Page 159. " under the wisely altered name of Boris Karloff "

Boris Karloff (1887-1969) emigrated to Canada in the 1910s and is best known for playing Frankenstein's monster in Frankenstein (1931), Bride of Frankenstein (1935) and Son of Frankenstein (1939).  Born in London, he attended both Uppingham and the Merchant Taylors' School. He was successful as an actor despite his lisp.

Page 159. " the great director John Schlesinger was there too "

John Richard Schlesinger (1926-2003) moved on from Uppingham school to Balliol College, Oxford. Upon graduation he worked as an actor; he began his career as a director for film and television in 1956.  He was an associate director of the Royal National Theatre from 1973. He was openly gay. His films include A Kind of Loving (1962), Billy Liar (1963), Darling (1965), Far From the Madding Crowd (1967), Sunday Bloody Sunday (1971) and more recently The Next Best Thing (2000).



Page 173. " Plus ça change "

Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr
Public DomainJean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr
A synecdoche for 'plus ça change, plus c'est la meme chose'  - the more things change, the more they stay the same. This is a coining by Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr (1808-1890), the French critic and novelist. His novels include Sous les Tilleuls (1832), Une heure trop tard (1833) and Vendredi soir (1835).

Page 175. " 'Notes on the English Character' and later Howard's End became sacred texts for me "
Portrait of E. M. Forster
Public DomainPortrait of E. M. Forster - Credit: Dora Carrington

In Notes on the English Character (read here or below) E M Forster (1879-1970) investigated class differences and hypocrisy as well as attitudes towards homosexuality. His 1910 'condition-of-England' novel Howards End explored the interaction of families from different social classes, its motto being 'only connect'.

Only connect! That was the whole of her sermon. Only connect the prose and the passion and both will be exalted, and human love will be seen at its height. Live in fragments no longer.

E M Forster published five novels in his lifetime, the others being: Where Angels Fear to Tread (1905), The Longest Journey (1907), A Room with a View (1908), and his greatest success, A Passage to India (1924). Maurice was published posthumously in 1972 and is a gay love story. E M Forster struggled with his homosexuality for much of his life, though recent publications indicate that he developed a surprisingly active sex life (given his reputation) in his late thirties.