|Sir Noel Malcolm|
|Born||Noel Robert Malcolm
26 December 1956
Surrey, England, United Kingdom
|Alma mater||Eton College
Trinity College, Cambridge
|Subject||History, politics, biography, literature|
Sir Noel Robert Malcolm, FRSL, FBA (born 26 December 1956) is an English political journalist, historian and academic. A King's Scholar at Eton College, Malcolm read history at Peterhouse, Cambridge and received his Doctorate in History from Trinity College, Cambridge. He was a Fellow and College Lecturer of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, before becoming a political and foreign affairs journalist with The Spectator and the Daily Telegraph.
He stepped away from journalism in 1995 to become a writer and academic, being appointed as a Visiting Fellow of St Antony's College, Oxford for two years. He became a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature (FRSL) in 1997, and a Fellow of the British Academy (FBA) in 2001. Since 2002, he has been a Senior Research Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford. He was knighted in the 2014 New Year Honours for services to scholarship, journalism, and European history.
Early life and education
Malcolm was born on 26 December 1956. He was educated at Eton College, an all-boys public school near Windsor, Berkshire, as a King's Scholar. He studied history at Peterhouse, Cambridge between 1974 and 1978. He received his PhD degree in History while he was at Trinity College, Cambridge.
Malcolm was a fellow and college lecturer of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge from 1981 to 1988. He was a political columnist (1987–1991) then the foreign editor (1991–1992) of The Spectator, and a political columnist for the Daily Telegraph (1992–1995). He was jointly awarded the T. E. Utley Prize for Political Journalism in 1991.
In 1995 he gave up journalism to become a full-time writer. Malcolm was a visiting Fellow of St Antony's College, Oxford in 1995–1996, and has been a Senior Research Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford since 2002. He serves on the advisory board of the conservative magazine Standpoint.
In 2010, Malcolm was featured as the key historian in the feature documentary film My Blood My Compromise to discuss the historical events that led to the demise of Yugoslavia and the war in Kosovo.
Malcolm became a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature (FRSL) in 1997, and a Fellow of the British Academy (FBA) in 2001. He is a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Fishmongers. He is a Member of the Academy of Sciences and Arts of Kosovo, and an Honorary Fellow of both Peterhouse, Cambridge (since 2010) and Trinity College, Cambridge (since 2011).
Malcolm is the author of:
- De Dominis, 1560–1624: Venetian, Anglican, ecumenist, and relapsed heretic (1984)
- George Enescu: His Life and Music ( Toccata Press, 1990), which has been translated into several languages
- Bosnia: A Short History (New York University Press, 1994), which has been translated into several languages
- Origins of English Nonsense (HarperCollins, 1997)
- Kosovo: A Short History (New York University Press, 1998)
- Books on Bosnia: A critical bibliography of works relating to Bosnia-Herzegovina published since 1990 in West European languages (with Quintin Hoare) (Bosnian Institute, 1999)
- Aspects of Hobbes (Oxford University Press, 2002)
- John Pell (1611–1685) and His Correspondence with Sir Charles Cavendish: The Mental World of an Early Modern Mathematician (with Jacqueline Stedall) (Oxford University Press, 2005)
- Agents of Empire: Knights, Corsairs, Jesuits and Spies in the Late Sixteenth-Century Mediterranean World (2015)
He edited Reason of State, Propaganda, and the Thirty Years' War: An Unknown Translation by Thomas Hobbes (Clarendon Press, 2007), and The Correspondence of Thomas Hobbes (1994) and Thomas Hobbes’ Leviathan (3 volumes, Oxford University Press, 2012), for which he was awarded a British Academy Medal. He has also contributed over 40 journal articles or chapters in books since 2002.
Malcolm has written many articles for newspapers, magazines and journals. Other than his work for The Spectator, the Daily Telegraph and Standpoint he has had articles published in The Guardian, The Sunday Telegraph, the New York Times, Washington Times, Time and the Daily Mail among other publications. He has also contributed book reviews mainly to The Sunday Telegraph. He has contributed to a number of scholarly journals including Foreign Affairs and the New York Review of Books.
