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Moving in

Patricia Beer

20 November 1980
A Poor Man’s House 
by Stephen Reynolds.
London Magazine Editions, 320 pp., £5.50, August 1980, 0 904388 35 2
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... StephenReynolds is coming back. There have been at least two indications of this recently. The prophet is no longer without honour in his own, adopted country, for a plaque has just been unveiled to him in Sidmouth ...

On the Feast of Stephen

Karl Miller: Spender’s Journals

30 August 2012
New Selected Journals, 1939-95 
by Stephen​ Spender and Lara Feigel, edited by John Sutherland.
Faber, 792 pp., £45, July 2012, 978 0 571 23757 9
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... Stephen Spender was a visitor to the city of Hamburg both before the war and after, when he played a part in the work of occupation and recovery. He was well on his way to being the noted ex-communist poet ...

Narrow Places

Brad Leithauser

15 October 1987
Selected Poems 
by Molly Holden.
Carcanet, 126 pp., £6.95, June 1987, 0 85635 696 4
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The Player Queen’s Wife 
by Oliver Reynolds.
Faber, 78 pp., £8.95, November 1987, 0 571 14998 7
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The Consuming Myth: The Work of James Merrill 
by Stephen​ Yenser.
Harvard, 367 pp., £21.95, June 1987, 0 674 16615 9
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... here because the ‘sage side’ emerges only in death. Knowledge carried a dear price in Holden’s precise and constricted world. In The Player Queen’s Wife, his second collection, Oliver Reynolds does Hopkins and his ‘curtal sonnet’ one better. Hopkins trimmed the sonnet to ten and a half lines; Reynolds pares it to five. Here is ‘Map’, from ‘Seven Little Sonnets for Frederick the ...
18 August 1983
Animal Thought 
by Stephen​ Walker.
Routledge, 388 pp., £17.50, January 1983, 0 7100 9037 4
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On the Evolution of Human Behaviour 
by Peter Reynolds.
California, 259 pp., £20, December 1981, 0 520 04294 8
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The Tangled Wing: Biological Constraints on the Human Spirit 
by Melvin Konner.
Heinemann, 436 pp., £16.50, October 1982, 0 434 39703 2
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Sociobiology and the Human Dimension 
by Georg Breuer.
Cambridge, 264 pp., £22.50, January 1983, 0 521 24544 3
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Sociobiology and the Pre-Emption of Social Science 
by Alexander Rosenberg.
Blackwell, 210 pp., £9.90, March 1981, 0 631 12625 2
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... political history – if indeed it is outside it. Time and again scholars have determined to get this disorderly province of the mind finally under control and to issue a clear map of it. Peter Reynolds, in his admirable book, cites one such map, from an American anthropologist writing in 1901: 1. The mentality of animals is instinctive rather than ratiocinative, and for each species responds ...


Stephen​ Fender

23 June 1988
by Kenneth Lynn.
Simon and Schuster, 702 pp., £16, September 1987, 0 671 65482 9
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The Faces of Hemingway: Intimate Portraits of Ernest Hemingway by those who knew him 
by Denis Brian.
Grafton, 356 pp., £14.95, May 1988, 0 246 13326 0
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... interviewed by Denis Brian. Fortunately the archival raw materials of his biography have recently encouraged some considerable biographical studies. Among these are three books by Michael Reynolds on aspects of Hemingway’s life and reading, and the comprehensive Hemingway (1985) by the indefatigable English biographer Jeffrey Meyers. Reynolds and Meyers stepped outside the ring where the ...

After Leveson

Stephen​ Sedley

11 April 2013
... of appeal made it clear that today such a device would be treated as an abuse of the court’s process, and the bill now reflects this. What the Defamation Bill also does, however, is abolish the ‘Reynolds defence’ – that the publication, though defamatory, was an exercise of responsible journalism and accordingly protected – and replace it with something approaching a tabloid editor’s dream: a ...

A Misreading of the Law

Conor Gearty: Why didn’t Campbell sue?

19 February 2004
Report of the Inquiry into the Circumstances Surrounding the Death of Dr David Kelly CMG 
by Lord Hutton.
Stationery Office, 740 pp., £70, January 2004, 0 10 292715 4
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... the law, either as it is or as it ought to be. Defending his general rule against broadcasting doubtful facts impugning the integrity of others, Lord Hutton refers to a recent House of Lords case, Reynolds v. Times Newspapers Ltd,12 and sets out in an appendix what he describes as ‘relevant passages’ from the speeches of three of his judicial colleagues in that case.13 The message here seems to be ...

On a par with Nixon

Stephen​ Alford: Bad Queen Bess?

