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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 19 April 2007

McCarthy and Dickinson at the BFI

Tom McCarthy has dropped me a line to tell me about an event he is involved in at the London-based British Film Institute this evening (starting at the very specific time of twenty to seven!):


What is the cultural logic of repetition? Is repetition the same as re-enactment? What role does trauma play in all this? Are these questions, by their very nature, inherently political?

Writer Tom McCarthy, whose novel Remainder sees an obsessed Everyman re-enact increasingly violent situations in a bid for 'authenticity', and artist Rod Dickinson, known for his large-scale re-enactments of the sermons of cult leader Jim Jones and the Obedience to Authority experiment of psychologist Stanley Milgram, discuss these issues with each other at the BFI, London. (18:40, £5, £4 concs).

Posted by Mark Thwaite
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Serendipoetry

Memorial Tablet

Squire nagged and bullied till I went to fight,
(Under Lord Derby’s Scheme). I died in hell—
(They called it Passchendaele). My wound was slight,
And I was hobbling back; and then a shell
Burst slick upon the duck-boards: so I fell
Into the bottomless mud, and lost the light.

At sermon-time, while Squire is in his pew,
He gives my gilded name a thoughtful stare:
For, though low down upon the list, I’m there;
‘In proud and glorious memory’... that’s my due.
Two bleeding years I fought in France, for Squire:
I suffered anguish that he’s never guessed.
Once I came home on leave: and then went west...
What greater glory could a man desire?

-- Siegfried Sassoon
Collected Poems (Faber and Faber)

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