British Conservatives hate poetry

This video from Britain says about itself:

‘A Cut Back’ by Carol Ann Duffy

The Poet Laureate reads to Channel 4 News her poem “A Cut Back“, revealing her anger on the cutting of all government funding to the Poetry Book Society.

By Jackie Warren in Britain:

UK Arts Council slashes poetry funding

An interview with Poetry Book Society director Chris Holifield

28 July 2011

The Conservative/Liberal Democrat coalition government has slashed the funding of Arts Council England (ACE) by 30 percent and ordered it to halve its administration costs. As a result, ACE has announced an end to the entire funding of the Poetry Book Society (PBS), a unique organisation providing vital support to poets, readers and publishers. The PBS sponsors the annual TS Eliot Prize, described as the most valuable and prestigious in the UK for a new collection of poetry.

PBS director Chris Holifield is also the co-founder of the largest writers’ website in the UK. We spoke to her about the campaign to save the society and the wider implications of the attacks on the arts.

Jackie Warren: I believe the PBS was founded by TS Eliot in 1953?

Chris Holifield: It was founded by TS Eliot and friends―some poets, some booksellers―at the instigation of the Arts Council. It was about getting books to readers and stimulating poetry sales. It’s grown over the years into a formal book club and a mainstay of the poetry-publishing world.

It’s difficult for poets to get published and also for poetry publishers to sell their books. This trend has been accelerated by changes in the book world, particularly the pressure on bookshops to be more commercial in their thinking. A lot of them have very small stocks of poetry and there isn’t much range available.

2 thoughts on “British Conservatives hate poetry

  1. Pingback: English poet Michael Horovitz interviewed | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Pingback: British taxpayers’ money wasted on killing buzzards | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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