What the Editors Are Reading

Several weeks ago I finished reading (studying, actually) David Bromwich’s The Intellectual Life of Edmund Burke: From the Sublime and Beautiful to American Independence.  A detailed and painstaking analysis of Burke’s writings and speeches and perhaps the best single work on Burke I’ve ever read.  (Volume II to follow in time.)

Having watched the Masterpiece Theatre version, made more than three decades ago, of Paul Scott’s Raj Quartet, I read the first volume, The Jewel in the Crown, set in India in the 1940’s and published first in 1966.  This lengthy novel, using a semi-Faulknerian technique, presents the same story through the eyes of the various characters.  Alternately interesting and tedious, Scott’s famous portrait of the Raj on the eve of independence is real and compelling.  While halfway through the book, I picked up and read Arthur Herman’s Gandhi and Churchill, a very well-done comparative biography of the two rivals for the British Empire whose lives and personalities coincided in many interesting ways.  And I began Northern Opposition to Mr. Lincoln’s War, edited by D. Jonathan White and published by the Abbeville Institute Press.  Some excellent essays so far.

Over a rainy Memorial Day weekend I began Volume I of Harold Nicolson’s Diaries & Letters, edited by Nigel...

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