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The Life & Times of Malcolm McLaren: The Biography

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'Excellent . . . With this book, Gorman convincingly moves away from the ossified image of McLaren as a great rock'n'roll swindler, a morally bankrupt punk Mephistopheles, and closer towards his art-school roots, his love of ideas. Tiresome, unpleasant, even cruel - he was, this book underlines, never boring' Sunday Times 'Exhaustive . . . compelling' Observer 'This masterfu 'Excellent . . . With this book, Gorman convincingly moves away from the ossified image of McLaren as a great rock'n'roll swindler, a morally bankrupt punk Mephistopheles, and closer towards his art-school roots, his love of ideas. Tiresome, unpleasant, even cruel - he was, this book underlines, never boring' Sunday Times 'Exhaustive . . . compelling' Observer 'This masterful and painstaking biography opens its doorway to an era of fluorescent disenchantment and outlandish possibility' Alan Moore Malcolm McLaren was one of the most culturally significant but misunderstood figures of the modern era. Ten years after his life was cruelly cut short by cancer, The Life & Times of Malcolm McLaren sheds fascinating new light on the public achievements and private life of this cultural iconoclast and architect of punk, whose championing of street culture movements including hip-hop and Voguing reverberates to this day. With exclusive contributions from friends and intimates and access to private papers and family documents, this biography uncovers the true story behind this complicated figure. McLaren first achieved public prominence as a rebellious art student by making the news in 1966 after being arrested for burning the US flag in front of the American Embassy in London. He maintained this incendiary reputation by fast-tracking vanguard and left-field ideas to the centre of the media glare, via his creation and stewardship of the Sex Pistols and work with Adam Ant, Boy George and Bow Wow Wow. Meanwhile McLaren's ground-breaking design partnership with Vivienne Westwood and his creation of their visionary series of boutiques in the 1970s and early '80s sent shockwaves through the fashion industry. The Life & Times of Malcolm McLaren also essays McLaren's exasperating Hollywood years when he broke bread with the likes of Steven Spielberg though his slate of projects, which included the controversial Heavy Metal Surf Nazis and Wilde West, in which Oscar Wilde introduced rock'n'roll to the American mid-west in the 1880s, proved too rich for the play-it-safe film business. With a preface by Alan Moore, who collaborated with McLaren on the unrealised film project Fashion Beast, and an essay by Lou Stoppard casting a twenty-first-century perspective over his achievements, The Life & Times Of Malcolm McLaren is the explosive and definitive account of the man dubbed by Melvyn Bragg 'the Diaghilev of punk'.


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'Excellent . . . With this book, Gorman convincingly moves away from the ossified image of McLaren as a great rock'n'roll swindler, a morally bankrupt punk Mephistopheles, and closer towards his art-school roots, his love of ideas. Tiresome, unpleasant, even cruel - he was, this book underlines, never boring' Sunday Times 'Exhaustive . . . compelling' Observer 'This masterfu 'Excellent . . . With this book, Gorman convincingly moves away from the ossified image of McLaren as a great rock'n'roll swindler, a morally bankrupt punk Mephistopheles, and closer towards his art-school roots, his love of ideas. Tiresome, unpleasant, even cruel - he was, this book underlines, never boring' Sunday Times 'Exhaustive . . . compelling' Observer 'This masterful and painstaking biography opens its doorway to an era of fluorescent disenchantment and outlandish possibility' Alan Moore Malcolm McLaren was one of the most culturally significant but misunderstood figures of the modern era. Ten years after his life was cruelly cut short by cancer, The Life & Times of Malcolm McLaren sheds fascinating new light on the public achievements and private life of this cultural iconoclast and architect of punk, whose championing of street culture movements including hip-hop and Voguing reverberates to this day. With exclusive contributions from friends and intimates and access to private papers and family documents, this biography uncovers the true story behind this complicated figure. McLaren first achieved public prominence as a rebellious art student by making the news in 1966 after being arrested for burning the US flag in front of the American Embassy in London. He maintained this incendiary reputation by fast-tracking vanguard and left-field ideas to the centre of the media glare, via his creation and stewardship of the Sex Pistols and work with Adam Ant, Boy George and Bow Wow Wow. Meanwhile McLaren's ground-breaking design partnership with Vivienne Westwood and his creation of their visionary series of boutiques in the 1970s and early '80s sent shockwaves through the fashion industry. The Life & Times of Malcolm McLaren also essays McLaren's exasperating Hollywood years when he broke bread with the likes of Steven Spielberg though his slate of projects, which included the controversial Heavy Metal Surf Nazis and Wilde West, in which Oscar Wilde introduced rock'n'roll to the American mid-west in the 1880s, proved too rich for the play-it-safe film business. With a preface by Alan Moore, who collaborated with McLaren on the unrealised film project Fashion Beast, and an essay by Lou Stoppard casting a twenty-first-century perspective over his achievements, The Life & Times Of Malcolm McLaren is the explosive and definitive account of the man dubbed by Melvyn Bragg 'the Diaghilev of punk'.

43 review for The Life & Times of Malcolm McLaren: The Biography

  1. 4 out of 5

    Leah Dickenson

    The level of research in this book is amazing however there were times when it became too mired in detail. It’s a huge book and became somewhat exhausting to get through. By the time we got to Bow Wow Wow I was done.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Mark Booth

    This is an interesting and well written book but it is far too long - in particular the last couple of hundred pages read almost like a list of activities. It would have been much better and more powerful if it had been shorter. Still enjoyable though.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Eugenia Melian

  4. 4 out of 5

    Conrad

  5. 5 out of 5

    Stephen McCathie

  6. 4 out of 5

    Hamish Danks Brown

  7. 4 out of 5

    Annie Watson

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    Mike Hales

  9. 5 out of 5

    Simon

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    Lindz

  11. 4 out of 5

    Ian Curry

  12. 4 out of 5

    Lesley9

  13. 5 out of 5

    Chris Estey

  14. 5 out of 5

    Dan Palmer

  15. 5 out of 5

    graham philip blackbourn

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    Andrew Weaver

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    Rupert

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    Tosh

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    January

  20. 4 out of 5

    gaminette

  21. 5 out of 5

    Bosco Farr

  22. 5 out of 5

    Mauro Aragón

  23. 5 out of 5

    Adam Smith

  24. 4 out of 5

    Jennie Reeve

  25. 4 out of 5

    Ian Lindsay

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    Ryan Hanson

  27. 4 out of 5

    Dave

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    Darren Thurston

  29. 5 out of 5

    Allison Thurman

  30. 5 out of 5

    Emma

  31. 5 out of 5

    Tess

  32. 4 out of 5

    Stacey

  33. 5 out of 5

    Clare Mckenna

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    Kristi

  35. 5 out of 5

    Stephen

  36. 5 out of 5

    Chelsea

  37. 5 out of 5

    Rachel Duffell

  38. 4 out of 5

    Mandy Queen

  39. 4 out of 5

    Criss Cio

  40. 4 out of 5

    Lauren Savage

  41. 5 out of 5

    Lee Robertson

  42. 4 out of 5

    Jeromy Nolan

  43. 5 out of 5

    Miguel Grimsditch

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