Charting half a lifetime spent exploring the written word, these eleven articles include Naipaul's boyhood experiences of reading books and his first youthful efforts at writing them; the evolution of his ideas about the extent to which individual cultures shape identities and influence literary forms; Naipaul's observations on Conrad, his literary forebear; the moving preface he wrote to the only book his father ever published; and his reflections on his career, ending with his celebrated Nobel lecture 'Two Worlds'. A remarkable companion piece to The Writer and the World, Naipaul's previous volume of highly-acclaimed essays, Literary Occasions is a stirring contribution to the fading art of the critic, and a revelation of a life in letters.

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