AugustusDoes this even need an introduction from us? We brought this book up in our first episode, when we discussed John Williams’ Butcher’s Crossing. We brought it up again when we discussed his Stoner. We’ve brought it up a number of times in recent episodes since we were thrilled when NYRB Classics announced they would be releasing their own edition of Augustus, which won Williams the National Book Award in 1972.

In Episode 15 we will be discussing the works of Stefan Zweig, in particular his novel Beware of Pity. Join us!

Please send us your thoughts and we’ll share them on the show.

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By |2014-09-10T20:53:51-04:00September 11th, 2014|Categories: Podcast|4 Comments


  1. Scott Foshee September 11, 2014 at 11:12 pm

    Great job guys. I loved Stoner and Butcher’s Crossing, but couldn’t get through this one because of the stilted language I think, but after your podcast I think I’m going to give it another try. Thanks for a great job!

  2. Seth Guggenheim September 12, 2014 at 4:57 pm

    Trevor and Brian: Thanks for such a good podcast. I found very interesting Trevor’s repeated references to the text of Augustus containing letters or journal entries having dates like “34 B.C.” Were these letters and journal entries supposed to have been discovered and given dates by an historian or other fictitious narrator well after the fact? If not, how would any of these ancients know that Christ would be born some number of years following their authorship of letters and journal entries? Williams could not have been so obtuse as to have overlooked a detail like that, nor would I think that he would have distorted “poetic license” to such a degree.

  3. Trevor Berrett September 15, 2014 at 12:42 pm

    Hi Scott and Seth, and thanks for the comments! I’ve been quiet here this past week as I’m recovering from a tonsillectomy (not as fun as one might think!). But, Set, to get to your question, Williams never addresses the modern dates in the ancient context. I personally don’t feel taken out as these are dates I use when I think about these folks, and I am glad I didn’t have to learn whatever calendars they were using at the time to date their letters. I also don’t think it distorts as it’s almost like some historian edited these documents and put them together, dating them for our convenience.

  4. Seth September 15, 2014 at 2:57 pm

    Thanks, Trevor! Hope you’re doing well. The dates, I’m sure, help rather than harm, but it certainly is a curious convention! Best, Seth.

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