‘UK’ Category

  1. “Sometimes pace _is_ argument”


    April 16, 2017 by AK

    Ada Palmer, who teaches history at Chicago, writes science fiction and composes music, reminisces on her early encounter with Thomas Carlyle’s prose: My cohort and I were wolfing down a book a day in those months, looting each for thesis and argument, so we could regurgitate debates, and discuss how our own projects fit with the larger questions …
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  2. (The) Burgess-Kubrick Squib


    March 11, 2017 by AK

    In Prospect Magazine, Kevin Jackson writes that Stanley Kubrick’s “slick and meretricious film” was an “ambiguous triumph” for Anthony Burgess… …since he regarded the book, most of which he had dashed off in three weeks, as a squib. It’s not clear to me whether Jackson put “squib” to mean a witty tour de force – …
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  3. William Golding mistook a Bob Dylan puppet for Satan


    March 8, 2017 by AK

    Reviewing John Carey’s biography of William Golding in 2009, Peter Conrad reported: Once, staying at a friend’s house in London, Golding awoke in panic and dismembered a Bob Dylan puppet because he thought it was Satan. Conrad is unimpressed by Carey’s analysis of Golding’s symbolic violence: …it may be that Carey is too sane or …
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  4. “Far right news sites entirely in Cyrillic script”


    February 27, 2017 by AK

    About two weeks ago, Mark Townsend wrote in The Guardian: Another Briton said to have had an influential intervention in the US elections is 52-year-old Jim Dowson, a Scottish Calvinist who founded the far right, anti-Muslim party Britain First. Dowson, from a hub in Hungary, set up a network of US-focused websites and Facebook groups with …
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  5. Adam Shatz’s violent fantasies


    February 18, 2017 by AK

    Adam Shatz, a contributing editor at The London Review of Books, writes on his blog: Many, perhaps most of us who live in coastal cities have found ourselves having criminal thoughts and violent fantasies since 9 November. Some involve Trump and Steve Bannon… still others involve the fabled white working class that is supposed to have …
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  6. Humming


    January 13, 2017 by AK

    One If you were in the real estate business in NYC, London or Toronto in the late 1980s, the 1990s or the noughties, there’s no way you could have avoided dealing with shady operators of Soviet or third-world extraction. I can’t tell if the cash inflow from the former USSR into UK and US real estate was greater …
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  7. The two Moores


    January 9, 2017 by AK

    Until this year, I did not realize how many Russian translations of Thomas Moore’s poetry had been produced in the 19th century, especially its first half. For details, I recommend two investigations into the subject (in Russian): Mikhail Alexeyev’s 1982 article in Literary Heritage (Volume 91, Chapter VIII [warning: a large pdf], pp. 657-824), which …
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  8. Lalla Rookh in Berlin, January 1821


    December 28, 2016 by AK

    Schumann’s second oratorio, Der Rose Pilgerfahrt (The Pilgrimage of the Rose, 1851) is firmly set on European soil: it begins with elves in a round dance on Midsummer hearing a quite, plaintive voice, the voice of the Rose. In contrast, Das Paradies und die Peri (1843) is errantly Oriental, flying the listener from India to …
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  9. Up in smoke


    November 8, 2016 by AK

    Pavel Felgenhauer, the veteran Russian military observer (I recall reading him in 1992 or 93), sees the Admiral Kuznetsov‘s journey to the Levant as an argument for more funding, advanced by the Russian admirals to erode opposition from the finance ministry and the “tank generals.” A request for money for a major upgrade. (Felgenhauer also seems to believe the …
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  10. A compassionate behemoth


    November 4, 2016 by AK

    William Davies writes in the London Review of Books: Home secretaries see the world in Hobbesian terms, as a dangerous and frightening place, in which vulnerable people are robbed, murdered and blown up, and these things happen because the state has failed them. What’s worse, lawyers and Guardian readers – who are rarely the victims of …
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