Page 4


The Spectator

A return to decent schooling, high moral values, that is what we want L abour said, through Mr Robin Cook, the shadow Foreign Secretary, that it might not let Britain join a...

Page 6


The Spectator

Chancellor Kohl says he wants a flexible Europe. But he does not mean it BRUCE ANDERSON he most interesting recent political development has gone largely unnoticed. It has...

Page 7

DIARY REBECCA FRASER I hope the current Austen-mania will do two

The Spectator

things: revive the fashion for knee- breeches and cutaways and make publish- ers reissue the not-so-poor man's Jane Austen, that pillar of Regency England fic- tion, Georgette...

Page 8


The Spectator

The first step towards ending deprivation is to understand that there's not a lot of it about MATTHEW PARRIS The video footage our television team had collected was just what...

Page 9


The Spectator

Michael Vestey explains the way in which President Clinton's expected re-election is because of rather than despite, his tendency to touch women Washington DC THERE is only...

Page 10

Mind your language

The Spectator

`TCHRUMPHH!' said my husband when someone on Radio Three referred to the 'protagonists' in a play. We all have our pet hates. (Yours might be pet hate.) They come flooding in...

Page 12


The Spectator

A Clinton win will please Mr Blair. But Hugh Brogan says that Mr Major's the one whom it should really comfort WRITING some days before the Ameri- can elections, I make one...

Page 15


The Spectator

. . . which is why, at election time, he'd rather be known as Ireland's. Charles Mosley unravels the President's ancestry PRESIDENT Bill Clinton famously told the Boston...

Page 17


The Spectator

Whatever the result next week, John Casey says it won't matter to us. He favours isolationism — ours from America TRY as I might, I am not able to take this American election...

Page 18


The Spectator

Michael Heath

Page 19


The Spectator

DID HELP MAC But he didn't plan it so as to replace Eden. Alistair Horne on what Macmillan really did in the great Anglo-American crisis 40 years ago . . . if Nasser 'gets...

Page 22


The Spectator

Anne McElvoy talks to a candid Grosics and an evasive Puskas — legendary footballers — about what they did in 1956 BURDENED by a history of defeats and compromises, Hungarians...

Page 26


The Spectator

Also frightful, ridiculous and Puritanical; that is what A.A. Gill thought about the Good Food Guide A SURVEY published last week claimed to prove that London was a better...

Page 27


The Spectator

David Carlton says a Yorkshire by-election could tell us whom Sir James really threatens, and it may not be Mr Major FREDERICK Forsyth, the thriller writer, after attending...

Page 30


The Spectator

The Guardian, Mr Jordan and a simple case of mass murder PAUL JOHNSON T he Guardian, a paper specially written for people who hate England and the English — who hate...

Page 32


The Spectator

Lloyd's man gets instant beatification it's a game of two halves CHRISTOPHER FILDES I t is nice to know that someone made £170 million out of Lloyd's of London, if that is...

Page 34


The Spectator

Sir: Last Sunday I watched Andrew Neil being interviewed by Frost on his morning television show. The 'peg' was of course Andrew's new book. When asked by Frost which he...

Righting the wrong

The Spectator

Sir: Douglas Johnson raises the possibility (Innocent, but still a traitor?', 12 October) that because an elderly French anti-Semite was 'right' about the authenticity of a...

LETTERS A party man

The Spectator

Sir: If Neil Hamilton (Fayed paid me noth- ing', 18 October) was so convinced by the criticisms of me in the DTI report on House of Fraser, why, five days after the report was...

Look to the archives

The Spectator

Sir: Andrew Roberts distorts history with his claim that it is a 'myth' (Danger! new myth ahead', 26 October) that Britain threw away a great opportunity of ending the second...

Page 35

Sir: Surely the time has come — and if not

The Spectator

why not? — for the impersonator, for that is undoubtedly what he must be, of Alastair Forbes in your review pages to declare him- self, for Mr Forbes, without any question,...

Reviewer ripostes

The Spectator

Sir: Although I was of course pleased to see the name of the widow of one of Britain's very best post-war journalists (Patrick O'Donovan) figuring in your post-bag (12 October),...

Sir: I was disappointed to read Alastair Forbes's vulgar attack

The Spectator

on Lee Radziwill. Your magazine, to our delight, can be everything, but never vulgar. Why use the platform for such badly written and unnec- essary drivel? Alexandra...

