n English in Africa - Alias Robert Pagan : William Plomer and the promotion of South African writing

Volume 38, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 0376-8902



The purpose of this article is twofold: to examine a neglected aspect of the otherwise well-documented career of William Plomer (1903-73), and then to draw attention to his role as a backstage negotiator on behalf of our literary figures, in Britain as well as in his country of birth, South Africa. Both these sides of his otherwise well-publicised activities involved a contrastingly humble, off-the-record quality, which we would call anonymous and unsigned, so that it is unsurprising if they have been overlooked by the fine chroniclers of his rich life and abundant works.

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