Angus Wilson: Late Call

(633 words)
  • Marina MacKay (University of Durham)

This novel's prologue recounts the events of a day in 1911. The heroine is the daughter of a brutish farmer and his wife, who are forced by the failure of their farm to take paying guests from London. The liberal Mrs Longmore warms to the victimised child, and her daughter, Myra, makes friends with her. Following various mishaps while out on a walk, the girls are discovered undressed in the woods. Mrs Longmore is plagued by “sophisticated, sinister fears” when Myra tells her that the farm girl undressed her, not realising that the error has been based on a misapplication of Mrs Longmore's doctrine that they “was to 'feel free'”. Mrs Longmore feels some impotent remorse when she later hears the girl being beaten.

This …

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MacKay, Marina. "Late Call". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 08 January 2001
[, accessed 25 September 2016.]