Who on earth was William Gilbert?

Michael Caines on the little-known romantic William Gilbert, a “man of fine genius” (according to William Wordsworth) who had “unfortunately received a few rays of supernatural light through a crack in his upper story”; Daniel Beer tells the tale of the Gulag at Solovki, a converted monastery known as “the Paris of the Northern concentration camps”, a place of brutality but also of resistant culture and ideas; finally, Laurence Scott considers the cultural history of shoeshining, from Dickens to Police Squad 


Books

William Gilbert and Esoteric Romanticism by Paul Cheshire

Intellectual Life and Literature at Solovki, 1923–1930: The Paris of the northern concentration camps by Andrea Gullotta

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