Category: Muriel Spark

Repetition and narrative time in Muriel Spark’s ‘The Bachelors’, ‘The Ballad of Peckham Rye’ and ‘A Member of the Family’

This essay is not far short of 11,000 words, so I’ve posted the opening section here as a taster, followed by a pdf for download. ‘Story time’ is not the same thing as ‘narrative time’.  The Russian Formalists, active during the early years of the twentieth century, used the terms ‘fabula’ and ‘sjuzhet’ to refer…

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The Murder of Merle Coverdale

  Many of Muriel Spark’s readers have accused her of being ‘cold’ in the treatment of her characters and in the case of Merle Coverdale in The Ballad of Peckham Rye, first published in 1960, Spark’s position of callous indifference would appear to have been taken to an extreme: Merle is not only heartlessly disposed…

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Like a hell-broth boil and bubble

This post is about Muriel Spark’s short story The Twins, and the first thing I have to note is that if you search for ‘creepy twins’ in Google Images, you get a whole load of stuff that you really, really don’t want to see: ‘creepy’ in every sense of the word. But I did manage,…

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