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Saddamism after Saddam

Charles Glass: After the Invasion, 8 May 2003

... each day to more atrocious undertakings; soon there will be no one but soldiers and bandits. Jorge LuisBorges, ‘The Garden of Forking Paths’ John Bagot Glubb, a young lieutenant bearing wounds from the war in France, arrived in Mesopotamia in 1920. His assignment was to command armed patrols through the ...

Flann O’Brien’s Lies

Colm Tóibín, 5 January 2012

... alone were Lisbon, Buenos Aires, Dublin. The writers were Fernando Pessoa, born 1888, died 1935; Jorge LuisBorges, born 1899, died 1986; Flann O’Brien, born 1911, died 1966. Each of them was brought up not only in a shadow country and city, or a place that felt as though it lived now in the shade, but also with two ...

At Tranquilina’s Knee

G. Cabrera Infante, 2 June 1983

The Fragrance of Guava: Plinio Apuleyo Mendoza in conversation with Gabriel Garcia Marquez 
translated by Ann Wright.
Verso, 126 pp., £9.95, May 1983, 0 86091 065 2
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... came to Stockholm to see a humble Latin get a literary prize (for being chummy with Castro) which Borges, another Latin though not so humble, didn’t get (for once visiting with Pinochet). All military men are alike but some Latin dictators are more catching than others. In his fifth column, the most unintentionally hilarious ever, Garcia Marquez appears at ...

In the Box

Dale Peck, 6 February 1997

How Stella Got Her Groove Back 
by Terry McMillan.
Viking, 368 pp., £16, September 1996, 0 670 86990 2
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Push 
by Sapphire.
Secker, 142 pp., £7.99, September 1996, 0 436 20291 3
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The Autobiography of My Mother 
by Jamaica Kincaid.
Vintage, 228 pp., £8.99, September 1996, 0 09 973841 4
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... appearing in English, so that her name could be added to that of Gabriel García Márquez and, um, Jorge LuisBorges, and a decades-old phenomenon combining certain characteristically Post-Modern elements with certain characteristically Gothic elements could be given the rejuvenating moniker ‘magic realism’, and the ...

I’m not a happy poet

John Butt: Lorca, 1 April 1999

Lorca: A Dream of Life 
by Leslie Stainton.
Bloomsbury, 568 pp., £20, November 1998, 0 7475 4128 0
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... shepherd-poet Miguel Hernández, admired in Spain but ignored elsewhere. Lorca’s some-time lover Luis Cernuda could have mounted a serious poetic challenge, but he suddenly rejected Modernism, and his poetry, always lugubrious, became prosaic and discursive. Jorge Guillén, who knew Lorca well, was a fine poet, but his ...

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