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Tristram Shandy redux

June 25, 2010 in General, News

Cover for Martin Rowson's Tristram Shandy re-issue

Shy and retiring soul that he is, The Guardian’s own Martin Rowson would blanch at the thought that Bloghorn would puff his upcoming talk at the London Literature Festival on 3rd July, but we feel it’s our duty as he is a fellow PCO member.

The subject at hand is the reissue of his graphic-novelisation of Laurence Sterne’s Tristram Shandy – a monumental, rambling, discursive life of “gentleman” Shandy, first published in 1759 and often called the first “modern” novel. This promises to be fun, as Rowson himself was designed for the Rabelaisian environs of Georgian London in which the novel is set.

Martin is a veteran apologist for all things Georgian London, but primarily his heroes, Hogarth and Gillray. You can see the Hogarth advocate at work here in this short film. London is so ingrained in his DNA, that the Caligulan court of Red Ken bestowed the official title of London Cartoonist Laureate on him, before Boris installed some Victorian parsimony back into City Hall.

Rowson tells Bloghorn that the evening promises “an impossible talk about the impossibility of producing a graphic novelisation of a novel about the impossibility of writing a novel”. So there. His talks are always lively and interesting, although Bloghorn recommends not bringing one’s maiden aunt as the language can sometimes be somewhat, er, Georgian. Tickets can be purchased here.