Close

Terms and Conditions

These terms and conditions of use refer to the London Review of Books and the London Review Bookshop website (www.lrb.co.uk — hereafter ‘LRB Website’). These terms and conditions apply to all users of the LRB Website ("you"), including individual subscribers to the print edition of the LRB who wish to take advantage of our free 'subscriber only' access to archived material ("individual users") and users who are authorised to access the LRB Website by subscribing institutions ("institutional users").

Each time you use the LRB Website you signify your acceptance of these terms and conditions. If you do not agree, or are not comfortable with any part of this document, your only remedy is not to use the LRB Website.


  1. By registering for access to the LRB Website and/or entering the LRB Website by whatever route of access, you agree to be bound by the terms and conditions currently prevailing.
  2. The London Review of Books ("LRB") reserves the right to change these terms and conditions at any time and you should check for any alterations regularly. Continued usage of the LRB Website subsequent to a change in the terms and conditions constitutes acceptance of the current terms and conditions.
  3. The terms and conditions of any subscription agreements which educational and other institutions have entered into with the LRB apply in addition to these terms and conditions.
  4. You undertake to indemnify the LRB fully for all losses damages and costs incurred as a result of your breaching these terms and conditions.
  5. The information you supply on registration to the LRB Website shall be accurate and complete. You will notify the LRB promptly of any changes of relevant details by emailing the registrar. You will not assist a non-registered person to gain access to the LRB Website by supplying them with your password. In the event that the LRB considers that you have breached the requirements governing registration, that you are in breach of these terms and conditions or that your or your institution's subscription to the LRB lapses, your registration to the LRB Website will be terminated.
  6. Each individual subscriber to the LRB (whether a person or organisation) is entitled to the registration of one person to use the 'subscriber only' content on the web site. This user is an 'individual user'.
  7. The London Review of Books operates a ‘no questions asked’ cancellation policy in accordance with UK legislation. Please contact us to cancel your subscription and receive a full refund for the cost of all unposted issues.
  8. Use of the 'subscriber only' content on the LRB Website is strictly for the personal use of each individual user who may read the content on the screen, download, store or print single copies for their own personal private non-commercial use only, and is not to be made available to or used by any other person for any purpose.
  9. Each institution which subscribes to the LRB is entitled to grant access to persons to register on and use the 'subscriber only' content on the web site under the terms and conditions of its subscription agreement with the LRB. These users are 'institutional users'.
  10. Each institutional user of the LRB may access and search the LRB database and view its entire contents, and may also reproduce insubstantial extracts from individual articles or other works in the database to which their institution's subscription provides access, including in academic assignments and theses, online and/or in print. All quotations must be credited to the author and the LRB. Institutional users are not permitted to reproduce any entire article or other work, or to make any commercial use of any LRB material (including sale, licensing or publication) without the LRB's prior written permission. Institutions may notify institutional users of any additional or different conditions of use which they have agreed with the LRB.
  11. Users may use any one computer to access the LRB web site 'subscriber only' content at any time, so long as that connection does not allow any other computer, networked or otherwise connected, to access 'subscriber only' content.
  12. The LRB Website and its contents are protected by copyright and other intellectual property rights. You acknowledge that all intellectual property rights including copyright in the LRB Website and its contents belong to or have been licensed to the LRB or are otherwise used by the LRB as permitted by applicable law.
  13. All intellectual property rights in articles, reviews and essays originally published in the print edition of the LRB and subsequently included on the LRB Website belong to or have been licensed to the LRB. This material is made available to you for use as set out in paragraph 8 (if you are an individual user) or paragraph 10 (if you are an institutional user) only. Save for such permitted use, you may not download, store, disseminate, republish, post, reproduce, translate or adapt such material in whole or in part in any form without the prior written permission of the LRB. To obtain such permission and the terms and conditions applying, contact the Rights and Permissions department.
  14. All intellectual property rights in images on the LRB Website are owned by the LRB except where another copyright holder is specifically attributed or credited. Save for such material taken for permitted use set out above, you may not download, store, disseminate, republish, post, reproduce, translate or adapt LRB’s images in whole or in part in any form without the prior written permission of the LRB. To obtain such permission and the terms and conditions applying, contact the Rights and Permissions department. Where another copyright holder is specifically attributed or credited you may not download, store, disseminate, republish, reproduce or translate such images in whole or in part in any form without the prior written permission of the copyright holder. The LRB will not undertake to supply contact details of any attributed or credited copyright holder.
