I want to begin with a judgment of luminous wrong-headedness. It has appeared twice in the pages of a widely-read weekly book review:
The Raj Quartet is one of the longest, most successfully rendered works of 19th century fiction written in the 20th century.
It is, of course, meant to be put-down, not praise.
What is wrong-headed is the prank played with chronology. Time serves us in no other way than as an imperturbable order of succession. Dates of existence give us the only hard ordering frame we have for the world in its going. Consequently if a novel was completed in 1975, it is a contemporary novel, and should be counted as such. And that is, of course, precisely what is illuminating in the dictum above. It implies that citizenship in one’s time does not accrue by mere reason of date of birth but must be earned by passing a critical test: The honor of being here and now is bestowed by the craft of critics.
With respect to novels this perverse notion, that the times accredit the work rather than the work the times, takes potently concrete shape. One would think that all the books recognized as novels come to establish a genre: the fairly lengthy prose fiction, For such an ex post facto genre the exception proves the rule, and so deviations are readily accommodated: There are novels all in rhyme (e.g„ Vikram Seth, Golden Gate), non-fiction novels that are meticulous reportage (e.g., Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood), and novels which are one-fifteenth as long as others (cf. Robbe-Grillet’s In the Labyrinth and War and Peace).
In criticism, however, instead of novels there appears something called “The Novel.” It behaves not as a genre but as a species: It has a line of evolution within which throw-backs like The Raj Quartet are discernible. Since it has become maladaptive, it is probably heading toward extinction, to join the dinosaurs. It is on this evolutionary hypothesis that what David Lodge calls the sermons on the text “Is the novel dying” (38) have become a preoccupation of criticism.
There is some agreement about the change in environment to which The Novel is failing to adapt. It is Reality that is killing The Novel (5), or rather the transmutation of reality, not from one state of affairs to another, but out of itself altogether: “Reality is no longer realistic,” as Norman Mailer says in The Man Who Studied Yoga, What this paradox is intended to mean is that there is no common phenomenal world anymore; our environment has gone surreal. Hence it requires a new novel, one that experiments with “fabulating” techniques: inversions of fact and fiction, randomness, surrealisms both vulgar and sophisticated, and bottomless subjectivism.
Now there has got to be something wrong with this vision of things. That the phenomenal world has illusionistic aspects is simply the wisdom of the ancients, and it is not what is meant here. That our contemporary world has been largely transmogrified into second nature, so that primary beings are harder to find, and that the traditional centers are giving way to fragmented perspectives—these and all the other much-debated features of modernity may make the genealogy of “Reality” harder to trace. But surely the notion that reality is over is a decision and not a finding, a sort of deliberate self-spooking. To put it another way: the coroners of Reality are also its assassins.
Oddly enough, among the motives for writing finis to the traditional novel one powerful purpose is precisely the establishment of a purer, sharper reality. Recall that “reality” is Latin for “thinginess.” Robbe-Grillet’s chosisme” is intended to disinfect things and purify them of their human meaning, so as to restore their pristine independence.
Either way, what is clear is that the putatively dying novel is the so-called “realistic novel.” What would be a good description of this, essentially the traditional novel? To begin with, realism, the usual critical term, is not quite accurate, for the great traditional novels are full of psychic and surreal episodes. There is, however, a delineation by Iris Murdoch of a novel of tolerance which comes closer to the novel that is said to have come to its end:
A great novelist is essentially tolerant, that is, displays a real apprehension of persons other than the author as having a right to existence and to have a separate mode of being which is important and interesting to themselves.
I must say that the defense of the characters inhabiting great novels in terms of their civil rights gives me a little pause. (Murdoch is defining the great novel as an expression of Classical Liberalism.) Moreover, tolerance seems a faint term for the affirmative sympathy great authors bestow on their characters. Nonetheless, “real persons more or less naturalistically presented” as being “mutually-independent centers of significance” are indeed to be found in the works of the novelists she mentions, among whom are Jane Austen and Tolstoy. Now here is a huge claim: Paul Scott belongs in this company.
Let me begin to defend this claim with respect first to tolerance and then to Tolstoy. I shall use as a small preliminary example Scott’s treatment of a character who really requires a lot of toleration: Captain Jimmy Clark, one of the old boys of Chillingborough, the public school that plays a fatal role in the book. Scott himself describes him in a later essay as a “wretched cad of a chap,” who, regrettably, succeeds in seducing Sarah, the major woman of the novel. Yet for all his sexual cockiness and brutal candor, it is he, and not the gentlemanly chaps, who has the ear for fine classical sitar playing. That too is in Scott’s account. It figures in, though it does not outweigh Clark’s coarseness toward Sarah. Tolerance does not preclude fine moral reckoning (see III).
