Thursday, November 14, 2013

Ten top books about servants

Lucy Lethbridge has written numerous books, as well as writing articles for the Observer, the Sunday Telegraph, the Independent on Sunday, the Times Literary Supplement, Art News, and Art+Auction. She lives in London.

Lethbridge's new book is Servants: A Downstairs History of Britain from the Nineteenth Century to Modern Times.

From her top ten list of books about servants as shared with the Guardian:
The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro (1987)

For modern readers, Ishiguro's butler narrator Stevens has become the embodiment of the old-fashioned career manservant: loyal, deferential, unquestioning, his own emotional and imaginative spirit cauterised by his dogged determination to be the perfect servant. The poignancy of Stevens is terrible and Ishiguro captures brilliantly the lugubrious "butlerese" that marks the voice of the butler – and that air of melancholy pedantry which butlers themselves (if their written memoirs are anything to go by) learned to affect for the purposes of conveying the correct image.
Read about another entry on the list.

The Remains of the Day is one of Tim Vine's six best books.

--Marshal Zeringue