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This item is taken from PN Review 243, Volume 45 Number 1, September - October 2018.

News & Notes
Blasphemy and obscenity · Anthony Burgess moved to Malta in 1968. There, the authorities seized nearly fifty ‘indecent’ books from his luggage and destroyed them. They included novels by Angela Carter, Kingsley Amis and D. H. Lawrence. Fifty years later, at the International Anthony Burgess Centre in Manchester, the collection has been reconstituted in an exhibition ‘which looks more widely at the themes of obscenity and censorship’ and includes unpublished manuscripts and letters, audio recordings, and photographs by Anthony and Liana Burgess. Burgess was a foe of censorship of all kinds, including blasphemy and obscenity. His position might not pass muster today: this exhibition is a welcome provocation at a time when a new Savonarolism may be gathering force.

Politically necessary · In June, a twenty-three-year-old of the Driftpile Cree Nation in Alberta won the Canadian portion of the Griffin Prize for This Wound is a World, published by Frontenac House. Billy-Ray Belcourt is feported to have sobbed as he accepted the $65,000 Griffin Poetry Prize. He is the youngest recipient ever of the prize. ‘This book was written not to be a book,’ he said. ‘It was written […] to allow me to figure out how to be in a world that I did not want, a world that many of us who are Indigenous did not want. It was written also to try to bring about the world that we do want collectively.’ Interviewed, he spoke of the prize as an ‘investment’ in ‘the voices of all people like him who are Indigenous, queer or gender ...

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