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Unfair to Furtwängler

Nicholas Spice, 5 December 1991

Trial of Strength: Furtwängler and the Third Reich 
by Fred Prieberg, translated by Christopher Dolan.
Quartet, 394 pp., £30, October 1991, 0 7043 2790 2
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Menuhin: A Family Portrait 
by Tony Palmer.
Faber, 207 pp., £15.99, September 1991, 0 571 16582 6
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... he had to give his first concert under armed guard. This is only one of numerous examples given by Tony Palmer of Menuhin’s willingness throughout his life to put himself out, and, where necessary, on the line, for people and matters of principle. He comes out of this book well, much better in fact than he did out of the television documentary – shown ...

We were the Lambert boys

Paul Driver, 22 May 1986

The Lamberts: George, Constant and Kit 
by Andrew Motion.
Chatto, 388 pp., £13.95, April 1986, 0 7011 2731 7
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... Kit became a casualty of the Sixties even as he had been the improbable personification, what Tony Palmer calls ‘a parody case’, of that decade. He was beaten up – effectively murdered – at a Kensington gay club by drug-traffickers whom he could not pay. He fell down his mother’s staircase later and suffered a fatal brain haemorrhage. His ...

Diary

David Gascoyne: Notebook, New Year 1991, 25 January 1996

... to tell us Edmond died in his sleep early this morning. Stunned. Rang the Independent, to find Tony Rudolf is already working on obit. Friday 4: Recovered sufficiently to be able to go round to rue de Picpus for a last supper with Jean-Claude and Annick. After a light lunch at l’ Aquarium café-tabac opposite hotel, driven to Roissy to catch 4.45 plane ...

Radical Aliens

David Cole: The Sacco-Vanzetti Affair, 22 October 2009

The Sacco-Vanzetti Affair: America on Trial 
by Moshik Temkin.
Yale, 316 pp., £25, July 2009, 978 0 300 12484 2
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... documentaries, it has also inspired novels and films, and even came up on The Sopranos, cited by Tony and Carmela Soprano to their children as evidence of the prejudice that had greeted their Italian immigrant ancestors. Most historians, lawyers and journalists who have studied the case have tried to determine whether Sacco and Vanzetti were guilty or ...

Disgrace under Pressure

Andrew O’Hagan: Lad mags, 3 June 2004

Stag & Groom Magazine 
edited by Perdita Patterson.
Hanage, 130 pp., £4, May 2004
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Zoo 
edited by Paul Merrill.
Emap East, 98 pp., £1.20, May 2004
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Nuts 
edited by Phil Hilton.
IPC, 98 pp., £1.20, May 2004
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Loaded 
edited by Martin Daubney.
IPC, 194 pp., £3.30, June 2004
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Jack 
edited by Michael Hodges.
Dennis, 256 pp., £3, May 2004
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Esquire 
edited by Simon Tiffin.
National Magazine Company, 180 pp., £3.40, June 2004
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GQ 
edited by Dylan Jones.
Condé Nast, 200 pp., £3.20, June 2004
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Men's Health 
edited by Morgan Rees.
Rodale, 186 pp., £3.40, June 2004
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Arena Homme Plus: ‘The Boys of Summer’ 
edited by Ashley Heath.
Emap East, 300 pp., £5, April 2004
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Stag & Groom Magazine 
edited by Perdita Patterson.
Hanage, 130 pp., £4, May 2004
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Zoo 
edited by Paul Merrill.
Emap East, 98 pp., £1.20, May 2004
Show More
Nuts 
edited by Phil Hilton.
IPC, 98 pp., £1.20, May 2004
Show More
Loaded 
edited by Martin Daubney.
IPC, 194 pp., £3.30, June 2004
Show More
Jack 
edited by Michael Hodges.
Dennis, 256 pp., £3, May 2004
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Esquire 
edited by Simon Tiffin.
National Magazine Company, 180 pp., £3.40, June 2004
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GQ 
edited by Dylan Jones.
Condé Nast, 200 pp., £3.20, June 2004
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Men’s Health 
edited by Morgan Rees.
Rodale, 186 pp., £3.40, June 2004
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Arena Homme Plus: ‘The Boys of Summer’ 
edited by Ashley Heath.
Emap East, 300 pp., £5, April 2004
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... for reassurance about the wonders of male normalcy. They look for all this in the way people like Tony Parsons have taught them, in a spirit of soft-core irony and hard-core sentiment. But apart from reassurance and a sort of avenging pride, what are these magazines selling to their readers? With their grisly combinations of sensitivity and debasement ...

