(Sir) Noël (Pierce) Coward David Hare - Essay

David Hare

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

[The Noel Coward Diaries] record a life largely given over to the theatre and the company of friends. Much time is spent stacking name upon name…. Though his worst contempt is directed against journalists, his own mind is journalistic, taking things at face value.

The editors admit only to minor censorship, but it is hard to believe that any was necessary, for the effect of the diaries is not at all intimate. Coward was clearly writing for eventual publication, and in a style which aims to give nothing away. He is not interested in describing people or events, preferring instead to concentrate on his own variations of feeling. His reaction to most people is to spray them with adjectives like...

(The entire section is 640 words.)