The Driver’s Seat

March 29, 2010

Alan Taylor 29th March 2010 MURIEL Spark’s Panatella-slim novel, The Driver’s Seat, has been shortlisted for The Lost Man Booker Prize, a wheeze set up to correct a terrible injustice. In 1971 the Booker – as it was then known – changed its rules and many books which were published...


March 2, 2010

Alan Taylor 2nd March 2010   In the light of the hysterical, paranoiac and hilarious reaction to the recent Literature Report I found the following comments by Isaac Bashevis Singer in his autobiography, Love and Exile remarkably prescient to Scotland now: “The literary scene in Warsaw, which...

Editor’s Blog 12th Feb

February 12, 2010

  Alan Taylor 12th February 2010 In the forthcoming issue of the SRB we are launching, in association with the University of Aberdeen, an essay competition, in the hope that it will stimulate interest in this most elastic and embracing of forms. For reasons too tedious to go into here the essay appears...

Salinger blog

January 30, 2010

Alan Taylor – 30th January 2010 Recently, while researching a long piece on Bob Dylan, I read that in the 1960s Dylan was offered the part of Holden Caufield in a never-realised film version of The Catcher In The Rye. Anyone who has seen the young Dylan at his most brattish in DA Pennebaker’s...

Blog 25th January

January 25, 2010

Alan Taylor 25th January 2010 Reading William Faulkner which, I’m told, is not a common occurrence these days. Why, when so much that’s currently published is remarkable for its vapidity, tonelessness and lack of character? Having bought the five-volume Library of America set, which includes...

Blog 21st November

November 21, 2009

Alan Taylor 21st November 2009 Reading the second and final volume of Timothy Neat’s biography Hamish Henderson (Polygon, £25), the too-tall poet, balladeer and folklorist who died at the age of 82 in 2002. Slowly but surely an era in Scottish letters is being given its proper due. Maggie Fergusson’s...

Respond to the blog

November 13, 2009

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Following Columbus

November 13, 2009

Alan Taylor 13th November 2009 WHERE better to begin than with the Bard of Avon, William Shakespeare, who famously made Hamlet utter: “to blog or not to blog, that is the question.” At least it was. Now, with coming of the SRB’s website, there is no option but to blog. As another great...

Volume 2 – Issue 3 – New Poems – Tom Leonard

October 28, 2009
by Tom Leonard

Litany: Blair’s Britain to seek the truth is to foment terrorism to call war state violence is to foment terrorism to question the news is to foment terrorism to press the mute button is to foment terrorism to call Bush fundamentalist is to foment terrorism to study Blair’s hand-gestures is to foment...

Man of the Folk

October 21, 2009
by Ray Burnett

THIS IS A SINGULARLY apt moment for Hamish Henderson’s life to be told. In Westminster, Gordon Brown is a Prime Minister committed to the continuing deployment of weapons of mass destruction in Scotland, Scottish troops deployed in an unpopular illegal war and a foreign policy that buttresses American...