As for Tolstoy, the comparison was suggested in passing by David Rubin, whose brief account of the novel is laden with insights. He was corrected in a review by Lawrence Graver, who proposes that Trollope rather than Tolstoy is the proper counterpart. Now I am a loyal Trollope lover, but this comparison seems to me absurd. Trollope is said to have had more than an amateurish knowledge of English parliamentary politics, and he certainly has a wide and nuanced knowledge of English types. But who was ever shaken by the fateful pathos of his setting or his people, as one might be by Scott’s? On the contrary, Trollope’s world is the quintessence of snugness. That is why he was so fervently revived during the Second World War.
No, the comparison with Tolstoy is much more telling. First, War and Peace and The Raj Quartet are both long-breathed and large-scened, though they do differ from each other—as the Russia of 1812 differs from the Anglo-India of 1942. Tolstoy’s Russians offer indomitable though inertial resistance to the Western invader of their large land; the British depicted by Scott subjugate an immense continent with half-hearted sedulousness. That apotheosis of warm-hearted Russian girlhood, Natasha, finds her entirely lovable completion in bossy, dowdy houswifehood. The ungainly, inhibited English girl Sarah, on the other hand, finds at the end release from family and a dawning love of her own. In both novels these consummations take place in the short epilogue of peace—deadly in the Indian case—that succeeds the great war. The Russian book is elemental and golden, overlaid with the sheen of a serene love of the land; the English book is complex and melancholy, ridden with moral scruple, decline, and loss of faith in England. Accordingly Tolstoy and Scott, who both reflect on history, have opposite views of it. Tolstoy thinks that it is only the integral of very small human differentials, which consequently make all the difference. Scott, sensitive to India’s immensity, emphasizes the frailty of human action in the face of history’s “moral drift” (1987, 13). Nonetheless, they and their novels end alike, with the children: Just as, in the last pages of War and Peace, Andre Bolkonsky’s son Nikolai fervently promises to make his dead father proud, so The Jewel in the Crown ends with an episode that postdates the quartet as a whole. Parvati, the lovely young daughter of a dead English mother and a self-exiled Indian father, goes off to her music lesson. She will grow up to be a gifted keeper of the great tradition, the Indian music that her mother had just begun to understand.
Putting The Raj Quartet in Tolstoyan company implies of course that it is a great novel. Let me specify the elements that seem to me to make it so:
- First there is indeed that widely affirmative mode Murdoch calls tolerance. Elizabeth Bowen says somewhere that “a novelist must be imperturbable.” Scott, on the other hand, advises the novelist: “You must commit yourself” (1987, 79). It appears to be the fusion of these, serene engagement and subtle wholeheartedness, that is the psychic mode of great novels.
- The great novels are full of resolved complexity. The net they knit is enormous, but there are no dropped stitches or loose ends. The prime example in the Quartet is the underground life of one of the two precipitating characters, Parvati’s occulted father, Hari Kumar, the Anglicized Indian with whom Daphne Manners falls in love and who is accused of her rape. He vanishes from view after the first book, re-emerges in a harrowing interrogation in the second, only to disappear, as it seems, for good. His absence hovers over the second half of the novel: Has the author forgotten him, left him dangling? But he returns toward the end, though not in propria persona— those connections are missed. He reappears rather as a printed voice, a voice of infinite melancholy, writing essays about the lost Eden of England, indeed about Chillingborough, essays which are signed with the name Philoctetes, the betrayed archer-hero with the incurable wound.
- A great novelist has in mind thousands of bits of knowledge which when selected appear to accrue significance on their own. Scott refers to this property as “graces bestowed” (1987, 215). He lists as examples both the name Daphne, which is a laurel native to Eurasia and the name of a nymph metamorphosed into that shrub while running from a god; and the name Philoctetes, which Scott relates to the Great Archer Hari. But such felicities are legion in the novel.
- In all the great novels I know there is an inextricable reciprocity of scenes and characters, of atmosphere and action. The Raj Quartet is full of subtle deeds and fine-spun conversations which slowly weave a magnificent panoramic tapestry. But it also exudes strong, strange-familiar redolences, enveloping auras, which seem to precipitate the individual figures. In Section IV below something will be said about how Scott achieves this effect.
