My first publication was a translation of Stendhal's Memoirs of an Egotist
Now that my book on Stendhal
is out, I seem to have come full circle and ought perhaps to give up.
But it is hard to abandon the habit. I've written about very specific aspects of comedy in
Shakespeare's Practical Jokes
, which will be republished next year, but I have always wanted to
say something more general on this topic that took in popular as well as high-brow culture (as far as irony is concerned,
for example, from Socrates to Ali G). Not surprisingly, this is proving hard. Meanwhile I keep myself busy with occasional blogs
for the Wordsworth Classics website (and for this one). I like to think of these as very modest equivalents of the short poems
Lawrence wrote when he was too ill and tired to do anything else - 'Pansies' he called them because that English word is
derived from Pensées
. But this was after he had made enough money from Lady Chatterley
not to have to bother anymore
(for my misgivings about this novel, see my Love and Sex in D. H. Lawrence
, which I am told will be due out in paperback in a few months).