  15. The LRB Website is provided on an 'as is' basis and the LRB gives no warranty that the LRB Website will be accessible by any particular browser, operating system or device.
  16. The LRB makes no express or implied representation and gives no warranty of any kind in relation to any content available on the LRB Website including as to the accuracy or reliability of any information either in its articles, essays and reviews or in the letters printed in its letter page or material supplied by third parties. The LRB excludes to the fullest extent permitted by law all liability of any kind (including liability for any losses, damages or costs) arising from the publication of any materials on the LRB Website or incurred as a consequence of using or relying on such materials.
  17. The LRB excludes to the fullest extent permitted by law all liability of any kind (including liability for any losses, damages or costs) for any legal or other consequences (including infringement of third party rights) of any links made to the LRB Website.
  18. The LRB is not responsible for the content of any material you encounter after leaving the LRB Website site via a link in it or otherwise. The LRB gives no warranty as to the accuracy or reliability of any such material and to the fullest extent permitted by law excludes all liability that may arise in respect of or as a consequence of using or relying on such material.
  19. This site may be used only for lawful purposes and in a manner which does not infringe the rights of, or restrict the use and enjoyment of the site by, any third party. In the event of a chat room, message board, forum and/or news group being set up on the LRB Website, the LRB will not undertake to monitor any material supplied and will give no warranty as to its accuracy, reliability, originality or decency. By posting any material you agree that you are solely responsible for ensuring that it is accurate and not obscene, defamatory, plagiarised or in breach of copyright, confidentiality or any other right of any person, and you undertake to indemnify the LRB against all claims, losses, damages and costs incurred in consequence of your posting of such material. The LRB will reserve the right to remove any such material posted at any time and without notice or explanation. The LRB will reserve the right to disclose the provenance of such material, republish it in any form it deems fit or edit or censor it. The LRB will reserve the right to terminate the registration of any person it considers to abuse access to any chat room, message board, forum or news group provided by the LRB.
  20. Any e-mail services supplied via the LRB Website are subject to these terms and conditions.
  21. You will not knowingly transmit any virus, malware, trojan or other harmful matter to the LRB Website. The LRB gives no warranty that the LRB Website is free from contaminating matter, viruses or other malicious software and to the fullest extent permitted by law disclaims all liability of any kind including liability for any damages, losses or costs resulting from damage to your computer or other property arising from access to the LRB Website, use of it or downloading material from it.
  22. The LRB does not warrant that the use of the LRB Website will be uninterrupted, and disclaims all liability to the fullest extent permitted by law for any damages, losses or costs incurred as a result of access to the LRB Website being interrupted, modified or discontinued.
  23. The LRB Website contains advertisements and promotional links to websites and other resources operated by third parties. While we would never knowingly link to a site which we believed to be trading in bad faith, the LRB makes no express or implied representations or warranties of any kind in respect of any third party websites or resources or their contents, and we take no responsibility for the content, privacy practices, goods or services offered by these websites and resources. The LRB excludes to the fullest extent permitted by law all liability for any damages or losses arising from access to such websites and resources. Any transaction effected with such a third party contacted via the LRB Website are subject to the terms and conditions imposed by the third party involved and the LRB accepts no responsibility or liability resulting from such transactions.
  24. The LRB disclaims liability to the fullest extent permitted by law for any damages, losses or costs incurred for unauthorised access or alterations of transmissions or data by third parties as consequence of visit to the LRB Website.
  25. While 'subscriber only' content on the LRB Website is currently provided free to subscribers to the print edition of the LRB, the LRB reserves the right to impose a charge for access to some or all areas of the LRB Website without notice.
  26. These terms and conditions are governed by and will be interpreted in accordance with English law and any disputes relating to these terms and conditions will be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales.
  27. The various provisions of these terms and conditions are severable and if any provision is held to be invalid or unenforceable by any court of competent jurisdiction then such invalidity or unenforceability shall not affect the remaining provisions.
  28. If these terms and conditions are not accepted in full, use of the LRB Website must be terminated immediately.
Close

