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Memory Failure

Pankaj Mishra: Germany’s Commitment to Israel, 4 January 2024

Subcontractors of Guilt: Holocaust Memory and Muslim Belonging in Postwar Germany 
by Esra Özyürek.
Stanford, 264 pp., £25.99, March, 978 1 5036 3556 2
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Never Again: Germans and Genocide after the Holocaust 
by Andrew Port.
Harvard, 352 pp., £30.95, May, 978 0 674 27522 5
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... which examines the German response to mass killings in Cambodia, Rwanda and the Balkans, Andrew Port suggests that their ‘otherwise admirable reckoning with the Holocaust may have unwittingly desensitised Germans. The conviction that they had left the rabid racism of their forebears far behind them may have paradoxically allowed for the ...


Andrew Motion, 19 June 1997

... On the other hand, calling to mind some hill-backed place with a ship-filled river curled into a port, the port itself, and traders lifting their eyes to the hills is easy – as easy as looking at you while I bend again to the atlas with blood running into my face and think of a naught like a ball bouncing out of the ...

Crushing the Port Glasses

Colin Burrow: Zadie Smith gets the knives out, 14 December 2023

The Fraud 
by Zadie Smith.
Hamish Hamilton, 464 pp., £20, September, 978 0 241 33699 1
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... gives a fresh angle to this often-told tale by concentrating on a key witness in the trials: Andrew Bogle, a Black man who grew up enslaved in Jamaica. There he became the page of Edward Tichborne (uncle to the missing Sir Roger), who was the manager of the Duke of Buckingham and Chandos’s plantations around Kingston. During the trials Bogle ...

In Le Havre

Andrew Saint: The rebuilding of France, 6 February 2003

... had wiped out was a town extension set out progressively in efficient squares, as the commercial port expanded. So the layout of Le Havre today consists of an adjusted plan not a new one, with streets widened, arcaded or straightened, but always marching to the bleak rhythm of the concrete-framed immeuble.Most of Le Havre’s architecture is the work of ...

For ever Falkland?

Tam Dalyell, 17 June 1982

... long-term solutions. Either the islands are supplied from eight thousand miles away (London to Port Stanley 8350 miles), or they once again depend on Argentina for fuel, fresh food supplies, general victualling and hospital services. After the events of the last eight weeks there is not the remotest possibility that any South American nation would allow ...

The Other Thomas

Charles Nicholl, 8 November 2012

... with Cranganore, at the mouth of the Periyar River, and thus with the long-vanished trading port known to the Greeks and Romans as Muziris. In the kingdom of the Cheras, after whom the modern state of Kerala is named, he performed miracles and healed the sick, converted Hindus and Jews and established seven churches (or in some ...

Leisure’s Utmost

Andrew Forge, 30 March 1989

Art and Politics of the Second Empire: The Universal Expositions of 1855 and 1867 
by Patricia Mainardi.
Yale, 288 pp., £30, September 1987, 0 300 03871 2
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Impressionism: Art, Leisure and Parisian Society 
by Robert Herbert.
Yale, 324 pp., £24.95, September 1988, 0 300 04262 0
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... on the terrace of their summer villa overlooking the entrance to the harbour of Le Havre. The port, we are told, had recently taken the place of Marseilles as the busiest port in France. Monet père had a business in ship’s chandling. The horizon that he is now contemplating from his chair on the terrace is crowded ...

Prodigious Enigma

Catherine Hall, 7 July 2022

Who’s Black and Why? A Hidden Chapter from the 18th-Century Invention of Race 
edited by Henry Louis Gates and Andrew S. Curran.
Harvard, 303 pp., £23.95, March, 978 0 674 24426 9
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... derived from the business of slavery, and the city changed to accommodate this business. The port was renovated to make room for the large ships travelling to Martinique, Guadeloupe and St Domingue; work began on what was to be the magnificent Place de la Bourse on the Garonne and on the new merchant houses and shops for the luxury trades. Slave ships ...

