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Isobel Williams

Author Photo of Isobel Williams
Books by this author: Catullus: Shibari Carmina
  • About
  • Reviews
  • Isobel Williams was educated at Woking Girls' Grammar School and Somerville College, Oxford. She blogs about live-drawing in various locations. She has held solo exhibitions in London and Oslo, written articles for publications ranging from The Amorist to International Journal for the Semiotics of Law, and given talks about her work at conferences in the UK and abroad. She wrote and illustrated The Supreme Court: a Guide for Bears in 2017 and is contributing a chapter to Design and Visualisation in Legal Education published by Routledge in 2021.
    Praise for Isobel Williams 'Williams has created a bracingly foul, but also a shrewd and funny Catullus'

    Colin Burrow, London Review of Books 

     'Catullus is in the basement, but he's a bit tied up, literally - Isobel Williams' naughty translation puts the Roman poet in a bondage dungeon.'

    Tristram Fane Saunders, The Telegraph Best New Poetry Books 2021

    'Collage and college in one slim course, her little book teaches and teases... Her treatment of selected poems is literary charcuterie as neat as it is naughty. Criticism ceases to be inky assessment and becomes a rally, tease and treat... Shibari Carmina embellishes the literature by looping the poet in a crib spun from and around his own confections. If you fail to enjoy this sado-masochistic gem as much as I have, you can always flog it...'

    Frederic Raphael, The Critic

     'Vibrant new translation... Her art is simple, bold and evocative, and serves to draw out the frank sexuality of many of Catullus' poems.'

    Grace Bartlett, Cherwell

    'Williams's translation covers such a breadth of emotion, including the conflicting and binding pain of love- pathos that can elicit tears and hilarity blended with jarringly puerile vitriol. These emotions are shrouded in words that seem almost like momentarily written notes, and so belie Williams's skill. Each word is perfectly placed and the poems are polished till their burnished edges have lost every hint of their maker's tools.'

    Ed Bedford, The Indiependent

    'It sheds new light on Catullus's struggles as he saw them. It is a striking attempt to present his poems in the moment and is enhanced by the innovative illustrations.'

    Stuart Lyons, Classics For All



    'Williams' translation is the best I've seen by a mile.'
    John Clegg
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