It is just fifty years since a young Middle Westerner, who had been persuaded to go to Princeton by reading Scott Fitzgerald, first arrived in Moscow as an attaché in the newly opened American embassy there. He was already unusually well-equipped to investigate the mysteries of Soviet society. An older cousin – also called George Kennan – had travelled widely in Tzarist Russia and had written about the Siberian exile camps and the pogroms inflicted on the Jews. Young George Kennan himself had already spent five years learning Russian and peering over the fence into Soviet Russia from the then still independent Baltic States.
Follow Literary Review on Twitter
'The Craft’s first martyr', John Coustos 'became a celebrity and a sensational symbol for the causes it would claim: tolerance, rational inquiry, cross-border cosmopolitanism, relative equality and enlightened faith.'
@darrin_mcmahon on the freemasons.
'"Dutch Light" roots its subject in his local environment, explaining, for example, how an abundance of sand for making glass led naturally to a thriving business in optical instruments in Holland.'
Patricia Fara on the life & work of Christiaan Huygens.
Sign up to our e-newsletter!
Get highlights from the new issue and selected archive articles, as well as exclusive competitions and subscription offers delivered straight to your inbox.