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Saturday, 6 May 1995

  • The modern novel: is there a plot or just a conspiracy?
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    His stereotype of the "fat feminist" author is gratuitously offensive, while his objections to the claims of blurb on dust-jackets betray a barely credible navety. Has he never considered that publishers need to sell books? That blurb is more a comme...

  • Briefly
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    "Though both hold views with which I concur, 'View' fails to rhyme with 'Depardieu'." Adrian Brodkin, London N2 l A LITTLE more fine-tuning is indeed required, I suggest. "I think Mr Warden ought to know, "Un film is masculine, like Depardieu." Marwi...

  • Churchill's legend lives on
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    Churchill the legend exists in much printed material as well as in an abundance of sound and visual recordings, which is surely why he qualifies as a "national heritage". Does possession of the original documents add anything to this public perceptio...

  • Don't wipe Tibet off the map
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    As a teacher, I have been appalled that some school atlases no longer show Tibet. In light of the huge efforts by the Dalai Lama to get the West to support the plight of Tibet, it is shocking to see Western map- makers erasing it, thus helping the Ch...

  • Testing point
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    Murray Silver Question Mark Computing London N19

  • Listen to sheep farmers
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    Second, why have the accounts of people possibly adversely affected by sheep dips apparently been dismissed by those responsible for the monitoring of human exposure to pesticides? Not all anecdotal accounts of suspected poisoning may prove correct b...

  • The NFT's meant to be litist
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    Alexander Walker London W9

  • Divorce mediation is not new A different type of mediation
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    These mediations focus on disputes about the arrangements for children and are ordered by the court; many clients are eager to participate in a non-litigious process of resolving difficulties, but many more are resistant to the process. Nevertheless,...

  • The modern novel: is there a plot or just a conspiracy?
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    I wonder, however, if he has perhaps succumbed without realising it to the other major con of the literary establishment; namely that if a book concerns itself even remotely with the unravelling of a puzzling crime, it cannot be "literature". Dickens...

  • Churchill's legend lives on
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    Marc Fresko Ipswich, Suffolk

  • Who suffers?
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    At a time when the BBC, for instance, is doing its best to reduce the stigma and prejudice which still attaches itself to the mentally ill, Mr Watkins' remark is offensive to those with severe psychiatric disorder. It is the sufferers who are made mo...

  • The modern novel: is there a plot or just a conspiracy?
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    While in no position to comment on the literary value of clog-and-shawl stories, or romantic fiction, I know that some of the most exciting writers turn out books that have "science fiction" or "fantasy" slapped on the spine. All we SF fans ask of wh...

  • It's a few decades too late to mourn the death of mutuality
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    The explanation was simple. N&P was talking to Abbey National and other financial institutions about being taken over. A takeover would mean a windfall for N&P members averaging, perhaps, £600 each. Any N&P saver with a qualifying account...

  • We never had pansies at my public school
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    I daresay that there are one or two odd-bods who slip through the security net every now and then, but, by and large, there is not now, nor has there ever been, any suggestion of homosexuality (dread word!) in our public school system. But does this ...

  • I don't need a bar for breakfast, just a cup of coffee
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    You stagger downstairs, desperate only for a cup of coffee and a piece of toast, and are accosted at the door by a man dressed as if he's about to go out hunting for the day. He is the master of breakfast ceremonies, and he demands to know if you are...

  • Avoid roller-skates and carrots alal arr
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    So, on to Friday, and fresh evidence that wine will lengthen your life, spirits will shorten it and beer will have no effect. Oh, and water from the bottle is no better for you than that from the tap, according to a Which? survey. And nicotine, by th...

  • Profile: Lachlan Murdoch; Heir to the Sun and Sky
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    That is where he might have stayed in relative obscurity had his father last month not launched a spectacular raid on the rugby league teams of Australia, England and New Zealand. His aim was to form a "super league" of teams who would be screened ex...

  • How Winston lunched his way to the finest hour
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    King George VI wanted Chamberlain to remain Prime Minister, but of a true coalition government. If he was to be forced out, the King preferred Halifax as a successor. There is a myth that it was the Labour Party which made Churchill Prime Minister. M...

  • Homage to Cherie ... nod from Sir Robin ... power flowers
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    n AH, YES, the photographs. That's Carole Maggio, of Arizona, down on the left, exercising her facial muscles. Carole, wittily, calls her exercises "Facercises"; they are her alternative to face lifts; she has this book about it. Did you know the nos...

  • We don't have to choke
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    This is largely a man-made disaster and the complacency of ministers and some of their advisers is extraordinary. The causes of pollution - mainly ozone in the summer, mainly nitrogen dioxide in the winter - are complex. But there is little doubt tha...