Malcolm's book Kosovo: A Short History (1998) saw robust debate among historians following its release. For example, the merits of the book were the subject of an extended debate in Foreign Affairs. The debate began with the review of the book by the former Fellow of the Russian Research Center at Harvard University, Aleksa Djilas. He wrote that Malcolm's book was "marred by his sympathies for its ethnic Albanian separatists, anti-Serbian bias, and illusions about the Balkans". Malcolm responded by claiming that Djilas had not produced any evidence to counter that produced in the book, and had instead resorted to belittling both Malcolm and his work, including the use of personal slurs and patronising language. The debate continued with Professor Stevan K. Pavlowitch of the University of Southampton asserting that Malcolm's book lacked precision, Melanie McDonagh of the Bosnian Institute claimed that Djilas' review took a "nationalistic approach", and Norman Cigar of Marine Corps University stating that Djilas was trying to create myths to legitimise Serbian actions in Kosovo.
In 1999, the Serbian-American poet Charles Simić wrote a letter to the London Review of Books criticizing Malcolm's failure to protest against vandalism and destruction of Serb cultural sites in Kosovo, despite Malcolm having made a prior statement that they should be cared for (a statement which Simić also noted in his letter). Later the same year, Thomas Emmert of the history faculty of Gustavus Adolphus College, Minnesota reviewed the book in Journal of Southern Europe and the Balkans Online and while praising aspects of the book also asserted that it was "shaped by the author's overriding determination to challenge Serbian myths", that Malcolm was "partisan", and also complained that the book made a "transparent attempt to prove that the main Serbian myths are false". Malcolm responded in the same journal in early 2000, asserting that the book challenged both Albanian and Serbian myths about Kosovo, but that there were more Serbian myths about Kosovo than Albanian ones and this explained the greater coverage of Serbian myths in the book. He also observed that Emmert's perspective and work was largely within the framework of Serbian historiography, and that Emmert's own perspective was the reason for Emmert's assertion that Malcolm was "partisan".
Other reviews of Kosovo: A Short History were varied. For example, in English Historical Review, Zbyněk Zeman observed that Malcolm "tries not to take sides", but in American Historical Review, Nicholas J. Miller stated that the book was "conceptually flawed" due to Malcolm's insistence on treating Kosovo as "a place on its own; [rather than] a scrap of irredenta that Serbs and Albanians fight over".
In 2006, a study by Frederick Anscombe looked at issues surrounding scholarship on Kosovo such as Noel Malcolm's work Kosovo: A Short History. Anscombe noted that Malcolm offered "a detailed critique of the competing versions of Kosovo's history" and that his work marked a "remarkable reversal" of previous acceptance by Western historians of the "Serbian account" regarding the migration of the Serbs (1690) from Kosovo. Malcolm has been criticized for being "anti-Serbian" and selective like the Serbs with the sources, while other more restrained critics note that "his arguments are unconvincing". The majority of documents Malcolm uses were written by adversaries of the Ottoman state or by officials with limited experience of the region. Anscombe notes that Malcolm, like Serbian and Yugoslav historians who have ignored his conclusions sideline and are unwilling to consider indigenous evidence such as that from the Ottoman archive when composing national history.
In a 2007 work, the Serbian historian Dušan T. Bataković claimed that Malcolm's book about Kosovo was "notoriously pro-Albanian" regarding the Kosovo issue. Frederick Anscombe has accused Bataković of writing several works in the 1980s and 1990s which advanced a Serbian nationalist perspective regarding Kosovo.
- "MALCOLM, Sir Noel Robert". Who's Who 2016. Oxford University Press. November 2015. Retrieved 26 December 2015.
- Malcolm 2000, p. 124.
- Debretts 2012.
- Pan Macmillan 2012.
- All Soul's College 2012.
- Standpoint 2012.
- Bosnian Institute 2012.
- Elsie 2010, p. 14.
- The Times 2013.
- Malcolm 2008.
- Malcolm 2001.
- Malcolm 1999a.
- Malcolm 1999b.
- Malcolm 1998a.
- Malcolm 1996.
- Malcolm 1995.
- Malcolm 1999c.
- Malcolm 1998b.
- Malcolm 2007.
- Djilas 1998.
- "List of related articles in Foreign Affairs".
- Noel Malcolm, Aleksa Djilas, et al. "Is Kosovo Real? The Battle Over History Continues," Foreign Affairs (January/February 1999).
- Simic, Charles (30 September 1999). "A State of One’s Own". London Review of Books. Archived from the original on 15 August 2014. Retrieved 22 January 2015.
- Malcolm, Noel (9 June 1999). "Independence For Kosovo". New York Times. Retrieved 23 January 2015.
- Emmert 1999.
- Malcolm 2000.
- Zeman 1999.
- Miller 1998.
- Anscombe 2006, p. 770. "Noel Malcolm, who offers a detailed critique of the competing versions of Kosovo's history... Here is a remarkable reversal, as Malcolm, like other Western historians, had previously accepted the Serbian account."
