Ted Hughes

From dirty old town... to New Age nirvana

The Yorkshire town that’s gone from dirty old buildings to New Age nirvana

29 September 2018 9:00 am

Bernard Ingham once told a story about a reporter from the Financial Times who went to cover an election in…

Blinded by love: Sylvia Plath with her son Nick in Devon in 1962

‘Ted is liar. Ted beats me up. Ted wishes me dead’: Sylvia Plath descends into madness and misery

15 September 2018 9:00 am

In 1923, a Frenchman, Emile Coué, persuaded millions of Americans to finger a piece of string with exactly 20 knots.…

Who is Sylvia – what is she?

7 October 2017 9:00 am

In May 1956, three months after meeting Ted Hughes, one before they will marry, Sylvia Plath writes to her mother…

How The Satanic Verses failed to burn

28 May 2016 9:00 am

This is a book which, as one eyes its lavish illustrations and dips into its elegant prose, looks as if…

Hughes in 1986: Bate simply fails to make the case his book stands on – that the poet was a sadist

An unauthorised, and unconvincing, biography of Ted Hughes

3 October 2015 8:00 am

Craig Raine says that Jonathan Bate’s unauthorised biography of Ted Hughes gets it wrong on every level

Poet Laureate Ted Hughes (Photo: Getty)

In Crow’s dark shadow

26 September 2015 8:00 am

A dead parent, the interrogation of a literary inheritance, and over everything, a bird: Max Porter is apparently unafraid to…

Praise, insults, posh gin – and other perils of the book launch

4 July 2015 9:00 am

Rachel Johnson, in last week’s Spectator diary, says that her husband says she only writes a book in order to…

I fear for this year’s Proms

6 June 2015 9:00 am

As Sepp Blatter has so affectingly remarked, the organisation he formerly headed needs evolution, not revolution. There is a consensus…

There’s nothing wrong with getting into Thomas Tallis on the back of Fifty Shades of Grey

28 February 2015 9:00 am

Great works of art may have a strange afterlife. Deracinated from the world that created them they are at the…

The risks of being an Englishman on Burns Night

31 January 2015 9:00 am

I’m rubbish at public speaking and detest it. Even the thought of reciting an English poem of my choice at…

Seamus Heaney in 1996

Seamus Heaney: no shuffling or cutting — just turning over aces

13 December 2014 9:00 am

The impersonator — Rory Bremner, Steve Coogan — speaks, in different voices, to a single primitive pleasure centre in his…

Castle Cottage in Near Sawrey, Cumbria, where Beatrix Potter lived after her marriage to William Heelis

Behind (almost) every great writer is a great garden

8 November 2014 9:00 am

It is a truism that writers of all kinds often find inspiration and solace in their gardens, as well as…