A leading novelist of the post-war era, Angus Wilson provided a sharp and often very funny portrait of Britain during this period. He shared with E.M. Forster a concern with the problems of liberal humanism, while his elaborate plotting and rich characterisation recall the works of Dickens. Unusually for a male novelist of his time, he placed women at the centre of several books – notably The Middle Age of Mrs Eliot (1958) and Late Call (1964) – while Hemlock and After (1952) and Anglo-Saxon Attitudes (1956) were among the first British literary novels to portray homosexual characters without fuss or special pleading.
In Wilson’s centenary year, biographer Peter J. Conradi, who knew him well over many years, chairs a celebration of his work. Ian McEwan was one of the first students on the creative writing MA established by Angus Wilson and Malcolm Bradbury at UEA; Wilson’s friend Margaret Drabble wrote his biography; the literary journalist Edmund Gordon represents a new generation of admirers.