17th April 2014
Dr Paul Barnaby of Edinburgh University will be giving a very interesting and revealing talk on behalf of the Friends of William Soutar Society. The talk, which is admission free in the Soutar Theatre, AK Bell Library, Perth, beginning at 7.30pm on Thursday 24 April, will mark the 116th anniversary of the birth of poet William Soutar.
Using manuscripts and letters held at the University of Edinburgh – most of them never seen by the general public before – Barnaby will reveal the complex relationship, and rivalry, which existed between William Soutar and the older Hugh MacDiarmid. In particular, he will explore the controversial reasons why Soutar never achieved a proper recognition of his work, which, Soutar supporters believe, was due to the influence of MacDiarmid. Early on in Soutar’s career he received encouragement from MacDiarmid, and they became friends. But they also disagreed on a number of issues. When Soutar died aged just 45, his father, John Soutar, asked MacDiarmid to edit a collection of his son’s work, but MacDiarmid wrote a long, highly critical introduction which many believe did Soutar’s reputation lasting damage. To hear more about this fascinating topic, come along to the talk on Thursday 24 April. Remember, admission is free.