Letters

Vol. 27 No. 20 · 20 October 2005

Search by issue:

Elephants in the Scherzo

E.M. Forster is not always as facetious as Frank Kermode says he is (LRB, 6 October). The description of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony in Howards End may be ‘an embarrassing couple of pages’ but it’s unlikely that Forster is ‘gently sneering at people who profess to like music without knowing how to do so’. Everything else he wrote about music suggests that he really was the kind of listener who listened to Beethoven and found ‘goblins and elephants in the scherzo’. ‘Not Listening to Music’ (1939) begins: ‘Listening to music is such a muddle that one scarcely knows how to describe it.’ In ‘The Raison d’Etre of Criticism in the Arts’ (1947), his charge against Walt Whitman’s account of the Beethoven Septet (‘a copious grove of singing birds’) could easily be turned back on him: ‘Here is adorable literature, but what has it to do with Op. 20?’ The adorability of Whitman on Beethoven is as dubious as that of Forster on the Fifth Symphony: both writers are gushing and imprecise – but probably sincere.

Fatema Ahmed
London NW5

Dirty Money

John Christensen’s piece on offshore finance (LRB, 6 October) deals mainly with the period from the 1980s to the mid-1990s, but anyone reading it would imagine that the situation he describes remains in place. Nowhere does he mention the Financial Services and Markets Act of 2000, or the legislation dealing with money laundering, or the position of the UK regulator (the Financial Services Authority) or, for that matter, the financial regulatory authorities of Jersey. He may not be aware that all staff of the FSA have to undertake rigorous tests in anti-money-laundering legislation.

Christensen includes not one precise piece of evidence of wrongdoing by the Jersey or the UK government authorities. He refers knowingly to ‘dirty money’, but what does he mean by it in this context? If he means that the proceeds of crime are being passed through a network of offshore accounts, then that is money laundering and it is a criminal activity. Or does he mean money gained by means he disapproves of but which is processed according to legitimate methods of tax avoidance? He seems to confuse avoidance with evasion. And by ‘City of London banks’, does he mean banks residing in the City – which could be Barclays, the Royal Bank of Scotland or Lloyds TSB – or small, exclusive finance houses? There are far more foreign banks in the City than UK banks. What is Christensen’s point, other than to imply that City = bad?

Christensen also neglects to mention the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an inter-governmental body whose purpose is to develop and promote national and international policies to combat money laundering and terrorist financing. Full members include, among many others, the UK, the USA, Argentina, all the EU member states, Switzerland and Turkey. Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man are not full FATF members, but they are members of the Offshore Group of Banking Supervisors. Christensen’s innuendos would lead his readers to believe that those in authority are little better than criminals. The reality is quite different. ‘Dirty money’ – the proceeds of crime – does come over from Nigeria, from other African countries and from other parts of the world, but it is not always possible to identify when money is being laundered. Criminals are skilful, and technologically adept.

Christensen sneers at the use of such things as ‘special purpose vehicles’ (SPVs) and ‘beneficial ownership’. There is nothing necessarily illegal or suspicious about these things, when used legitimately. SPVs are often used in the quite legitimate process of ‘securitisation’, by which companies take assets off their balance sheet and issue investment paper (‘securitising’) against them, usually in the form of bonds. The SPV is used to ensure that a ‘clean break’ is achieved between the issuing company and the assets it formerly controlled. The process is subject to rigorous auditing, and is scrutinised by the FSA whenever a supervised firm is involved (it nearly always is, as banks are required to undertake the work). The term ‘beneficial owner’ is quite commonly used in share dealings and other financial transactions to differentiate the owner who benefits from an asset from the legal owner, which may be a bank nominee company, for example. It is usually a matter of convenience, not secrecy. Indeed, when served with the appropriate notice by the authorities, the nominee company must divulge the name and address of the beneficial owner. An uninformed reader of Christensen’s article could be forgiven for thinking that recourse to SPVs and nominee companies were criminal activities.

Of course we would all like there to be less corruption, and fewer opportunities to promote it. But Christensen does his cause no good by using the language of accusation without substantiating his argument. Where does he get his figures from? Whose calculations are they? When he speaks loosely of the ‘real intentions’ of the IMF, the World Bank and the UK government, what is he implying? If he knows of individuals or bodies that have broken the law – principally the Money Laundering Regulations or the FSMA – he should report it to the authorities. Indeed, in the case of money laundering, the regulations require him to do so.

Alex Smith
Saffron Walden

Beyond the Ashes

Richard Guy suggests that a main reason there are so few black cricketers in or even near the current England team is that many state schools no longer play the game (Letters, 6 October). I wonder. It’s true that black cricketers are likely to have been to state, not private schools, almost all of which appear still positively to encourage cricket and can afford to perpetuate a game that is notoriously expensive in terms of time, equipment and space. Indeed, it was reported earlier in the summer that some 35 per cent of those now playing professional cricket in the county championship went to private schools, an extraordinary figure if it’s the case, and surely a much higher percentage of the privately educated than ever you could have found in the past.

