Terms and Conditions

These terms and conditions of use refer to the London Review of Books and the London Review Bookshop website ( — 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.


Vol. 29 No. 24 · 13 December 2007

Search by issue:

Resistance is surrender

Convinced, nay, chastened by Slavoj Žižek’s arguments for a new realism on the left, I shall be campaigning over the next months to dissuade those planning to ‘save their beautiful souls’ in street protests against the bombing of Iran from doing any such thing (LRB, 15 November). And I have written a letter to my congresswoman (she’s a bit of an anti-war firebrand, so Žižek will forgive me if my intervention fails to have immediate results), along the lines: ‘While respectfully recognising the US state’s representation of my interests, and its right and duty to protect them by force of arms, might I propose that you propose that the strike against Iranian facilities be limited to 50 bunker busters per nuclear installation, with a total TNT not exceeding, say, half the Hiroshima device per site? And could I put in a plea for restraint in the use of depleted uranium? I realise this may be intruding too far on the administration’s prerogatives, but would you perhaps suggest, to those in the know, double-checking of intelligence before the targets are finally decided on? Oh yes, collateral damage … Couldn’t we make a strictly between presidents offer of undercover medical help, Quds force to Quds force, in the unlikely event?’ These seem to me ‘strategically well-selected, precise, finite demands’. They’re sure to do the trick.

T.J. Clark
University of California, Berkeley

‘Sit at home and watch the barbarity on television’ seems to be Slavoj Žižek’s new slogan for fighting capitalism. He writes of the million-strong demonstration against the war on Iraq: they ‘served to legitimise it.’ All that happened was that ‘the protesters saved their beautiful souls.’ Žižek’s brilliant dialectical insight allows us to see that all struggles that do not fully achieve their objectives sanctify the status quo. So the events of May 1968 in France must have legitimised the Gaullist regime, the Cuban revolution continued US domination of Latin America, the independence of India the British Empire, the revolutions of 1848 European reaction, the civil rights movement American racism. And if the US now attacks Iran we must at all costs not take to the streets against it. Perhaps the philosopher should go beyond interpreting the world in confusing ways and try to change it.

Chris Harman
International Socialism Journal, London E8

Reading Slavoj Žižek’s strangely giddy defence of Hugo Chávez, I was reminded of Woody Allen’s Bananas, in which Allen’s character, a product-tester named Fielding Melish, joins a group of guerrillas in the mountains of ‘San Marcos’, a right-wing Latin American military dictatorship. The guerrilla leader brandishes his gun, his revolutionary slogans and his Che beard with equal aplomb, and promises that the day of liberation is near. Once the guerrillas triumph, he changes the official language to Swedish and announces that everyone must wear their underpants outside their clothes. Venezuelans aren’t speaking Swedish yet, but Chávez’s drive to concentrate power in his own hands brings them one step closer. I prefer the Subcomediante Marcos.

André Bénichou
Nanterre, France

In Tavistock Square

‘Virginia Woolf,’ Deborah Friedell writes, ‘said that her books would have been “inconceivable" without the death of her father: she needed him to die before she could write about him in To the Lighthouse’ (LRB, 15 November). But it was clearly her mother she was writing about in To the Lighthouse. ‘Until I was in my forties,’ she wrote, ‘the presence of my mother obsessed me. I could hear her voice, see her, imagine what she would do or say as I went about my day’s doings … Then one day walking around Tavistock Square I made up, as I sometimes make up my books, To the Lighthouse … when it was written, I ceased to be obsessed by my mother. I no longer hear her voice; I do not see her.’

David Robinson
Swanage, Dorset

Clarity begins at home

David Runciman’s observation that charities are hamstrung by demands for transparency while the business of governments remains opaque should be repeated to every gathering of trustees and in every charity boardroom across the UK (LRB, 29 November). Runciman deals mostly with charitable activities in the international context, but these aren’t the only ones that suffer disabling scrutiny. The difficulties involved in making clear that a donation to a children’s charity directly helps a child drive UK charities into pathological introspection. Promoting the need to end cruelty to children, for example, butts up against the need to prove that that is precisely what one’s organisation is trying to achieve.

I would, sadly, warn Runciman against any optimism. Polling evidence that the company I now work for has been generating for a decade shows that in 1998 two thirds of the UK public was unable to name an organisation that existed to protect the environment. In late 2007 the number was exactly the same. Polled in the same study last September, 63 per cent of the respondents were extremely or very concerned about ‘charities being open and fair, honest and legal in their fundraising’, as against 45 per cent being extremely or very concerned about ‘climate change’.

Chris Greenwood
nfpSynergy, London EC1

Charities choose to be increasingly transparent and accountable not just as a result of government regulation, but because to exist and legitimise themselves they need to maintain the confidence of both their beneficiaries and those who make resources available. This increasingly collaborative and transparent space is much more likely to encourage the sort of political engagement that grapples with the problems addressed by charities than the opaque and unaccountable institutions to which we have become accustomed.

