Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist

Decline And Fall

Evelyn Waugh and I went to the same school.  And even though I showed up 40 years after him, the ethos- anglo-catholic, dandyish, decadent-  hadn't changed a great deal.  It shaped him, it shaped me- and when I read him- especially the early books- I feel like he's winking at me- that we're co-conspirators in a plot against teachers, parents, prefects, chaplains and- well-  everything there is.

There's a joke in Decline and Fall which only an Old Lanconian could possibly get.

Decline and Fall is his first novel- also his purest and funniest. His attitudes hadn't hardened, he hadn't been nobbled by the Catholics- the irreverence is broadcast far and wide and no-one escapes. 
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