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Scott, Paul

british india novel quartet

(British, 1920–78)

Paul Scott was born and brought up in north London, and initially began training as an accountant. His service in the Second World War took him to India, and his experiences and observations there were to prove an undying source of inspiration in his writing career. Scott is best known for his novel sequence The Raj Quartet, which was successfully televised in 1984. The quartet consists of The Jewel in the Crown (1966), The Day of the Scorpion (1968), The Towers of Silence (1971), and A Division of' the Spoils (1975). The novels look at the last days of the British occupation of India, chiefly from the British point of view, although there is much sympathy for the native Indians. The setting is powerfully evoked, and the characters are strong and memorable. Scott's last novel, Staying On (1977), a Booker Prize-winner, is a humorous but poignant account of British life in India after 1947.

Salman Rushdie, Ruth Prawer Jhabvala, John Masters, E. M. Forster  SA

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