Category Archives: History

Notebook

[A]n abyss divided left and right even during years of relative calm, when political issues were not particularly prominent. The way of thinking of the two camps, their mode of expression, their whole mental make-up, were different. Just as a … Continue reading

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Notebook

At the beginning of December I took a trip to New York, and saw Berthold Viertel. I got home just as war was declared with Japan. Of course, our group was wildly excited – which surprised me, in a way, … Continue reading

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Notebook

The temperature that night was -75.8 degrees, and I will not pretend it did not convince me that Dante was right when he placed the circles of ice below the circles of fire. Still we slept sometimes, and always lay … Continue reading

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Stripes

[I posted this at The Times’ First Edition Facebook page] Andrew Bacevich, an academic with a rare insider’s understanding of the American army (he was a senior officer and lost a son in the Iraq war) has written a good … Continue reading

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Notebook

All of the documents through 1938 that survive among Gould’s papers give his surname as “Gold”, but beginning at least as early as June 1939 the family name was almost always printed “Gould” in newspapers, programmes, and other sources… Xenophobia … Continue reading

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On the bench

For the last few days I’ve been reading “Jeremy Hutchinson’s Case Histories”, a biography of sorts of one of the most celebrated defence lawyers of the last century.  (He’s still  alive, and turned 102 this year.) One chapter is devoted … Continue reading

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Notebook

By 1815, memories of the 1790s were fragmented and confused, varying greatly according to the divergent memories of individuals, families and regions. Some of the most famous mythical symbols of the Revolution had yet to be propagated. Building barricades – … Continue reading

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Notebook

Macaulay , like Burke, was an intellectual MP who harnessed history to politics. He was a literary celebrity of forceful personality and decided opinions – “I wish I was as cocksure of anything as Tom Macaulay is of everything,” remarked … Continue reading

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Marooned

Well, I went in with my expectations set reasonably low – the swooning and gasping from many of the critics automatically put me on my guard. (Remember how they tried to convince us that “Skyfall” was the best Bond film … Continue reading

Posted in Film, History, Reviews, Uncategorized, World War 2 | Tagged , ,

Notebook

St Stephen’s Chapel was the seat of the House of Commons from 1550 until it was destroyed by fire in 1834. Parliament’s authority was enhanced by this spectacular setting, and from it the English developed the habit of housing important … Continue reading

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