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Tag: Biography

A way in the world

In almost everything he writes, VS Naipaul hangs his arguments and prejudices from a seductive personal narrative that is jewelled with detail. His latest essay collection, about his early development as a writer, includes a beautiful account of his friendship…
Ian Jack  

Recycling Nixon

Conrad Black's weighty new biography of Richard Nixon portrays him as a "mighty and mythic" figure who made a "dignified exit" after being unfairly hounded from office—a code it's little trouble to break
Andrew Adonis  

Hitler’s myth-maker

Leni Riefenstahl's apologists say she was a pure aesthete who cared nothing for politics. But it was her indifference to how her talents were used that made her so repugnant
Kevin Jackson  

The self-made exile

Michael Foot was the great rhetorician of his age. His tirades against government enlivened politics and helped sustain the credibility of parliament
Andrew Adonis  

Raine’s sterile thunder

TS Eliot's greatness as a poet is established beyond all doubt. So why do critics feel the need to defend him against all charges of misogyny and antisemitism?
Terry Eagleton  

Barack Obama

His unusual background and his ability to use it to articulate a hopeful version of the American dream have turned Barack Obama into a political star. But is the US ready for its first black president?
James Crabtree  

Publishing confessions

After some spectacular flops in 2006, the celebrity memoir has been declared dead. But the man who helped to create the genre reckons we shouldn't write it off yet
Trevor Dolby  

The Shah of Pakistan

While enjoying American support and largesse, Pakistan's president has crushed domestic opposition and done little to combat religious extremism
Pervez Hoodbhoy  

Ways of seeing

Arriving in London as a young man, Robert Hughes embraced 1960s excess. But it was his repressive Jesuit upbringing that made him the critic he is
Rachel Cooke  

Child’s play

Günter Grass's revelations about his Nazi past will end the temptation to take his political pronouncements seriously—which is no bad thing
Hans Kundnani