London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1962. First Edition . Hardcover. Near Fine in Near Fine DJ/Near Fine. Small 8vo. Dust Jacket Design By Duffy Ayers. First printing of Dennis's selected studies in drama written for 'Encounter'. 184pp. Blue cloth, gilt spine lettering, cream endpapers. Dust jacket price 21s net. SIGNED BY DENNIS to half-title page. The book appears in tight, unread condition with Jonas A. Barish's neat Ex-libris plate on front paste-down endpaper; the white dust jacket is very crisp, bright and fully intact with only some slight soiling, and a couple of small closed tears. [Jonas A. Barish was one of the world's leading scholars of Shakespeare, English drama, Ben Jonson, and "antitheatrical prejudice ' and a member of the Department of English at the University of California, Berkeley from 1954 until his retirement in 1991.] " Nigel Dennis has...a place as one of the best English novelists of his generation." - Bernard Bergonzi. " Dennis, Nigel (Forbes) (1912-89), British novelist and dramatist, born in Bletchingley, Surrey, educated in Rhodesia, Austria, and Germany. He was an outstanding journalist and became co-editor of 'Encounter'. Much of his first novel, 'Boys and Girls Come out To Play' (1949) [US: 'A Sea Change'], is set in America where he had worked as a journalist from 1931 to 1949. 'Cards of Identity' (1955), which Dennis adapted for the stage in 1956, is widely regarded as his finest work; an extravagantly inventive satire on the shallowness of human identity in modern civilization, the novel culminates, in The Prince of Antioch', a sustained parody of Shakespeare. 'A House in Order' (1960), set chiefly in a greenhouse from which the narrator observes a third world war, forms a tautly concentrated fable on the nature of human purpose. His other works as a dramatist include 'The Making of Moo' (1957) and 'August for the People' (1961). His love of the Mediterranean is expressed in 'An Essay on Malta' (1972) and in 'Exotics' (1970), a volume of poems set mainly in that region." - Oxford Companion to 20th Cent. Lit. in English. " Although Nigel Dennis has published only three novels, their quality is high enough to give him a place as one of the best English novelists of his generation. 'Cards of Identity'...established his reputation and remains one of the most brilliant works of post-war English fiction....'A House in Order' is remarkable for the way in which it works as a novel, even while being an evident moral fable. ["A Sea Change'] leaves no doubt...of the quality of Dennis' writing...[and] shows a satirical inclination, and a tendency to allegory or fables. " - Bernard Bergonzi. "When Nigel Dennis was persuaded to turn his novel, 'Cards of Identity', into a play he developed a strong interest in the theatre. 'The Making of Moo' and 'August for the People', which followed it, increased his reputation as a controversial playwright. Readers of 'Two Plays and a Preface' will remember how perceptive and stimulating a commentator Nigel Deniis can be on the playwright's problems. The present essays are chosen from the studies he has made for 'Encounter' of such diverse dramatists as Brecht, N.F. Simpson, Sartre, Genet, Ionesco, Ibsen and Shakespeare. They are provocative and witty, and strike at the roots of many cherished and respected misconceptions, but the author's views are soundly based on a profound knowledge of his subject." - front dust jacket flap.
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