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When Eyesight is Fully Industrialised

John Kerrigan, 16 October 1997

Open Sky 
by Paul Virilio, translated by Julie Rose.
Verso, 152 pp., £35, August 1997, 9781859848807
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... in an apocalyptic sense that the world as we know it is passing. As the blurb on the back of Julie Rose’s fine translation of Open Sky notes – under the chiliastic legend ‘one day the day will come when the day will not come’ – Virilio was inspired at the age of 18 by the Abbé Pierre and the movement of worker-priests and became a ...

Fatal Non-Readers

Hilary Mantel: Marie-Antoinette, 30 September 1999

The Wicked Queen: The Origins of the Myth of Marie-Antoinette 
by Chantal Thomas, translated by Julie Rose.
Zone, 255 pp., £17.95, June 1999, 0 942299 39 6
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... not surprising that she sought allies outside the usual royal circles. Her favourite dressmaker, Rose Bertin, was given free access to the royal apartments, and was known as ‘the female minister’. Choosing what to wear was Antoinette’s waking duty each day. With her first cup of coffee came a catalogue of samples from her wardrobe. Though the fashions ...

Thatcherschaft

Nicholas Spice, 1 October 1987

The Child in Time 
by Ian McEwan.
Cape, 220 pp., £10.95, September 1987, 9780224024990
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The Book and the Brotherhood 
by Iris Murdoch.
Chatto, 601 pp., £11.95, September 1987, 0 7011 3251 5
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... Kate was snatched and remembering how the subsequent shock and grief broke up his marriage with Julie. The skilful exposition of The Child in Time, dovetailing thoughts and memories into the continuum of present events, is typical of the professional way that McEwan handles his material in the novel. The book is about many things: about loss and its ...

Je suis bizarre

Sarah LeFanu: Gwen John, 6 September 2001

Gwen John: A Life 
by Sue Roe.
Chatto, 364 pp., £25, June 2001, 0 7011 6695 9
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... importunate women such as Gwen. At his home in Meudon, outside Paris, Rodin continued to live with Rose Beuret, the peasant woman with whom he had spent the previous forty years. John wrote letters to Rodin which she would deliver to the studio, pressing them into Rilke’s hand if she wasn’t allowed to go in; or she would lurk outside in a café, springing ...

Un Dret Egal

David A. Bell: Political Sentiment, 15 November 2007

Inventing Human Rights: A History 
by Lynn Hunt.
Norton, 272 pp., £15.99, April 2007, 978 0 393 06095 9
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... novels of private lives and loves, above all Richardson’s Pamela and Clarissa, and Rousseau’s Julie. These books received frenzied popular and critical acclaim, but not because they said anything about constitutions and rights, even allegorically. What they did do, according to Hunt, was to encourage readers to identify with weak female characters who ...

Gloriously Fucked

J. Robert Lennon: Paul Auster’s ‘4321’, 2 February 2017

4321 
by Paul Auster.
Faber, 866 pp., £20, January 2017, 978 0 571 32462 0
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... prehistory: Russian Jews emigrate to New York and bear a child, Stanley; Stanley marries comely Rose, and they beget our protagonist, Archie Ferguson. From there on, the book is divided into eight long chapters, and each chapter into four interleaved subchapters. Each subchapter develops one possible future life for Ferguson: chapter 1.1 is on the same ...

At Pallant House

Eleanor Birne: Pauline Boty, 6 February 2014

... on the side, including a bit part in Alfie. She was almost cast as the lead in Darling, before Julie Christie came along. She danced on Ready Steady Go!, modelled for David Bailey, introduced Bob Dylan to London, broke Peter Blake’s heart, was part-owner of a frock shop in Carnaby Street, married and gave birth to a daughter all before dying in 1966 at ...

Closets of Knowledge

Frank Kermode: Privacy, 19 June 2003

Privacy: Concealing the 18th-Century Self 
by Patricia Meyer Spacks.
Chicago, 248 pp., £25.50, May 2003, 0 226 76860 0
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... was to celebrate the satisfaction of weeping over one’s own sufferings and those of others. Julie and her sister Claire are prostrate, having fainted from joy at their reunion. Claire’s daughter screams. St Preux strides about uttering broken exclamations and experiencing convulsive spasms. Julie’s husband looks ...

Diary

Rosemary Dinnage: In Paris, 2 February 1984

... parents whom in life he believed he could never escape. Here is the invitation from Hermann and Julie Kafka to their only son’s bar-mitzvah, and here the black-edged card in Czech and German announcing his death. Here are the letters from Kafka, grandson of a Bohemian butcher, describing anti-semitic riots he has been watching from his window, and his ...

