Reflections of a working writer and reader
It is as reasonable to represent one kind of imprisonment by another, as it is to represent anything that really exists by that which exists not.
Daniel Defoe, in the preface to the third volume of Robinson Crusoe
john baker, February 25th, 2007. 4 comments. Filed under literature, miscellaneous, reviews, writing.
The Guardian has brought a few critics and writers together to give their opinions. Some interesting comments . . .
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Yes, the comments are very revealing, often of the authors themselves.
jb says: Agreed. I particularly like Louise Doughty’s closing remark:
In the end it is not for us to identify the great writers. We don’t have any sense of perspective. Kafka published virtually nothing in his lifetime, while Pearl S Buck won the Nobel prize for literature.
The interesting thing is that most of the contributors either mention Amis in a positive or negative way, so one way or another, he has had an impact on their reading lives.
It’s almost like going out with a girl and all she wants to do is talk about her ex… well, you get the idea
jb says: Hi Geoffrey. Amis is like that. There is no doubt whatsoever that he was a prodigious and precocious talent. This probably led to overblown or unreal expectations, something that the media, generally, find inexcusable.
JB, I didn’t know that about Kafka. Makes you think…
jb says: There are other examples, I believe. Several poets, lots of women . . .
And Proust had to pay to have his first volume of Remembrance of Things Past published, I’ve just learned.
jb says: The inheritance allowed him to write.
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