The Wild Goose Chase

Rex Warner
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ISBN 9780571243204 Format Paperback
Published 29/05/2008 Length 436 pages

About Book

The Wild Goose Chase, published in 1937 and Rex Warner's first novel, was a groundbreaking piece of fiction. The novel follows three brothers whose journey is a dazzling original political allegory of liberation through Marxism. While most socialist writing of the 1930s took the form of social realism or reportage, Warner broke with this tradition, drawing instead on surrealism, classical mythology, fairy tales, film, and popular genres of the time including Boys Adventure and science fiction. Its publication immediately secured Rex Warner's reputation as a major writer.

In the novel, three brothers - Rudolph, David, and George - embark on a dangerous quest in search of the 'wild goose'. Their search takes them into a neighbouring country and they eventually arrive at a sealed-off town where the ruling dictators have enslaved the people and secured a life of privilege for themselves and a few harmless professors who teach at the town's university. Only George, the youngest brother, is able to stand up against the dictators, and he eventually leads a successful revolution against them.

  • About Rex Warner

    Reginald Ernest [Rex] Warner (1906-1986) was a poet, novelist, classicist and translator. While studying classics and English at Oxford, he became involved with a group of young writers including W.H. Auden, Stephen Spender and Cecil Day-Lewis. After leaving Oxford he was a teacher and travelled in Egypt before publishing his first novel in 1937, The Wild Goose Chase. He was the director of the British Institute in Athens in the 1940s and then went on to teach in various American universities. Later in life he wrote many novels and works of non-fiction about Ancient Greece and Rome, including Imperial Caesar, which won the 1960 James Tait Black Memorial Prize for Fiction, and as well as translating numerous classical works.

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