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Homage to Education

Colin McGinn, 16 August 1990

Essays in political Philosophy 
by R.G. Collingwood, edited by David Boucher.
Oxford, 237 pp., £25, November 1989, 0 19 824823 7
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The Social and Political Thought of R.G. Collingwood 
by David Boucher.
Cambridge, 300 pp., £27.50, November 1989, 0 521 36384 5
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... the teaching burden of thirty to forty hours a week which he had hitherto endured. But he was, David Boucher tells us, as intellectually isolated within his own university as he was from the broader philosophical currents represented by Russell. His chief influences came from quite elsewhere – notably, from the Italian idealists, Croce, Gentile and ...

Life after Life

Jonathan Rée: Collingwood, 20 January 2000

An Essay on Metaphysics 
by R.G. Collingwood, edited by Rex Martin.
Oxford, 439 pp., £48, July 1998, 0 19 823561 5
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The New Leviathan 
by R.G. Collingwood, edited by David Boucher.
Oxford, 525 pp., £17.99, March 1999, 0 19 823880 0
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The Principles of History 
by R.G. Collingwood, edited by W.H. Dray and W.J. van der Dussen.
Oxford, 293 pp., £48, March 1999, 0 19 823703 0
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... of enthusiasts who have formed the Swansea-based R.G. Collingwood Society under the leadership of David Boucher. As well as issuing a substantial academic fanzine called Collingwood Studies, now in its fifth year, the Society’s members have produced excellent new editions of the Essay on Metaphysics and New Leviathan, as well as the Idea of ...

A Few Home Truths

Jonathan Rée: R.G. Collingwood, 19 June 2014

R.G. Collingwood: ‘An Autobiography’ and Other Writings, with Essays on Collingwood’s Life and Work 
edited by David Boucher and Teresa Smith.
Oxford, 581 pp., £65, December 2013, 978 0 19 958603 5
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... An Autobiography​ ’ by R.G. Collingwood must be one of the most popular philosophical books in the English language, but when it was published in 1939, it was not expected to do well. Collingwood warned Oxford University Press that it was ‘destitute of all that makes autobiography saleable’. It was going to be a ‘dead loss’, he said, and in a preface he offered a pre-emptive apology: he was a philosopher by vocation – had been as long as he could remember – so the story of his life could not be anything more than a compendium of abstract ideas ...

Upward Mobility

Bruce Boucher, 31 March 1988

Venetian Villas 
by Michelangelo Muraro.
Rizzoli, 514 pp., $85, January 1987, 0 8478 0762 2
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Picturing Art in Antwerp, 1550-1700 
by Zirka Zaremba Filipczak.
Princeton, 247 pp., £37.60, February 1988, 0 691 04047 8
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The Painful Birth of the Art Book 
by Francis Haskell.
Thames and Hudson, 64 pp., £5.95, February 1988, 0 500 55019 0
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... part of the century. Filipczak draws attention to the career of another upwardly-mobile painter, David Teniers II, who fashioned a variant of the gallery picture at mid-century: shells, scientific instruments and so on are jettisoned in favour of works of art placed in an environment reminiscent of a modern picture collection, a constcamer. This change of ...


P.N. Furbank, 3 August 1995

Emulation: Making Artists for Revolutionary France 
by Thomas Crow.
Yale, 288 pp., £29.95, January 1995, 0 300 06093 9
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... the Pompadour and her entourage actually enjoyed was the Rococo, and their favourite painter was Boucher. Their heart was not in the reforms, and the new Poussin, the ‘Phoenix’ destined to restore the nation’s sense of the ‘noble’ and the ‘ideal’, obstinately failed to arise. The turning-point seems to have come, at any rate symbolically, with ...

Contre Goncourt

Francis Haskell, 18 March 1982

Painting in l8th-Century France 
by Philip Conisbee.
Phaidon, 224 pp., £20, October 1981, 0 7148 2147 0
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Word and Image: French Painting of the Ancien Régime 
by Norman Bryson.
Cambridge, 281 pp., £27.50, January 1982, 0 521 23776 9
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... patrons. What can be called ‘the Goncourt revival’ reversed this scale of values. Watteau, Boucher, Chardin, Greuze, Quentin de la Tour, Fragonard were written about and sought after: Restout, Antoine Coypel, Carle van Loo and many others were neglected. It thus becomes the job of the historian today to present a more balanced picture of 18th-century ...

