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Hand and Mind

Michael Baxandall

17 March 1983
Dürer: His Art and Life 
by Fedja Anzelewsky, translated by Heide Grieve.
Gordon Fraser, 273 pp., £50, November 1982, 0 86092 068 2
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Dürer: Paintings, Prints, Drawings 
by Peter Strieder, translated by Nancy Gordon and Walter Strauss.
Muller, 400 pp., £35, September 1982, 0 584 95038 1
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... Both these books are art books in the particular sense that the main reason for paying quite large sums for them would be their illustrations. This is not to say their texts are bad. Both are by distinguished Dürer scholars and both offer tidy brief versions of the academic consensus without any eccentricities. Anzelewsky proceeds chronologically: after a first short chapter on Nuremberg he works ...

Theories of Myth

Hugh Lloyd-Jones

19 March 1981
Structure and History in Greek Mythology and Ritual 
by Walter​ Burkert.
California, 226 pp., £9, April 1980, 0 520 03771 5
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Myth and Society in Ancient Greece 
by Jean-Pierre Vernant, translated by Janet Lloyd.
Harvester, 242 pp., £24, February 1980, 9780391009158
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... belong; Ernst Cassirer’s theory of myth as a symbolic form of expression suffers from the vagueness of its concept of a symbol. Far more in the public eye at present is the theory of Claude Lévi-Strauss. Influenced by Durkheim and Mauss, and acting on the analogy of the structural linguistics initiated by de Saussure, he finds a second meaning which may be more significant than the surface sense in ...

I Love You Still

Russell Jacoby

9 February 1995
Intellectuals in Exile: Refugee Scholars and the New School for Social Research 
by Claus-Dieter Krohn, translated by Rita Kimber and Robert Kimber.
Massachusetts, 255 pp., $15.95, July 1994, 0 87023 864 7
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... Without the refugees from Nazi Europe American intellectual life would lack weight and reach. It is impossible to conceive of American political thought without Hans Morgenthau, Hannah Arendt or Leo Strauss; American psychoanalysis without Erik Erikson, Bruno Bettelheim or Heinz Hartmann; American publishing without Kurt Wolff or Theodore Schocken; architecture without Walter Gropius; art history ...

Enfield was nothing

P.N. Furbank: Norman Lewis

18 December 2003
The Tomb in Seville 
by Norman Lewis.
Cape, 150 pp., £14.99, November 2003, 0 224 07120 3
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... I hate voyages and explorers,’ Lévi-Strauss writes in his Tristes Tropiques (1955). So what is he doing, he asks himself, in producing this account of his expeditions? Must I relate so many insipid details and insignificant occurrences ...

In the Waiting-Room of History

Amit Chaudhuri: ‘First in Europe, then elsewhere’

24 June 2004
Provincialising Europe: Postcolonial Thought and Historical Difference 
by Dipesh Chakrabarty.
Princeton, 320 pp., £42.95, October 2000, 0 691 04908 4
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... started. This poster captured and compressed the gradations of Darwin’s parable of evolution, both arresting time and focusing on the key moments of a concatenation, in a similar way to what Walter Benjamin thought photographs did in changing our perception of human movement: Whereas it is a commonplace that, for example, we have some idea what is involved in the act of walking (if only in ...
19 March 1981
Thirty Seconds 
by Michael Arlen.
Farrar, Straus/Faber, 211 pp., £5.50, February 1981, 0 374 27576 9
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The Crystal Bucket 
by Clive James.
Cape, 238 pp., £6.95, February 1981, 0 224 01890 6
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The Message of Television 
by Roger Silverstone.
Heinemann, 248 pp., £14.50, March 1981, 0 435 82825 8
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... of the relative strengths of publishing and broadcasting. Each of them is a bookish book in its way. One is academic. One is by a very literary-minded critic (and draws its title from a poem by Sir Walter Raleigh). One is a piece of vivid journalism recognisably in the tradition of Norman Mailer and other modern American writers. All these books are from literary stables. Michael Arlen’s first ...

