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Bros

Tony Tanner, 22 April 1993

The Correspondence of William James. Vol. I: William and Henry 1861-1884 
edited by Ignas Skrupskelis and Elizabeth Berkeley.
Virginia, 477 pp., £39.95, January 1993, 0 8139 1338 1
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Henry James: The Imagination of Genius 
by Fred Kaplan.
Hodder, 620 pp., £25, November 1992, 9780340555538
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... I take up my pen once more after this long interval to converse with my in many ways twin bro.’ Thus William James to Henry in 1873. We might put against this comments from earlier letters. ‘Our ways are so far apart that I doubt if we ever really get intimate’ (1867). But then again, a year later: ‘I feel as if you were one of the 2 or 3 sole intellectual & moral companions I have ...

Jabs

Richard Horton, 8 October 1992

Edward Jenner 1749-1823 
by Richard Fisher.
Deutsch, 361 pp., £20, July 1991, 0 233 98681 2
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... community. Born on 17 May 1749, he was the second son of the marriage between the vicar of Berkeley, Gloucestershire, and the daughter of a former vicar of the same parish. Orphaned at the age of five, he attended grammar school and soon became apprentice to a local surgeon. At 21 he moved to London to continue his medical studies as anatomical ...

A University for Protestants

Denis Donoghue, 5 August 1982

Trinity College Dublin 1592-1952: An Academic History 
by R.B. McDowell and D.A. Webb.
Cambridge, 580 pp., £35, June 1982, 0 521 23931 1
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... been given to the city at the dissolution of the monasteries. A year later, on 3 March 1592, Queen Elizabeth issued a charter incorporating ‘the College of the Holy and Undivided Trinity near Dublin’ as ‘the mother of a university’ with the aim of providing ‘education, training and instruction of youths and students in the arts and faculties ... that ...

Never Knowingly Naked

David Wootton: 17th-century bodies, 15 April 2004

Common Bodies: Women, Touch and Power in 17th-Century England 
by Laura Gowing.
Yale, 260 pp., £25, September 2003, 0 300 10096 5
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... in its inception) a corporal politics, intended to reconfigure our understanding of power. At Berkeley he ran a seminar from which two other major books emerged: Peter Brown’s The Body and Society: Men, Women and Sexual Renunciation in Early Christianity (1988), which explored the theme of carnality and spirituality, and Thomas Laqueur’s Making ...

Use Use Use

Robert Baird: Robert Duncan’s Dream, 23 October 2013

Robert Duncan: The Ambassador from Venus 
by Lisa Jarnot.
California, 509 pp., £27.95, August 2013, 978 0 520 23416 1
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... to that earlier, atavistic, inner life of a person’. His extracurricular education continued at Berkeley, where a circle of female friends including Pauline Kael taught him the byways of modernist poetry and leftist politics. He joined the campus literary magazine and discovered there ‘a stubbornness that should’ve told me I was going to be able to hold ...

Calcutta in the Cotswolds

David Gilmour: What did the British do for India?, 3 March 2005

Empire Families: Britons and Late Imperial India 
by Elizabeth Buettner.
Oxford, 324 pp., £25, July 2004, 0 19 924907 5
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... An Indian career meant that sons hardly saw their fathers once they were no longer infants. As Elizabeth Buettner observes in Empire Families, Sir Adelbert Talbot, the Resident in Kashmir, retired in the same month that his son Addy came out to start his own career in the ICS. Henry Cotton’s grandfather served in Madras from 1801 to 1830, retiring the ...

Diary

Kevin Kopelson: Confessions of a Plagiarist, 22 May 2008

... process and not so simple larceny. Between process and, oh – just ‘write it!’ (to quote Elizabeth Bishop) – plagiarism. The answer, by way of explanation for which I offer the following narrative (or confession), is ‘no.’ Now, I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking that all such confessions are deceptive. To quote J.D. Salinger ...

Against the Same-Old Same-Old

Seamus Perry: The Brownings, 3 November 2016

The Brownings’ Correspondence, Vol 21 
edited by Philip Kelley, Scott Lewis, Joseph Phelan, Edward Hagan and Rhian Williams.
Wedgestone, 432 pp., $110, April 2014, 978 0 911459 38 8
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The Brownings’ Correspondence, Vol 22 
edited by Philip Kelley, Scott Lewis, Joseph Phelan, Edward Hagan and Rhian Williams.
Wedgestone, 430 pp., $110, June 2015, 978 0 911459 39 5
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Robert Browning 
edited by Richard Cronin and Dorothy McMillan.
Oxford, 904 pp., £95, December 2014, 978 0 19 959942 4
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Browning Studies: Being Select Papers by Members of the Browning Society 
edited by Edward Berdoe.
Routledge, 348 pp., £30, August 2015, 978 1 138 02488 5
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... an idealist) phenomenon of ‘outness’, a favourite word he had unearthed in Bishop Berkeley; and a large element of his huge and contradictory mind remained deeply attached to those ‘external things’ that were otherwise meant obligingly to fleet away before the enchantments of Mind. Wordsworth, likewise, began his autobiographical epic with ...

