David Jones, artist and poet (1895-1974) begins his PREFACE TO THE ANATHEMATA :

'I have made a heap of all that I could find.' (1) So wrote Nennius, or whoever composed the introductory matter to Historia Brittonum. He speaks of an 'inward wound' which was caused by the fear that certain things dear to him 'should be like smoke dissipated'. Further, he says, 'not trusting my own learning, which is none at all, but partly from writings and monuments of the ancient inhabitants of Britain, partly from the annals of the Romans and the chronicles of the sacred fathers, Isidore, Hieronymous, Prosper, Eusebius and from the histories of the Scots and Saxons although our enemies . . . I have lispingly put together this . . . about past transactions, that [this material] might not be trodden under foot'. (2)

(1) The actual words are coacervavi omne quod inveni, and occur in Prologue 2 to the Historia.
(2) Quoted from the translation of Prologue 1. See The Works of Gildas and Nennius, J.A.Giles, London 1841.

17 June 2009

Alison Croggon : her Pascall Prize speech

The following is taken directly from Alison Croggon's
Theatre Notes (15 June 2009):

My acceptance speech for the Geraldine Pascall Prize for Critical Writing is now online at the Geraldine Pascall Foundation site. The important bit:

But I also see some sparkles in the gloom. There are a lot of smart young bloggers in Australia, hungrily seeing art and responding to it. And artists themselves are vocal in demanding more and better responses to their work. The internet has stepped into the breach. Theatre Notes was the first theatre blog in Australia, but these days it’s by no means the only one. Melbourne in particular has a rich and lively culture of theatre blogging. This prize means a lot to me in many ways, but a major reason is that it demonstrates conclusively that blogging is not just the province of bored teens. And I hope it will encourage not only me, but the talented younger critics I see developing around me. They need encouraging. As we all know, criticism is no easy career choice. It sometimes feels thankless, and it requires the skin of a Sherman tank.