Our carnival of pluralism rolls merrily on, fit adornment for a global city-state. Yet, a mere generation ago, literary life in London meant something utterly alien to today's cosmopolitan sprawl. In the post-imperial capital that staggered on into the Thatcher era, many aspiring writers still hankered for a single focus of authority. Outsiders might travel hopefully in search of an entrée to this inner sanctum. Look at VS Naipaul's mortifying early career. But few doubted that some secret chamber of wisdom and patronage persisted - if only they could find the door. ...
Friday, June 26, 2009
London is the literary capital of the world? Not any more, according to Boyd Tonkin in today's Independent: