Magazine October 19, 2015, Issue

Violence before Victoria

Murder by Candlelight: The Gruesome Slayings behind Our Romance with the Macabre, by Michael Knox Beran (Pegasus, 258 pp., $27.95)

In this era of orange-suited victims beheaded or buried alive en masse by jihadist fanatics, Michael Knox Beran would like to take us back to an earlier era of shocking horrors, the “classical age of murder” that reigned, as he sees it, in England in the quarter century from 1811 to 1837. He calls upon court testimony, contemporary news accounts, and especially the writings of the Romantic prose masters Thomas De Quincey and Thomas Carlyle to reexamine, in all their ghastliness, a series of murders that transfixed, delighted, and terrified the English public of the day.

And what is a “classical

In This Issue

Articles

Politics & Policy

Hung Up on Israel

At the recent Republican presidential debate, many of the candidates mentioned Israel. Jeb Bush, for example, said that we need to reestablish “our commitment to Israel, which has been altered ...

Features

Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

Super K, Revisited

‘Surely no statesman in modern times, and certainly no American secretary of state, has been as revered and then as reviled as Henry Kissinger.” So begins Niall Ferguson’s monumental biography, ...
Politics & Policy

Bedeviled

Black Mass, in which a cadaverous Johnny Depp portrays James “Whitey” Bulger, the famous Boston gangster and FBI informant, is the kind of movie that gives competence a bad name. ...
Country Life

Duskfall

Kids come back to college at the end of August, but night comes back into its own at the end of September, so between freshman orientation and the equinox is ...

Sections

Happy Warrior

Happier Warrior

For most of human existence, the average man could look forward to a relatively short life of chasing game or extracting enough sustenance from the ground that his family could ...
Politics & Policy

Letters

Crime and Over-punishment It is surprising that the editors of National Review would publish Stephanos Bibas’s article, which describes at length the harmful social effects of keeping convicted criminals behind bars ...
Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ The New York City Council honored Ethel Rosenberg. One hundred million people were unavailable for comment. ‐ If Donald Trump stopped insulting people, he would practically be rendered mute, but ...
Athwart

Gruel, Britannia

Story from the Telegraph: “Meat should be treated like tobacco with a public campaign to stop people eating it, Jeremy Corbyn’s new vegan shadow farming minister Kerry McCarthy has suggested.” “Shadow” ...
Politics & Policy

Poetry

THE GARDEN Nothing to do with me, All that it grows: Whatever I might see – A vole, a rose. Who gives, who takes away? Look how it grieves, How what shoots up today Falls among thieves, While in ...

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