Saturday, October 28, 2006

on Waugh and morals in world literature

Husband found this at a book sale recently, knowing all too well the difficulty I have with British authors. Waugh is an exception, of course. I like to know the person behind my favorite authors, so I am enjoying it greatly. As opposed to Flannery--my very favorite--whom I got to know first through The Habit of Being, Waugh first came to me through his fiction, namely Brideshead Revisited. It is exactly about Brideshead that he writes, from Dubrovnik, 1945:
I am beginning to get letters thanking for Brideshead Revisited. It seems to be a success and I think it should be. Unfortunately it is not to be published until April because of shortage of paper and the delays in proof correcting due to my sojourn abroad. This is a pity because it is a book for winter reading. Also, I hope, in April everyone's mind will be on great events in Europe rather than novels of the past. Bu I believe it will go on being read for many years. The general criticism is that it is religious propaganda. That shows how opinion has changed in 80 years. No on now thinks a book which totally excludes religion is atheist propaganda. 80 years ago every novel included religion as part of the normal life of the people.

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