ulysses, p. 152), is practically blind all through the book; his eyes without his glasses focus eight inches in front of his nose, and he broke them ‘yesterday’. This proves ...

The Ultimate Novel

William Empson

2 September 1982
Ulysses 
by Hugh Kenner.
Allen and Unwin, 182 pp., £10, March 1982, 0 00 480003 6
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A Starchamber Quiry: A James Joyce Centennial Volume 1882-1982 
edited by E.L. Epstein.
Methuen, 164 pp., £9.50, February 1982, 0 416 31560 7
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... So far, I may have given more expression of preference than solid argument. I need now to list the main details throughout the book which prepare the reader for Stephen to accept the Bloom Offer. There is at once a rather quaint obstacle. Most readers of Ulysses do not believe in omens, but Joyce eagerly did; in this he is genuinely like Homer. Four of the ...

Bloodbaths

John Sutherland

21 April 1988
Misery 
by Stephen​ King.
Hodder, 320 pp., £11.95, September 1987, 0 340 39070 0
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The Tommyknockers 
by Stephen​ King.
Hodder, 563 pp., £12.95, February 1988, 0 340 39069 7
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Touch 
by Elmore Leonard.
Viking, 245 pp., £10.95, February 1988, 9780670816545
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Sideswipe 
by Charles Willeford.
Gollancz, 293 pp., £10.95, March 1988, 0 575 04197 8
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Ratking 
by Michael Dibdin.
Faber, 282 pp., £10.95, April 1988, 0 571 15147 7
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... Stephen King has occasionally raised a rueful protest against being typed as a horror writer – even with the consolation of being the best-selling horror writer in the history of the world. But, as he ...

Settlers v. Natives

Stephen​ Sedley

8 March 2001
Questioning Sovereignty: Law, State and Nation in the European Commonwealth 
by Neil MacCormick.
Oxford, 210 pp., £40, October 2000, 0 19 826876 9
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Waitangi and Indigenous Rights: Revolution, Law and Legitimation 
by F.M. Brookfield.
Auckland, 253 pp., NZ $39.95, November 1999, 1 86940 184 0
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... of globalism. The recent establishment of international war crimes tribunals, like the growing question-mark over the ability of regimes to grant themselves or their nastier predecessors amnesties, marks a strong move to qualify national sovereignty in the interests of humanitarian standards; a move tellingly resisted in regard to its own citizens by the United States, whose long-arm jurisdiction is ...
18 June 2014
... the time of Finnegans Wake, then, the ‘economantarchy’ (as Joyce calls it) that is literature’s trading-floor is fully up and running, but the process begins back in Ulysses. ‘The problem,’ Stephen tells Buck Mulligan after Buck scolds him for trying to trade Shakespearean theory for a bit of English coin, ‘is to get money.’ Should they solicit it, he sarcastically asks, from the milkwoman ...

Diary

Stephen​ Sackur: In Khorramshahr

23 May 1991
... visible in the midst of a ruined house; walls had been left standing in meaningless isolation, bereft of their companions. There were holes in the road blasted by artillery shells, and countless pock-marks in the masonry. Everywhere, piles of rubble – bricks, of course, but also fragments of cars and of barely identifiable domestic appliances left to rot in the sun. I walked for half a mile across ...

At the Royal Academy

Peter Campbell: Rodin

5 October 2006
... ideas about something other than itself is vindicated in the Burghers and Balzac, but the overwhelming rhetoric of those pieces also aggrandises the maker. They haven’t the humility which marks, for example, the Gothic sculpture Rodin admired. His work is at the service of his genius, not of the story. Touch is manifested by marks fingers made in the clay as they modelled a cheek, a mouth ...
30 October 1997
Noel Coward and Radclyffe Hall: Kindred Spirits 
by Terry Castle.
Columbia, 150 pp., £15.95, November 1996, 0 231 10596 7
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Your John: The Love Letters of Radclyffe Hall 
edited by Joanne Glasgow.
New York, 273 pp., £20, March 1997, 0 8147 3092 2
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Radclyffe Hall: A Woman Called John 
by Sally Cline.
Murray, 434 pp., £25, June 1997, 9780719554087
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...  and what she sees as their, more or less disguised, fictional portraits of each other. Jonathan Brockett in The Well of Loneliness bears an unmistakable resemblance to Coward. Hall’s heroine Stephen Gordon (Radclyffe Hall was called John for most of her adult life) knows that Brockett, a playwright with soft white hands and an effeminate voice, is a man ‘who would never require more of her ...

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