Simon Kővesi
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How late it was, how late (1994)
in James Kelman
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This chapter discusses Kelman's 1994 novel, How late it was, how late, which is voiced from Sammy Samuels' perspective and features the Hardie Street police station. It notes that this novel features Kelman's complex of resistances to the first person. The chapter describes Sammy as the first character through which Kelman celebrates the musicality of the Glasgow voice, one who shows an enriching evolution of Kelman's study of the relationship between sound and site, identity and speech, and locality and accent. It also takes a look at Sammy's poor literacy and the dynamics of the narrative, which are controlled by an active interpretation of space and sound, and examines the gap between textuality and orality.

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