In the latest issue:

Real Men Go to Tehran

Adam Shatz

What Trump doesn’t know about Iran

Patrick Cockburn

Kaiser Karl V

Thomas Penn

The Hostile Environment

Catherine Hall

Social Mobilities

Adam Swift

Short Cuts: So much for England

Tariq Ali

What the jihadis left behind

Nelly Lahoud

Ray Strachey

Francesca Wade

C.J. Sansom

Malcolm Gaskill

At the British Museum: ‘Troy: Myth and Reality’

James Davidson

Poem: ‘The Lion Tree’

Jamie McKendrick

SurrogacyTM

Jenny Turner

Boys in Motion

Nicholas Penny

‘Trick Mirror’

Lauren Oyler

Diary: What really happened in Yancheng?

Long Ling

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

Hemingway and Wallace Stevens got in a fight,
Drunken fisticuffs in Paris over who was right.
En garde! Put up your dukes!
Then one of them suddenly pukes.
The moon turned into the sun overnight.

Pound isn’t on Mount Rushmore yet.
Support to put Pound there is hard to get.
Add Ezra Pound to Mount Rushmore!
Add his face to the other presidents!
Let South Dakota hear his antique I’m-reciting-poetry voice.

En garde! I don’t believe a word the sun is saying.
En garde! I hear the sun announce that it’s been praying.
I take my constitutional down Broadway
And pray for the return of all the hostages
And hear the optimistic all-clear siren.

They look like shackled sausages, the hostages.
Please follow us down Broadway.
We’re talking to ourselves as if we’re homeless,
But actually we’re talking on our cell phones you can’t see
At first, then you see and it makes sense.

I’m talking to a friend in Santa Fe
And what’s he say? What say, friend in Santa Fe?
So many mountains has New Mexico. So many joys.
It don’t make sense.
Then it makes sense.

A woman out there home-schools her son.
She breastfeeds him until the boy is four.
They both are happy and seem smart and well.
She’s America! Meet you in New York. Meet you at the zoo.
Let’s meet at the Met. Carnegie Hall tonight.

She breastfed him until the boy was four but claims,
Untruthfully, it stopped when he was three.
Four is embarrassing!
Four is America!
Land of tit! Land of wampum and Big Chief Big Breasts.

In Santa Fe did Kubla Khan
A stately Astrodome decree.
You enter a private screening room
As big as Topanga Canyon outside
Los Angeles,

And rise as high above the Pacific
As the big houses in Malibu do,
Movie star castles the size of mountains,
Where the stars
Feast and rest.

White meat marches to the coast of New Mexico (there is none),
Skies over to Dubai and back in a private jet.
White meat eats dark meat and night. White meat eats light.
The Sultan rides his gorgeously caparisoned elephant toward LA
And the only bookshop in sight.

Gentlemen, start your engines!
I don’t believe a word the sun is saying.
Drivers, start your engines!
I hear the sun announce that it’s been praying.
The hostages have been beheaded.

Mountains of melody rise from a page
Of Pound’s Pisan Cantos, all-American Pound writing in a steel cage
Made of temporary-airfield landing-strip matting
Turned into an outdoor prison cell
Open to the rain and the blistering Italian sun.

Never mind what he did,
Mountains of melody rise,
For which he is
Battered and bleached and sundried and drowned
By Big Chief Big Breasts.

I am no wartime traitor frying without a roof
Under Lord Brother Sun.
Nor am I naked in a cage being rained on.
Nor on a New York City sidewalk homeless, begging in rags,
Shitting poems in my pants.

King Lear, preposterously arrogant and unrepentant and anti-Semitic,
Went to meet the American Army at Pisa to surrender.
He walks with me down Broadway on my daily walk,
Reliving his foolishness
With immortal melodious regret – but not humility, not yet.

Send Letters To:

The Editor
London Review of Books,
28 Little Russell Street
London, WC1A 2HN

letters@lrb.co.uk

Please include name, address, and a telephone number.

Letters

Vol. 38 No. 4 · 18 February 2016

Frederick Seidel’s poem ‘America’ refers to Ezra Pound as a shade who accompanies Seidel, like some Eliotic ‘familiar compound ghost’ or doppelganger, ‘down Broadway on my daily walk’ (LRB, 4 February):

King Lear, preposterously arrogant and unrepentant and anti-Semitic,
Went to meet the American Army at Pisa to surrender.

