J. G. Ballard's Top Ten Writers

British author lists his favourite authors, poets and dramatists

In a BBC survey at the turn of this century, J. G. Ballard listed his top ten writers of the last millenium. It's interesting to note how many of the selected are associated with twentieth-century satire and dystopian writing - authors who held a powerful influence over Ballard's own work:
1. William Shakespeare
The universal writer and poet.

2. Miguel Cervantes
Don Quixote is the first great anti-hero.

3. Jonathan Swift
The most intelligent writer who ever lived.

4. Herman Melville
Moby Dick is the greatest ocean of a novel the human imagination has ever sailed.

5. John Keats
The sweetest literary poet of all.

6. Franz Kafka
The greatest prophet of the terrifying bureaucracies of the 20th century.

7. Fyodor Dostoyevsky
He is the great psychologist of the modern novel.

8. Joseph Heller
Catch 22 is the last classic novel written this century.

9. George Orwell
1984 is the prophetic novel of our time.

10. Aldous Huxley
Brave New World is a guide book to the next millennium.

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