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Pamela Hansford JohnsonA Writing Life$
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Deirdre David

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198729617

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198729617.001.0001

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A Professional Novelist

A Professional Novelist

(p.147) 6 A Professional Novelist
Pamela Hansford Johnson

Deirdre David

Oxford University Press

In the mid- to late 1950s, Pamela emerged as a critically acclaimed novelist, particularly after the family returned to London. In perhaps her best-known novel, The Unspeakable Skipton, she explores the life of a paranoid writer who sponges on English visitors to Bruges. The novel was hailed for its wit and sensitive depiction of the life of a writer. She also published a fine study of a London vicar martyred in marriage to a vain and selfish wife: The Humbler Creation is remarkable for its incisive and empathetic depiction of male despair. The Last Resort sealed her distinction as a brilliant novelist of domestic life in its frank depiction of male homosexuality. While continuing to publish fiction, Pamela maintained her reputation as a deft reviewer. In 1954, she and Charles travelled to the United States—the first of many trips that were to follow.

Keywords:   The Unspeakable Skipton, United States, homosexuality, male characters, Bruges

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