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Blog entries on '11 January 2007'

Thursday 11 January 2007


I'm a bit behind this week, what with recently starting full-time at The Book Depository, and having deadlines to meet for a longish article (on Death and Literature don't you know!) in a Time Out book, which isn't due for publication for a wee while yet, and for a review in the Financial Times (I know!) of Sayed Kashua's pretty poor Let It Be Morning. All this by way of saying that I will be writing about Pascale Casanova's Samuel Beckett: Anatomy of a Literary Revolution very soon. In the meantime, has a decent, sympathetic review of the book online which is worthy of your attention, but with which I have several difficulties. For now, I'll just say I'm far less sympathetic to Casanova's argument than

Posted by Mark Thwaite
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Thursday 11 January 2007

Linda Chase and Matthew Welton

The Manchester-based poets Linda Chase and Matthew Welton will be appearing at Manchester Metropolitan University on Thursday 18th January 2007. Admission is £5.00 (£3.00 concessions; free to students and staff of MMU) and the venue is: Lecture Theatre 6, Geoffrey Manton Building (opposite the Commonwealth Aquatics Centre on Oxford Road, Manchester city centre, UK).

Linda Chase grew up on Long Island in commuting distance of New York City. She has been a stage costume designer, a Tai Chi teacher and is currently an Associate Lecturer in Creative Writing at Manchester Metropolitan University. She co-ordinates the Poetry School Manchester and in 2004 started the Arts Council funded Poets and Players performance series. Her first collection These Goodbyes was published by Fatchance Press in 1995, and two further titles have been published by Carcanet: The Wedding Spy (2001) and Extended Family (2006).

Matthew Welton was born in Nottingham and currently lives in Manchester. He is course leader for the Creative Writing degree at Bolton University, editor of Stand magazine, and a director of the Manchester Literature Festival. His first collection, The Book of Matthew, won the 2003 Jerwood-Aldeburgh prize.

This event is hosted by the Writing School and is open to the public. A selection of Linda's and Matthew's books will be available to buy before the reading from our special Blackwell's stall. Get your copies signed by the poets.

Posted by Mark Thwaite
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Thursday 11 January 2007

Ars Interpres

I meant to mention this the other day when someone (Steve probably) brought it to my attention: Ars Interpres, an international print and online journal featuring "contemporary English language poetry and English translations of modern poetry from Scandinavia and other countries around the world."

Posted by Mark Thwaite

Thursday 11 January 2007

More on Tillie Olsen

Anne Fernald, who blogs at the wonderful Fernham, and who I'll be interviewing soon in her capacity as the author of Virginia Woolf: Feminism and the Reader, writes:

Tillie Olsen, a leftist, feminist novelist who was targeted by McCarthy-era smear-tactics and wrote, too, of the struggles of writing while also working and raising children died two weeks shy of her 95th birthday.

Her granddaughter commented on my blog and let me know about a really great tribute planned for this Saturday:

"the family requests that on her birthday, January 14th, people whose lives have been touched by Tillie gather with friends in their homes and public libraries to celebrate her life and to read her work together. We would be comforted to hear from you about your celebrations. Please email us:"

It would be wonderful if people from the feminist blogging and litblogging community could take a few hours out, on this upcoming Martin Luther King Holiday Weekend, to her.

You can visit the family's memorial site here:

I would really be excited to think that we all could re-read (or read) I Stand Here Ironing or some other great story and inform the family about it.

Posted by Mark Thwaite
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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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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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