Alias MacAlias: Writings on Songs, Folk and Literature Hamish Henderson
He was well-known as a songwriter and poet (his collection Elegies for the Dead in Cyrenaica won the Somerset Maugham Prize in 1949) and as a pioneer in the field of Scottish folk studies and song collecting. Henderson was also a highly original translator of poetry - from Gaelic, French, German, Latin and Greek - much of it into Scots, and also of the work of the Italian socialist Antonio Gramsci, whose Prison Letters he published in English in 1974. This book brings together around sixty pieces spanning fifty years - essays, articles, reviews and reminiscences - which demonstrate the enormous diversity of his interests. There are essays on literature (Hugh MacDiarmid and Lorca), politics (post-war Germany, the Clearances), and, of course, on the folk song tradition. Alias MacAlias was first published by Polygon in 1992. Birlinn will publish a major biography of Hamish Henderson by Timothy Neat in 2005.