Strangers

John Lanchester, 11 July 1991

Serial Murder: An Elusive Phenomenon 
edited by Stephen Egger.
Praeger, 250 pp., £33.50, October 1990, 0 275 92986 8
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Serial Killers 
by Joel Norris.
Arrow, 333 pp., £4.99, July 1990, 0 09 971750 6
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Life after Life 
by Tony Parker.
Pan, 256 pp., £4.50, May 1991, 0 330 31528 5
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American Psycho 
by Bret Easton Ellis.
Picador, 399 pp., £6.99, April 1991, 0 330 31992 2
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Dirty Weekend 
by Helen Zahavi.
Macmillan, 185 pp., £13.99, April 1991, 0 333 54723 3
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Silence of the Lambs 
by Thomas Harris.
Mandarin, 366 pp., £4.99, April 1991, 0 7493 0942 3
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... committed in the North of England between 1975 and 1980, Sir Michael Havers, the Attorney-General, rose to tell the Judge that the Crown was dropping the charge of murder in favour of a guilty plea for manslaughter. Havers said that all the evidence tended towards the conclusion that ‘this is a case of diminished responsibility.’ Mr Justice Boreham replied ...

Ideal Speech

Geoffrey Hawthorn, 19 November 1981

Hegel contra Sociology 
by Gillian Rose.
Athlone, 261 pp., £18, May 1981, 0 485 11214 0
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The Political Philosophy of the Frankfurt School 
by George Friedman.
Cornell, 312 pp., £9.50, February 1981, 9780801412790
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Metacritique 
by Garbis Kortian, translated by John Raffan.
Cambridge, 134 pp., £12.50, August 1980, 0 631 12779 8
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The Idea of a Critical Theory 
by Raymond Geuss.
Cambridge, 99 pp., £10, December 1981, 0 521 24072 7
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The Politics of Social Theory 
by Russell Keat.
Blackwell, 245 pp., £12.50, August 1981, 0 631 12779 8
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Critical Hermeneutics 
by John Thompson.
Cambridge, 257 pp., £17.50, September 1981, 9780521239325
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Hermeneutics and the Human Sciences 
by Paul Ricoeur, translated by John Thompson.
Cambridge, 314 pp., £20, September 1981, 0 521 23497 2
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... freedom. Hence their interest now in Jürgen Habermas, that ‘unifying force’, as Gillian Rose grandiloquently describes him, ‘in the international world of sociological reason’. He produces a reasoned reflection on our collective biography in which he claims to reveal our rational will. There is, accordingly, more to Habermas than mere ...

Liquid Fiction

Thomas Jones: Francis Spufford, 25 April 2002

The Child that Books Built: A Memoir of Childhood and Reading 
by Francis Spufford.
Faber, 214 pp., £12.99, April 2002, 0 571 19132 0
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A Child’s Book of True Crime: A Novel 
by Chloe Hooper.
Cape, 238 pp., £12.99, February 2002, 0 224 06237 9
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... of the playground with his friends Richard and Roger, ‘trying to fart at will’; about avoiding Julie, ‘who liked to pounce on innocent-looking kids and ask them the Question – “D’you know what having it off means?”’; about the time Francis ‘crept onto the landing and kissed Aslan’s nose’ on a poster-map of Narnia ‘in experimental ...

Poor Hitler

Andrew O’Hagan: Toff Humour, 15 November 2007

The Mitfords: Letters between Six Sisters 
edited by Charlotte Mosley.
Fourth Estate, 834 pp., £25, September 2007, 978 1 84115 790 0
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... he was, despite his reputation as an imperialist brute. Superior Person, the biography by Kenneth Rose, makes little mention of the bons mots, but some of them exist in what Curzon would have cringed to hear called the popular memory. ‘Gentlemen do not take soup at luncheon’; ‘Dear me, I never knew that the lower classes had such white ...

Diary

Chris Mullin: A report from Westminster, 25 June 2009

... part in it. Then Douglas Carswell, the Tory backwoodsman who has tabled a motion of no confidence, rose and demanded that time be made available for a debate. ‘It’s not a substantive motion,’ the Speaker replied. ‘Oh yes it is,’ came voices from all sides. Extraordinary. I’ve never seen the Speaker heckled before. It was like watching Ceausescu’s ...

Rigging the Death Rate

Paul Taylor, 11 April 2013

... an opportunity to tell their stories’. Many such stories had been collected by campaigners like Julie Bailey, a café-owner whose mother died in Stafford Hospital after being treated with callous incompetence. In November 2007, Bailey founded a pressure group called Cure the NHS and began to gather reports of patients left to lie for days on urine-soaked ...

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