On indexes

Some years ago now I had a bright idea. It was for a mechanism which would bring together all of the indexes of digitised books to make one super-index linking back to each of those texts. Yes there would be huge unevenness between the individual indexes, and yes it had a Borgesian air about itRead More

Endnotes

I have been reading Magic Moments by the literary critic John Sutherland. It is a memoir constructed around the books (and some films) that he experienced when young, viewed again from the perspective of its subject six decades later. It’s an ingenious way of constructing a biography, with each chapter devoted to the stories heRead More

The art of the spine

I have just finished reading The Speechwriter, by Barton Swaim. It’s an account of the writer’s experience as speechwriter for the Republican politician Mark Sanford, whose presidential ambitions were crushed by revelations of an extramarital affair. Sanford isn’t mentioned by name but is readily identifiable, and I found the the book to be an awkwardRead More