Sunday, April 19, 2009

R.I.P. J.G. Ballard (1930-2009)

Quite harrowing to think what this loss means. I've no doubt that future generations will consider him one of the most important writers of the 20th century - at least as important as Eliot and other 'big names', probably more so.


Blogger kek-w said...

Eliot??? Geddoutahere.

April 19, 2009 at 4:10 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

Alright, corrected. Keep in mind, Kek, Eliot is probably as important to me as Burroughs, etc. are to you. What I'm saying is that Ballard was one of *the* central figures of the writing of modernity, and, alongside Lovecraft, the defining spirit of its most powerful mode (pulp-modernism). He was also, of course, much more fun to read than Eliot, day-to-day.

April 20, 2009 at 12:54 AM  
Anonymous Kenicky said...

I've only read "Empire of the Sun". Hated it. Almost as much as I hate running for the bus. And the sound it makes when badgers cry.

Obviously I've missed out on his experimental stuff that sounds more appealing. Where to start?

April 29, 2009 at 3:08 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

I would probs. say 'The Atrocity Exhibition', which is really his most seismically significant book, but even I find that one heavy going. 'Crash' and 'High Rise' come from something approaching the same territory, and are more traditionally narrative. The short stories are also a good point of entry - the stuff from 'Vermillion Sands', 'The Terminal Beach' and some of the others are as good as the novels, prob.

May 3, 2009 at 3:31 PM  

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