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Walking in high places

Michael Neve, 21 October 1982

The Ferment of Knowledge: Studies in the Historiography of 18th-Century Science 
edited by G.S. Rousseau and R.S. Porter.
Cambridge, 500 pp., £25, November 1980, 9780521225991
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Romanticism and the Forms of Ruin 
by Thomas McFarland.
Princeton, 432 pp., £24.60, February 1981, 0 691 06437 7
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Poetry realised in Nature: Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Early 19th-Century Science 
by Trevor Levere.
Cambridge, 271 pp., £22.50, October 1981, 0 521 23920 6
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Coleridge 
by Richard Holmes.
Oxford, 102 pp., £1.25, March 1982, 0 19 287591 4
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Young Charles Lamb 1775-1802 
by Winifred Courtney.
Macmillan, 411 pp., £25, July 1982, 0 333 31534 0
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... Romantics, Rebels and Reactionaries, reviewed in the LRB (Vol. 3, No 21) by Christopher Ricks; and Thomas McFarland’s marvellously over-the-top Romanticism and the Forms of Ruin, which also appeared in 1981. (One might commend, en passant, the Princeton University Press as a place where inventive, wordy studies in Romantic ideas receive elegant ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: Britney’s Biggest Fan, 21 June 2001

... imports come from overseas.’ In Humour in the White House: The Wit of Five American Presidents (McFarland, £30.40), Arthur Sloane, a professor of management at the University of Delaware, takes a serious look at the jokes made by Lincoln, Coolidge, FDR, JFK and Reagan, and at the way each man’s sense of humour helped him hang onto power. Reagan, we are ...
The Life of Samuel Taylor Coleridge 
by Rosemary Ashton.
Blackwell, 480 pp., £25, December 1996, 0 631 18746 4
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Coleridge: Selected Poems 
edited by Richard Holmes.
HarperCollins, 358 pp., £20, March 1996, 0 00 255579 4
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Coleridge’s Later Poetry 
by Morton Paley.
Oxford, 147 pp., £25, June 1996, 0 19 818372 0
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A Choice of Coleridge’s Verse 
edited by Ted Hughes.
Faber, 232 pp., £7.99, March 1996, 0 571 17604 6
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... in condemning Coleridge as an impotent fraud and plagiarist, many reluctantly agreed with Thomas McFarland when he declared: ‘Coleridge’s ruin, in both life and work, is ... the true human fact; the academic classic and the conventional achievement the illusion.’ It may be that in the protracted aftermath to the much insisted on ...

Festival of Punishment

Thomas Laqueur: On Death Row, 5 October 2000

Proximity to Death 
by William McFeely.
Norton, 206 pp., £17.95, January 2000, 0 393 04819 5
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Death Row: The Encyclopedia of Capital Punishment 
edited by Bonnie Bobit.
Bobit, 311 pp., $24.95, September 1999, 0 9624857 6 4
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... in British reforming circles and even more so among their Revolutionary American cousins. Thomas Jefferson regarded it as belonging with the handful of books essential for understanding the new forms of civil government being built in America. Capital punishment was not abolished in any of the new American jurisdictions, despite the efforts of some of ...

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