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Pity the monsters

Richard Altick, 18 December 1980

The Elephant Man 
by Bernard Pomerance.
Faber, 71 pp., £2.25, June 1980, 0 571 11569 1
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The Elephant Man: the Book of the Film 
by Joy Kuhn.
Virgin, 90 pp., £6.95, October 1980, 9780907080091
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The Elephant Man 
by Christine Sparks.
Futura, 272 pp., £1.25, August 1980, 0 7088 1942 7
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The Elephant Man and Other Reminiscences 
by Frederick Treves.
Star, 126 pp., £95, August 1980, 0 352 30747 1
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The Elephant Man and Other Freaks 
by Sian Richards.
Futura, 197 pp., £1.25, October 1980, 0 7088 1927 3
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The True History of the Elephant Man 
by Michael Howell and Peter Ford.
Allison and Busby, 190 pp., £6.95, March 1980, 0 85031 353 8
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... wretch of hideous aspect’ who hid out in a vile opium den near the docks. But it is, in fact, Frederick Treves MRCS, a medical contemporary of Dr Watson and Dr Conan Doyle, describing, after forty years, the first scene – in an East End hospital – in the even stranger story of the Elephant Man, the least of whose manifold disfigurements was a ...

Paradise Lost

Nicholas Everett, 11 July 1991

Omeros 
by Derek Walcott.
Faber, 325 pp., £17.50, September 1990, 0 571 16070 0
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Collected Poems 
by Norman MacCaig.
Chatto, 456 pp., £18, September 1990, 0 7011 3713 4
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The Mail from Anywhere 
by Brad Leithauser.
Oxford, 55 pp., £5.95, September 1990, 0 19 282779 0
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An Elegy for the Galosherman: New and Selected Poems 
by Matt Simpson.
Bloodaxe, 128 pp., £6.95, October 1990, 1 85224 103 9
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... rather two hundred years earlier, the British and French are fighting over St Lucia, which, as Sir Frederick Treves wrote in The Cradle of the Deep (1910), ‘is the Helen of the West Indies and has been the cause of more blood-shedding than was ever provoked by Helen of Troy. Seven times was it held by the English and seven times by the French ...
... was not a horror attraction, like her more famous successor, the Elephant Man (whom his rescuer Frederick Treves described, when he first found him in 1884, as ‘the most disgusting specimen of humanity that I have ever seen’). The general sense of wonder surrounding the Sicilian Fairy was to do with her being an adult in miniature, or with her ...

History’s Postman

Tom Nairn: The Jewishness of Karl Marx, 26 January 2006

Karl Marx ou l’esprit du monde 
by Jacques Attali.
Fayard, 549 pp., €23, May 2005, 2 213 62491 7
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... the nationalisme crystallised by the Franco-Prussian War. In The Course of German Nationalism from Frederick the Great to Bismarck (1991), Hagen Schulze outlined something of the Rhine country’s political fate, most famously signalled by the ‘Rhine-song-movement’ that emerged after the publication of some verses in the Trierische Zeitung in 1840: They ...

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