The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #156154   Message #3681890
Posted By: Jim Carroll
02-Dec-14 - 03:03 PM
Thread Name: New book - Legacies of Ewan MacColl
Subject: RE: New book - Legacies of Ewan MacColl
MacColl used to end most of the Critics Group meetings by launching into a soliloquy on song, theatre, literature..... anything that arose from the night's work
It was during these he introduced me to what have turned out to be my favourite authors.
Cervantes was probably the first - he recounted how the author was captured (I think, during the Battle of Lepanto) and became a galley slave, escaped, was recaptured....... "and went on to write one of the world's finest novels"
Those evenings became life-changing.
His own favourite was 'The Good Soldier Schweik' which tells of the feeble-minded soldier whose idiocy got himself drafted into the army during W.W.1 (for commenting that the flies in the local bar had shit on the portrait of The Kaiser). - that same idiocy kept him alive for the duration of the war - I'm about to embark on it for the fourth time.
Another one he introduced me to was the trilogy 'The Scots Quair' - magic.
I was quite proud when I was able to return the complement and managed to introduce him to the novels of Victor Serge - he strongly disapproved of Anarchist Serge's politics, but he took to them like a duck to water.
"academics are people who keep up the practice"
I'll think you'll find that academics read books Al - their various callings make it compulsory.
What you seen to be describing are middle-class pseuds who collect books but tend not to read them
For a while I had a number of extremely wealthy customers in London, in Knightsbridge, Kensington and Chelsea.
It used to amuse me to brows through their libraries of first editions enviously then nip off to work upstairs in the bedrooms to inevitable find Jeffry Archer at one side of the bed and Barbara Taylor Bradford at the other.
Jim Carroll