By Rebecca West
Like so much all of Rebecca West's reportage, A teach of Powder methods nice literature. Written among 1946 and 1954, those debts of 4 debatable trials discover the character of crime and punishment, innocence and guilt, retribution and forgiveness. the center-piece of the booklet is "Greenhouse with Cyclamens," a three-part essay at the Nuremberg trials written with precision, readability, and bold perception. She additionally experiences on fairly brutal homicide trials — one for a lynching in North Carolina, the opposite for a "torso murder" in England — and the espionage trial of a British telegrapher. all through, the query of guilt evokes Ms. West to feats of mental detection in which unerring craftsmanship and a strong narrative feel mix to a excessive function — the pursuit of fact. "An stunning book.... As compelling as court docket television yet with no the frisson of voyeurism (and with the compensatory satisfactions of West's breathtakingly lucid prose style), those based narratives remind us of the preciousness and fragility of our correct to trial by way of jury."—Francine Prose. "It is her certain magic to mix impressionism and precision, as though Monet and Ingres may someway be fused. many times a passage starts as a type of iridescent cloud, and culminates in a diamond point."—Telford Taylor, Saturday Review. "Rebecca West...has raised journalism to a excessive paintings, respiring into it a intensity, a poetry, a subtlety, and an knowing and compassion for people and their unending follies and tragedies that provide it a sound position in modern literature."—William L. Shirer.
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