META NAME="Forgotten Classics" CONTENT="neglected novels forgotten authors."

forgotten classics

'Reading neglected writers so you don't have to' A Time Out column and a blog for books that seem to be undeservedly forgotten, from John Galsworthy to Rose Macaulay, from Amos Tutuola to DH Lawrence, from W. Somerset Maugham to Fanny Burney. What books do you think we should revive? If you love a writer who has lapsed in popularity please let me know! Are my choices controversial?

Sunday, May 28, 2006

robert mccrum

Robert Mccrum has written in the Observer today about the decline of the
Great British Literary Novel
(,,1784465,00.html). There are
many things in his piece that I don't really agree with (his account of the
decline of the 'literary'/ 'English' novel in the 60s either allows Tom
Wolfe too much influence in the UK or ignores the Americans like Thomas
Pynchon and John Updike). His account of the rise of the celebrity author is
interesting. The concept that the writer is bigger than the work and that
the novel has become in thrall to the culture of celebrity is suggestive and
problematic at the same time. In particular, for this blog, it raises the
possibility of 'instant' forgotten classics, books that have mayfly lives
due to the dynamics of celebritisation (his example is Gautam Malkani's
Londonstani, hyped and paid for but quickly forgotten; you could add books
like Alex Garland's The Beach, Monica Ali's Brick Lane, DBC Pierre's Vernon
God Little, all interesting works on various levels and indicative cultural
phenomena but unlikely to last particularly, kind of Chantelle lit.).


Post a Comment

<< Home