OPINION Claire Flay

NWR Issue 95

Rich Text

I first came across Dorothy Edwards in Jane Aaron's edited anthology A View Across the Valley: short stories by women from Wales c.1850–1950 (Honno, 1999). Intrigued as to the background of the author who had produced ‘The Conquered’, with its border tensions, imperial references and naive yet arrogant male narrator, I turned to the biographical notes and was surprised to learn that the author was, like myself, from Ogmore Vale. I dismissed this as an error – the former mining valley of Ogmore Vale is often confused with the nearby affluent seaside town of Ogmore-by-sea. Besides, immersed as I was in the gritty realist narratives of writers like Gwyn Thomas, Lewis Jones and Jack Jones, where I could find my community and its history reflected in a very real way, the large country houses and idle elite that populate Edwards’ fiction rang hollow.

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