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Delius, Anthony

Entry updated 29 September 2020. Tagged: Author.

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(1916-1989) South African poet (see Poetry) and author who eventually moved, after much political pressure because of his anti-apartheid views, to the UK, remaining there from 1967. His Satire on South African Politics and apartheid, The Last Division (1959), sends a 1980s Union Parliament to a Hell and Devil closely resembling those in Wyndham Lewis's The Childermass (1928), where they re-create, under their Premier's inspiration, the social system they left behind. The swingeing satirical power of this book-length poem is remarkable. Its views on South Africa's future contrast markedly with those expressed by Garry Allighan and are comparable with those of Arthur Keppel-Jones, though sharper. Less interestingly, The Day Natal Took Off: A Satire (1963) depicts that state's secession from South Africa. A late poem, Black South Easter (1965 chap), is a mythopoeic fantasia, a Matter of Africa quasi-narrative peopled with admonishing ghosts (see Fantastika). [JC]

Anthony Ronald St Martin Delius

born Simonstown, South Africa: 11 June 1916

died Chichester, Sussex: September 1989

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