I cannot praise enough this TV series by BBC. It is not just a story of
four spies who were graduated from Cambridge. It had represented the
mentality of British intellectual during pre-WW2 years. They had tried
their best to pursue what they believed even though the cost was their
Facebook is under increasing pressure to explain how data collected on
50m users were exploited for political gain, following claims that data
firm Cambridge Analytica used the leaked information to help Donald
Trump win the US presidency.
Fathers review: The life of the ‘London Review of Books’ editor Karl Miller
Karl Miller, who died in 2014 aged 83, was one of the great literary
editors of the 20th century, as well as being an outstanding critic,
memoirist and social commentator. He was also, on the evidence of this
book by his son Sam, an exemplary father.
Not that there is anything hagiographic about Sam Miller’s Fathers. It
takes a sharp look at family life, at the mores of the 1960s and
1970s, at Karl Miller’s history and complex personality, and at
friendship, death, revelation and affirmation. It is subtle and
reflective. It is, above all, as the author says, his version of his
He starts with biographical facts, gleaned from family conversations
and his mother, Jane Miller, as well as from a couple of his father’s
books. The “working-class orphan from a Scottish mining village” had
already set out some aspects of his early years in his memoir
Rebecca’s Vest (1993), in which the theme of duality, the divided self,
is to the fore.
Miller was, in fact, only a quasi-orphan, as both his parents were
alive, although separated from each other and from him. His maternal
grandmother brought him up, with input from aunts, near Edinburgh.
Young Karl won a scholarship to the Royal High School in the city. A
glittering school career was followed by Cambridge University in the
early 1950s, with the alarming FR Leavis as a tutor and plenty of
excitements and miseries. Cambridge friends included Mark Boxer, Thom
Gunn, Nick Tomalin, Rory McEwen and, most importantly for Fathers, Tony
White, a maverick figure exuding a “boundless generosity and zest”.
Before the decade was over Miller was established in London, married to
Jane Collet, the father of one son, Daniel – peeked at in his pram by
Ivy Compton-Burnett – and about to become literary editor of the
Spectator. Then came the New Statesman and then the Listener, which he
edited in a way not pleasing to WH Auden, who accused him of having
A Scottish intransigence marked his dealings with these and other
periodicals. It was undercut, however, by a dour charm and instinct
for excellence. His own words about Henry Cockburn, “pugnacious,
militant, mercurially wise”, might apply to himself. The phrase occurs
in the book Dark Horses (1998), his memoir of editing, assessing and
This work, of a luminous idiosyncrasy, has a chapter on the London
Review of Books, the journal Miller is most strongly associated with. He
cofounded it in 1979 and was its editor until circumstances brought a
painful break with the magazine, 13 years later.
As well as the public Miller, Fathers uncovers the private individual,
the lover of Scottish ballads and soccer, the amiable tease, the
champion of his children against wrong-headed teachers and encourager of
all their juvenile interests. (They had a delightful mother too.) At the
same time Fathers lets us in on a well-kept family secret. Once it’s
revealed we see how this has determined the construction of the book,
which moves backwards and forwards, circling its themes and perceptions,
but always homing in on the central fact of Miller’s death, his unique
gifts and singular outlook on life.
He reached 83, but some of his Cambridge contemporaries died
earlier, including Tony White, who suffered an embolism after a football
injury. In the late 1950s he and Miller founded Battersea Park Football
Club. White had his own plentiful eccentricities, first abandoning an
acting career to become a lamplighter and later transplanting himself to
a cottage in Connemara, where he tried his hand at lobster farming and
failed to become a published author.
His death occasioned a number of elegies by poet friends. One of these,
Tony White 1930-1976, by Richard Murphy, contains the line “His
presence made the darkest day feel clear.” His presence as a free
spirit was also appreciated by the Miller household in Chelsea, where he
danced at parties and watched the FA Cup final on television. Because of
all this, and his enduring friendship with Karl and Jane Miller, White
has a prominent role in this book.
Miller died after falling downstairs at his home – a catastrophe
recounted by his wife, Jane, in her book In My Own Time (2016), as well
as by his son. His ashes were scattered on the Pentland Hills, near
where his life began.
Fathers, elegant, illuminating and deeply personal, is a fitting tribute
to a distinctive man. It affords new insights into someone especially
hard to pin down. Miller was Scottishly wry and dry, occasionally ill
humoured but more often amusing, acerbic and kind – altogether a
compound of opposites, as he puts it in Rebecca’s Vest, “which keep
Patricia Craig is an author and critic. Her most recent book is
Bookworm: A Memoir of Childhood Reading
Wonderful cast by Toby Stevens and other three actors. They did act as
Etonians and Cambridgers. Some may not like the previaling scene of
homosexuality. However, that was how it should be both at Eton and at
Politicians on both sides of the Atlantic are calling on the social
network to reveal more information on how Cambridge Analytica, which has
close ties to Steve Bannon, Mr Trump’s former chief strategist,
harvested data of US voters.
British MP Damian Collins has asked Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief
executive, to personally testify in an investigation into how the social
network was also used in political campaigns including the Brexit
英国议员达米安 Collins已必要脸谱的上位推行官马克 Zuckerberg，在多少个考查中以村办的名义表明社交互连网如何也被利用于含有退休公投的政治之争。
Mr Collins said it was time for Mr Zuckerberg to “stop hiding behind his
Mr Collins yesterday accused Alexander Nix, Cambridge Analytica’s chief
executive, of “deliberately misleading” a committee hearing last month
when he told parliament that his firm did not use any Facebook data. Mr
Nix told the FT at the weekend that he stood by his comments, despite a
former employee turned whistleblower claiming he had evidence to the
Mr Nix added: “We deleted our Facebook data at the time we were alerted
to a possible contravention of Facebook data policies.” When asked why
he did not disclose this to parliament he said: “They didn’t ask me
Amy Klobuchar, a Democratic senator from Minnesota, said Mr Zuckerberg
needed to testify before the Senate as it was “clear these platforms
can’t police themselves”.
So far only mid-level Facebook executives have defended the company
since the revelations from Christopher Wylie, the Cambridge Analytica
whistleblower, were published in the New York Times and the Observer at
the weekend. The social network executives said it was not a data breach
because it had not been hacked.
The reports allege that Cambridge Analytica was passed data collected by
Global Science Research using a psychological survey app for research.
It used the data to create profiles on respondents and their friends,
which were used for political targeting without consent.
Facebook banned the data analytics company on Friday, three years after
it first discovered it had broken its rules.