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

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Blog entries on '13 December 2005'

Tuesday 13 December 2005

SOT: Underrated writers

The good folk at Syntax of Things kindly invited me to contribute some names to their Underrated Writers list, but I got embroiled in other things and, regrettably, never got around to sending them my choices (my chief nomination would have been Dai Vaughan). SoT asked "a wide range of litbloggers to tell us the writers who aren't receiving the attention they should ... [compiling] a list of 55 writers from 15 different litbloggers" and their resulting Underrated Writers list is now online.

Posted by Mark Thwaite

Tuesday 13 December 2005

John on Bookslut

I'm glad that John (via pas au-delà) has taken Jessa Bookslut to task for her stupid comment on Pinter's speech, but I do think another lit-blogger should wade in and condemn her facile derision. I wish I could be bothered, but I fear I'll drown my contempt in truculent, opprobrious adjectives. In lieu, I'll quote John asking:

Could this be a scintillatingly ironic performace of the very mendacious, thought-repellent use of language that Pinter's speech describes? Might be. Even at that, though, it's troublesome; too comfortable a gesture, redolent of the laugh track or the dormitory. And I just doubt it. Now anecdotal evidence is not conclusive, but this suggests that the extensive reading of middlebrow garbage along with the exertion of trying to sound hiply ironic about it really does blunt the mind and vitiate the morals. Is there a hell worse than this know-nothing solipsism, this moral idiocy worn like a badge?

Posted by Mark Thwaite

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Omens, after Alexander Pushkin

I rode to meet you: dreams
like living beings swarmed around me
and the moon on my right side
followed me, burning.

I rode back: everything changed.
My soul in love was sad
and the moon on my left side
trailed me without hope.

To such endless impressions
we poets give ourselves absolutely,
making, in silence, omen of mere event,
until the world reflects the deepest needs of the soul.

-- Louise Gluck
Averno (Carcanet Press)

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Word of the Day

The Dord, the Diglot, and an Avocado or two

Pre-order Anu Garg's new book: The Dord, the Diglot, and an Avocado or Two: The Hidden Lives and Strange Origins of Common and Not-So-Common Words (ISBN 9780452288614), published by Penguin more …

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October's Books of the Month

The New Spirit of Capitalism The New Spirit of Capitalism
Luc Boltanski; Eve Chiapello
Horizons Touched: The Music of ECM Horizons Touched: The Music of ECM
Steve Lake, Paul Griffiths

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