Literary Precedents for The Ballad of Peckham Rye

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Spark herself claims not to have any direct literary influences. "I influence myself," she claims. Though her unique combination of wit, satire, and the supernatural demonstrates this judgment to be largely true, she does acknowledge some influences on her prose: I think I would belong, in the writing of prose, to a literary tradition which is connected with the belletrists like Max Beerbohm, a humourist. On the level of thought, Pritchett and that sort of fantasy... . Also, you wouldn't think so, but I owe a lot to Proust. I read Proust over and over again.

Indeed, the writings of Beerbohm—an associate of Oscar Wilde, whose The Ballad of Reading Gaol (1898) may have influenced Spark's title here—exhibit some of the same elegance and ironic wit of Spark's The Ballad of Peckham Rye. Beerbohm's caricatures and an early collection of short fiction, Seven Men (1919), are particularly...

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This section contains 416 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy The Ballad of Peckham Rye Short Guide
Copyrights
Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction and Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults
The Ballad of Peckham Rye from Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction and Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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