Two Ships

Andrew O’Hagan, 6 March 1997

... of believing, ways of wanting, seemed to come together in that horrible tale. The Montrose was in port at Antwerp on 20 July 1910. It was due to sail to Quebec. There were reports in all the papers that a warrant had been issued for the arrest of Dr Crippen and his paramour. They had been spotted at a Brussels hotel, but were lost track of soon after. SS ...

What sort of traitors?

Neal Ascherson, 7 February 1980

The Climate of Treason 
by Andrew Boyle.
Hutchinson, 504 pp., £8.95, November 1980, 9780091393403
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... of reconciliation with his friends. Newspapers are ‘they’ and we, after all, are ‘we’. As Andrew Boyle relates, it turned out that a great many old acquaintances of Burgess and Maclean were much more horrified – felt, indeed, much more betrayed – by the fact that the late Goronwy Rees gave a version of their flight to the People than by the flight ...

Brideshead Revered

David Cannadine, 17 March 1983

The Country House 
by James Lees-Milne.
Oxford, 110 pp., £4.50, November 1982, 0 19 214139 2
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English Country Houses and Landed Estates 
by Heather Clemenson.
Croom Helm, 244 pp., £15.95, July 1982, 0 85664 987 2
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The Last Country Houses 
by Clive Aslet.
Yale, 344 pp., £15, October 1982, 0 300 02904 7
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... one room to another’; John Mytton, of Halston Hall, who consumed between four and six bottles of port a day, and once set fire to his nightshirt to frighten away the hiccoughs; Disraeli, gazing into the fire at Hughenden, murmuring ‘Dreams, dreams, dreams’, and being refused in marriage by the Countess of Cardigan because his breath smelt of ‘the ill ...

Angels and Dirt

Robert Dingley, 20 November 1980

Stanley Spencer RA 
by Richard Carline, Andrew Causey and Keith Bell.
Royal Academy/Weidenfeld, 239 pp., £12.50, September 1980, 0 297 77831 5
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... to incorporate what is going on outside itself. In the foreground of ‘The Resurrection, Port Glasgow’ (1947-56;), an old man has been bisected by the cutting edge of the canvas. He is left, Spencer commented sympathetically, ‘without a world of his own’. Half of his body has been resurrected by art, but the other half has been consigned to ...

The Greatest Person then Living

Andrew Bacevich: Presidents v. Generals, 27 July 2017

The General v. the President: MacArthur and Truman at the Brink of Nuclear War 
by H.W. Brands.
Anchor, 438 pp., £21, November 2016, 978 0 385 54057 5
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... cemented his authority. To turn the tide, MacArthur proposed a daring amphibious assault on the port of Inchon far behind North Korean lines. Members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Truman’s principal military advisers, had their doubts. With characteristic bombast, MacArthur pressed his case. ‘The prestige of the Western world hangs in the balance,’ he ...

Aldermanic Depression

Andrew Saint: London is good for you, 4 February 1999

London: A History 
by Francis Sheppard.
Oxford, 442 pp., £25, November 1998, 0 19 822922 4
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London: More by Fortune than Design 
by Michael Hebbert.
Wiley, 50 pp., £17.99, April 1998, 0 471 97399 8
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... are a concomitant of commercial success, as the glum old riverside warehouses of London’s port, renascent now as ‘lofts’, remind us. Does it matter that a city is ugly, or even ill-governed, so long as it is prosperous? Some think no: look at Tokyo. Let us hope that London can develop a broader self-respect on both counts. For the City it may at ...

Chasing Steel

Ian Jack: Scotland’s Ferry Fiasco, 22 September 2022

... The​ most unexpected building in Port Glasgow is a castle – Newark Castle, inherited in the 17th century by the Maxwell family, who turned it from an austere tower house into what the guidebook calls a Renaissance mansion. The Clyde rises and falls only a few yards from the castle’s back door, and in 1668 Sir George Maxwell sold eighteen acres of riparian land to the city of Glasgow, which thought it was a useful site for a harbour ...

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