Larkin, Nabokov, and Others

    On this page I have created links to writers with important connections to Amis (for more on these connections, consult Understanding Martin Amis, by James Diedrick. Some are oft-acknowledged influences (Bellow, Larkin, Nabokov); others are friends (Salman Rushdie, Christopher Hitchens); others are contemporary American writers whose preoccupations and narrative devices often parallel Amis's own (Don DeLillo, Philip Roth).

    I begin with links to the three nineteenth-century writers whose voices can often be heard echoing in the margins of Amis's own novels: Jane Austen, Charles Dickens, and Robert Louis Stevenson. Austen's importance to Amis is especially important to emphasize, since he so often implies in his own criticism that the house of fiction is an exclusively male domain. Yet his own hard-edged comedies of ill-manners are inconveivable without the precedent and example of the great Jane Austen--as his own essay "Miss Jane's Prime" implicitly acknowledges. And while Dickens's influence is everywhere apparent in Amis's work, Stevenson's importance is less often remarked. Both writers, however, are preoccupied with doubles and doubling; both Other People and Time's Arrow evoke and extend the haunting mental landscape of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

Nineteenth-Century Influences:

bullet The Jane Austen Information Page
bullet An Index of Charles Dickens Pages

Twentieth-Century Affinities:

bullet Extreme Metaphor. Chris Hall on the career of J.G. Ballard
bullet J.G. Ballard at the Electronic Labyrinth
bullet, maintained by Ryan Roberts
bullet "Celebrity Feuds and Tantrums." The Evening Standard online imagines the present state and future shape of the Martin Amis-Julian Barnes feud.
bullet Jorge Luis Borges (The Jorge Luis Borges Center for Studies and Documentation at the University of Aarhus, Denmark)
bullet "Borges' Genius Praised on the Centennial of his Birth." Laura Weffer Cifuentes of the Latino On-Line News Network reports on the 14 January 1999 colloquium on Borges at the British Library, featuring Martin Amis and Ian McEwan. 
bullet Martin Amis and Ian McEwan discuss Borges: an excerpt from the transcript at Bibliomania, and a streaming video of the Amis-McEwan conversation)
bullet Borges: Influences and References (includes brief discussions of Amis-Borges connections)
bullet The significance of "The Aleph" in The Information (from Understanding Martin Amis by James Diedrick)

bullet Saul Bellow (at the Nobel Prize Internet Archive).
bullet NOTE: The 1995 Everyman edition of Bellow's The Adventures of Augie March, which Amis has declared "The Great American Novel," contains an introduction by Amis. This edition of the novel can be purchased from
bullet NOTE: Saul Bellow (along with Keith Botsford) is currently editing a literary journal titled The Republic of Letters. Online samples from the journal are available by visiting the journal's web site. 
bullet NOTE: To read a conversation between Bellow and Amis in the 25 July 1998 Electronic Telegraph, click here.

bullet The William S. Burroughs Files InterWebZone
bullet Don DeLillo's America
bullet DeLillo and other literary novelists attacked in The Atlantic. The Times (London), 9 July 2001). The article, by B.R. Myers, appears in the July/August issue of The Atlantic.
bullet The Christopher Hitchens Web
bullet Hitchens on Kissinger (from the Amis Discussion Board, July 2001).
bullet The Amis-Hitchens argument over Koba the Dread
bullet The Ian McEwan Website
bullet "Bookered, Innit"? James Diedrick's review of Amsterdam, which compares the careers of Amis and McEwan (January 1999)
bullet McEwan in Seattle, by Julie Wells (4 January 1999)
bullet Vladimir Nabokov:
bullet Martin Amis speaking on Nabokov and Literary Greatness, 15 April 1999.
bullet    butterfly.gif (3648 bytes)    Zembla (Nabokov Web Site)
bullet NOTE: The 1995 Everyman edition of Nabokov's Lolita, containing an introduction by Martin Amis, can be puchased online from here

bullet Martin Amis and Philip Larkin: A Web of Connections
bullet The Philip Roth Society
bullet A review of The Dying Animal at the Guardian website that suggests the affinities between Amis and Roth (30 June 2001)
bullet Salman Rushdie at Albion College, 24-25 April 2003 (honorary degree citation, news coverage, other resources)
bullet Rushdie resources at the Postcolonial and PostImperial Literature in English website.
bullet The Centaurian (A web site for information on and discussion of John Updike)
bullet Salon interview with John Updike


This site is featured in
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BBC Education Web Guide

Rushdie at Albion
Hitchens on Koba
Amis and Larkin
The Aleph
Miss Jane's Prime
NT & *Homicide*


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Site maintained by James Diedrick, author of Understanding Martin Amis, 2nd edition (2004).
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