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America Explodes

Adam Shatz, 18 June 2020

... July, after a breakfast with the Democratic presidential candidate and former basketball star Bill Bradley, Joe went to Mount Rainier to do some birdwatching. He never returned. The most likely explanation is that he fell down a ravine and lost consciousness (he had a heart condition), but Washington is a very white state, and some of his friends and family ...

Diary

Christian Lorentzen: At the Conventions, 27 September 2012

... books?’ That reply always ends a conversation. On the way into the hall on the last night I saw Martin Amis, on assignment for Newsweek, being scanned with a metal detector. I collected my floor pass and headed for stage right, by the West Virginia delegation, who were wearing ‘War on Coal’ pins and mining helmets to remind the nation which state lights ...

Schusterism

C.H. Sisson, 18 April 1985

Diaries: 1923-1925 
by Siegfried Sassoon, edited by Rupert Hart-Davis.
Faber, 320 pp., £12.95, March 1985, 0 571 13322 3
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... The troubles he encountered during and after the war must of course have had earlier origins, and Martin Seymour-Smith is probably right in his diagnosis: ‘Possibly his strange and neurotic personality and its written expressions were in part a reaction against his having been deprived of both paternal influence and the Jewishness he knew he had ...

Mingling Freely at the Mermaid

Blair Worden: 17th-century poets and politics, 6 November 2003

The Crisis of 1614 and the Addled Parliament: Literary and Historical Perspectives 
edited by Stephen Clucas and Rosalind Davies.
Ashgate, 213 pp., £45, November 2003, 0 7546 0681 3
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The Politics of Court Scandal in Early Modern England: News Culture and the Overbury Affair 1603-60 
by Alastair Bellany.
Cambridge, 312 pp., £45, January 2002, 0 521 78289 9
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... subject, literature and history were commonly taught together. The Shakespearean critic A.C. Bradley and the historian J.S. Brewer had chairs in literature and history. In the 1870s the subjects might have grown up as a single faculty at Oxford had not Bishop Stubbs, the Regius Professor of History, vetoed the proposal. When Oxford gave social ...

Tang and Tone

Stephen Fender: The Federal Writer’s Project’s American epic, 18 March 2004

Portrait of America: A Cultural History of the Federal Writers’ Project 
by Jerrold Hirsch.
North Carolina, 293 pp., £16.50, November 2003, 0 8078 5489 1
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... on a patriotic mission to explore their country’s sense of itself. But the Texas congressman Martin Dies, chairman of what would become the House UnAmerican Activities Committee, didn’t see it that way. Apparently a believer in the notorious ‘thesis’ of the historian Frederick Jackson Turner, Dies thought that America had been created by a heroic ...

Bloody Sunday Report

Murray Sayle: Back to Bloody Sunday, 11 July 2002

... Cathedral, Londonderry, of Gráinne, daughter of Northern Ireland’s Education Minister Martin McGuinness (not yet knighted for his varied public services, but it’s early days), and Sean ‘Harpie’ Hargan, the Derry football hero. The TV wasn’t there, we thought wistfully, to cover us, or the long-running story that had brought us back to ...

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