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10 October 2017
Another Persephone ancestor used to have an original copy of J’Accuse but alas no one knows what has happened to it. So we have a reproduction hanging in the shop and of course it’s pretty illegible but it makes the point: if only we had a Zola to say the right thing. Some columnists are consistently wise and sane and incisive about a country gone mad – but their pieces are too ephemeral, they don’t have the long-lasting impact of J’Accuse. There is a very good book about Zola’s exile to England by Michael Rosen, we shall sell it in the shop when it’s in paperback (in January): it’s called The Disappearance of Emile Zola: Love, Literature and the Dreyfus Case. As the blurb says: ‘ it’s the incredible true story of a writer’s personal bravery in the face of the greatest political scandal of the age.’ We are waiting for our Zola.
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