Steven McGregor rss

Meeting of Henry VIII of England and Francis I of France at the Field of the Cloth of Gold outside Calais in 1520.

Brendan Simms: A strong, united Europe is in Britain’s interest

2 May 2013 12:25

Since the collapse of the Byzantine Empire, European history has been dominated by two themes: the centrality of Germany and the primacy of foreign policy. This is the argument of… Continue reading

Soldiers take a cigarette break at base Kalsu on July 17, 2011 in Iskandariya, Babil Province, Iraq. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Fobbit by David Abrams – review

10 April 2013 9:58

Fobbit, by David Abrams, is an attempt at describing a wartime tour from different perspectives, including soldiers and support personnel. Chapter by chapter our viewpoint rotates within this cast of… Continue reading

US soldiers carry a wounded comrade through a swampy area during action in Vietnam in 1969. NATIONAL ARCHIVES/AFP/GettyImages

War is not to be envied

11 February 2013 13:09

Donald Anderson is a former US Air Force Colonel and current professor of English Literature at the US Air Force Academy. His new book, Gathering Noise from my Life: A… Continue reading

British and American troops operating in Helmand last year. Image: Getty

Shiva Naipaul Memorial Prize – The Walking Wounded

16 January 2013 10:21

This is the runner-up in our recent Shiva Naipaul Memorial Prize. The rest of the shortlist will be published in the coming days. At the entrance is a pale stone… Continue reading

Way Of The Cross Led By Pope Benedict XVI

Thornton Wilder’s theatrics in The Cabala

29 October 2012 10:30

I was on a date once in Atlanta, Georgia. We decided on the theatre and there was only one show playing, The Skin of Our Teeth by Thornton Wilder. After… Continue reading

The Great Gatsby

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s unfinished business

6 September 2012 16:41

It’s hard enough convincing people to read finished novels much less unfinished ones — though perhaps our cultural obsession with The Great Gatsby is reason enough to republish F. Scott… Continue reading

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Benedict Cumberbatch at a photo call for the adaptation of Parade's End that aired last year. (NICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP/Getty Images)

The Hamlet of the trenches: Parade’s End reviewed

24 August 2012 16:56

Ford Madox Ford’s Parade’s End is being republished as well as adapted for the screen by the BBC.  I first discovered the tetralogy when, in an attempt to improve my… Continue reading

House of Lords, Getty Images

The fictional House of Lords

6 August 2012 12:38

The House of Lords has yet again survived reform. ‘We have been discussing this issue for 100 years and it really is time to make progress,’ the Prime Minister said… Continue reading

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Uganda, Getty Images

Interview: Nick Makoha’s shame

20 July 2012 8:30

“My shame was my father wasn’t there,” says Nick Makoha, the London poet who represented Uganda at the recent Poetry Parnassus. This frank vulnerability is at the core of his… Continue reading

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A writer’s vanity

24 May 2012 13:25

‘Jordan’s fourth biography, that’s vanity.  Only writers are subjected to this kind of inquisition about how their work reaches the viewer,’ quipped a panelist at a recent Birkbeck University event… Continue reading

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The battle for free speech in China

2 April 2012 12:26

I haven’t been much drawn to erotica or political allegory, but Chen Xiwo’s I Love my Mum changed that. Relaxed, in an open necked shirt and jeans, at a recent… Continue reading

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Ending a war story

22 March 2012 8:37

What, if any, are the similarities between the great novels of past wars, such as Somerset Maugham’s The Hero (the Boer War), Ford Madox Ford’s Parade’s End (WWI), and Evelyn… Continue reading


Remembering Gilbert Adair

18 January 2012 8:54

Gilbert Adair was a mentor to me, even in the year following his stroke, which was when we became closest, and I knew him best. I had just left the… Continue reading

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