Terms of Art

Conor Gearty: Human Rights Law, 11 March 2010

The Law of Human Rights 
by Richard Clayton and Hugh Tomlinson.
Oxford, 2443 pp., £295, March 2009, 978 0 19 926357 8
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Human Rights Law and Practice 
edited by Anthony Lester, David Pannick and Javan Herberg.
Lexis Nexis, 974 pp., £237, April 2009, 978 1 4057 3686 2
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Human Rights: Judicial Protection in the United Kingdom 
by Jack Beatson, Stephen Grosz, Tom Hickman, Rabinder Singh and Stephanie Palmer.
Sweet and Maxwell, 905 pp., £124, September 2008, 978 0 421 90250 3
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... there is one remarkable case in which the judge sets out in detail the then prime minister Tony Blair’s privately expressed exasperation at the UK’s inability to ship a suspect back to Egypt to be interrogated by the security apparatus of one of his holiday friends, Hosni Mubarak. This simple guarantee against serious ill-treatment has not ...

Out of the Gothic

Tom Shippey, 5 February 1987

Trillion Year Spree: The History of Science Fiction 
by Brian Aldiss and David Wingrove.
Gollancz, 511 pp., £15, October 1986, 0 575 03942 6
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Eon 
by Greg Bear.
Gollancz, 504 pp., £10.95, October 1986, 0 575 03861 6
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The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy: A Trilogy in Four Parts 
by Douglas Adams.
Heinemann, 590 pp., £9.95, September 1986, 0 434 00920 2
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Humpty Dumpty in Oakland 
by Philip K. Dick.
Gollancz, 199 pp., £9.95, October 1986, 0 575 03875 6
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The Watcher 
by Jane Palmer.
Women’s Press, 177 pp., £2.50, September 1986, 0 7043 4038 0
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I, Vampire 
by Jody Scott.
Women’s Press, 206 pp., £2.50, September 1986, 0 7043 4036 4
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... a conviction that social conditions are epiphenomena. Aldiss cites David Lodge’s argument that Tony-Bungay is a better novel than it appears because it insists on spreading its focus from the Ponderevos and Bladesover House to ‘the Condition of England’ itself. In similar style, one could argue that much ‘near-Science Fiction’ gets misread because ...

In the bright autumn of my senescence

Christopher Hitchens, 6 January 1994

In the Heat of the Struggle: Twenty-Five Years of ‘Socialist Worker’ 
by Paul Foot.
Bookmarks, 288 pp., £12.50, November 1993, 0 906224 94 2
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Why You Should Join the Socialists 
by Paul Foot.
Bookmarks, 70 pp., £1.90, November 1993, 0 906224 80 2
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... Healy’s ugly little gang (soon to magnetise the Redgraves), but it did have an éminence named Tony Cliff, the nom de guerre of a Palestinian Jewish exile born Ygael Gluckstein. Cliff was a great speaker and enthusiast and raconteur, who had laid bare the futility of orthodox Trotskyism and the persisting illusion that the Soviet Union was any sort of ...

Cut, Kill, Dig, Drill

Jonathan Raban: Sarah Palin’s Cunning, 9 October 2008

... surroundings, for Wasilla itself – quite unlike its rival and contemporary in the valley, Palmer, 11 miles to the east – is a centreless, sprawling ribbon of deregulated development along a four-lane highway, backed on both sides by subdivisions occupied by trailer-homes, cabins, tract-housing and ranch-style bungalows, most built since 1990. It’s ...

Diary

Alan Bennett: Notes on 1997, 1 January 1998

... Jocelyn has known or worked with. There is music that has been specially composed, a poem by Tony Harrison, the theme of which is all the toasts he and Jocelyn have drunk together in all the various places where they have worked around the world. They’re due to set off on Monday on another epic journey, the script, based on the Prometheus legend, is ...

Diary

Alan Bennett: Bennett’s Dissection, 1 January 2009

... to the half-opened leaves makes the trees bulky and seemingly as laden with blossom as in a Samuel Palmer. In the afternoon we go over to Austwick and walk down the muddy lane to the clapper bridge. There are sheep and lambs everywhere and the beck is very full, gliding wickedly between the stones before flattening out over the fields. It’s a perfect scene ...

Dazed and Confused

Paul Laity: Are the English human?, 28 November 2002

Patriots: National Identity in Britain 1940-2000 
by Richard Weight.
Macmillan, 866 pp., £25, May 2002, 0 333 73462 9
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Pariah: Misfortunes of the British Kingdom 
by Tom Nairn.
Verso, 176 pp., £13, September 2002, 1 85984 657 2
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Identity of England 
by Robert Colls.
Oxford, 422 pp., £25, October 2002, 0 19 924519 3
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Albion: The Origins of the English Imagination 
by Peter Ackroyd.
Chatto, 518 pp., £25, October 2002, 1 85619 716 6
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... is singled out for praise as ‘dismissive of establishments wherever he found them’ – Harry Palmer ‘came to epitomise the decline of deference’. (Peter Hitchens, in contrast, uses the framework of national identity in The Abolition of Britain, published in 1999, to issue a diatribe against the ‘social revolution’ – the disappearance of ...

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