callmemadam (callmemadam) wrote,

Barbara Pym

Admirers of Barbara Pym, of whom I am not one, may like a heads up that this week's Woman's Hour drama is Jane and Prudence. There was a discussion on this morning's programme of Barbara Pym and her novels and there's a link to it here.

Why don't I like Barbara Pym? I just don't like her or any of her characters; they are the kind of women I would like to smack. If the books had great literary merit this wouldn't matter: I don't like The Provincial Lady but I enjoy reading the books because they are so well done. I think Pym's reputation was grossly over-inflated by Philip Larkin's admiration, publishers cashed in (after leaving the poor woman in the wilderness for years) and boom! the books were undiscovered masterpieces. Just shows the power of publicity. Her novels are not a patch on those by Elizabeth Taylor or E H Young.
Tags: barbara pym, woman's hour, women writers

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