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William Rodgers reads the papers

William Rodgers, 19 February 1987

The Market for Glory: Fleet Street Ownership in the 20th Century 
by Simon Jenkins.
Faber, 247 pp., £9.95, October 1986, 0 571 14627 9
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The End of the Street 
by Linda Melvern.
Methuen, 276 pp., £9.95, October 1986, 0 413 14640 5
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... hero in his dealings with Hugh Gaitskell. But after Gaitskell’s death, a single speech on the white heat of the technological revolution transformed his reputation. As Prime Minister, from 1964, he enjoyed complete domination of the press for over three years. The Lobby in particular accepted him at his own evaluation, returning full of admiration from ...

White Lies

James Campbell: Nella Larsen, 5 October 2006

In Search of Nella Larsen: A Biography of the Colour Line 
by George Hutchinson.
Harvard, 611 pp., £25.95, June 2006, 0 674 02180 0
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... John had been deceived into thinking Clare was something else, an equally fictitious formula, ‘white’. They have no family because she feared children might show a touch of the tar brush. Before the fateful blow, John is asked casually by Irene Redfield, through whose eyes we see the action and who is also light enough to ‘pass’ when it suits her to ...

White Power

Thomas Meaney, 1 August 2019

Bring the War Home: The White Power Movement and Paramilitary America 
by Kathleen Belew.
Harvard, 330 pp., £23.95, April 2018, 978 0 674 28607 8
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Revolutionaries for the Right Anti-Communist Internationalism and Paramilitary Warfare in the Cold War 
by Kyle Burke.
North Carolina, 337 pp., June 2018, 978 1 4696 4073 0
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... were serving in Croatian nationalist battalions in the Yugoslav wars, with underground American white power organisations promoting wider recruitment – and seeking out and funding East German neo-Nazis. More recently, some 15 American freelancers have joined gonzo-fascist Ukrainian units in the Donbass to fight ‘Putin’s communists’, though others ...

New Faces on the Block

Jenny Diski, 27 November 1997

Venus Envy 
by Elizabeth Haiken.
Johns Hopkins, 288 pp., £20.50, January 1998, 0 8018 5763 5
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The Royal Women of Amarna: Images of Beauty From Ancient Egypt 
by Dorothea Arnold.
Metropolitan Museum of Art, 192 pp., $45, February 1997, 0 8109 6504 6
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... turned ankle, rather than a fat, self-indulgent tyrant; Elizabeth not trusting anyone. In 1563 William Cecil drafted a decree demanding that she be content that some special cunning painter might be permitted by access to her Majesty to take the natural representation of her Majesty whereof she hath always been of her own will and disposition very ...

Lincoln, Illinois

William Fiennes, 6 March 1997

All the Days and Nights: The Collected Stories 
by William Maxwell.
Harvill, 415 pp., £10.99, January 1997, 1 86046 308 8
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So Long, See You Tomorrow 
by William Maxwell.
Harvill, 135 pp., £8.99, January 1997, 9781860463075
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... In America, William Maxwell is something of a Grand Old Man. He has been president of the National Institute of Arts and Letters. He has won the American Book Award and the PEN/Malamud Award. For forty years, as a fiction editor on the New Yorker, he advised and goaded Nabokov, Eudora Welty, John Cheever and John Updike ...

A Resonance for William Styron

Gabriele Annan, 7 November 1985

Savage Grace 
by Natalie Robins and Steven Aronson.
Gollancz, 473 pp., £10.95, October 1985, 0 575 03738 5
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... There are some known names: Cecil Beaton, Jasper Johns, James Jones, John Mortimer, Patricia Neal, William Styron, Andy Warhol. Among the rest are antique dealers, decorators, magazine editors, a ‘freelance music co-ordinator for fashion shows’, a princess ‘internationally concerned with matters of spiritual evolution’, an extraordinarily large ...

Shizza my drizzle

William Skidelsky: Nick McDonell, 5 September 2002

by Nick McDonell.
Atlantic, 244 pp., £9.99, July 2002, 1 84354 071 1
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... the way black people talk (‘Foh shizza my drizzle’; ‘What in the damn shiz for a niz’). ‘White kids pretending to be black’, they prowl the streets looking for trouble, committing such appalling crimes as stealing hip-hop CDs, scoring dope and buying cigarettes with their fake ID cards. Part of the reason they are funny is that, for all their ...