Richard Marsh
ImpACT Coalition, Institute of Fundraising, London SW8

Southern Gents

It isn’t really the case, as Nicholas Guyatt implies, that John Scopes’s trial in Dayton, Tennessee put reason on trial against unreason; nor was his conviction ever overturned (LRB, 15 November). Soon after the law against teaching evolution in schools had been enacted, the American Civil Liberties Union looked to have it annulled by a higher court. They first needed a test case, with a volunteer who could be sure of being convicted. Scopes was happy to be the one. During the trial theatricals, the judge constantly reminded everyone that nobody was there to judge Darwin or the Bible; they were there merely to ascertain whether Scopes had broken the law. But even after the guilty verdict had been handed down, the ACLU didn’t get any further. The Tennessee Law Court had probably seen too much of the Dayton circus and turned down the appeal, noting that it saw no reason to further such a bizarre case.

The law was never enforced again. When the Tennessee legislature took another look at it in 1967, it was pitched out with little fuss. In 1972, in my Nashville high school, I heard my Baptist biology teacher say he himself did not believe in evolution. But, he said, we were going to learn it, because it was in the textbook and part of the course. He said it graciously, without the slightest hint of a whine, like a Southern gentleman calmly deferring to a demanding stranger.

Nicholas Blanton
Shepherdstown, West Virginia

Good, Bad and Ugly

I was intrigued by Michael Wood’s suggestion that the western genre is to do with the way men behave when the law of the land is absent (LRB, 18 October). But I would have expected him to have nodded, at least, in the direction of the sub-genre which took that idea to its limit, and was responsible for the death of the Hollywood western in the mid-1960s. It’s hard to recall now just how subversive Sergio Leone’s Fistful of Dollars was in 1964, with its nameless, cigarillo-chewing hero, who hasn’t shaved for some days, riding into town on a mule and committing a string of casual killings for personal gain. And in Once Upon a Time in the West, the blue-eyed Henry Fonda who until then had never done a dirty deed on screen, is revealed to be a callous child killer. For six years or so, hundreds of versions of this in-your-face hyper-amorality, good, bad and ugly, rolled out of Cinecittà. It was their influence that delegitimised the American western. Over the past four decades, Hollywood has found barely enough cash and imagination to make a couple of westerns a year, each one of which is inspected with forensic attention to determine whether or not it displays genuine signs of life.

Tony Barrell
Balmain, New South Wales

Film v. Still

David Simpson recalls the famous photograph of the 1968 shooting of a prisoner by the South Vietnamese chief of police as showing blood spurting from the wound (LRB, 29 November). I too remember this image: it was to be seen in a film clip of the event but it is missing from the photo, which I guess was taken a second too soon. Or perhaps the photo is an early frame taken out of the film clip. It seems the clip may be even better remembered than the still photo.

Jim Grove
Cowbridge, Glamorgan

Among the Republicans

‘Even Nelson Rockefeller got on the bandwagon, dispatching an emissary to the 1980 Republican Convention to quell opposition among liberal Republicans to a party platform that would have been considered extremist just four years earlier,’ Greg Grandin wrote in the LRB of 29 November. While Nelson Rockefeller’s powers were surely vast, even he would have had difficulty intervening at a convention that met nearly eighteen months after his death on 26 January 1979.

David Karol
University of California, Berkeley

Greg Grandin writes: Apologies. I should have said David Rockefeller, or Rockefeller interests. The person in question was Richard Rosenbaum, who had been a fixture in New York liberal Republican politics, and a close ally of the whole Rockefeller clan. Both in the 1976 and the 1980 Republican Conventions, he served as liaison between the Reagan conservatives and the Rockefeller moderates (as well as between D’Amato Long Island Republicans and the Rockefellers), and in 1980, according to the New York Times, was ‘instrumental in quelling dissent in the New York delegation over the platform planks on equal rights for men and women, abortion and the federal judiciary’. And he described his peace with Reagan as a ‘conversion’. In fact, if I had caught this, it would have made for an even more interesting point. Rosenbaum asked the convention if they would have a moment of silence for Nelson: ‘We have to make room for decency in politics,’ he said. The convention organisers refused, though they did make time for Kissinger, Nelson Rockefeller’s friend and adviser, to praise Reagan, his former adversary.

Nice Mrs T.

Tom Paulin seems not to know that Philip Larkin was indeed offered the laureateship in December 1984 (LRB, 29 November). Several of his letters at that time included such comments as ‘Mrs T. was very nice about my not wanting it,’ ‘very nice and understanding about it all’, ‘sorry to disappoint’ and so forth.

Anthony Thwaite
Low Tharston, Norfolk

Or as Larkin put it to Amis, ‘the thought of being the cause of Ted’s being buried in Westminster Abbey is hard to live with.’

Page Nelson
Cambridge, Massachusetts

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.