Cover image for Malcolm Lowry eighty years on
Malcolm Lowry eighty years on
Vice, Sue, 1961-
Publication Information:
New York : St. Martin's Press, 1989.
Physical Description:
viii, 162 pages ; 22 cm
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PR6023.O96 Z717 1989 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



Ten essays reexamine the enigma of Lowry, offering biographical, contextual, psychoanalytic, and critical/linguistic interpretations of his oeuvre, particularly, of course, Under the volcano. Annotation(c) 2003 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Persuasive enough on their own, the essays assembled here gain strength from their wide variety. Naturally, Under the Volcano (1947), called by John Orr "one of the most important novels of the commonplace. . .ever written in our century," gets a great deal of attention. But the spotlight also settles upon subjects like the influence of Charles Jackson's Lost Weekend (1944) on Lowry; the archetype of the father, or male authority figure, in Lowry; the importance of Lowry's short stories; John Huston's trivializing 1984 screen version of Volcano; the intellectual ferment at Cambridge during Lowry's student days, with special attention given to the force exerted by Wordsworth, the Faust legend, and Eliot's The Waste Land; and, finally, the private mysteries and confusions that make Malcolm Lowry (1909-57) so challenging a task for the biographer. Unfortunately, the book cries out for more careful editing. The source materials following each essay are not set forth uniformly, and most of the essays in the book's first half are poorly written. In successive sentences (p.48), Victor Sage shifts a verb tense and surrounds with inverted commas locutions he disapproves of rather than replacing them with fresh ones. Could these flubs have been caught and excised by editor Vice? Her own bent for adjectives like "narratable," "carnivalesque," and "occulted" invites doubt. Nevertheless, this is a work that enhances our understanding of a gargantuan drinker, follower of the sea, and important writer. -P. Wolfe, University of Missouri--St. Louis