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Cave’s Plato

A.D. Nuttall

7 July 1988
In Defence of Rhetoric 
by Brian Vickers.
Oxford, 508 pp., £40, February 1988, 0 19 812837 1
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Recognitions: A Study in Poetics 
by Terence Cave.
Oxford, 530 pp., £40, March 1988, 0 19 815849 1
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... scorn the idea of persuading an academic reader by emotive stratagems. This in turn suggests that Brian Vickers belongs more with the rationalists than with those tragedians whose company he desired. TerenceCave, on the other hand, writes like an artist. His mind is subtler than Vickers’s, his erudition just as extensive. When Greek formal rhetoric began, Gorgias wrote at the end of his Helen: ‘So I ...

Diary

Marina Warner: Literary Diplomacy

16 November 2017
... something you saw on the news, or inventing it from scratch. The speculative mind generates experience – imagined experience. ‘As if’ is wishful and, sometimes, wistful, but it is a hope. TerenceCave’s recent book Thinking with Literature argues powerfully that literature and storytelling are capacities of intellect and memory: Human cognition is alert, attentive, responsive. Above all, it ...

Putting on Some English

Terence​ Hawkes: Eagleton’s Rise

7 February 2002
The Gatekeeper: A Memoir 
by Terry Eagleton.
Allen Lane, 178 pp., £9.99, January 2002, 0 7139 9590 4
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... its middle and upper-class core, from outlandish Douglas, Pandy and Salford to chairs at London, Cambridge and Oxford, takes on something of an epic air, almost at one with the path from Caliban’s cave to Prospero’s study. One advantage of being on the periphery is that you know where the centre is. ‘I was an 18-year-old working-class Catholic, as certain as a speak-your-weight machine and as ...

Dark Corners

Terence​ Ranger

9 July 1987
Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, Written By Herself 
by Harriet Jacobs, edited by Jean Fagan Yellin.
Harvard, 306 pp., £29.95, July 1987, 9780674447455
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The Spirit and the Drum: A Memoir of Africa 
by Edith Turner.
University of Arizona Press, 165 pp., £15.95, July 1987, 0 8165 1009 1
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Kaffir Boy: Growing out of Apartheid 
by Mark Mathabane.
Bodley Head, 354 pp., £12.95, April 1987, 0 370 31058 6
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... escape from the clutches of apartheid, I had to reject the tribal traditions of my ancestors.’ Describing a visit to Vendaland, he writes of ‘witch-doctors’ and ‘voodoo’: As we entered the cave [of the witch-doctor] a strange terror seized me. The interior was spookily dark ... an old woman led us through – the way she looked and walked reminded me of Gagool in the movie King Solomon’s ...
7 August 1980
Louis MacNeice in the BBC 
by Barbara Coulton.
Faber, 215 pp., £12.50, May 1980, 0 571 11537 3
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Best Radio Plays of 1979 
Eyre Methuen/BBC, 192 pp., £6.95, June 1980, 0 413 47130 6Show More
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... The sound radio Features Department, which was formed in 1945 under Gilliam, gathered together established names, including MacNeice, Dillon, Cleverdon and Bridson, and new ones like W. R. Rodgers, Terence Tiller, R. D. Smith and Rayner Heppenstall. MacNeice was henceforth one of a group of literary men whose social life revolved around certain pubs in Soho, Fitzrovia or the immediate environs of ...

Lethal Pastoral

Paul Keegan: Housman’s Lethal Pastoral

17 November 2016
Housman Country: Into the Heart of England 
by Peter Parker.
Little, Brown, 446 pp., £25, June 2016, 978 1 4087 0613 8
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... whatever its wide cast of characters, is essentially about an imaginary character (not the poet, not me) named Henry.’ Housman originally planned to publish A Shropshire Lad anonymously as Poems by Terence Hearsay, and ‘Terence’ (after his exilic namesake, the Latin playwright brought to Rome as a slave) is one of many who trudge this landscape – locals and rustics but also exotics like Lot’s ...
18 April 1996
Inventing Ireland: The Literature of the Modern Nation 
by Declan Kiberd.
Cape, 719 pp., £20, November 1995, 0 224 04197 5
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... of former greatness, of the time before 1492 and the beginning of Castilian imperialism. Like most turn-of-the-century buildings in Barcelona they used Gothic and Romanesque references, spiky shapes, cave-like entrances, floral motifs in wrought iron, coloured glass or ceramic tiles, ornate sculpture, conveying both craft and opulence. They were intensely political buildings, and both Domènech i ...

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