[ilds] Answering Lea Stogdale

James Gifford odos.fanourios at gmail.com
Wed May 30 10:37:46 PDT 2007

Hello all,

You're getting your daily dose of me as I work through my email inbox...
Delete me freely.

Lea asks two good questions that I think merit responses to the list as a
whole rather than in part.

> Jamie, did you ever hear the interview conducted with LD
> by the previous  host of the CBC radio afternoon show
> several years ago? It was out of Vancouver. Is this
> interview available? Is it worthwhile?

I have heard it, and I think you mean the CBC's "Durrell by Himself"
interview.  I suspect it was recorded in Montreal, the only Canadian city I
believe Durrell visited, or at least the only one he commented on.  I only
have a poor quality recording of it, but let me know if you're sufficiently
interested.  Also see it in this incarnation:

Markle, Fletcher. "Teaching Your Characters That They'Re More or Less Free."
Lawrence Durrell: Conversations. Ed. Earl G. Ingersoll. Cranbury, NJ:
Associated University Presses, 1998. 99-104.

Notes: Transcription of "Telescope: Lawrence Durrell by Himself," directed
by Rene Bonniere and moderated by Markle. Aired 7 November 1968 on the
Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

Lea also asks:

> Was LD an atheist?
> He has Balthazar say: 'We are all hunting for rational
> reasons for believing in the absurd.'

I must admit that I don't think this necessarily implies atheism, and I
don't know if I'd grant LD that nom de plume (nor do I think he took it up
in the sense that you mean).  We may all wish to believe in the absurd, and
many of us achieve it.  I think Durrell was on a quest for the absurd, and
it's pretty hard to be on a quest without at least an inkling of belief if
not the real thing...  He may have been tired, or like Lancelot, some vast
river may have blocked his passage, but if he was an atheist, I'd guess he
was the kind that was hoping he might be proved wrong.

As for being a Christian, certainly not...


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