There seems to be a widespread assumption, often repeated on social media, that Anthony Burgess was a political conservative whose novels promote a right-wing agenda. Although Burgess sometimes claimed to take no interest in party politics, his position turns out to be a more complicated one than expected. Looking into his novels, autobiographical works and […]

To mark the 50th anniversary of the first release of Stanley Kubrick’s film adaptation of A Clockwork Orange, we present a weekly online series Anthony Burgess at the Movies in which we zoom in on Anthony Burgess’s interest in cinema. In 1923, at the age of six, Anthony Burgess had his first experience of the […]

Anthony Burgess’s Earthly Powers is a book made up of other books. The Earthly Powers Bookshelf charts that literary map, using as its base Burgess’s library at the International Anthony Burgess Foundation. In one of the most memorable scenes in Earthly Powers, Philip Shawcross, a British man in Malaya, apparently possessed by demons, undergoes an […]

To celebrate the reopening of the International Anthony Burgess Foundation in Anthony Burgess’s home city of Manchester, here is Burgess’s article ‘I Am A Mancunian’, first published in the Manchester Evening News in December 1984. Telling Southerners that I am a Mancunian, I sometimes get the silly response ‘What did you say – a Manchurian?’ […]

To celebrate the reopening of the International Anthony Burgess Foundation in Manchester, we look at Burgess’s identity as a Mancunian. Anthony Burgess left Manchester in 1940 and returned only occasionally thereafter. Yet the city of Manchester and its people appear many times in Burgess’s writing — Manchester accents, landmarks, and even smells pervade his literary […]

To celebrate the post-lockdown reopening of the International Anthony Burgess Foundation, based in Anthony Burgess’s birth city of Manchester, we take a look at Burgess’s identity as a Mancunian. Anthony Burgess was born and educated in Manchester. His formative years in the city awakened in him a life-long love of literature, music, drama, and learning. […]

Near the beginning of Honey for the Bears, Anthony Burgess’s 1963 novel set in Leningrad, there is a reference to the Cambridge spies: Not everything you do has to be political. Like those diplomats that went over that time. For all anybody knows they might have gone over because of their stomachs. In Russia, nobody […]

In much of Anthony Burgess’s fiction, there are overt references to his home town, even in those novels that have nothing to do with Manchester – be it some minor character having a Mancunian accent, or one of the city’s landmarks being referred to fleetingly: Belle Vue Zoo cited during an unsatisfactory meal in Singapore […]