In the Studio

William Feaver: Sitting for Frank Auerbach, 22 October 2009

... The zest is illusory though. It’s more a matter of letting go. Frank Auerbach, ‘Head of William Feaver II 2008’ Early this year Auerbach relinquished the last of several versions of The Tree Opposite, paintings of the wall along one side of the alley outside his studio, the steps, a wicket gate, and hints of parked cars under ebullient ...

In His White Uniform

Rosemary Hill: Accidental Gods, 10 February 2022

Accidental Gods: On Men Unwittingly Turned Divine 
by Anna Della Subin.
Granta, 462 pp., £20, January, 978 1 78378 501 8
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... preacher. Taking the National Geographic of June 1931 as his text, Howell announced that a white prince (the Duke of Gloucester, who represented George V at the coronation) had bowed before the Black king. ‘We of the black race are now free.’ Haile Selassie was, he said, the Black Messiah. Events unfolded from this point in a way that becomes ...

Three Hitherto Unpublished Poems

William Empson, 17 August 1989

... anthropoid, beaten to delicacy; One depends for that, though hollow, upon industrialism, Upon milk white metal, upon furnaces all night. Having got the thing one may fill it when required, at leisure, From any river, from the common tap; Those cloud-pipes being frozen, with marine tears; And there will always be flowers to stick into it in the springtime. Lies ...

In the Graveyard of Verse

William Wootten: Vernon Watkins, 9 August 2001

The Collected Poems of Vernon Watkins 
Golgonooza, 495 pp., £16.95, October 2000, 0 903880 73 3Show More
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... a cashier in Cardiff. Failure to adjust to his new life, an obsession with time, and too much William Blake led to fantasies of omnipotence and to a physical assault on his old headmaster. This breakdown – and the vision of redemption that accompanied it – lies behind his later statement that ‘in my 23rd year I suddenly experienced a complete ...

The Crowe is White

Hilary Mantel: Bloody Mary, 24 September 2009

Fires of Faith: Catholic England under Mary Tudor 
by Eamon Duffy.
Yale, 249 pp., £19.99, June 2009, 978 0 300 15216 6
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... In the reign of Edward VI, an Exeter clergyman named William Herne, an enthusiast for the gospel, told one of the city’s aldermen that he would rather be torn apart by wild horses than ever again say the Catholic Mass. In December 1553, Queen Mary newly enthroned, the alderman entered his parish church to find Herne at the altar, in his old vestments and all ready to go ...

Hayden White and History

Stephen Bann, 17 September 1987

The Content of the Form: Narrative Discourse and Historical Representation 
by Hayden White.
Johns Hopkins, 248 pp., £20.80, May 1987, 0 8018 2937 2
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Post-Structuralism and the Question of History 
edited by Derek Attridge, Geoff Bennington and Robert Young.
Cambridge, 292 pp., £27.50, February 1987, 0 521 32759 8
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... In publishing his compendious work Metahistory in 1973, Hayden White gave currency both to a term and to a programme. His subtitle, ‘The Historical Imagination in 19th-Century Europe’, indicated the broad area of his investigations, but gave little sense of the radical originality of this programme, which was quite simply the re-examination of historiography in its written form ...

Kermode and Theory

Hayden White, 11 October 1990

An Appetite for Poetry: Essays in Literary Interpretation 
by Frank Kermode.
Collins, 242 pp., £15, November 1989, 0 00 215388 2
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... Frank Kermode belongs to no sect of literary criticism, and he has founded no school. Like William Empson, whom he praises as a ‘genius’ of criticism, Kermode has always been more interested in a poetic than in a theoretic approach to the study of literature. He thinks that literature itself – rather than theories about it – is our best guide to how to read critically, and he has devoted the better part of a long career to this conviction ...
Beyond the Pale: White Women, Racism and History 
by Vron Ware.
Verso, 263 pp., £34.95, February 1992, 0 86091 336 8
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Imperial Eyes: Travel Writing and Transculturation 
by Mary Louise Pratt.
Routledge, 257 pp., £35, January 1992, 9780415026758
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... Vron Ware is described on the dust-jacket of Beyond the Pale, her study of the difficulty white feminists have had in being fair to brown races which appear to oppress their women, as ‘a journalist and feminist design consultant’. Footnote 17 on page 256 enlightens. Ware, I discover, is the co-author of At Women’s Convenience: A Handbook on the Design of Women’s Public Toilets ...

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