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One of the Guardian Unlimited Books' top 10 literary blogs: "A home-grown treasure ... smart, serious analysis"

The Bookaholics' Guide to Book Blogs: "Mark Thwaite ... has a maverick, independent mind"

Thursday 05 January 2006

Harold Pinter’s artistic achievement

Paul Bond, in his essay Harold Pinter’s artistic achievement (via Dialogic) says:


What is clear both from the Nobel citation and from Hari’s attack is the extent to which Pinter’s political thinking and his art are interlinked. Although he has written constantly throughout his career, he has never forced his work. It is surprising how few of his 29 plays are full-length pieces. He once said that “you write because there’s something you want to write, have to write.” From this vision of the necessity of artistic expression flows his confidence that you can “take a chance on the audience.” This is an increasingly rare trait and demonstrates a remarkable artistic independence in the present period. That he has been able to maintain this critical independence throughout a 50-year career marks him as quite extraordinary.

Bond does us all a favour here crushing the arguments of Johann Hari of the Independent newspaper who wrote an idiotic piece entitled Pinter does not deserve the Nobel Prize. Unless there was a new prize for "rage-induced incoherence," wrote Hari, Pinter’s "ravings" should not be broadcast. These ravings are some of the most powerful words I've ever read or heard.

Posted by Mark Thwaite

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