Monday, May 12, 2008

"I Commit to the Flames" (1934)

The dustjacket of one of the surprise publishing hits of 1934, theatre critic Ivor Brown's I Commit to the Flames (the title is a direct nod to the so-called Nazi "fire-incantations", the speeches made as books were hurled into bonfires). The book was first published in January, and had gone into a fourth impression by June.
Brown's occasionally funny book includes swipes at all manner of writers, from "Sex-Professors" to T.S. Eliot, from D.H. Lawrence to the music of someone called King Congo. It is all, it would seem, modernity's fault. And the solution? "For some kinds of rubbish the incinerator is the only remedy."

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