Facts and figures

The Spectator

Sir: Readers can make up their own minds about Stephen Glover's hostile verdict on my 11-year editorship of the Sunday Times (Media studies, 26 October), though they should keep...

Unanswered questions

The Spectator

Sir: Richard Moore appeared to be saying (`No new insight', 12 October) that because Jeremy Thorpe was acquitted at the Old Bailey in 1979 of conspiring to murder Nor- man Scott...

Page 38

Mistaken identity

The Spectator

Sir: Your contributor Anne McElvoy (`Britain's multi-party system', 26 October) claims to have seen me at the Goldsmith Massenversammlung in Brighton. She may have confused me...

Baldly speaking Sir: Those of us who are too poor

The Spectator

and respectable to feature in Taki's upwardly- mobile columns must be grateful for a guest appearance via the tradesman's entrance, even as bald and envious hacks skilled mainly...

Welsh, n©

The Spectator

Sir: I see that Paul Johnson has called me a silly, rancorous Welsh Leftie (And another thing, 26 October). May I point out that I am not Welsh? Robert Harris The Old...

Page 40


The Spectator

To become famous by being killed, be a rich man in football (not even a player) STEPHEN GLOVER N o man knows how people will treat his demise, but in the next world Matthew...

Page 42


The Spectator

Cook's guided tour Bevis Hillier SOMETHING LIKE FIRE: PETER COOK REMEMBERED edited by Lin Cook Methuen, £16.99, pp. 269 Y ears ago there was on the Times a woman — let us call...

Page 44

The discomposing composer

The Spectator

Michael Carlson CHARLES IVES: A LIFE WITH MUSIC by Jan Swafford Norton, £22.50, pp, 525 harles Ives' music can make people uneasy, musicians as well as audiences. In 1982 I...

Page 45

More lecherous than Loamshire

The Spectator

Jane Gardam WORST FEARS by Fay Weldon Flamingo, £16.99, pp. 196 A s usual, Fay Weldon has written a very moral book; that is to say a book that takes a good look at sin and...

Page 46

A catalogue of bedfellows

The Spectator

Hugo Vickers THE SEWING CIRCLE by Axel Madsen Robson, f16.95, pp. 240 T he Sewing Circle is a book which suggests that a great number of Hollywood stars were lesbians. It does...

Page 47

The night their number came up

The Spectator

Alasdair Palmer LIVING ON THE LOTTERY by Hunter Davies Little Brown, £15, pp. 340 Y u have to hand it to Camelot. It may not take a great deal of wit or wisdom to make millions...

Page 48

I can't get no satisfaction

The Spectator

Helen Osborne LEAVING A DOLL'S HOUSE by Claire Bloom Virago, £16.99, pp. 274 I s it something in the water? Actresses have started throwing their ids over their shoulders,...

Page 49

Not so very special relationship

The Spectator

Anthony Howard FIGHTING WITH ALLIES: AMERICA AND BRITAIN IN PEACE AND WAR by Robin Renwick Macmillan Press, £25, pp. 315 B ooks nowadays often tend to come with what Sheridan...

Page 50

Notting Hill ghosts

The Spectator

Sophia Watson STIFF LIPS by Anne Billson Macmillan, £14.99, pp. 375 A nne Billson's new novel has the most disgusting and irrelevant title of any book ever published. Even Will...

The secret of a legend

The Spectator

Stephen Gardiner IN THIS DARK HOUSE by Louise Kehoe Viking £17, pp. 230 T he mystery surrounding the sudden disappearance of Berthold Lubetkin from the architectural scene at...

Page 52

Rebel without a cause

The Spectator

Philip French STONE by James Riordan Aurum, £19.95, pp. 574 S ubtitled 'The controversies, excesses, and exploits of a radical filmmaker', James Riordan's slack, over-extended...

Errata The title of Raymond Keene and Tony Buzan's book,

The Spectator

reviewed last week by Anthony Storr, is The Age Heresy. The last sentence of Michael Scott's review of Titta Ruffo's My Parabola should have read: 'The orbit of his career was...

Page 53

Twilight in paradise

The Spectator

Myles Harris THE ISLAND OF THE COLOUR BLIND by Oliver Sacks Picador, £16.99, pp. 293 D arwin when he saw his first kangaroo wondered if the Pacific might not hide 'a second...

Page 54

Close focus on Africa

The Spectator

Philip Glazebrook CONGO JOURNEY by Redmond O'Hanlon Hamish Hamilton, £18, pp. 472 T his book describes a perfectly awful journey: the horrors of African travel load each page....

