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Vintage set to republish Caliban Shrieks after bartender’s
Lynette had seen the title before, but not for a long time and eventually, we concluded it must have been out of print since the forties. Last year, browsing Salford’s Working Class Movement Library, an enjoyably strange cover stopped me in my tracks.
A plasterer from Rochdale, Greater Manchester, he was largely self-taught having read a wide range of literature while on the dole during the Great Depression.
Len Doherty wrote the best novel you’ve never heard of — in
Bottom line: We’ll be sure to keep Millers updated on Jack’s journey to help Caliban Shrieks , and maybe more of Hilton’s work besides, reach a new readership. Orwell may have preserved the ‘habit of seeing the working-classes through the cosy fug of an Edwardian music-hall’, 13 as Richard Hoggart memorably put it, but he did see them and could only partially transform them to meet his expectations, even in the process of representation. Lost to time, only to be rediscovered again in the Salford's Working Class Movement Library in 2022, Caliban Shrieks is a working-class masterpiece of British literature, and continues to speak as brash and impassioned as it did on its first rave publication in 1935.With it came, not the entrancing mysteries of the bedroom, nor the passionate soul-stirring of two sugar-candied Darby and Joans, but the practised resolve that, come what may, be the furnishers’ dues met or no, the rent paid or spent, we – the wife and I – would commemorate our marriage by having, every Sunday morn, ham and eggs, So it was we got one over on the poet, with his madness of love, the little dove birds, etc. It was a last ditch effort, I'd spent six months trying to reach out to other people who had tried to find out more about Hilton.