- The occurrences and deeds of great novels are explicit. In particular is the evil done literal evil. I shall dwell on this matter in the next section. In sum, a very great novel, a post-final novel, was completed little more than a decade ago, although The Novel was supposed to be dead. Or as Scott puts it, inveighing against the “literary body-snatchers the sort of people who prove that the novel is dead because they want it to be”: “Well, if the novel is dead, all I can say is that it’s having a lovely funeral” (1987, 193).
II The Philistine Satan
The Raj Quartet has something War and Peace lacks: an evil presence of enormous pathos. It is the almost vibrant desolation around this person which confirms Scott as a “tolerant” novelist in the most positive sense. This villain is Ronald Merrick, whose name, as so many in this novel, sounds overtones, here those of merit gone wrong. There are, to be sure, other unadmirable characters in the book. Authorial tolerance, as has been said, does not preclude personal or moral aversion. There is, above all, Sarah’s mother Mildred Layton, a languidly snobbish, rigid Memsahib, who displays, however, her own sort of arid valor. There is also Pandit Baba, the fanatical behind-the-scenes instigator of rebellion, Merrick’s ultimate nemesis, who has, for all his slipperiness, a certain blunt righteousness. But neither of these has the odor of unholiness that hangs about the monstrously efficient District Superintendent of Police in Mayapore, later a captain in the Indian army, who acquires a defacing scar and a prosthetic hand.
But great treatments of human evil do not take refuge in indeterminate demonisms. They have the courage of their moral revulsion: Definite crimes are committed. Take for example that dark evil which preoccupies Marlowe in Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, surely the greatest novelette of our century. For all its ineffable horror, there are also namable misdeeds: Kurtz has allowed himself to be worshipped as a god, with human sacrifices. Or consider how much more vaporous Dostoevsky’s Possessed became when the first editor prudishly excluded Stavrogin’s confession, which reveals the actual deed corresponding to his spiritual perversion: He had seduced and driven to suicide a little girl.
Scott’s Merrick tortures and molests prisoners, and drives one of them to suicide. He manipulates superiors, blackmails subordinates, and abuses confidential knowledge—always working discreetly, though at the limits. Moreover, the explanation of this appalling man’s conduct is given along straightforwardly secular lines, in terms of an unfortunate conjunction of sexual pathology, social inferiority, and tearingly ambiguous racial feeling. This not unsympathetic account, rendered after Merrick’s lurid semi-suicidal death, comes from the most understanding quarter, the wise and decent sophisticate and long-inactive homosexual, Count Bronowski (Book IV, 594).
It is because there are real crimes and secular diagnosis that Merrick can acquire theological gravity. This perspective is provided by one of the most moving figures in fiction, Barbie Batchelor, the missionary spinster whose book, The Towers of Silence, is the intense heart of the Raj series. She is the sort of person one could not stand to spend an hour with in a social setting. She scurries about officiously and talks compulsively. But Scott follows her fate from her own center, from the threatening void behind her chatter, through the spells of “imaginary silences,” moments of insight when she does not know whether she has actually uttered anything, to her final mute madness. Her despair derives from love deprived of an aim; above all she is oppressed by an intense devotion to an absconded god.
This woman’s precarious sanity is finally unhinged as a direct result of her encounter with Merrick. She is packed and ready to leave Pankot when she first catches a glimpse of him; she gasps “both at the sight of a man and at the noxious emanation that lay like an almost visible miasma around the plants along the balustrade which had grown dense and begun to trail tendrils.” In the course of their meeting he had sought her out as he had gone after other victims he had chosen: men, women, finally a child he teaches her about despair. In particular he reveals to her the despair behind the suttee-like death of her friend and heroine, Edwina Crane. Miss Crane had set herself afire after the fatal beating of the schoolmaster Chaudhuri, who had been protecting her from a mob on the road from Dibrapur:
“There is no God. Not even on the road from Dibrapur.” An invisible lightning struck the veranda. The purity of its colourless fire etched shadows on his face. The cross glowed on her breast and then seemed to burn out (375).
Having thus undone Damascus, he sends her off on a tonga which, over-burdened with the weight of her trunk (it contains the testimonials of her life), careens down-hill to calamity. Her last sane words are: “I have seen the devil.”
