Morag Fraser

Morag Fraser

Morag Fraser was Chairperson of ABR and was for many years Editor of Eureka Street. She is currently writing a biography of the poet Peter Porter.

'Signs and portents: The outlook for America in Obama’s second term' by Morag Fraser

February 2013, no. 348 31 January 2013
November in America signals a time to gather in, take stock and breathe a little. The elections are done by the end of the first week. Thanksgiving beckons, the high holidays begin, media fever subsides – a little – and morphs into retrospective political analysis and projected anxiety about the future, especially, since 2008, the economic future. It is a pattern I’ve seen repeated over and ... (read more)

Lincoln

February 2013, no. 348 30 January 2013
The Academy Award season is so given to hyperbole that it was a relief to read one critic not starry-eyed about Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln. Rex Reed, in the New York Observer, criticised the film for having ‘too much material, too little revelation and almost nothing of Spielberg’s reliable cinematic flair’. I don’t agree for a moment, but Reed’s comment is an interesting pointer to th ... (read more)

'Fear and loathing in American politics' by Morag Fraser

February 2012, no. 338 23 January 2012
'Fear and loathing in American politics' by Morag Fraser
The Princeton Post Office, as befits this famed university town, has a certain grandeur. It is small – Princeton is a village after all – and modest in its proportions, but grand in aspiration. As you step through its panelled doors your gaze is drawn by the long parade of milk-glass and bronze lights towards the mural that adorns the far wall. Like the White House murals, it is lofty, but alm ... (read more)

Morag Fraser reviews 'Autumn Laing' by Alex Miller

October 2011, no. 335 27 September 2011
Morag Fraser reviews 'Autumn Laing' by Alex Miller
Not since Marguerite Yourcenar’s classic Memoirs of Hadrian (1951) have I encountered a novel of such bravura intensity and insight into the jagged contours of the human heart. Autumn Laing opens with a mercurial soliloquy. Over eighteen shimmering pages, the novel’s eponymous heroine draws scarcely a breath as, in a soul-scouring torrent, spanning a lifetime while skewering the moment, she c ... (read more)

Morag Fraser reviews 'A Widow's Story' by Joyce Carol Oates

May 2011, no. 331 26 April 2011
Morag Fraser reviews 'A Widow's Story' by Joyce Carol Oates
On 18 February 2008, Joyce Carol Oates’s husband, Raymond J. Smith, died unexpectedly of cardiopulmonary arrest. Smith was eminent in his own field as editor of the Ontario Review, but quietly eminent. Now he has become famous, a household name in international literary circles – as his widow’s spouse. It is an odd state of being, or non-being. But this is an odd book, alternately brilliant ... (read more)

'Maddened times in the USA' by Morag Fraser

December 2010–January 2011, no. 327 30 November 2010
Immediately after the mid-term elections in November, Barack Obama left for a long-planned G20 gathering in Seoul and for meetings with heads of government in the nation states of India, Indonesia, and Japan. Nothing remarkable, you think? Exactly what one expects a United States president to do? Not in America. The right-wing blogosphere went berserk. Michele Bachmann (Republican, Minnesota, Tea ... (read more)
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