Ideology and Story in Life-Writing

It’s a strange coincidence that I should be publishing, in quick succession, a biography and a memoir, which both deal in contradictory ways with ideology.

In autobiography, in order to shape the sprawl of your experience, you need to gain some capacity to see your life from outside, as a story, if, nevertheless, one based on facts. A year ago I managed at last to finalise Losing Israel, a memoir about my changing relationship with my mother’s country. I’d shovelled everything into my account, unwilling, like the amateur historian, to omit any fact that might be important. Then I’d tried for several years to find the right form for it. By the time I understood what the story was, I’d cut out 50,000 words.



Hay Festival 2015

Alice Vernon's blog from Hay Festival 2015


Is 'How the Light' Hay Festival's Edinburgh Fringe?

Gwen Davies discusses 'fringe' festival How the Light Gets In and suggests that the older festival may learn lessons from its rival in terms of audience demographic and atmosphere if not in event quality and plain English


To Kill a Machine

Alice Vernon was particularly impressed by a props-centred set in this production from Scriptography, about the life of Alan Turing, the gay Bletchley Park codebreaker, which contains brief nudity

NEW Summer Interviews

Read interviews with highly recommended authors Philippa Holloway, Ellie Rees and Timothy L Marsh for the New Welsh Writing Awards 2015, WWF Cymru Prize for Writing on Nature and the Environment


Scenes from a Hokkaidan Life

As precise and nuanced as Japanese calligraphy, this memoir of the author’s stay on the remote Hokkaido island in the far north of Japan has at its heart the mountain, Yōtei-San, the region’s iconic equivalent to Mount Fuji. Here are themes of seasonal transformation, the peripheral, folklore and learning to belong. more...



Quietly As Snow - Gwydion Thomas interviewed by Walford Davies

Gwydion Thomas, the only child of R.S. Thomas and artist M.E. Eldridge, talks to Walford Davies about his experiences as the son of artistic parents, and discusses the interrelationship of their respective fields in their creative partnership. more...

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