Other Indias

Walter​ Nash

15 September 1988
Ice-Candy-Man 
by Bapsi Sidhwa.
Heinemann, 277 pp., £11.95, February 1988, 0 434 70230 7
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Mistaken Identity 
by Nayantara Sahgal.
Heinemann, 194 pp., £10.95, April 1988, 0 434 66612 2
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Baumgartner’s Bombay 
by Anita Desai.
Heinemann, 230 pp., £10.95, July 1988, 0 434 18636 8
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... on the wall, leatherbound Goethe on the book shelf, on the table the ashtray in the form of a Prussian helmet, in the corner the rubber tree. His confident father, a furniture dealer, enjoys beer and Strauss in the Sunday-best park, and an occasional day at the races; his demure Mutti loves her piano, and poetry, and plants, and her little poppet, But the Nazis care for none of these things, and when ...
9 July 1987
The Age of Terrorism 
by Walter​ Laqueur.
Weidenfeld, 385 pp., £17.95, March 1987, 9780297791157
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The Baader-Meinhof Group: The Inside Story of a Phenomenon 
by Stefan Aust, translated by Anthea Bell.
Bodley Head, 552 pp., £12.95, June 1987, 0 370 31031 4
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... In the first few pages of Walter Laqueur’s The Age of Terrorism (largely a reworking and updating of his 1977 work, Terrorism), the author attempts to confront the old adage that ‘one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom ...

Joseph Jobson

Patrick Wormald

18 April 1985
Saladin in his Time 
by P.H. Newby.
Faber, 210 pp., £10.95, November 1983, 0 571 13044 5
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Soldiers of the Faith: Crusaders and Moslems at War 
by Ronald Finucane.
Dent, 247 pp., £12.50, November 1983, 0 460 12040 9
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... Claude Lévi-Strauss and others have been in the habit of describing the expansion of European civilisation as an unmitigated catastrophe for the rest of mankind. It is arguable that not the least of its casualties has ...

Witchcraft

Perry Anderson

8 November 1990
Storia Notturna: Una Decifrazione del Sabba 
by Carlo Ginzburg.
Einaudi, 320 pp., lire 45,000, August 1989, 9788806115098
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...  Trevor-Roper in the first instance, but also Keith Thomas, charged with reductionism and functionalism. Against this tradition Ginzburg sets what he sees as the superior programme of Lévi-Strauss’s Structuralist treatment of myths as symbolic systems, whose hidden meaning is generated by unconscious operations of the human mind – even though Lévi-Strauss’s anthropology has given ...
19 December 1991
...  and Buthelezi was eager for any international acceptance he could get. This is why the Kwazulu cabinet room is studded with photographs of Buthelezi with Thatcher, with Reagan, with Franz-Josef Strauss, with the Pope. The same logic drives the IFP into the crazy situation where they value the presence of Treurnicht’s CP at their conference. In his pre-circulated speech, Buthelezi studiously ...
3 March 1983
Mozart 
by Wolfgang Hildesheimer, translated by Marion Faber.
Dent, 408 pp., £10.95, January 1983, 0 460 04347 1
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... worshippers seem to be a garrulous and pious tribe. Hildesheimer has a fine ear for the high-flown nonsense that seems to possess most of them, and he quotes some redolent exemplars. There is Bruno Walter, seeing Mozart as an ‘open, trusting soul’: a ‘happy, simple-hearted young man’, a benign fantasy that Hildesheimer brusquely banishes to the realm of wishes. There is Bernhard Paumgartner ...

At Tate Modern

Hal Foster: Robert Rauschenberg

1 December 2016
... on objecthood in ways that go beyond ravaged surfaces; tacked directly to supports, they were presented without frames, and Rauschenberg often photographed them among everyday things. As the curator Walter Hopps commented, they also underscore ‘the fact of a new urban surface’. Nevertheless, the two series do share an essential operation in negation. After two White Paintings were exhibited in ...

Marseille, 1940-43

Neal Ascherson

18 July 2013
... consulate queue were constellations of German, Austrian and Eastern European anti-fascist celebrities: Heinrich and Golo Mann, Hannah Arendt, Anna Seghers, Simone Weil, Arthur Koestler, Victor Serge, Walter Benjamin, Franz Werfel and his wife Alma Mahler, Lion Feuchtwanger, Konrad Heiden (Hitler’s first truthful biographer), Marc Chagall, Jacques Lipchitz, Moïse Kisling, the young Claude Lévi ...

Princes, Counts and Racists

David Blackbourn: Weimar

18 May 2016
Weimar: From Enlightenment to the Present 
by Michael Kater.
Yale, 463 pp., £25, August 2014, 978 0 300 17056 6
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... would later become major artists, but both left within a few years, repelled by the philistinism of local notables and the formality of the court. A generation later the 25-year-old Richard Strauss was hired, but like others before him felt blocked by petty bureaucrats and insufficiently supported (or recompensed) by his patron. After five years he went back to Munich. The wealthy cosmopolitan ...

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