Page 56


The Spectator

never talk to that woman again' Julie Kavanagh, the biographer of Frederick Ashton, reveals how she almost ruined their friendship F airly early in our acquaintance, Fred-...

Page 61

Ope ra

The Spectator

Ines de Castro (Scottish Opera) Conflict of duty and passion Michael Tanner S cottish Opera's production and musical performance of James MacMillan's first full-length opera,...

Mix and match

The Spectator

The winner of an urban design competition has been announced. Alan Powers reports A sodden leaves mark the transition from St Martin's Summer to mid-autumn, London assumes...

Page 62


The Spectator

Javier De Frutos (Purcell Room) Romeo and Juliet (Royal Opera House) Compagnie Cre - Ange (Queen Elizabeth Hall) Baring all Giannandrea Poesio A Ramsay Burt writes in his...

Page 63


The Spectator

Inside the Music (Jermyn Street Theatre) Smokey Joe's Café (Prince of Wales) A Doll's House (Playhouse) Mrs Warren's Profession (Lyric Hammersmith) Come to the cabaret ......

Page 64


The Spectator

The Glimmer Man (18, selected cinemas) A mellow maverick Mark Steyn Y ou're from New York. You cracked the De Marco case. Well, this ain't New York, and this ain't the De...

Page 65


The Spectator

Memoir appeal Ursula Buchan W riting a book about your garden, how you made it and how you look after it, seems a peculiarly Anglo-Saxon pastime. The list of authors who have...

Page 66


The Spectator

Crashing times ahead Michael Vestey I f you are 100 years old in the year 2000, you might receive threatening letters demanding to know why you aren't at school and accusing...


The Spectator

The lure of the tedious James Delingpole I f you ever listen to Radio Five Live, you might have heard me being horribly inartic- ulate last week as I tried to explain the...

Page 68

Not motoring

The Spectator

I agree with Mr Poole Gavin Stamp though I cannot bring myself to vote either Conservative or Labour at the next election, the Referendum Party did not appeal to me until I...

The turf

The Spectator

Sheer style Robin Oakley O ne thing which politics and racing have in common is that sheer style can do a lot for you in both. The then Norman St John Stevas once asked...

Page 69


The Spectator

Spoiling tactics Christian Hesketh H ere we are at the start of what is or should be a season of dazzling rugby. Although the whistle has blown and nation- al squads are...

Page 70

Low life

The Spectator

Reviewing the past Jeffrey Bernard I was taken out to lunch one day last week by an old friend who spends as much time as I do in the past and we remem- bered old faces, old...

High life

The Spectator

Poor old Ben Taki ally Bedell Smith is an American biog- rapher who did to Bill Paley what Bomber Harris did to Dresden. Mind you, she was fair. Paley's only weakness was —...

Page 72

Country life

The Spectator

Bitter and twisted Leanda de Lisle S ome people like to claim that feminism has killed off gentlemen, but I see no evi- dence for this. On the contrary, it has done much to...


The Spectator

BRIDGE Table feel Andrew Robson HAVING been pushed to an uncomfort- ably high level, as a result of some spirited competitive bidding by the opposition, the declarer Petar...

Page 73

English mudb at hs

The Spectator

IN a recent article, a Mr Adam Edwards complains about the lack of English food in London. Another journalist writing in the same vein blames Elizabeth David for hav- ing spoilt...

Page 74


The Spectator

IN-THE-STRAND SIMPSON'S IN-THE-STRAND CHESS Resurrection Raymond Keene FROM the late 1970s onwards the Dutch town of Tilburg became celebrated in chess lore as the site of...


The Spectator

j III. SI, LE VAIT Sc iT(H IISLE OF SI;Lt MALI SCUICH %MAI HA, u RA COMPETITION Velvet melody Jaspistos IN COMPETITION NO. 1956 you were invited to write a rhymed poem...

Page 75


The Spectator

A first prize of £25 and a bottle of Graham's Late Bottled Vintage 1990 Port for the first correct solution opened on 18 November, with two runners-up prizes of £15 (or, for UK...

Page 79


The Spectator

In all seriousness Simon Barnes IT is the enduring image of a book, of a sport. Fifteen men in shorts all together in a single hug. Behind them, coat-hangers and kitbags;...


The Spectator

Dear Mary.. . Q. How does one deal with men who swap place cards at formal meals, thereby wreck- ing carefully devised seating plans and mor- tifying those whom they shun? Some...