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Hateful Sunsets

David Craig: Highlands and Headlands, 5 March 2015

Rising Ground: A Search for the Spirit of Place 
by Philip Marsden.
Granta, 348 pp., £20, October 2014, 978 1 84708 628 0
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... Philip Marsden​ ’s new book explores an idea as much as it explores a country. It journeys westward through Cornwall from Bodmin Moor to Scilly, alighting on the rocky eminences where granite has boiled up through the Earth’s crust and crystallised into highlands and headlands. It’s rugged country, raked by south-westerlies ‘bred of the Atlantic’ and eaten at by seas surging into the throat of the Channel ...

The Cadaver Club

Iain Sinclair, 22 December 1994

Original Sin 
by P.D. James.
Faber, 426 pp., £14.99, October 1994, 0 571 17253 9
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Dan Leno and the Limehouse Golem 
by Peter Ackroyd.
Sinclair-Stevenson, 282 pp., £14.99, September 1994, 1 85619 507 4
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The Hidden Files: An Autobiography 
by Derek Raymond.
Warner, 342 pp., £5.99, December 1994, 0 7515 1184 6
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Not till the Red Fog Rises 
by Derek Raymond.
Little, Brown, 248 pp., £15.99, December 1994, 0 316 91014 7
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... the parrots, the peglegs: all press-ganged upstream with Adam Dalgleish’s impersonator, Roy Marsden, for the Long John Silver show at the Mermaid. James is left with a heritage trail of selective quotations, a London Dungeon of waxwork crimes exhibited in authentic locations. This is an empty set, a set defined by its architecture (where even Mandy the ...

‘Come, my friend,’ said Smirnoff

Joanna Kavenna: The radical twenties, 1 April 1999

The Radical Twenties: Aspects of Writing, Politics and Culture 
by John Lucas.
Five Leaves, 263 pp., £11.99, January 1997, 0 907123 17 1
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... favoured by the Futurists, Egoists and Vorticists: Pound, Richard Aldington, Wyndham Lewis, Dora Marsden, Hilda Doolittle. Pound ‘took on’ technology: ‘what the analytical geometer does for space and form’ he compared to what ‘the poet does for the states of consciousness’; ‘as the abstract mathematician is to science so is the poet to the ...

Back to Life

Christopher Benfey: Rothko’s Moment, 21 May 2015

Mark Rothko: Towards the Light in the Chapel 
by Annie Cohen-Solal.
Yale, 296 pp., £18.99, February 2015, 978 0 300 18204 0
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... and Realism from American painting; never mind that she never mentions Edward Hopper, say, or Marsden Hartley. Never mind that it is Philip Guston’s contemporaneous escape from abstraction, rather than Rothko’s into it, that inspires young painters today: Guston ‘died of a heart attack at the same age as ...


Evan Kindley: Modernist Magazines, 23 January 2014

The Oxford Critical and Cultural History of Modernist Magazines: Volume I: Britain and Ireland 1880-1955 
edited by Peter Brooker and Andrew Thacker.
Oxford, 976 pp., £35, May 2013, 978 0 19 965429 1
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The Oxford Critical and Cultural History of Modernist Magazines: Volume II: North America 1894-1960 
edited by Peter Brooker and Andrew Thacker.
Oxford, 1088 pp., £140, July 2012, 978 0 19 965429 1
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The Oxford Critical and Cultural History of Modernist Magazines: Volume III: Europe 1880-1940 
edited by Peter Brooker, Sascha Bru, Andrew Thacker and Christian Weikop.
Oxford, 1471690 pp., £145, March 2013, 978 0 19 965958 6
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... Crisis was underwritten by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and A. Philip Randolph and George Schuyler’s Messenger had the support of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters. Yeats’s magazines Beltaine and Samhain were issued to provide publicity and explanatory material for performances at the Irish Literary Theatre and the ...

Do you like him?

Ian Jack: Ken Livingstone, 10 May 2012

You Can’t Say That: Memoirs 
by Ken Livingstone.
Faber, 710 pp., £9.99, April 2012, 978 0 571 28041 4
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... kind. Two inspirational teachers gave him a love of reading and, more excessively, of animal life. Philip Hobsbaum, who in his later academic career encouraged many writers, including Seamus Heaney and Alasdair Gray, got him to read Nineteen Eighty-Four, which Livingstone reckons influenced his political beliefs more than any other book. Raymond Rivers, his ...

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