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The Good Old Days

Sheila Fitzpatrick: The Dacha-Owning Classes

9 October 2003
Summerfolk 1710-2000: A History of the Dacha 
by Stephen Lovell.
Cornell, 259 pp., £18.95, April 2003, 0 8014 4071 8
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Socialist Spaces: Sites of Everyday Life in the Eastern Bloc 
edited by David Crowley and Susan Reid.
Berg, 261 pp., £15.99, November 2002, 1 85973 533 9
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Caviar with Champagne: Common Luxury and the Ideals of the Good Life in Stalin’s Russia 
by Jukka Gronow.
Berg, 179 pp., £15.99, October 2003, 1 85973 633 5
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The Unmaking of Soviet Life: Everyday Economies after Socialism 
by Caroline Humphrey.
Cornell, 265 pp., £13.95, May 2002, 0 8014 8773 0
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... is complex and he has done a lot of research (if readers want to try something less demanding first, they can go to his article, ‘Soviet Exurbia: Dachas in Postwar Russia’, in the Crowley and Reid collection).1 But it shows Lovell to be a first rate social as well as cultural historian. Like his mentor, Catriona Kelly (whose recent study of Russian advice literature is an essential source for ...

Wolves in the Drawing Room

Neal Ascherson: The SNP

2 June 2011
... the two coalition governments with the Liberal Democrats, did breed some attractive and vigorous figures. But few of them remain today. A starry group of young women ministers – Wendy Alexander and Susan Deacon among them – were driven out of politics by opaque vendettas and sheer disillusion. The cruel truth is that Scottish Labour was less interested in exploring devolution to transform Scotland ...

English Changing

Frank Kermode

7 February 1980
The State of the Language 
edited by Leonard Michaels and Christopher Ricks.
California, 609 pp., £14.95, January 1980, 0 520 03763 4
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... habits have been dropped, and we are ‘in better shape’ than we were in the time of Dickens. This is heartening, but there are other contributors who think there is plenty to worry about. David Reid has a sombre essay on the inadequacy of the language (as used by journalists, sociologists, psychiatrists, even theologians) to deal fittingly with the Jonestown massacre. He thinks the reason for ...


Peter Campbell

5 December 1985
... secret, Adrian’s torments are cathartic. These are children’s books in which the real characters are adults. It showed up in the television adaptation. Julie Walters, as Adrian’s mother, Beryl Reid as his Granny, his father, Bert (the pensioner Adrian is issued with to practice good samaritanism on): they are the round characters. Adrian and Pandora, his priggish girlfriend, the cardboard foils ...

As Many Pairs of Shoes as She Likes

Jenny Turner: On Feminism

15 December 2011
... Young women, the state and public order in Britain, as seen in clippings from the newspapers, August 2011: Natasha Reid, 24, pleaded guilty to stealing a television from a Comet in North London during the riots of 7 August. Her mother said she was ‘baffled’ by her own behaviour – she had a much nicer TV set at ...

Barely under Control

Jenny Turner: Education: Who’s in charge?

6 May 2015
... said, ‘I felt they weren’t really interested in it and I found that really offensive.’ The head at Churchill Gardens, Jane Thomas, retired at the end of the summer term in 2013; her deputy, Susan Rankin-Reid, took over, but soon left the school herself. In the Guardian Rajeev Syal reported that Rankin-Reid had been ‘bullied by academy managers’ and that ‘parents … blamed the academy ...

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