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Celebrating sixty years of Martin Amis

By Tom Chatfield  

The prince of prose at his louche best

Sixty years ago this Tuesday—the 25th August—Martin Amis popped into the world. No doubt he’ll be celebrating in some style; the circumstances will be certainly be grander than those of the post-war Oxford into which he arrived. There, the 27-year-old poet and postgraduate student Kingsley Amis was in the middle of writing a B.Litt. thesis on “English Non-Dramatic Poetry” (which would, in 1950, be failed by Amis’s chief examiner, the “silly, unhelpful, posturing…

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