Daniel Defoe

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Islander review – change and contradictions on Robinson Crusoe island
Stéphane Goël’s documentary merges the past and present of this small island off the coast of Chile

Phuong Le

06, Sep, 2021 @9:14 AM

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Research explains how people act in pandemics – selfishly, but often with surprising altruism | Utteeyo Dasgupta
In his book A Journal of the Plague Year, Daniel Defoe describes 17th-century behavior that is unmistakably familiar today

Utteeyo Dasgupta

20, Dec, 2020 @11:17 AM

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Exit Management by Naomi Booth review – how to survive in London
This compelling tale of people scrabbling for purchase in the capital is peculiarly appropriate to our current crisis

Nina Allan

23, Oct, 2020 @6:30 AM

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The Covid novels are arriving. And they'll be a warning to future generations | Laura Spinney
We remember the horrors of the first world war but not the 1918 Spanish flu, which was mostly ignored by literature, says the author Laura Spinney

Laura Spinney

07, Aug, 2020 @12:00 PM

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Beyond Daniel Defoe: the real journals of the plague year
For all its power, Defoe’s account of the great plague was not firsthand, and there’s much to be learned from genuine witnesses

Sam Jordison

19, May, 2020 @1:56 PM

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A Journal of the Plague Year may be fictional, but it's not untrue
Daniel Defoe clearly relied on his imagination to write his history, but where he invented scenes it was in the spirit of a larger truth

Sam Jordison

12, May, 2020 @10:02 AM

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Defoe's Plague Year was written in 1722 but speaks clearly to our time
From sluggish bureaucracy to empty streets and paranoia, this account of contagion in London could hardly be more relevant

Sam Jordison

05, May, 2020 @10:00 AM

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The end of coronavirus: what plague literature tells us about our future
From Thucydides to Camus, there are plenty of hopeful reminders that there’s nothing unprecedented about the coronavirus lockdown - and that pandemics do end

Marcel Theroux

01, May, 2020 @10:00 AM

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A Journal of the Plague Year by Daniel Defoe is our reading group book for May
This 1722 ‘potrait of the face of London now indeed strangely altered’ offers a fascinating perspective on our current crisis

Sam Jordison

28, Apr, 2020 @11:15 AM

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Howard Jacobson: 'I am a social distancer by instinct'
The novelist was in Tenerife when news of Covid-19 hit. He reflects on a month of uncertainty and the search for hand sanitiser

Howard Jacobson

28, Mar, 2020 @11:00 AM

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What I'm really watching: Monkees, Thunderbirds and kids' TV of the 70s
In the latest of our new series revealing the strange viewing habits brought on by self-isolation, one writer finds time to plumb the deepest depths of the 70s kids’ TV schedules

Paul Simon

27, Mar, 2020 @8:00 AM

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Got 150 hours? Great audiobooks to listen to on lockdown
From Ian McKellen reading Homer to Bill Bryson on the body, these audiobooks can expand your horizons, even when you can’t go out

Steven Poole

25, Mar, 2020 @6:00 AM

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