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Black Lamb

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Now in its 14th year of publication, this magazine was created to offer the discerning reader a stimulating selection of excellent original writing. Black Lamb Review is a literate rather than a literary publication. Regular columns by writers in a variety of geographic locations and vocations are supplemented by features, reviews, articles on books and authors, and a selection of “departments,” including an acerbic advice column and a lamb recipe.

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A Week in Literary History

November 24th, 2002

In 1713, Anglo-Irish novelist Laurence Sterne (The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman, 1760-67) is born in Clonmel, County Tipperary.

sterneportrait.jpgLaurence Sterne, b. November 24, 1713, d. 1768

For pure wickedness, Sterne has long been considered more salacious, if not more savage, than Swift, but this is a bum rap. The priggish Samuel Johnson’s disapproved of his Yorkshire contemporary shouldn’t blind us to Sterne’s manifest humanity. The character of Uncle Toby in Tristram Shandy — along with Tolstoy’s Andre, Wilkie Collins’ Gabriel Betteredge, and G.B. Edwards’ Ebenezer LePage — is one of the most memorable and loveable in all of literature. And Tristram Shandy made possible, for better or worse, a truly modern literary perspective, in which the narrative and narrator are always subject to authorial scrutiny and, above all, skepticism.

Suggested Reading Novel The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gent., 1759-67. Travel A Sentimental Journey through France and Italy. Sermons The Sermons of Mr. Yorick, 1760-1769.

Posted by: The Editors
Category: A Week in Literary History, Books and Authors | Link to this Entry

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