A Matter of Survival

October, Eight O’Clock by Norman Manea, translated by Cornelia Golna and Anselm Hollo and Mara Soceanu Vamos and Max Bleyleben and Marguerite Dorian and Elliott B. Urdang

He Doth Not Sleep’

The New Shelley: Later Twentieth-Century Views edited by G. Kim Blank

Shelley’s Poetry and Prose edited by Donald H. Reiman, edited by Sharon B. Powers

The Bodleian Shelley Manuscripts Volume XI: The Geneva Notebook of Percy Bysshe Shelley transcribed and edited by Michael Erkelenz

Shelley’s First Love: The Love Story of Percy Bysshe Shelley and Harriet Grove by Desmond Hawkins

Love’s Children by Judith Chernaik

Shelley’s Goddess: Maternity, Language, Subjectivity by Barbara Charlesworth Gelpi

Blazing Passions

Red Sorghum directed by Zhang Yimou (1987)

Horse Thief directed by Tian Zhuangzhuang (1986)

The Big Parade directed by Chen Kaige (1985)

Yellow Earth directed by Chen Kaige (1984)

Raise the Red Lantern directed by Zhang Yimou (1991)

Fists of Fury directed by Lo Wei (1972)

Shanghai Blues directed by Tsui Hark (1984)

Peking Opera Blues directed by Tsui Hark (1986)

A Chinese Ghost Story directed by Ching Siu-ting (1987)

A Better Tomorrow directed by John Woo (1986)

Boat People directed by Ann Hui (1982)

Rouge directed by Stanley Kwan (1988)

Once Upon a Time in China directed by Tsui Hark (1991)

A Touch of Zen directed by King Hu (1975)

A Terra-Cotta Warrior directed by Ching Siu-ting (1990)


Louis Begley’s books include Why the Dreyfus Affair Matters and the novel Wartime Lies. His eleventh novel, Killer Come Hither, will be published in 2015.

Caroline Blackwood (1931-1996) was born into a rich Anglo-Irish aristocratic family. She rebelled against her background at an early age and led a hectic and bohemian life, which included marriages to the painter Lucian Freud, the pianist and composer Israel Citkowitz, and the poet Robert Lowell. In the 1970s Blackwood began to write. Among her books are several novels, including Great Granny Webster and Corrigan (both available as NYRB Classics); On the Perimeter, an account of the women’s anti-nuclear protest at Greenham Common; and The Last of the Duchess, about the old age of the Duchess of Windsor.

Frederick C. Crews is Professor Emeritus of English at the University of California, Berkeley. He is the author of Follies of the Wise: Dissenting Essays.

Joan Didion is the author of The Year of Magical Thinking and We Tell Ourselves Stories in Order to Live: Collected Nonfiction.

Richard Holmes is the author of Shelley: The Pursuit (published by NYRB Classics), which won the Somerset Maugham Award in 1974; Coleridge: Early Visions, winner of the 1989 Whitbread Book of the Year award; Dr Johnson & Mr Savage, which won the 1993 James Tait Black Prize; and Coleridge: Darker Reflections, which won the 1990 Duff Cooper Prize and Heinemann Award. His new book, Falling Upwards: How We Took to the Air, was published in October 2013. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and was awarded the Order of the British Empire in 1992. He is also a professor of biographical studies at the University of East Anglia. He lives in London and Norwich with the novelist Rose Tremain. The article in the December 18, 2014 issue draws on the seventh Leon Levy Biography Lecture, which he gave in 2014 on “The Two Sides of the Biographer’s Notebook.”

Hugh Honour is the author, with John Fleming, of The Visual Arts: A History, which has recently been published in its sixth expanded edition. (November 2002)