Books

Paths of enlightenment

26 May 2012 5:00 pm

Sam Leith enjoys some spell-binding poetic prose, and emerges a happier, lonelier and wiser man

Some legends flourish …

26 May 2012 4:00 pm

Confronted by the dead Athenian heroes of the Peloponnesian War, Pericles gave voice in his funeral oration to an idea…

Back to the Dreyfus Affair

26 May 2012 4:00 pm

Not bad, this life. Now 95, Bernard Lewis, is recognised everywhere as a leading historian of the Middle East.He is…

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An enigma wrapped in a conundrum

26 May 2012 4:00 pm

What to make of Banksy? Artist or vandal? Tate Modern holds no Banksys and, other than a redundant phone box…

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In a Greene shade

26 May 2012 4:00 pm

One of the unanticipated benefits of British rule in India is the body of distinguished writing in the English language…

Life imitates art

19 May 2012 11:00 am

The other evening my wife came home to find me watching re-runs of Steptoe and Son. The washing up had…

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A lord of thin air

19 May 2012 11:00 am

Richard Davenport-Hines finds the author of Couples to have been a thoroughly singular man

Who needs money?

19 May 2012 10:00 am

I was racking my brains, trying to understand money, trying to grasp exactly what it is, when I came across…

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Photo finish

19 May 2012 10:00 am

Christopher Isherwood kept diaries almost all his life. The first extant one dates from 1917, when he was 12, and…

Cracks in the landscape

19 May 2012 10:00 am

Sartre tried to prove that hell is other people by locking three strangers in a room for eternity and watching…

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Forever waging wars

19 May 2012 10:00 am

Death by buggery. Death by castration. Even death by being scared to death. Or so we are led to believe…

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Ladies, you don’t want to go back there

19 May 2012 10:00 am

In 2009 a magazine survey found that many women in their twenties wanted to stay at home baking while their…

An ordinary monster

12 May 2012 11:00 am

While studying Buddhist trance in Cambodia in 1971 the ethnologist François Bizot was ambushed and imprisoned by Khmer Rouge rebels.…

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Mission accomplished

12 May 2012 10:00 am

Two shots killed Osama bin Laden, one in his chest and one in his left eye. ‘Two taps’ is standard…

Trouble at mill

12 May 2012 10:00 am

I have some sympathy with the pioneering incomers who moved to the Yorkshire mill town of Hebden Bridge in the…

They’re all in it together

5 May 2012 12:00 pm

Ferdinand Mount is right to be shocked by the inequalities of modern British society; but his remedies are not brutal enough, says Polly Toynbee

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Reading the runes

5 May 2012 11:00 am

Martin Palmer is without doubt one of our leading authorities on the subject of Nature and sacred writing today —…

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Femmes du monde

5 May 2012 11:00 am

At the end of Dreaming in French, in ‘A Note on Sources’, Alice Kaplan terms her narrative ‘this pièce montée’,…

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Bookends: … and the inner tube

28 April 2012 10:00 am

In the early 1990s, when Boris Johnson was making his name as the Daily Telegraph’s Brussels correspondent, Sonia Purnell was…

Celebrating the Tube …

28 April 2012 10:00 am

The London Underground is methadone for people with nerd habits. Were it not for its twisty, multi-coloured map, its place…

Going to the fair

28 April 2012 10:00 am

Why would anyone want to buy this dreadful book? The frightful Simon Cowell appears to have co-operated with the author,…

It concentrates the mind wonderfully

28 April 2012 10:00 am

It’s odd, but we mostly go about as if death were optional, something we could get out of, like games…

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Out of sight, out of mind

28 April 2012 10:00 am

Arthur Newton and Peter Gavuzzi, long-distance interwar runners, are two of the most extraordinary British athletes. They are also the…

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Nature study

28 April 2012 10:00 am

On my desk is the vertebra of a narwhal. It was given to me by a man in Canada after…

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A moth to the flame

28 April 2012 10:00 am

The tissue of myth and hearsay surrounding the rebellious Pannonica Rothschild has made her a difficult creature to pin down, says Sam Leith