  • THE LIST
    Sunday, 7 May 1995

    TODAY is the feast day of Saint Domitian, sixth-century Bishop of Maastricht, a Frenchman who was very persuasive in debate, particularly against heretics. He converted the Meuse valley to Christianity, building churches and hospices as he went. In o...

  • How therapy explores reality
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    Sir: It was unfortunate that Bryan Appleyard should have said at the end of an otherwise balanced article (3 May) that "therapy, like the cults, is religion gone wrong", thereby sweeping us all into the same pigeon- hole and contradicting his earlier...

  • Bad name, bad record, good idea
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    Sir: Andrew Marr's piece on the Department of National Heritage - brilliantly written though, as usual, it was - did less than justice to the idea behind the creation of the department ("A heritage trail littered with mistakes", 4 May). He was right ...

  • Hip replacement: let the pain decide
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    Sir: I am sure that Mr Bulstrode (letter, 28 April) is correct in warning your readers not to rush off to have a hip replacement. However, I am not at all sure that his quoted statistics, or those that the patient is likely to receive from the orthop...

  • Exploitation-free carpet buying
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    Sir: You reported (3 May) that major European importers had scrapped orders for hand-knotted carpets from Pakistan. The tragic death of Iqbal Masih has created unprecedented media coverage for the issue of child slavery and has rightly mobilised publ...

  • How therapy explores reality
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    Sir: Bryan Appleyard is misguided to lump psychotherapy in with aromatherapy or colonic irrigation. The latter procedures result in a sense of physical well-being and doubtless calm the mind. Psychotherapy is made of sterner stuff. It is an elaborati...

  • In defence of the Jesus Army
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    Sir: The article in the Magazine (29 April) on the Jesus Army was sensational and unbalanced. You describe the Jesus Army as "one of Britain's fastest-growing cults", and refer to exploitation and brainwashing in a way that can only be described as s...

  • Theatrical cooking skills
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    Sir: If Maggie Brown aspires to be a restaurant critic as well as a theatre reviewer, she must polish her skills of observation (Diary, 3 May). Closer attention to the meal cooked by Lia Williams in David Hare's play Skylight would have revealed that...

  • How therapy explores reality
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    Sir: I was disappointed at how uninformed Brian Appleyard is about psychotherapy ("Nightmare cures for unhappiness", 3 May). What his piece failed to recognise is that good psychoanalytic psychotherapy aims to hold both the inner world reality and th...

  • QUOTE UNQUOTE
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    For a man linked with satire he was without malice to anyone, although he did admit to pursuing an irrational vendetta against the late, great Gracie Fields - Richard Ingrams, former editor of 'Private Eye', on Peter Cook I do hope you won't go on ab...

  • LETTERS: Remember the Merchant Navy on VE Day
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    Sir: It was good to be alive on VE Day (Letters, 3 May). So it was. Just, with thousands of other POWs on the River Kwai and elsewhere in the Far East. It was just an ordinary day. No different to any other in the previous three years. Burying a few ...

  • Only brave men go to Brixton
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    Blacker then explained that he was merely a minor link in a complicated delivery chain. The stuff wasn't for him, or for the person who had asked him to get it, or indeed for that person but for an American novelist whose publisher was due in London ...

  • Playing snooker at the Labour club
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    And that, metaphorically, is what hundreds of thousands of his former fellow Conservative voters will now be doing. For, this weekend, all over suburban and rural England, startled new Labour and Liberal Democrat councillors will be looking at their ...

  • You cannot degrade democracy and expect thanks
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    So John Major promises not to "run away" and, rather touchingly, gives the impression that he thinks this news will reassure people. "No excuses" - but no lessons either. Cabinet ministers tell us that the votes of millions of irate Britons have been...

  • There'll be bluebirds over Hyde Park
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    Meeting Dame Vera is about as difficult as meeting the Queen, and an infinitely more intimidating experience. Fiercely protected by her husband of 54 years, Harry Lewis, it requires endless phone calls, negotiations and three cancellations (once beca...

  • LETTERS: Remember the Merchant Navy on VE Day
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    Sir: I very much appreciate and must congratulate Barbara Hoddinott for her letter (29 April) referring to the forgotten group in the last war - the Merchant Navy. Fifty-three years ago I was with a unit of an infantry regiment at Crewe changing trai...

  • LETTERS: Remember the Merchant Navy on VE Day
    Saturday, 6 May 1995

    Sir: Barbara Hoddinott (Letters, 3 May) refers to the efforts of the Merchant Navy during the Second World War. I am pleased to advise you that, far from being forgotten, there is a service of commemoration and thanksgiving for the Merchant Navy at 1...

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