Ayer, Anscombe and Empiricism

Alasdair MacIntyre, 17 April 1980

Perception and Identity: Essays presented to A.J. Ayer with his replies to them 
edited by G.E. MacDonald.
Macmillan, 358 pp., £15, December 1979, 0 333 27182 3
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Intention and Intentionality: Essays in Honour of G.E.M. Anscombe 
edited by Cora Diamond and Jenny Teichmann.
Harvester, 205 pp., £16.95, December 1979, 0 85527 985 0
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... Locke, Berkeley and Hume were three very different philosophers with very different preoccupations, modes of argument and attitudes towards the world. But by the middle of the 19th century it had become the custom to view them as the successive representatives of a single empiricist tradition. It is the English rather than the British who excel in the invention of traditions ...

Toe-Lining

Frank Kermode, 22 January 1998

Shakespeare’s Troy: Drama, Politics and the Translation of Empire 
by Heather James.
Cambridge, 283 pp., £37.50, December 1997, 0 521 59223 2
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... that one’s own nation had inherited Roman dominion and classical learning. It is what Bishop Berkeley had in mind much later when he wrote: ‘Westward the course of empire takes its way.’ Berkeley believed so firmly in the idea that he left his library to Yale and Harvard and his name to a great Californian ...

Diary

Rebecca Solnit: Get Off the Bus, 20 February 2014

... The same morning the buses were stopped in downtown San Francisco, some hellraisers went to the Berkeley home of a Google employee who, they say, works on robots for the military. (Google recently purchased eight robotics companies and is going in a lot of new directions, to put it mildly.) After ringing his doorbell, they unfurled a banner that read ...

Diary

Elaine Showalter: On the Phi Beta Kappa Tour, 10 March 1994

... Austen, and posed New Age questions on the courtship rituals of Pride and Prejudice: ‘Suppose Elizabeth Bennet said to her parents: “I’ve found a life partner I really love, and she’s a woman”?’ Though I had asked for a modern hotel, with a telly and a minibar, my hosts were sure that I would enjoy The Morning Glory, a local guest house near the ...

Taunted with the Duke of Kent, she married the Aga Khan

Rosemary Hill: Coming Out, 19 October 2006

Last Curtsey: The End of the Debutantes 
by Fiona MacCarthy.
Faber, 305 pp., £20, October 2006, 0 571 22859 3
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... who had curtsied to Victoria. Yet the girls who grew up wearing ‘princess coats’ like Elizabeth and Margaret’s emerged from the season into a very different world and several came out not as swans but as viragos. Among MacCarthy’s near contemporaries at the Palace were Vanessa Redgrave, Rose Dugdale and Teresa ‘Hayter of the ...

Why praise Astaire?

Michael Wood: Stanley Cavell, 20 October 2005

Philosophy the Day after Tomorrow 
by Stanley Cavell.
Harvard, 302 pp., £18.95, May 2005, 0 674 01704 8
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... deaths’ reappear in Philosophy the Day after Tomorrow, again in connection with scepticism. When Elizabeth Bennet receives a letter from Darcy and realises that she has been ‘blind, partial, prejudiced, absurd’, this moment of self-knowledge also represents, Cavell says, her knowledge of being known, of being acknowledged, ‘as if until then her ...

Gesture as Language

David Trotter, 30 January 1992

A Cultural History of Gestures: From Antiquity to the Present 
edited by Jan Bremmer and Herman Roodenburg.
Polity, 220 pp., £35, December 1991, 0 7456 0786 1
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The New Oxford Book of 17th-Century Verse 
by Alastair Fowler.
Oxford, 830 pp., £25, November 1991, 0 19 214164 3
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... record that Johnson made any effort to restrain the limb with which he was about to refute Bishop Berkeley. It is because we cannot help our gestures that so much effort has been put, over the centuries, into classifying and regulating them. Traces of this effort survive: in the manuals compiled for orators, actors, preachers; in legal depositions and ...

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