Synopses & Reviews
When Anthony Blunt died in 1983, he was a man about whom almost anything could be - and was - said. As Surveyor of the Queen's Pictures and Director of the Courtauld Institute, Blunt's position was assured until his exposure in 1979 left his reputation in tatters. Miranda Carter's brilliantly insightful biography gives us a vivid portrait of a human paradox. Blunt's totally discrete lives, with their permanent contradictions, serve to remind us that there is no one key to any human being's identity: we are all a series of conflicting selves.
'Astonishingly good' Daily Telegraph
'Highly impressive... sensitive and compelling... Miranda Carter has written a richly informative biography which, in the end, does not fall into the trap of tout comprendre, c'est tout pardonner - not only because she is not seeking to pardon him, but also because there is something here that is still quite impossible to comprehend.' Noel Malcolm, Sunday Telegraph
'A compelling biography... Miranda Carter's skill at scouring the different compartments of Blunt's life is deeply impressive' Julian Barnes, New Yorker
Anthony Blunt, aesthete, communist, homosexual, MI5 agent, and Soviet mole, also made an enormous contribution to the establishment of art history as Director of the Courtald Institute. This biography shows how his life illustrated key themes and moments of the 20th century.
Now in paperback with a new cover, this biography links key 20th century themes with the life of Antony Blunt, focusing on the intellectual, political, sexual and social. 16pp b/w photos. Winner of the Orwell Prize for Political Writing in 2001.
This brilliant psychological examination of the infamous Cambridge art-historian-turned-spy reveals the multiple masks worn by the Cold War's most notorious traitor. From young member of the Bloomsbury circle to left-wing intellectual, from closeted homosexual ascending to the Establishment to object of public denunciation by Margaret Thatcher, the arc of Blunt's life is at once a deeply nuanced account of fifty years in the British power elite and an astonishing history of one of the century's greatest deceits.