Author Archives: Rob Maslen

Night at the Museum: Fantasy Scotland. A Retrospective, Part 2

[This post contains material relating to the recent event at the University of Glasgow’s Hunterian Museum, which took place on 24 November 2017. It also contains the quiz, with all the answers!] The Quiz Visitors were asked to find the answers … Continue reading

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Night at the Museum: Fantasy Scotland. A Retrospective, Part 1

On Friday 24 November, between 7 and 10 pm, an event took place in The Hunterian Museum at the University of Glasgow. Night at the Museum: Fantasy Scotland was conceived as a celebration of the links between Scotland and the … Continue reading

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Bedbound

One morning, Mr McGhee rolled over in bed and refused to get up. ‘Are you all right, love?’ asked his wife. She shook him a couple of times, then went to phone his work. ‘Tommy’s ill, I’m afraid,’ she said. … Continue reading

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Octavia Butler and the Impossibility of Slavery

[For Black History Month 2017] At the heart of Octavia Butler’s novel Kindred is the question of writing. How to write truthfully, effectively, humanely, about past atrocities: atrocities on a scale that can’t be conceived of, involving crimes that can’t … Continue reading

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Autumn Lights

At nightfall when the cottage lights went on the street should have been plunged in an abysmal darkness; but where Mr Printon (being an educated man) knew the stars must be, although he had never seen a star, there was … Continue reading

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Comedy Comes of Age in Shakespeare’s All’s Well

[I gave a version of this piece as a lecture at the Shakespeare Institute, Stratford-upon-Avon, in 2009, at the invitation of John Jowett. It’s pretty closely in dialogue with my book Shakespeare and Comedy (Arden, 2005), especially Chapter 3, ‘Lightness, … Continue reading

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Change in William Morris’s The Wood Beyond the World

In her fine biography of William Morris Fiona McCarthy claims that his late romances are unlike anything else written in the nineteenth century.[1] One could just as easily say that they’re unlike anything else written at any time, including the … Continue reading

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Little Ships

These days when she dreamed it was as if she were talking face to face with friends long dead, and when she woke she opened her eyes onto sepia tints inside a narrow frame, a dim imitation of her colourful … Continue reading

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Cloud Palace

Stretched out in my seat in row 7, absorbed in my book, I detected a tentative touch on the crook of my arm. An old woman was sitting beside me; her scent was of herbs And the light cotton tunic … Continue reading

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Summer Songs

MAYFLY The little mayfly flew about Until the mighty sun went out. A minute more the mayfly flew – And then the mayfly went out too.   MIDGES Have you ever seen the midges Dancing on a summer eve? Tropic … Continue reading

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