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The Current Issue

July 2016, Issue 444 Tanya Harrod on Fortuny and Morris * Christopher Woodward on Robert des Ruines * Ian Sansom on a new life of Evelyn Waugh * Felipe Fernández-Armesto on Cervantes's modern fiction * Peter Marshall on writing about the Reformation * Kate Adie on a return to Libya * Valerie Grove on Dadland * Douglas Smith on Tsarist Siberian punishment * Patrick Scrivener on a history of horse-racing * Simon Baker on Mark Lawson * Frances Wilson on flâneuse * Richard Cockett on ISIS * David Collard on Joanna Kavenna *  and much, much more…

Seamus Perry

Housman Country: Into the Heart of England

By Peter Parker

A E Housman remains the best advertisement in English literature for the enabling power of repression. He was, as his brother Laurence said, ‘provokingly reserved’, though from beneath the lid he kept so firmly screwed down emerged rare fleeting glimpses of the tempestuous stuff that was always going on inside. Housman was, as Auden put it in his fine, admiring poem, the ‘Latin Scholar of his generation’, but his approach to classical literature was ostentatiously arid, as though deliberately to keep anything like feeling at arm’s length. He wrote about minute matters of textual scholarship with brilliant precision and utter authority, regarding the efforts of less adequate scholars with devastating contempt... read more

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