Poetry may be truer than History, as the ancient philosophers claimed, but a few historical rectifications may nonetheless be in order. First, in May 1945, Pound turned himself in to the American authorities at Lavagna (near Rapallo), then was transferred to the CIC quarters at Genoa for three weeks of interrogation before being transported by jeep down the coast to the military DTC at Pisa and placed in an outdoor cage whose dimensions were exactly those of today’s Guantánamo. That’s to say, he didn’t just walk into Pisa to give himself up: he was sent there in handcuffs, with a supervisory cable from Washington insisting he be accorded ‘no preferential treatment’ and that ‘utmost security measures’ be implemented ‘to prevent escape or suicide’. Second, Pound was arrogant, yes, anti-Semitic no doubt, but not (unlike, say, Heidegger) wholly ‘unrepentant’. In an interview with Allen Ginsburg in Venice in 1967, Pound admitted that ‘the worst mistake I made was that stupid suburban prejudice of anti-Semitism.’ Around 1970, paying tribute to his lifelong companion Olga Rudge in his still unpublished Venice notebooks, he wrote: ‘she wd have saved me from idiocies in antisemitism.’ Here we begin to hear the (silent) rue of Lear.

Richard Sieburth
New York University

Although pointing this out risks committing one of those ‘lazy critical confusions of life and art’ referred to by Michael Wood on the facing page, Frederick Seidel’s ‘America’ seems to believe the ‘drunken fisticuffs’ between Wallace Stevens and Hemingway occurred ‘in Paris’, a city Stevens dreamed about but never visited. In fact, they fought at Key West, Florida. The poem is exact in other details (such as the construction of Pound’s cage at Pisa), so perhaps this matters. In Paris, as it happened, Hemingway boxed with Pound, witnessed by Wyndham Lewis, whose eyes, Hemingway thought, were those of ‘an unsuccessful rapist’, and who had himself already been hung upside down on park railings by T.E. Hulme. By this stage, too, Pound had fenced with Yeats (and, near disastrously, with William Carlos Williams, who by his own account punched Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven in the face), and had thrown Robert Frost over his shoulder in a ju-jitsu move: the same Frost with whom Stevens swapped contrary theses on the nature of each other’s poetry, I believe at Key West, Florida.

Tony Sharpe
Lancaster University

Vol. 38 No. 6 · 17 March 2016

John Simpson casts doubt on my assertion that Hemingway boxed with Pound in Paris (Letters, 3 March). In addition to the eyewitness account by Wyndham Lewis I referred to, here’s Hemingway writing from Paris to Sherwood Anderson on 9 March 1922:

I’ve been teaching Pound to box wit [sic] little success. He habitually leads wit his chin and has the general grace of the crayfish or crawfish. He’s willing but short winded. Going over there this afternoon for another session but there ain’t much job in it as I have to shadow box between rounds to get up a sweat. Pound sweats well, though, I’ll say that for him. Besides it’s pretty sporting for him to risk his dignity and his critical reputation at something he don’t know nothing about.

The same letter then goes on to praise Pound as ‘really a good guy’.

Tony Sharpe
Lancaster University

Vol. 38 No. 5 · 3 March 2016

It’s difficult to believe that, as Tony Sharpe claims, Hemingway boxed with Ezra Pound in Paris because Hemingway was about 15 years younger than Pound (Letters, 18 February). There was a famous boxing match in Paris in 1929 between Hemingway and the Canadian writer Morley Callaghan, with F. Scott Fitzgerald as timekeeper. In the second round the rather smaller Callaghan, who had considerable amateur boxing experience, cut Hemingway’s lip. This apparently upset Scott Fitzgerald enough to make him forget his role as timekeeper. In the fourth minute of the round, with both men tiring, Hemingway tried to end it quickly and left himself open to a left that knocked him to the floor. It was the end of several friendships.

John Simpson
Gorssel, The Netherlands

send letters to

The Editor
London Review of Books
28 Little Russell Street
London, WC1A 2HN

letters@lrb.co.uk

Please include name, address and a telephone number

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.