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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"

Blog entries on '04 February 2006'

Saturday 04 February 2006

Camus at Combat

Camus at Combat: Writing 1944-1947 (Princeton University Press), edited and annotated by Jacqueline Lévi-Valensi, translated by Arthur Goldhammer, and with an introduction by David Carroll, has just landed.

Paris is firing all its ammunition into the August night. Against a vast backdrop of water and stone, on both sides of a river awash with history, freedom's barricades are once again being erected. Once again justice must be redeemed with men's blood.

"Albert Camus (1913-1960) wrote these words in August 1944, as Paris was being liberated from German occupation. Although best known for his novels including The Stranger and The Plague, it was his vivid descriptions of the horrors of the occupation and his passionate defense of freedom that in fact launched his public fame." Usefully, PUP have a copy of the first chapter online:

Articles that appeared in clandestine issues of Combat can at best be classified as "probably" by Camus, and it is not out of the question that he wrote others. For obvious reasons, he kept no record of what he wrote, and no firm conclusions can be drawn from either the themes or the style of what was published, since everything that appeared in the paper constituted an act of resistance and reflected goals shared by everyone who wrote for it.

Posted by Mark Thwaite
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Saturday 04 February 2006

Manchester Bloggers

Manchester Bloggers is an "aggregation of posts from Manchester Bloggers." Manchester, North of England, UK this is. RSB has just joined up.

Posted by Mark Thwaite
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Saturday 04 February 2006

Too much fact in Banville's The Sea

Nice piece in The Times today (by Kenneth J Harvey, author of The Town That Forgot How to Breathe) satirising the ridiculous James Frey debacle:

After reading John Banville's Man Booker prize-winning The Sea, a slim volume trumpeted as fiction, I was startled to discover, upon perusing my hefty atlas, that this supposedly fantastical place named Ireland was an actual island ...

Posted by Mark Thwaite
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As you sow, so shall you reap. The bags packed,
Umbers and gold swollen between the purse-strings,
Getaway cars nose on a hot scent.
Under striped canvas the patrons gather,
Staring at blue, incorrigible seas.
The stubble burns a hole in summer's pocket;
Upon the baked crust of their world, the mice
Scatter their ashes to the harvest moon.

-- Peter Scupham
(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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