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Cold War

Subject: History

The antagonism between the USA and USSR lasting from the late 1940s until the late 1980s, ‘cold’ because it was waged through diplomatic and ideological means rather than force. Britain ...

Deighton, Len

Deighton, Len (1929– )   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...He served in the RAF and worked in a variety of professions before turning to authorship. His first book, The Ipcress File ( 1962 ), with its unnamed, working-class hero, elliptic narration, and emphasis on departmental rivalry in British intelligence, gave a new turn to the Cold War spy story. Seven more novels with the same hero followed—the best are perhaps Horse Under Water ( 1963 ), Billion-Dollar Brain ( 1966 ), An Expensive Place to Die ( 1967 ), and Twinkle, Twinkle Little Spy ( 1976 ; US title Catch a Falling Spy ), but his later work, from...

Our Man in Havana

Our Man in Havana   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...Man in Havana , a novel by Graham Greene , published in 1958 , described by its author as ‘a Secret Service comedy’ and drawing on his experience of intelligence work in Sierra Leone and London during and after the Second World War. Tracing ‘the absurdities of the Cold War’ through louche, decadent Havana, shortly before Fidel Castro's revolution ended Batista's rule, the novel shows a British agent, Hawthorne, recruiting a local vacuum-cleaner salesman, Wormold. His pious but profligate daughter, general shortage of money, and extravagance of imagination...

Le carré, John

Le carré, John (1931– )   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...of Quality ( 1962 ), a more traditional detective story. The Spy Who Came in from the Cold ( 1963 ; filmed by Martin Ritt , 1965 ), a harsh, bleak cold War novel of loyalty and betrayal, written as a reaction to the then fashionable James Bond spy novels of I. Fleming (which le Carré has stigmatized as ‘candyfloss’), was an immense success, enabling the author to leave the Foreign Office and devote himself to writing. It was followed by The Looking-Glass War ( 1965 ), A Small Town in Germany ( 1968 ), and an unsuccessful novel, The Naive and...

God that Failed, The: Six Studies in Communism

God that Failed, The: Six Studies in Communism   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...and introduced by Richard Crossman , and published in 1950 . The book, which grew out of a discussion between Crossman and Arthur Koestler , made a great impact at the time and was considered one of the most effective intellectual weapons in the Western armoury of the Cold War. The six contributors were Koestler , Ignazio Silone , André Gide , Stephen Spender , Richard Wright , and Louis Fischer . Dr Enid Starkie , who suggested the title of the book, compiled and edited Gide's reminiscences from various sources, because he was too ill to...

Thomas, Ross

Thomas, Ross (1926–1995)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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... Briarpatch ( 1984 ). The Porkchoppers ( 1972 ) and Yellow-Dog Contract ( 1976 ) centre on sinister aspects of American labour organizations. He is highly regarded for his considerable stylistic range and fluent handling of complex plots. Other works by Thomas include The Cold War Swap ( 1966 ), The Backup Men ( 1971 ), Twilight at Mac's Place ( 1990 ), and Ah, Treachery ( 1994 ). The Brass Go-Between ( 1969 ) and The Procane Chronicle ( 1972 ) are among the thrillers he published under the pseudonym Oliver...

Aickman, Robert

Aickman, Robert (1914–81)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...in London. He played an important part in the founding of the Inland Waterways Association after the Second World War. From the publication of We Are for the Dark ( 1951 ; with Elizabeth Jane Howard ), he became increasingly recognized as a fine exponent of the ghost story. On his title pages, Aickman described his work as ‘strange stories’. His collections include Dark Entries ( 1964 ), Powers of Darkness ( 1966 ), Sub Rosa ( 1968 ), Cold Hand in Mine ( 1976 ), Tales of Love and Death ( 1977 ), Intrusions ( 1980 ), Night Voices ( 1985 ), and ...

Snodgrass, W. D.

Snodgrass, W. D. (1926– )   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...addressed to and are about his daughter Cynthia, the child he lost with the collapse of his first marriage. The controlled lyric gravity of these poems reflects the intensity of his loss, while America's engagement in the Korean War provides a broader metaphorical frame and a focus on contemporary political events; the ‘cold war’ of the military campaign is seen as a public echo of the desolation of his private landscape, pictured through the frozen wastes of his marriage. His other collections include After Experience: Poems and Translations ( 1968 ), ...

Temporal Power: A Study in Supremacy

Temporal Power: A Study in Supremacy (1902)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Edwardian Fiction

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2005

...bookselling record for a 6 s. volume. The hero of the story is a contemporary king who rules over an unnamed Christian country. The king is married to a beautiful but cold consort and they have three sons. Suddenly aware that he is not doing his duty to his people, the king resolves to go amongst them and see things for himself. He joins a society of socialists, vetoes one declaration of war, and thwarts a Jesuit conspiracy, during which an attempt is made on his life, an attempt foiled by a beautiful working-class woman who receives the knife-thrust in his...

De Boissière, Ralph

De Boissière, Ralph (1907– )   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...the Americans. Salman Rushdie has said of Crown Jewel that ‘the enormous appeal of this book lies not so much in its committed socialism as in its ability to integrate politics with the lives of its characters’. In No Saddles for Kangaroos ( 1964 ), de Boissière integrated Cold War politics and the Korean conflict with the private lives of Australian automobile workers in the early...

Webb, Mary

Webb, Mary (1881–1927)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...and its exploration of the nature of female consciousness and sexuality. Her work has been compared with that of Thomas Hardy and with the rustic novels of Sheila Kaye-Smith . Both Webb and Kaye-Smith were amongst the writers satirized in Stella Gibbons 's comic work, Cold Comfort Farm . A collection of nature poems and essays, The Spring of Joy ( 1928 ), appeared...