Global Moods

Peter Campbell: Art, Past and Present, 29 November 2007

Mirror of the World: A New History of Art 
by Julian Bell.
Thames and Hudson, 496 pp., £24.95, October 2007, 978 0 500 23837 0
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... greatness can be addressed, there is only a drawing tucked into a margin from Botticelli, and from Boucher a tapestry. Yet the drawing – Allegory of Abundance – allows Bell to make a point better than Primavera would have done: Naked infants, horns of plenty and gauze-clad maidens had lain on Italy’s studio shelves as slightly dusty templates ever since ...

The Ashtray

Nicholas Penny, 4 June 1981

The Study and Criticism of Italian Sculpture 
by John Pope-Hennessy.
Princeton, 270 pp., £25.10, March 1981, 0 691 03967 4
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... Late one evening, leaving a dinner party at the American Embassy, I ran into David Carritt, who told me he had come across a circular bronze relief of the Virgin and Child in use as an ashtray.’ The narrator is Sir John Pope-Hennessy and his nocturnal encounter was with one of the most hawk-eyed art-dealers in Europe ...
Hans Memling: The Complete Works 
by Dirk de Vos.
Thames and Hudson, 431 pp., £95, October 1994, 0 500 23698 4
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... by the Moreel triptych and some thirty more works, was classed along with Van Eyck and Gerard David as the great Flemish primitive. On that occasion his particular Flemish religiosity (again with the less-than-convincing comparison to Fra Angelico) was emphasised. On the one hand, the very model of a Flemish primitive master; on the other, the German ...


Brigid Brophy, 2 October 1980

Deliberate Regression 
by Robert Harbison.
Deutsch, 264 pp., £8.95, September 1980, 0 233 97273 0
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... that, I suppose, Mr Harbison felt like writing about. He begins with the paintings of Watteau, Boucher and Fragonard and presently gives us a distant glimpse of his thesis when he seems to pin on J.-J. Rousseau’s cult of the primitive some of the blame for mankind’s ‘deliberate regression’. On he goes to the neo-classic (French, German and Danish ...

How to get on in the new Iraq

Carol Brightman: James Baker’s drop-the-debt tour, 4 March 2004

... has less interest in oil contracts. Asked about the ‘incentives’ the US was offering, Richard Boucher, a state department spokesman, said that Baker could be ‘very effective in that regard’ because he was ‘working with all the tools at his disposal in the US government’. And so on 22 December the contract bidding was suspended; the ...

Punk Counterpunk

Bee Wilson, 20 November 2014

Vivienne Westwood 
by Vivienne Westwood and Ian Kelly.
Picador, 463 pp., £25, September 2014, 978 1 4472 5412 6
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... dreamed up much of the look, the attitude and the lyrics, though not the sound. A full year before David Bowie adopted the same hair style, Westwood had her hair bleached blonde and cut ‘coupe-sauvage’ style: tufty, asymmetrical and barmy-looking. She went to America and dressed the New York Dolls. Together, she and McLaren assembled the Sex Pistols, whom ...

A Wonder and a Scandal

Peter Campbell: Titian, 5 April 2001

Titian: The Complete Paintings 
by Filippo Pedrocco and Maria Agnese Chiari Moreto Weil.
Thames and Hudson, 336 pp., £50, March 2001, 0 500 09297 4
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... in his work – much more than in that of most other painters who show them in similar numbers, Boucher for example – get to us at the same primitive level as baby pictures and pin-ups. Of course his nudes and putti do more than just engage us in that way, and they do not do it with the repetitiveness of glamour pictures, but the sources of photographic ...

Do Not Scribble

Amanda Vickery: Letter-Writing, 4 November 2010

The Pen and the People: English Letter-Writers 1660-1800 
by Susan Whyman.
Oxford, 400 pp., £30, October 2009, 978 0 19 953244 5
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Becoming a Woman in the Age of Letters 
by Dena Goodman.
Cornell, 408 pp., £24.50, June 2009, 978 0 8014 7545 0
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... to read before they could write, but some may have recognised only the letters in their own name. David Cressy’s research on England suggests a gradual, if uneven, climb in male sign literacy, from 10 per cent in 1500 to 45 per cent in 1714 and 60 per cent in 1750. Female sign literacy lagged behind male, but rose steeply from a shockingly low base of 1 per ...

Does one flare or cling?

Alice Spawls, 5 May 2016

‘Vogue’ 100: A Century of Style 
by Robin Muir.
National Portrait Gallery, 304 pp., £40, February 2016, 978 1 85514 561 0
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‘Vogue’ 100: A Century of Style 
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... by or about the group. Clive Bell went to the Paris exhibitions, there were stories by David Garnett, features on Duncan Grant, and Woolf wrote five pieces, including one about Sir Walter Raleigh. Vogue still owed something to the society magazine that was the earliest incarnation of the American edition, and the first frontispiece went to Eileen ...

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