Books

Memoirs of an academic brawler  

22 March 2014 9:00 am

It’s a misleading title, because there is nothing unexpected about Professor Carey, in any sense. He doesn’t turn up to…

The making of a novelist

22 March 2014 9:00 am

Karl Ove Knausgaard was eight months old when his family moved to the island of Tromøya; he left it aged…

'Marcia painting her self-portrait’; detail from Boccaccio’s On Famous Women (1402)

The selfie from Akhenaten to Tracey Emin

22 March 2014 9:00 am

If ever there was a time to write a book about self-portraits, this must be it.  ‘Past interest in the…

The talent and tragedy of Richard Pryor

22 March 2014 9:00 am

The troubles of Richard Pryor’s life are well known — from his childhood in a brothel to his self-immolation via…

Books and Arts

22 March 2014 9:00 am

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Cracking up

20 March 2014 3:00 pm

The troubles of Richard Pryor’s life are well known — from his childhood in a brothel to his self-immolation via…

Småland

20 March 2014 3:00 pm

Småland’s wooden cottages with sunflowers lack nothing. Brightly-painted, small in the distance like stories, they call the eye on and…

Cracking up

20 March 2014 3:00 pm

The troubles of Richard Pryor’s life are well known — from his childhood in a brothel to his self-immolation via…

Småland

20 March 2014 3:00 pm

Småland’s wooden cottages with sunflowers lack nothing. Brightly-painted, small in the distance like stories, they call the eye on and…

A dreadful warning: a fisherman paddles through a tide of toxic waste on the Yamuna river, against a backdrop of smog and high-rise construction

Lawlessness, corruption, poverty and pollution: the city where we're all headed

15 March 2014 9:00 am

India’s vast polluted capital, where brutality, corruption and ruthless self-seeking are endemic, could be the blueprint of the future, says Peter Parker

Sweden’s warrior king Gustavus Adolphus inspired the English far more than their own effete, self-righteous Stuart monarchs

Can anyone make a good case for the Stuart kings?

15 March 2014 9:00 am

Historians have generally not been kind in their assessment of Britain’s first two Stuart kings. Their political skills are regarded…

Gay Paree: food, feuds and phalluses – I mean, fallacies

15 March 2014 9:00 am

In his preface to The Joy of Gay Sex (revised and expanded third edition), Edmund White praises the ‘kinkier’ aspects…

Madness and massacre in the jungle

15 March 2014 9:00 am

In his new novel, Children of Paradise, Fred D’Aguiar, a British-Guyanese writer, returns to the Jonestown massacre, previously the subject…

What other job lets you swear in front of your parents?

15 March 2014 9:00 am

There aren’t many jobs that allow a nice middle-class Jewish boy to say ‘fuck’ in front of his parents. But…

A master craftsman of the anecdote

15 March 2014 9:00 am

One of the many charms of this book is its sheer unexpectedness, which makes it hard to review, for to…

Queen Victoria with the naughty bits put back

15 March 2014 9:00 am

Queen Victoria was the inventor of official royal biography. It was she who commissioned the monumental five-volume life of Prince…

The harrowing, inspiring life of Andrew Sachs

15 March 2014 9:00 am

Comedians always like to claim that they started making jokes after childhoods made harsh by poverty; that at a formative…

Lost Kerouac that should have stayed lost

15 March 2014 9:00 am

In 1944, when he was 22, Jack Kerouac lost a manuscript — in a taxi, as he thought, but probably…

Middlemarch: the novel that reads you

15 March 2014 9:00 am

The genesis of The Road to Middlemarch was a fine article in the New Yorker about  Rebecca Mead’s unsuccessful search…

On the trail of a Victorian femme fatale

15 March 2014 9:00 am

Kate Colquhoun sets herself a number of significant challenges in her compelling new book, Did She Kill Him? Like Kate…

Books and Arts

15 March 2014 9:00 am

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Kim Philby at the press conference he called in 1955 to deny being the ‘Third Man’

Kim Philby got away with it because he was posh

8 March 2014 9:00 am

Kim Philby’s treachery escaped detection for so long through the stupidity and snobbery of the old-boy network surrounding him, says Philip Hensher

The Edward Snowden scandal viewed from planet Guardian

8 March 2014 9:00 am

Last summer a National Security Agency (NSA) contractor called Edward Snowden leaked a vast trove of secret information on the…

The spy who came in from le Carré

8 March 2014 9:00 am

The single most terrifying moment of my adult life occurred at 8.55 a.m. on the morning of Tuesday 5 August…

Portrait of T.E. Lawrence by Augustus John

Lawrence of Arabia, meet Curt of Cairo

8 March 2014 9:00 am

How do you write a new book about T.E. Lawrence, especially when the man himself described his escapades, or a…