That Merrrick is Satanic is utterly clear: He has a sort of non-being; he is “a man,” as Guy Perrin, the fresh hero of the last book says, “who comes too late and invents himself to make up for it”—too late, that is, for the kind of domination he longs to exercise. He hunts and catches souls. He purveys despair. But he is a smaller and newer devil than Milton’s “lost Archangel” who rules Pandemonium in self-confident grandeur. Merrick is goaded to middle-class ressentiment by the frosty superiority of the Chillingburians, white and black, not possessed by rebellious pride. What is more devastating, he is a renegade without a Lord, consigned to traveling to and fro in India and to riding up and down in it with no one to report to. He is a devil in a world without a god, a humanistic devil, a human devil, a human being.
Now I am mindful of the cheap frisson to be gained from that notorious interpretational identity: “The ostensibly human character X is really the mythical Y,” the Great Earth Mother, say, or the Wicked Witch of the West. But aside from the fact that Scott’s indicators are unmistakable, it is actually only to Barbie Batchelor that Ronald Merrick is the devil, and his essentially human deviltry is the direct complement of God’s absence: In a world from which God has absconded a man can be a demon.
The wonder is that this frigid philistine can invest his own perverted person with such a bleakly piteous aura. Scott’s early novels, some of which are clear preludes to The Raj Quartet, are all about the moral struggle of lonely men against forces of disintegration. It is almost as if Merrick had been molded out of the negative to their common essence.
III. The Respectful Englishman
As the complement to the delineation of the policeman’s private perversion, the novel as a whole bears a moral mission. It is an engrossing fact that the mission is a noble failure, at least in one of its two facets. When faced on a certain occasion with a direct question by an Indian about the present-day contribution of his work, Scott had no positive answer (1987, 147). Nonetheless he made it clear, and others understood, that he was combating two evils: the ignorance of the English not so much about India—that is beyond novelistic cure—but about their own moral responsibility for its fate (1987, 157); and the ingrained lack of respect the English aliens have for the dark-skinned Indians in whose land they are camping. It is for racial arrogance alone that Scott shows real contempt.
Now The Raj Quartet is indeed a deeply absorbing history lesson in the rise and fall of the raj, the English rule of India. So far the mission is fulfilled.
It is otherwise with the respect of the British for the Indians. For this has in turn two aspects, a racial and a religious one. The germinal and controlling event of the book is the consummation of Daphne’s and Hari’s love in the Bibighar Gardens, and her subsequent rape by a gang of hooligans, for which Hari is arrested by Merrick. True to his promise to Daphne (exacted by her for his protection, not hers) he never divulges the truth of the affair. Hari Kumar is for Daphne Manners a full human being; in the intimacy of this affair color is nothing. But he is also Harry Coomer, a Chillingburian, Englishman through and through—indeed the novel’s English gentleman par excellence.
If color is at least in one decisive instance conquered, Indianness, Hindu Indianness, is another matter. Except for Kumar and the above-mentioned Chaudhuri, “B.A., B.S.C.,” who “did not profess to be a Christian” but “on the other hand, . . . did not profess any other religion,” no hero of the book is born Hindu. Indeed there are many unsavory Hindus like the Pandit. In Staying On, which bears to the Raj tetralogy the relation that a satyr play has to an ancient tragic trilogy, it gets worse. There we find that mountainous monument of petty corruption, who exceeds the nastiest Britisher in nastiness, Mrs. Boolabhoy.
In truth, the Indians, who, like the two Kasims, have the authorial respect are Muslims, and even when apostate they are not unmindful of their history. Young Kasim is not the only Muslim in this novel who dies an unassuming hero’s death defending English women. I do not know whether Scott was aware of the fact that he favors the Muslims. The inclination certainly goes way back in India novels.
“One does not write out of one’s feelings for books but out of one’s feelings about life,” says Scott (1987, 160). But books are part of a writer’s life, the more vitally so the less he is playing “Can you top this” with the tradition. The book vital to the shaping of The Raj Quartet’s mission was of course E. M. Forster’s A Passage to India. Scott was puzzled and disturbed by Forster’s final judgment that the liberal Fielding and Dr. Asiz cannot be friends. Forster’s earth and sky say: “No, not yet,” “No, not there.” But now it should be possible, Scott thinks, to portray such a friendship (1987, 1962). Perhaps so, but it is to my point that Asiz is in fact a Muslim. There is an old, old history of British revulsion from Hinduism (Rubin, 8, 168), and Scott does not break out of it. Perhaps in Hinduism the West may face its uttermost antithesis, where appreciative respect is perilous. I do not know. But I do know that Scott’s failure should give us pause in our incessant sanguine calls for understanding our non-Western fellow humans by means of heaps of self-denigration and a few three-credit courses. It can’t be done: At most we can examine ourselves to discern what is inalienably ours, what is insuperably alien, and what is residually common.
