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Nikolaus Pevsner The Life by Susie Harries
  

Nikolaus Pevsner The Life

Biography / Autobiography   The Real World   

RRP £30.00

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The definitive biography, based on exclusive access to diaries and personal papers, as well as the archive of Pevsner's landmark series, The Buildings of England.

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Synopsis

Nikolaus Pevsner The Life by Susie Harries

Born Nikolai Pewsner into a Russian-Jewish family in Leipzig in 1902, the young Nikolaus Pevsner lived through turbulent years in Germany. A promising career as an academic in Dresden during the crisis years of the Weimar Republic ended with his enforced move to England in 1933. Susie Harries explores the truth about his reported sympathies with elements of Nazi ideology, his internment in England as an enemy alien, his mother's suicide in 1942 and his sometimes painful assimilation into his country of exile. As a critic, academic and champion of Modernism, Pevsner became a central figure in the architectural consensus that accompanied post-war reconstruction; as a 'General Practitioner' of architectural history, Pevsner wrote and broadcast on an astonishing range of subjects, from Gothic cathedrals and Georgian coffee houses to the Festival of Britain and Brutalist tower blocks. But it is the Buildings of England series, published between 1951 and 1974, that has made Pevsner's name synonymous with the exploration and enjoyment of English architecture. Pevsner's career is a prism through which to view the evolution of art history (and its publishing) in Britain - while his life as both an outsider and insider at the heart of English art history illuminates both the predicament and the prowess of the continental emigres who did so much to shape British culture after 1945.

Reviews

This is a biographical masterpiece that shows how the life of one man can become a prism through which can be read the stories of both England and Germany in the 20th century...[Harries] book is of infinite value -- Alexandra Harris New Statseman A biography almost as comprehensive as the BofE [Buildings of England] itself...It's been worth the 20 year wait -- Matthew Bell Independent on Sunday What Harries brings to the table is the most intimate portrait of Pevsner yet -- Hugh Pearman Sunday Times This is not just a fair-minded biography, but also an impressive and comprehensive one. An enormous one too... even the obsessives will discover new things -- Harry Mount Spectator Magnificent...in Susie Harries's hands, Pevsner's story unlocks a vitally important chapter in 20th-century history...told with warmth, lucidity and wit Art Quarterly


About the Author

Susie Harries was born in 1951, studied classics at Cambridge and Oxford Universities, and worked for several years on the Independence Commission Against Corruption in Hong Kong.

She has co-authored six books as well as writing on Japanese security and environmental policy for English newspapers.

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Book Info

Publication date

18th August 2011

Author

Susie Harries

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Publisher

Chatto & Windus an imprint of Vintage

Format

Hardback
880 pages

Categories

Biography / Autobiography
The Real World

Biography: general
Theory of architecture

ISBN

9780701168391

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