Wednesday, January 23, 2008

"You are either a liar or are unbalanced and should see a doctor"

Frederic Raphael has a most meticulously and scathingly well-written piece on Graham Greene's letters in the TLS this week. It's interesting in itself (Anthony Burgess makes a brief appearance!), but also perhaps most striking as an instance of what I think of as a characteristically British reviewing style, in this case with Raphael's particular stamp on it. Lovely!

(I admire it without wishing to emulate it, I think it must take a lifetime of practice in any case and a whole formation of the personality which I am too much of an enthusiast to embrace!)

1 comment:

  1. I dunno, Raphael's essay strikes me as too political, he's basically accusing Greene of having the exactly correct political line, and also of being an expatriate. But a person can live only one life: by spending so much time away from England, apparently Greene forfeited his chance to be an expert on zippers and fly-buttons. But maybe that was an ok tradeoff.