Wednesday, September 16, 2020

No more James Gillespie's?

James Gillespie: leading school urged to rename over founder’s slavery links. Dame Muriel's school, the inspiration for The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, is being urged to change its name due to current events. There is an article in today's Times if you wish to learn more. Gillespie was involved in the tobacco trade, and was a tobacconist in Edinburgh's High Street.

Friday, August 21, 2020

The Muriel Spark Society Lecture 2020

We are delighted to announce that we are able to hold our annual lecture over the Web this year. The event is part of the National Library of Scotland's zoom events programme and we are once again very grateful for the support. Our speaker is Professor Fiona Sampson, who, like Spark, has written a biography of Mary Shelley. She was also only the second female editor of Poetry Review after Spark herself in the 1940s. Professor Sampson's title: Muriel Spark: finding her form. The lecture will broadcast on November 12 at 5pm. We will send out more joining instructions nearer the time, but advise that you register with Eventbrite. We look forward to the worldwide audience that will for the first time be able to join us for our lecture.

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Muriel Spark and the Art of Deception - new article

It is a pleseure to welcome our new member, Biatriz Lopez, a PhD candidate at Durham University. She also kindly gave us a note of an intriguing article she has just published: I'm writing to you because I have just published a new journal article, 'Muriel Spark and the Art of Deception: Constructing Plausibility with the Methods of WWII Black Propaganda', in the Review of English Studies, which I think may be of interest to members of the Muriel Spark Society. If you circulate a mailing list or are active in social media, would you please be able to feature some information about the article? It can be accessedthrough the following link:

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Terence Greer Book artist 1929-2020

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Sad to report the passing of the brilliant book artist Terence Greer, who died recently in Canada. As you can see from above, and below, he produced wonderfully memorable covers for Muriel's books for Penguin. He also did a work for Radio Times, which some may remember.
Great to see these images again.

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Thursday, June 25, 2020

Aileen Christianson

Sad to announce the passing of the academic and writer Aileen Christianson, aged 75. She was a life member of the Society and spoke for us at the National Library of Scotland.There is an obituary in the Guardian in which Muriel gets a mention, 23 June 2020.

Muriel Spark, Mary Shelley and a 21st Century plague

Muriel Spark praised Mary Shelley’s The Last Man, which deals with a 21st Century plague. There is a paperback edition from OUP if it is not too near the bone, although many are reading Defoe and Camus for plague literature!

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Nash Ensemble

Many  will remember with pleasure the Nash Ensemble at the Spark concert in the Queen’s Hall in January. You can now hear a lot more of them in Radio 3’s lunchtime concert series this week, and also on BBC Sounds. Enjoy.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Miss Blaine’s Prefect and the Vampire Menace

Congratulations to our member Olga Wojtas on the recent publication of her second novel featuring fifty something librarian Shona, former pupil of Marcia Blaine. This time her adventures take her o fin de siecle France, with Debussy and Alan Taylor making appearances ...
Paperback original from Contraband £8.99. Kindle edition £3.99.
Forgive the personal reference, but this post was written by a fifty-something librarian!

Appointment in Arezzo - A Good Read

Alan Taylor’s Appointment in Arezzo will be discussed on Radio 4’s A Good Read tomorrow (24 March) at 4.30pm. Happy listening.
Good wishes of encouragement and comfort to all, especially if you are self-isolating. Take care.