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Samuel Beckett’s Chess Library

Playwright Samuel Beckett’s interest in chess is well known, but what did he read about the game? There are several chess books among the 757 works in Beckett’s online library. ‘He also studied the chess columns regularly in Le Monde and spent hours playing chess…

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Brain Scam

Justin Horton   Ray Keene’s charity, The Brain Trust, appears to donate a lot of the money it raises to organisations run by Ray Keene and his friends. What’s going on? Let’s ask Ray directly.   Email, Sunday 13 January, to rdkobe@aol.com. [For details and…

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Brief Encounters

  The Grandmaster Magnus Carlsen and the Match that Made Chess Great Again Brin-Jonathan Butler 224 pages | softback | £12.95 London: Simon & Schuster, 2018 Sarah Hurst The directionless nature of Brin-Jonathan Butler’s book is evident from its title, ‘The Grandmaster: Magnus Carlsen and…

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‘Disgusted with the Chamber of Horrors’

Chess and Early Cold War Propaganda Chess, like many sports, has been used as a political instrument. Files recently released by the National Archives reveal how the Soviet Union exploited chess for propaganda during the early years of the Cold War (1953–1960). In December 1953,…

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A New Dawn for Chess

Bromance Twitter Timeline   See also The Election of Arkady Dvorkovich Russia Made the King of Chess. The U.S. Dethroned Him   With thanks to Sarah Hurst (@XSovietNews)

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Searching for André Philidor

Interest in François-André Danican Philidor revived in 1926, the 200th anniversary of his birth. Celebrations were planned at his birthplace, Drieux in the Champagne region of France, and Biarritz. In England too chess players were keen to mark the occasion. Bust of Philidor (Cleveland Public Library…

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