Accordingly, this English novel is more than anything about being British, that is to say, about being an English man or woman cut off from and forgotten by England, camping on alien soil, coping with obligations and succumbing to spiritual temptations not known at home. Such highly local trials bring out deeply human quandaries. Except for the color question, Scott’s sympathy is inexhaustible, so much so that he has been, absurdly, accused of being an “imperialist-manqué.” But then the novel has also been called anti-British: If it is, then anxious reproaches are not a part of love. In fact, of course, the charges balance out, confirming the work as the “moral dialogue between writer and reader” that Scott thinks a novel should, among other things, be (1987, 149). He does not think, however, that the moral effect is the essential function of a novel.
Here is what a novel, more centrally, is: It is “a view into a private vision of reality.” (1987,104). For Scott this definition has a meaning at once deep and precise.
IV. The Telling Image
The deeper meaning is that a novelist works with being and with a perspective on being, with reality acknowledged and with reality viewed. It should be said here that the catchword “reality” includes all sorts of observed otherness, from infinite landscapes to intimate reveries, from hardest thinghood to surrealist visions: Viewed reality is precisely reality viewed as experience, “human reality” (107). The implication of this complex notion is that one might work out— not here, though —a metaphysics specific to the “the novel of tolerance,” the traditional great novel par excellence. Of course a novelist of Scott’s stature was deeply preoccupied by what one might call “applied metaphysics.” His reflections, scattered but cohesive, are to be found in the essays collected in On Writing and the Novel.
The more precise, almost technical meaning of Scott’s definition is that a novel is the telling of an image. Here is the author’s most specific idea of “what a novel is“:
A series of images, conveyed from me to you, in such a manner that my view of life is also conveyed—BUT ONLY TO ONE PERSON AT A TIME: THE READER (consenting adults). IT IS THAT READER I’M WRITING TO (212).
So to begin with, and as he continually emphasizes, a novel is a communication; indeed it is a sort of love affair between the writer and each separate reader. This intention distinguishes him from the experimental writer, whose responsibility is to keep the genre alive by his innovations and the critics at work by his sophistication.
That is not to say that Scott is not a very clever narrator. He uses a great multiplicity of means: audacious perturbations of time, such as reprises, anticipations, parallelisms; large varieties of sources, fictive and real, such as diaries, newspaper accounts, descriptions of cartoons; and, above all, the several kinds of narration: direct, oblique, third-, second-, first-person narrative. In fact there are in The Raj Quartet two distinct narrators. The first of these is an anonymous inquirer who investigates the ramifications of the Bibighar affair in the first book. The second is Guy Perrin, the character obviously closest to the author. He is introduced in the last book as a “breath of fresh air,” to represent a healthier “modernity,” a man who baffles Merrick’s designs on him (214). We learn in Staying On that the delicate understanding between him and Sarah, first expressed in the aftermath of the Hindu massacre of Muslims during which they had failed to save their friend Ahmed Kasim from self-sacrifice, had resulted in a happy marriage. The “question of who is telling the story” (212) was on Scott’s mind; one might say that its asking—whose first occurrence is in Plato’s Republic (393)— is one chief mark of a self-conscious, reflective writer.
The telling, the narrative, is packed into the “small, hard rectangular object” (114) which the reader gets to hold. The material book and the telling between its covers are successive reductions of a first, originating element: the image. Here then is Scott’s most concise definition of a novel:
A novel is a sequence of images. In sequence these images tell a story (74).
Hence the language of a novel is for all its verbal linearity not a telling but a showing (74). This secret of Scott’s novels is first set out in an essay, antedating The Raj Quartet, called “Imagination and the Novel” (1961). And indeed, the earlier novels which, though fine in themselves, look in hindsight like exercises for the Raj, are full of such images. In The Chinese Love Pavilion, for example, a crucial image is the “landscape without figures,” “the intimate distances preserved behind glass,” pictures of India painted by the narrator’s grandfather. They are shown to signify the complication introduced into the romantic love of the land by the presence of real people, dark-skinned natives and white dispensers of justice. Here one can see how the image invokes the moral preoccupation of a novel. Indeed, in “Method: The Mystery and the Mechanics” (1967), Scott goes so far as to say that writing which does not grow out of an image but in which, conversely, the image is fitted to the text, is flat and tenuous (75). He “won’t begin until the images start coming” (212). The mystery— for Scott that image is the writer’s mystery—must precede the mechanics.
