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Category Archives: Classics

Castaways, convicts and cannibals: Patrick White’s A Fringe of Leaves

Why do we read Patrick White? The answer, ‘because he won a Nobel Prize’ is not sufficient in itself. If it were, we’d read Vicente Aleixandre, Jaroslav Seifert and Wislawa Szymborska. But by and large, we don’t. Nor do many of us read White. No doubt some … Read more »

Colette’s family plot: autobiography in The Cat

‘Colette’s ‘family plot’ is a garden and a graveyard… The treasure of Colette’s writing is the layered vertical memory that blooms into fiction and thus brings to light those beloved ghosts who, Colette finds, now dwell within the writer herself.’ –       Jerry Aline Flieger, Colette and the … Read more »

‘They have a right to do anything we can’t stop them from doing’: Catch-22

In our new ‘Classics’ series, we ask writers to read – or reread – literary classics. In this first instalment, Claire Corbett discovers the military horrors of Joseph Heller’s Catch-22. For a new reader, a novel’s status as a classic can obscure its true achievements because its … Read more »