George Sutherland Fraser

1915 - 1980

G.S. Fraser was one of the five Editors of the first Oasis anthology "Return to Oasis" which was published by Shepheard-Walwyn in 1980. He was an M.A. from St. Andrews University in Scotland, where he had studied English Literature and American and Colonial History.

He started his working life as a trainee journalist on the Aberdeen Press and Journal at a salary of three pounds a week. He joined the army soon after the Second World War began.

A whimsical biographical note in the anthology says this early training as a journalist allowed a physically inept soldier who could never hit a target and hardly march in step, to find various niches in Army journalism in the Middle East. He was on the Cairo magazine Parade, before becoming the assistant editor in Asmara of the Eritrean Daily News (Il Quotidiano Eritreo) Later on in the war, another Oasis poet Sir John Waller helped him get a job back in Cairo with the Ministry of Information. Here, the biographical note says, he became a sergeant-major churning out information and propaganda.

After the war he became a university lecturer in Japan and at Leicester University back in England. He published several books of poems and of literary criticism, especially of twentieth century poetry. A collected edition of George Fraser's poetry was edited by a fellow Editor and poet Ian Fletcher.

All his co-Editors of Return to Oasis - Victor Selwyn, Erik de Mauny, Ian Fletcher and John Waller - have also died since then, and no further Oasis anthologies are likely to be published.

Selected Works

Poems of G.S. Fraser
Published by Leicester University Press (1981)
ISBN: 0718512146 (paperback)

The Modern Writer and His World
Continuity and Innovation in Twentieth-Century English Literature
Published by Greenwood Press (1976)
ISBN: 0837185491 (paperback)