Again, in The Birds of Paradise the narrator is beset with images, often flashing forth as from a lost paradise (Swindon). However, mention of this novel gives an opportunity to make a different, though essential point: Scott’s aboriginal image is not a literary image in the usual sense. The dead paradisea regia of the title and the very live parrot with which the narrator makes do are— very resonant —literary images: of beauty fallen prey to consumption, of rajahs and of the Raj. But the image Scott means is another thing: It is a vision, a literal vision of the visual and, secondarily, of the auditory imagination, a sight before the mind’s eye with the specific properties of internal vision:
First,…the primary materials, from both the author’s and the reader’s point of view, are the images. Secondly . . . because they are images—illusions of a mobile, audible, human activity—there are perhaps no actual rules to follow which will ensure they hold together, or to depart from which will lead to collapse. You could say that because the images are not tactile, the question of their holding together simply doesn’t arise…(110).
This passage presents the canonical properties of visual imagery established in the disciplines and sciences that study them: freedom from the laws of motion arid of inertial bodies; elsewhere Scott adds yet another, release from temporal determinacy (83). But it also says something about the special relation that the image-based novel establishes between author and reader: The reader’s absorption of the novel recapitulates its genesis in the writer’s imagination: Both begin with the image.
And end with it. Scott’s theory is entirely abstracted from his practice, and accordingly the Raj books begin with, are sustained by, and end on an image, the specific spontaneous vision from which and into which the novel grows. One might say that the novelistic image acts somewhat like an Aristotelian form: It guides the novel’s coming into being and it is the shape of its completion.
The governing image of The Raj Quartet is that of a girl running (82, 84). The writer starts “bombarding the image with experience,” the image here being a girl he’s met briefly in Calcutta, a husky, awkward girl (85) as both Daphne and Sarah will be. The image opens up, shows the plot, the problems it contains. The Jewel in the Crown begins with this running girl, gawky Daphne Manners fleeing from the Bibighar catastrophe. It closes with a running girl, Parvati, her graceful golden-brown daughter running to her music lesson. And the whole quartet ends with a double image in a song by the Muslim poet Gaffur: the bowman choosing his arrows and the girl running with the deer—Hari and Daphne raised to a mythical vision.
The running girl is indeed the human figure of the image, but behind that figure is a scene, an Indian setting, vast and variable, “conveying to a girl running…an idea of immensity.” Hence the whole image consists of the landscape and the figure in it: a reciprocating vision of intimating atmosphere and poignant action.
Books by Eva Brann may be found in The Imaginative Conservative Bookstore. This essay was originally published in
The St. John’s Review (Volume 38, No. 3, 1988-89) and is republished here with gracious permission of the author. Miss Brann welcomes questions/comments via mail: Dr. Eva Brann, St. John’s College, 60 College Avenue, Annapolis, MD, 21401-1655 (she does not use computers and thus no email).
Scott, Paul. The Chinese Love Pavilion. London: Eyre and Spottiswoode, 1960.
___. The Birds of Paradise. London: Eyre and Spottiswoode, 1962.
___. The Raj Quartet. New York: Avon Books, 1979.
Book 1: The Jewel in the Crown 
Book II: The Day of the Scorpion 
Book III: The Towers of Silence 
Book IV: A Division of the Spoils 
___. Staying On. London: Heinemann, 1975.
___. On Writing and the Novel: Essays by Paul Scott (1961-1975). Edited by S. C. Reece. New York: Morrow, 1987.
Graver, Lawrence. Review of Paul Scott: On Writing and the Novel; and David Rubin: After the Raj. The New York Times Book Review, March 15, 1987.
Lodge, David, The Novelist at the Crossroads. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1971.
Murdoch, Iris. “The Sublime and the Beautiful Revisited.” The Yale Review, 49 (1959), pp. 247-71.
Rubin, David. After the Raj: British Novels of India. Hanover, N.H.: University Press of New England, 1986.
Swinden, Patrick. Paul Scott: Images of India. London: Macmillan, 1980.