Reviews

1-15 of 87 Articles
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Robert Shiels commends a new look at the self-invented authoritarian Caesars who present such a clear and present danger to democracy and the rule of law today.

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Following the death of Queen Victoria in 1901, Britain began to face up to the changing world of the 20th century which would bring an end to the greatest empire the world has ever known. Robert Shiels enjoys a readable new account. With this readable general narrative of the Edwardian period, Alwyn

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1848, sometimes known as The Springtime of the Peoples, saw revolutionary fervour sweep across Europe and the ominous publication by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels of The Communist Manifesto. Robert Shiels finds a new history of this European turning point by the eminent historian Sir Christopher Cl

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Graham Ogilvy reviews a "true story of love, crime and a dangerous obsession". Stendhal syndrome is unlikely to feature in a plea of mitigation in a sheriff court near you – and citing it did nothing to secure the liberty of Stéphane Breitwieser, the working-class Frenchman who systemat

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Robert Shiels is impressed by a new history of opium which paints a fascinating picture of an ancient trade with a profound impact on modern society. Opium has its own history and this discursive study by novelist Amitav Ghosh, moving into factual history, concentrates on individual aspects of the o

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Robert Shiels uncovers the story of how our everyday truths came to be. This substantial and interesting book has a rather contrived title that suggests a military battle of sorts, although it narrates a crucial aspect of the history of ideas in the British context.

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Robert Shiels enjoys a new book on the age-old practice of wine fraud. This modest but interesting study of the murky side of wine-making gives an insight as to the old trade practices and the weakness of the system within which the business has been conducted.

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The centenary this year of the first Labour government will doubtless see the publication of a number of new books analysing a game-changing event. Robert Shiels reviews one of the first, by Scottish journalist David Torrance. In 1923 the immediate consequences of an inconclusive general election su

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Robert Shiels commends a new biography of the comic genius who fell victim to the USA's post-war red scare. This attractively produced book, with many photographs, is a social, political and cultural history of a crucial period in the life of an influential 20th century figure, an original and indep

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Former sheriff Douglas Cusine commends a new practical guide to running a Sheriff Court proof. The final sentence of this very useful book is this: “Running a proof can be enjoyable, but you will find it more so if you have prepared it well, you are properly funded, and you are as well organis

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Professor Joseph Bristow’s impressive new study, which deserves close attention, shows that the civil libel suit and the criminal trials involving Oscar Wilde were understood to be within the legal procedures of the time. The significantly wider importance of his book may be that the detailed

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Douglas Thomson reviews a new book by Ian O'Donnell, professor of criminology at University College Dublin, examining four very different prison regimes. In this book, Professor Ian O'Donnell visits and investigates four very different prison environments, all considerably unlike those within the ma

1-15 of 87 Articles