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Clothes were everything to me

Lisa Cohen: Bill Cunningham, 25 October 2018

Fashion Climbing: A New York Life 
by Bill Cunningham.
Chatto, 256 pp., £16.99, October 2018, 978 1 78474 281 2
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... and everyone around that the colour of his newly dyed hair is ‘tangerine’. The first two are Bill Cunningham in 1930s suburban Boston, during the childhood he describes in the posthumously published Fashion Climbing: A New York Life. The last I saw myself on a crosstown bus in New York this spring, and was the kind of figure who would have ...

Whose Body?

Charles Glass: ‘Operation Mincemeat’, 22 July 2010

Operation Mincemeat: The True Spy Story that Changed the Course of World War Two 
by Ben Macintyre.
Bloomsbury, 400 pp., £16.99, January 2010, 978 0 7475 9868 8
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... of agony. Montagu, Cholmondeley et al created an identity, that of Royal Marine Captain William ‘Bill’ Martin, for the corpse. They ‘discussed and refined this imaginary person, his likes and dislikes, his habits and hobbies, his talents and weaknesses’. The characters of Martin and his supposed fiancée, Pam, became so real to their fabricators that ...

Impressions of Nietzsche

Keith Kyle, 27 July 1989

The Lives of Enoch Powell 
by Patrick Cosgrave.
Bodley Head, 518 pp., £16, April 1989, 0 370 30871 9
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... on which he is presently engaged, is perceptibly the same man who attacked the Royal Titles Bill for recognising republics inside a Commonwealth that was no longer called ‘British’, who fought a sustained campaign against British membership of the European Community that became all the more intense as people declined to embrace its rationale and who ...

Victorian Piles

David Cannadine, 18 March 1982

The Albert Memorial: The Monument in its Social and Architectural Context 
by Stephen Bayley.
Scholar Press, 160 pp., £18.50, September 1981, 0 85967 594 7
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Victorian and Edwardian Town Halls 
by Colin Cunningham.
Routledge, 315 pp., £25, July 1981, 9780710007230
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... municipal monsters was far from easy. In some cases, an individual patron might foot the entire bill, as was the case at Todmorden. In others, a corporation committee might be responsible, as at Hull and Rochdale. Or there might be a competition, as at Manchester, Sheffield, Belfast, Cardiff and Colchester. Whichever method was adopted, there were often ...

Upside Down, Inside Out

Colin Kidd: The 1975 Referendum, 25 October 2018

Yes to Europe! The 1975 Referendum and Seventies Britain 
by Robert Saunders.
Cambridge, 509 pp., £24.99, March 2018, 978 1 108 42535 3
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... run. By 1981 the Europhiles had mutinied, and the Gang of Four – Jenkins, Williams, Owen and Bill Rodgers – went off in their own craft, the Social Democratic Party. Indeed, the experience of centre-right Labour and centre-left Conservative politicians working more harmoniously across the aisle than with the extremists of their own parties planted the ...

I just let him have his beer

Christopher Tayler: John Williams Made it Work, 19 December 2019

The Man who Wrote the Perfect Novel: John Williams, ‘Stoner’ and the Writing Life 
by Charles Shields.
Texas, 305 pp., £23.99, October 2018, 978 1 4773 1736 5
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Nothing but the Night 
by John Williams.
NYRB, 144 pp., $14.95, February 2019, 978 1 68137 307 2
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... to Colorado, agreed to publish his novel and arranged for him to resume his studies on the GI Bill. He also found work for him at his press, and in 1947 the two men published Winters’s In Defence of Reason. Williams, who’d thought himself fairly enlightened on the grounds that he’d read Proust and Conrad Aiken, now came to feel that his writing had ...

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