17 November 2016
Bad Queen Bess? Libels, Secret Histories, and the Politics of Publicity in the Reign of Queen Elizabeth I 
by Peter Lake.
Oxford, 497 pp., £35, January 2016, 978 0 19 875399 5
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Elizabeth: The Forgotten Years 
by John Guy.
Viking, 494 pp., £25, May 2016, 978 0 670 92225 3
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... In​ 1948 Allan Wingate published British Pamphleteers, a collection of tracts assembled by Richard Reynolds and introduced by George Orwell. The first pamphlet in the book is John Knox’s First Blast of the Trumpet (1558), which begins: ‘To promote a woman to beare rule, superioritie, dominion or empire ...
6 February 2014
Becoming a Londoner: A Diary 
by David Plante.
Bloomsbury, 534 pp., £20, September 2013, 978 1 4088 3975 1
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The Animals: Love Letters between Christopher Isherwood and Don Bachardy 
edited by Katherine Bucknell.
Chatto, 481 pp., £25, September 2013, 978 0 7011 8678 4
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... James) and meets the love of his life, a unique Greek called Nikos Stangos. The boys were fascinated by Bloomsbury – the books, the people, the scarves, the gossip – which led them to venerate Stephen Spender as one of its last links. Squeezed into a narrow bed, they would read Spender’s World within World together and admire ‘that entirely English’ set-up in which, Plante wrote at the time ...

White Lie Number Ten

Nicholas Jose: Australia’s aboriginal sovereignty

19 February 1998
Race Matters: Indigenous Australians and ‘Our’ Society 
edited by Gillian Cowlishaw and Barry Morris.
Aboriginal Studies Press, 295 pp., AUS $29.95, March 1998, 0 85575 294 7
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Aboriginal Sovereignty: Reflections on Race, State and Nation 
by Henry Reynolds.
Allen and Unwin, 221 pp., AUS $17.95, July 1996, 1 86373 969 6
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... more feared in the remote early settlements at Sydney Cove and elsewhere. Just what claims to humanity or justice those original occupants might have is a question that remains to be answered. Henry Reynolds, in his books The Other Side of the Frontier (1981) and Frontier (1987), argues that war, though undeclared, was indeed waged. For both sides, Aboriginal invisibility was a key, rendering white ...

Into the Gulf

Rosemary Hill

17 December 1992
A Sultry Month: Scenes of London Literary Life in 1846 
by Alethea Hayter.
Robin Clark, 224 pp., £6.95, June 1992, 0 86072 146 9
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Painting and the Politics of Culture: New Essays on British Art 1700-1850 
edited by John Barrell.
Oxford, 301 pp., £35, June 1992, 9780198173922
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London: World City 1800-1840 
edited by Celina Fox.
Yale, 624 pp., £45, September 1992, 0 300 05284 7
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... eccentric figure than he might now seem in order to support the broader conclusion that Marcus Curtius symbolised the end not only of Haydon’s career, but of painting in ‘the tradition of Joshua Reynolds, James Barry and Benjamin West’. How convincing this argument is depends on how we view that ‘tradition’. Of the three artists only West, who found a royal patron with the necessary deep ...


Stephen​ Smith: Peace in Our Lunchtime

6 October 1994
... You see, many people are unhappy about that visit of Adams to Dublin. Good God, these people carried out a sectarian programme for 25 years. We have six days of peace and there are Hume and Reynolds sitting down with Adams.’ McGimpsey had just finished his column for the Sunday World: ‘It’s all tits and bums but they have about six political items.’ ‘What are you saying this week ...

Too Proud to Fight

David Reynolds: The ‘Lusitania’ Effect

28 November 2002
Wilful Murder: The Sinking of the ‘Lusitania’ 
by Diana Preston.
Doubleday, 543 pp., £18.99, May 2002, 0 385 60173 5
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Lusitania: Saga and Myth 
by David Ramsay.
Chatham, 319 pp., £20, September 2001, 1 86176 170 8
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Woodrow Wilson 
by John Thompson.
Longman, 288 pp., £15.99, August 2002, 0 582 24737 3
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... was won. But, he told the Reichstag, ‘we are now in a state of necessity, and necessity knows no law.’ The appeal to necessity has a long history in warfare. In The Rights and Duties of Neutrals Stephen Neff calls it ‘a sort of juridical “wild card” which allows a state to “trump” the normal rights of other states in times of desperation’.* Germany wasn’t the only country to have ...
10 July 2003
Manet/Velázquez: The French Taste for Spanish Painting 
by Gary Tinterow and Geneviève Lacambre et al.
Yale, 592 pp., £50, March 2003, 0 300 09880 4
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... light’ on a silver crucifix and ‘one or two clasped parchment books’. ‘The only ornament on the walls was a large picture, exquisitely painted by Spagnoletto,’ of the martyrdom of St Stephen. The Spanish school evoked the rack, the rapier, the ruff, the spiral ebony chair-leg and the fainting nun, and a world that was now sufficiently distant or in decline (in The Antiquary it is the ...
5 February 1981
... belong to two or three stories. Its three-layered time-scheme suggested that it might adapt well to television and I first suggested it to the BBC in 1975, but without success. Then, early in 1978, Stephen Gilbert commissioned it for a series called ‘The Other Side’, also being made from Pebble Mill, Birmingham. The immediate problem was to dramatise the relationship between Great-grandfather and ...

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