- Anscombe 2006, pp. 770-771. "Malcolm is criticized for being anti-Serbian, and for using his sources as selectively as the Serbs, though the more restrained of his critics only suggest that his arguments are unconvincing. Most of the documents he relies on were written by enemies of the Ottoman Empire, or by officials with limited experience of the Ottoman Balkans... Malcolm, like the historians of Serbia and Yugoslavia who ignore his findings, overlooks the most valuable indigenous evidence. Unwillingness to consider Ottoman evidence when constructing national history is exemplified by the Serbian historians..."
- (Bataković 2007, p. 13): "Notoriously pro-Albanian as regards the Kosovo issue is Noel Malcolm, Kosovo. A Short History (London: Mac- millan, 1998)."
- Anscombe, Frederick (2006). "The Ottoman Empire in Recent International Politics - II: The Case of Kosovo". The International History Review. 28 (4): 761.
- Elsie, Robert (2010), Historical dictionary of Albania, Lanham: Scarecrow Press, ISBN 978-0-8108-7380-3, retrieved 4 February 2012
- Bataković, Dušan T. (2007). Kosovo and Metohija: living in the enclave. Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Institute for Balkan Studies.
- Anscombe, Frederick (2006). "The Ottoman Empire in Recent International Politics - II: The Case of Kosovo". The International History Review. 28 (4): 758–793.
- Djilas, Aleksa (1998). "Imagining Kosovo: A Biased New Account Fans Western Confusion". Foreign Affairs. Council on Foreign Relations. 77 (5 September/October 1998): 124–131. JSTOR 20049055.
- Emmert, Thomas (1999). "Challenging myth in a short history of Kosovo". Journal of Southern Europe and the Balkans Online. Routledge. 1 (2): 217–221. doi:10.1080/14613199908414002. Retrieved 12 December 2012.
- Malcolm, Noel (1999c). "What Ancient Hatreds?". Foreign Affairs. Council on Foreign Relations. 78 (1 January/February 1999): 130–134. JSTOR 20020248.
- Malcolm, Noel (2000). "Response to Thomas Emmert". Journal of Southern Europe and the Balkans. Routledge. 2 (1): 121–124. doi:10.1080/14613190050004871. Retrieved 12 December 2012.
- Miller, Nicholas J. (1998). "Noel Malcolm, Kosovo: A Short History, New York:New York University Press. 1998.". American Historical Review. 103 (5 December 1998): 1648–1649. doi:10.1086/ahr/103.5.1648.
- Zeman, Zbyněk (1999). "Kosovo. A Short History by Noel Malcolm". The English Historical Review. Oxford University Press. 114 (457 June 1999): 801–802. doi:10.1093/ehr/114.457.801. JSTOR 580536.
Newspapers and magazines
- Malcolm, Noel (12 November 1995), "David Owen and His Balkan Bungling", The Sunday Telegraph
- Malcolm, Noel (6 November 1996), "The Grandee and a Question of Genocide", Daily Mail
- Malcolm, Noel (30 March 1998a), "The Past Must Not be Prologue", Time
- Malcolm, Noel (16 July 1998b), "Kosovo's History", New York Review of Books, retrieved 14 December 2012
- Malcolm, Noel (9 June 1999a), "Independence for Kosovo", The New York Times, retrieved 14 December 2012
- Malcolm, Noel (4 May 1999b), "Response to Amos Perlmutter's Op-ed 'Who Will Run Kosovo'", Washington Times
- Malcolm, Noel (1 July 2001), "Milosevic Was Doomed by Press Freedom", The Sunday Telegraph
- Malcolm, Noel (6 December 2007), "The New Montenegro: The State That Was Not a State", New York Review of Books, retrieved 30 January 2015
- Malcolm, Noel (26 February 2008), "Is Kosovo Serbia? We ask a historian", The Guardian, retrieved 14 December 2012
- All Soul's College (2012). "Sir Noel Malcolm, MA, PhD, FBA, FRSL". Retrieved 13 December 2012.
- Bosnian Institute (2012). "Bosnian Institute – Trustees". Retrieved 13 December 2012.
- Debretts (2012). "Noel Robert Malcolm". Retrieved 13 December 2012.
- Pan Macmillan (2012). "Noel Malcolm". Retrieved 15 December 2012.
- Standpoint (2012). "About Noel Malcolm". Retrieved 14 December 2012.
- The Times (2013). "New Year’s Honours revealed for higher education". Retrieved 30 December 2013.