On the other hand, it’s not clear why the game should need to depend exclusively on schools to produce cricketers. Many have learned to play the game, to start with at any rate, in parks, on waste ground or on the street, and there remain hundreds of local cricket clubs which boys can join. It would be a mistake to imagine that only if you played at school have you got a chance of being good enough to get into a test team. The hero of the hour, Andrew Flintoff, seems to have played hardly at all at the Lancashire school he went to (and turned down an offer from Northamptonshire at one point, an offer that included a scholarship to a local public school). Flintoff has a rare talent, admittedly, but his example can still serve to weaken the argument that it all depends on state schools relearning to practise and support a game they seldom have the proper facilities for if we’re to see more black players getting to the top. Since England got the Ashes back, and the hungover players did their open-top and 10 Downing Street bit, we’ve started hearing about large sums of money being pumped into the game to encourage young players. This is sadly reminiscent of the ridiculous hoo-ha surrounding the Olympic bid, whereby money that should have been provided all along for decent sporting facilities turns out to be available only if it can be tied to some spectacular and possibly ephemeral success.

Richard Scott
London W12

Alasdair Mackenzie asks why I think non-white players are being frozen out of the England test team (Letters, 6 October). England are taking an all-white party of 17 players to Pakistan for the test series this winter. Doubtless these players were selected ‘on merit’, but merit is not a straightforward quality when picking a cricket team. The squad does not include Owais Shah, who had the best batting average last summer of any English player available for selection. Shah did not even make the one-day squad, though as Mackenzie points out the one-day side has recently included players like Kabir Ali and Vikram Solanki (who is going to Pakistan for the one-day games). What Duncan Fletcher and the England management appear to value in the test team above all else is team spirit, all-for-one, one-for-all. The one-day side is a more experimental, haphazard affair. The fact that non-white players occasionally make it into the one-day team doesn’t prove much, and is consistent with the kind of attitude that used to be rife in English football – the idea that black players were good for a cup run, but not the long, hard grind of an English league season. Lots of non-white players play cricket in this country. Some of them used to make it into the England test team. Now they don’t. The reasons behind this are certainly complex. But one factor seems to be, as Shah’s Middlesex coach John Emburey put it when he learned of Shah’s omission from the winter touring parties, that certain faces don’t ‘fit’.

David Runciman
Cambridge

The Wrong Idea of North

James Hamilton-Paterson calls the Arctic Circle ‘an imaginary boundary arbitrarily drawn’ (LRB, 1 September). Imaginary it might be – there is no line drawn on the ground – but arbitrary it is not. The Arctic Circle is at latitude 66.5º (approximately), which is 90º (the location of the North Pole) minus 23.5º, the tilt of the Earth’s axis with respect to the plane of the Earth’s orbit. More exactly, in 2000, the latitude for the Arctic Circle was 66º33’39". The tilt of the Earth varies with time, so the Arctic Circle is not at a fixed latitude. Some very real phenomena occur above the Arctic Circle and not below it. For example, above the Arctic Circle, the sun is above the horizon for at least 24 continuous hours once a year (the midnight sun).

Roger House
Sebastopol, California

James Hamilton-Paterson’s review of two books on the North mentions the icebergs outside the harbour in St John’s, and notes that the destruction of the cod stocks on the Grand Banks has had a bad effect on the Newfoundland economy. However, St John’s is a full degree south of Paris, while the UK, which is located north of latitude 50º, is not normally taken to be part of the North. The icebergs outside St John’s harbour in springtime are a consequence of the north-south Labrador Current, which has the opposite effect on the Newfoundland climate to that produced by the south-north Gulf Stream on the UK.

J.M.W. Scott
St John’s, Newfoundland

Do they?

In her richly allusive review of Michael Cunningham’s richly allusive new novel, Jacqueline Rose writes fascinatingly on the subject of Cunningham’s extensive debt to Whitman and to Freud (LRB, 22 September). It is disappointing, though, that in a discussion of a story set in the future, in which ‘“simulos" … are being exterminated as their unpredicted complexity (they are capable of dreaming) interferes with their function,’ there should be no mention of Philip K. Dick’s novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

Mary Elkins
Stockport

Misguessed

Peter Campbell’s ‘lead-guessing’ is a nice take on Bleigiessen (LRB, 6 October), but the correct translation is ‘lead-pouring’. May his shapes ever be auspicious.

Nicholas von Maltzahn
Ottawa

He’s a Man!

There was a mistake in Robert Irwin’s review of Modern Arabic Fiction: An Anthology edited by Salma Khadra Jayyusi (LRB, 18 August). Hanna Mina, the author of Fragments of Memory, is a man, not a woman.

Ken Seigneurie
Beirut

Read anywhere with the London Review of Books app, available now from the App Store for Apple devices, Google Play for Android devices and Amazon for your Kindle Fire.

Sign up to our newsletter

For highlights from the latest issue, our archive and the blog, as well as news, events and exclusive promotions.