Donne Sex and God: A Critical Conversation Paperback – 17 Jul 2013
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About the Author
John Hoyles was marked by books from a young age: Huckleberry Finn (my first book from a Cardiff bookshop 1944); Hardy’s Wessex novels (at my Berkshire prep school 1948, as inoculation against pessimism); War and Peace (read in boarding school courtyard 1950 – I fell in love with Natasha); Lawrence Collected Poems (forbidden texts, banned in school library, seen in mad music master’s room in school tower); Shelley’s Complete Poems (BEAUTY, pure and absolute from Cirencester bookshop 1952, aged 16); Urquhart’s 1653 RabelaIs (Renaissance high jinks for Christmas 1953); Lady Chatterley unexpurgated (Swedish edition from Hamburg bookshop 1955, lent to 16 year old schoolgirl, never returned, another forbidden text); the Marquis de Sade’s Justine (in French, in Paris, 1961, another forbidden text). In all this lurked the high and the low, symbolised for John in his inability to finish Crime and Punishment and his subjection to the samizdat porn of The Story of O while doing National Service in Bedford (1955-7). John was born in Cornwall, studied at Kingswood School Bath and Queens’ College Cambridge, and taught English and related literature at Hull University (1965-2001). He has specialised in the history of ideas and the relationship between literature and politics. His writings include The Waning of the Renaissance (1971), The Edges of Augustanism (1972), and The Literary Underground (1991), this last principally a study of Kafka and Zamyatin. In his later years he has taught courses on Cinema, Totalitarianism and Feminism. More recently, John is the author of three recent books, “Donne Sex and God”, “Film Fun” and “Literary Sizzlers”. He also runs the Hull Film Society and is doing his best to contribute to the Hull Year of Culture.