Kaye-Smith, Sheila

Kaye-Smith, Sheila (1887–1956)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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..., D. H. Lawrence , Dorothy Richardson , Thomas Hardy , and Mary Webb . Sussex Gorse ( 1916 ) attracted considerable notice, and following the war three further books confirmed her reputation as a Sussex novelist, in particular Joanna Godden ( 1921 ). Her popularity as a regional novelist during the 1920s has not endured and, like Mary Webb , she was among the writers satirized by Stella Gibbons in Cold Comfort Farm . Religion was also a central theme in her work; following her conversion to Roman Catholicism in 1929 she wrote a study of four Roman...

Capote, Truman

Capote, Truman (1924–84)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...in Local Color ( 1950 ) and The Muses Are Heard ( 1956 ), his account of a tour through Russia with the cast of Porgy and Bess . In 1966 he produced a collection of short stories, A Christmas Memory , and also achieved widespread notoriety with the publication of In Cold Blood , an early example of ‘faction’ ( see New Journalism ) concerned with an infamous multiple murderer. He also enhanced his reputation with a procession of acerbic journalism and shorter prose pieces, some of which appeared in the collections Then It All Came Down ( 1976 )...

Mitford, Nancy

Mitford, Nancy (1904–73)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...Jessica Mitford became a communist, Diana married the British fascist Oswald Mosley , and Unity became an admirer of Hitler. English aristocratic family circles, their eccentricities and amatory escapades, are at the centre of her next novel, Love in a Cold Climate ( 1949 ). After the war she settled in France, about which she wrote in Don't Tell Alfred ( 1960 ), a roman-à-clef about the British Embassy in Paris. Her biographies include Madame de Pompadour ( 1954 ; revised edition, 1968 ), Voltaire in Love ( 1957 ), and Frederick the...

Simmons, James

Simmons, James (1933–2001)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...Marriage was published along with pamphlets by Seamus Heaney and others to mark the Belfast Festival of 1965 , initiating the emergence of Ulster poetry . His collections include Late but in Earnest ( 1967 ), The Long Summer Still To Come ( 1973 ), Judy Garland and the Cold War ( 1976 ), From the Irish ( 1985 ), Poems 1956–1986 ( 1986 ), Sex, Rectitude and Loneliness ( 1993 ), and Mainstream ( 1994 ). His poetry is noted for its humour, candour, and fluently accessible use of traditional forms. The ‘generous democracy of response’ Edna Longley...

Ashton, Helen

Ashton, Helen (1891–1958)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Edwardian Fiction

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Current Version:
2005

...social and sexual round quite deftly. Its main characters are: an elderly scientist weary of science; his younger, embittered wife; her admirer, a novelist (described by one reviewer as ‘something between a vampire and a hermit crab’); a brilliant Jewess; her cold-blooded admirer; and the hero, an ambiguous outsider, half-English, half-French. They are all left at the end very much as they were at the beginning. Dr Serocold ( 1930 ) was probably her most popular work. Several of her later novels, such as William and Dorothy ( 1938 ), Parson Austen's...

Derelict Empire, A

Derelict Empire, A (1912)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Edwardian Fiction

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Current Version:
2005

...illustration of the belief, widely held in right-wing circles, that Britain would have to Prussianize itself in order to defeat Prussia in the war which, by 1912 , seemed inevitable. There is some action of the stiff-upper-lip variety. The only wound Wardlaw suffers during his campaigns proves on inspection to be ‘little more than a deep scratch, requiring no treatment beyond a sprinkle of boracic acid powder and a cold-water bandage. These simple remedies having been applied, [he] sat down to a late...

Third Man, The

Third Man, The   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...underestimates the depths of Lime's malign ingenuity: their discovery of truths even darker than they had supposed makes The Third Man a kind of paradigm for the feelings of an age whose faiths and sanctities had so recently been ruined by the Second World War and the opening hostilities of the Cold War which followed. It is also typical of repeated movements in Greene's fiction towards underworlds of disillusion and destroyed...

Lippmann, Walter

Lippmann, Walter (1889–1974)   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...Lippmann was an excoriating critic of the New Deal, dismissing Franklin D. Roosevelt as an ‘amiable boy scout’ and supporting Wendell Willkie's candidacy for the Republican nomination for the Presidency. He supported the broad objectives of US foreign policy during the Cold War period, but was frequently a trenchant critic of those who administered the policy. His other major works are Drift and Mastery ( 1914 ), The Good Society ( 1937 ), and Essays in the Public Philosophy ( 1955 ). See also Walter Lippmann and the American Century ( 1980 ),...

McEwan, Ian

McEwan, Ian (1948– )   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...farcical deceit. Black Dogs ( 1992 ) is a fable about the nature of evil, whose central event—an encounter between a young woman on holiday with her husband in post-war France and the black dogs referred to in the title—has a clear political symbolism. The novel, which moves between this event and a contemporary setting, deals with changes in political allegiances in the aftermath of the Cold War, and asks some pertinent questions about the possible resurgence of Fascism in such a climate. In this, as in other more recent works, McEwan has moved from the...

Masses, The

Masses, The   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Literature in English

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...it was re-formed as a weekly journal in 1934 ; its literary content subsequently diminished as a result of its intensifying ideological preoccupations. Joseph North was chief editor between 1938 and the magazine's closure in 1949 as a result of difficulties imposed by the Cold War. Robinson Jeffers , Theodore Dreiser , Carl Rakosi , Kenneth Fearing , Lola Ridge , and Van Wyck Brooks were among the contributors of poetry, fiction, and criticism in its earlier years; documentary reportage by Dorothy Parker , Erskine Caldwell , and Ernest ...

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