The Week

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Cappuccino Culture

The Spectator on Culture — and our new team blog This week’s issue concludes our guide to 40 poems you should know, hot on the heels of The Spectator’s (controversial) choice of the best 50 films of all time. The response to both lists has been passionate and powerful: it comes as no surprise that

Reform the religion

A party striving to make the huge leap from opposition to office must speak with one voice, maintain scrupulous clarity and ensure iron discipline. It must reassure the voters relentlessly, persuading them at every available opportunity that it has changed and that it grasps why it has been defeated in prior general elections. Yet a


Diary – 22 August 2009

I spent last weekend in Edinburgh taking part in a small celebration of a friend’s eventful life. Fred was dazzlingly intelligent and witty and kind, and though I hadn’t seen him in years, the news of his death came as an awful shock. Poignantly, I first heard the news from Cary, one of my best

Diary of Notting Hill Nobody | 22 August 2009

Monday Mrs Hannan on the phone again, wanting to know when she can have her husband back. Told her to hold the line while I asked Nigel who stopped Twittering just long enough to shake his head in a v grim way and make a sign with his finger across his throat. Not sure what

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Letters | 22 August 2009

Conservative progress Sir: So the notion of ‘progressive’ conservatism is roiling British politics these days (Politics, 15 August). Well, come on over to the colonies, mate, and get educated! We in Canada have had ‘progressive conservative’ political parties, at both the provincial and federal levels of government, for decades — they’re even officially named Progressive