Angus Wilson

BookAngus Wilson

Angus Wilson

Writers and Their Work


January 7th, 1997

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Sir Angus Wilson shot to fame in the late 1940’s – his first stories were greeted by Sean O’Faolain and Evelyn Waugh alike with delight. He was championed at once as an odd realist providing new social maps of post-war England – V S Pritchett was to see him as revising the conventional picture of English Character, and recovering “broadness” without losing humanity. He has many faces as a writer. If he inherits the comic Dickensian novel of social depth and density, he also marries this to a recognisably modern anxiety and insecurity about the ‘self’. Wilson’s major books often concern ‘creative breakdown’: they depict people who undergo a crisis and/or collapse of self-belief, and then have to find the courage to invent themselves anew.

Author Information

Peter Conradi is Professor of English at Kingston University. He has held positions at VEA, University of Colorado and in Poland and lectured widely around the world. His recent books include: John Fowles (1982); Dosteovsky (1988) and Iris Murdock: the Saint and Artist (1989).

Table of Contents

Table of Contents
Section TitlePagePrice
Half Title2
Title Page4
Biographical Outline11
Abbreviations and References13
The stories17
Theatricality: from involuntary towards voluntary acting19
1 The Art of Creative Breakdown: Men27
Hemlock and After27
Anglo-Saxon Attitudes32
2 The Art of Creative Breakdown: Women38
The Middle Age of Mrs Eliot39
Late Call44
3 No Laughing Matter: Confluence49
4 No Laughing Matter: Play62
5 Fire, Ice and Magic68
As If By Magic 68
Setting the World on Fire 73
Conclusion: Déniaiserie and Post-modernity80
Notes 85
Select Bibliography 88
Index 94