David Collard

A Fine Bromance

Distant Intimacy: A Friendship in the Age of the Internet

By

Every December Private Eye’s book pages feature the Frederic Raphael Memorial Prize, an award given to the writer who makes the most obscure or pretentious selection as their Book of the Year. In 2012 the honours went to Raphael himself. The book he had chosen was Richard Seaford’s Cosmology and the Polis: The Social Construction of Space and Time in the Tragedies of Aeschylus, a scholarly account of the role of ritual and money in the development of the Greek city-state. It’s unlikely to trouble Fifty Shades in the Kindle charts, and is a perfectly reasonable choice for an accomplished classicist. Why the sniggering?

Raphael does tend to brag, but then he has plenty to brag about. He’s very clever, very accomplished and very successful, and if not quite a national treasure he’s something much rarer in our culture, and to be valued more – a national asset. He also beats Lord Gnome at his own game, referring drolly in the first of the emails he exchanges with Joseph Epstein, now published in Distant Intimacy, to a recent appearance in ‘the TLS international show-off selection’.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • What a charming, candid blogpost from one of our dear contributing editors. ,
    • RT : The first guess from one of my 1st graders was “death” and such an awed, somber, reflective hush fell over the clas… ,
    • Merry Christmas from Literary Review! Hope your stockings were laden with books, and the tree bending under the weight of further books....,
    • Last minute Christmas gift required? We're offering discounts on all our subscriptions (20% no less!) with the cod… ,
    • In this issue's 'Silenced Voices', Lucy Popescu writes of Thailand's restrictive lese-majesty laws and their latest… ,
    • "Gunn was a disciple of the American formalist Yvor Winters, but Winters’s poetry could never give off such a scent… ,
    • Christmas gift hunting? Why not give the gift of being even better read? We're offering discounts on all our subscr… ,