Family Values Paperback – 10 Jul 2008
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These are tough poems, full of love and harm, good and damage, rage and compassion. They show us dealing well and also very badly with our kind and with the rest of the living planet. They are made of the rough substance of real lives. Their hallmark is loyalty: a steadfast, clear-sighted, unsentimental loyalty. Their truth is a 'being true to'. And they are a beautiful answering back against the worst. Maureen Duffy reminds us how funny people are, how vulnerable, lovable, bizarre and heroic. Her own voice is umistakeable in every line. And every poem is a sort of fighting between two lines: 'Mortality's at best a dodgy state' and 'It's not over yet; rejoice.'
About the Author
Maureen Duffy was born in 1933 in Worthing, Sussex. As well as being a poet, playwright and novelist, she has also published a literary biography of Aphra Behn, and The Erotic World of Faery a book-length study of eroticism in faery fantasy literature. After a tough childhood, Duffy took her degree in English from King's College London. She went on to be a schoolteacher from 1956 to 1961, and edited three editions of a poetry magazine called The Sixties. She then turned to writing full-time as a poet and playwright after being commissioned to produce a screenplay by Granada Television. She made her debut as a novelist with That's How It Was, published to wide acclaim in 1962. Her first openly gay novel was The Microcosm (1966), set in the famous Gateways club in London. Among her later novels, Gor Saga was televised in 1988 in a three-part mini-series called First Born, starring Charles Dance, and Alchemy (2005) is now out in paperback from Harper Perennial.Duffy has published around 30 other books, including five volumes of poetry. Her Collected Poems, 1949-84 appeared in 1985. Her work has often used Freudian ideas and Greek myth as a framework. She took an active part during the debates around homosexual law reform, which culminated in the Act of 1967. In 1977 she published The Ballad of the Blasphemy Trial, a broadside against the trial of the Gay News newspaper for 'blasphemous libel'. She has also been active in a variety of groups representing the interest of writers, and is currently the President of the Authors' Licensing and Collecting Society, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. She is deeply interested in issues around enforcing traditional forms of intellectual property law, and is President of the British Copyright Council.