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Do fight, don’t kill

Susan Pedersen: Wartime Objectors, 20 October 2022

Battles of Conscience: British Pacifists and the Second World War 
by Tobias Kelly.
Chatto, 367 pp., £22, May 2022, 978 1 78474 394 9
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Practical Utopia: The Many Lives of Dartington Hall 
by Anna Neima.
Cambridge, 313 pp., £75, April 2022, 978 1 316 51797 0
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... democracies would slide into despotism. Mill made resisting social norms a social duty of its own.Tobias Kelly and Anna Neima are Millians. Both authors admire their subjects. Kelly’s are the conscientious objectors who refused to fight during the Second World War; Neima’s are the creators of the utopian community ...

Full Tilt

Thomas Jones: Peter Carey, 8 February 2001

True History of the Kelly Gang 
by Peter Carey.
Faber, 352 pp., £16.99, January 2001, 0 571 20987 4
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... returns to England in spring 1837 to seek Phipps out. Among the characters he meets is a certain Tobias Oates, the author of a hugely successful comic novel and a sketch writer for the Morning Chronicle (he must occasionally bump into Dickens in the paper’s offices) whose new project is a study of the criminal mind – Dickens, meanwhile, would have been ...

Turtle upon Turtle

Christian Lorentzen: Nathan Englander, 22 March 2012

What We Talk about When We Talk about Anne Frank 
by Nathan Englander.
Weidenfeld, 207 pp., £12.99, February 2012, 978 0 297 86769 2
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... it has been called ‘remarkable’ and ‘courageous’ by James Lasdun in the Guardian; Alison Kelly said in the TLS that it was ‘a wonderful collection: entertaining, profound and gently powerful’; Stacy Schiff in the New York Times Book Review said, ‘a kind of hard-won wisdom spills out on every page.’ And Englander has provided a neat package to ...

Tickle and Flutter

Terry Castle: Maude Hutchins’s Revenge, 3 July 2008

... it seems, without a biddyish dilation on the carnality of her themes. ‘Maude Hutchins,’ James Kelly wrote in 1955, does ‘as she pleases’ as a novelist and ‘to date what has pleased her most is s-e-x as observed and enjoyed from the feminine vantage point.’ Hutchins, Maxwell Geismar said, was a writer who went about ‘describing casually all the ...

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