[ilds] baboonism

Bruce Redwine bredwine1968 at earthlink.net
Sat Jul 7 21:54:14 PDT 2007

Bill, I take you seriously, but I don't see your concern.  I meet you in person, I shake your hand, I share a drink or two with you, we exchange stories and tall tales, I like you, maybe you like me -- will I ever truly know you?  No, of course not.  Will you ever truly know me?  No.  You may be playing games with me.  I may be playing games with you.  So what?  Does this really bother me?  No.  That's the uncertainty of life.  And that's the way I read Durrell's non-fiction.  Fiction is another matter -- that gets more complicated.  But non-fiction, Durrell's travel literature, I assume is like a face to face encounter.  The Durrell I hear, the voice I hear, is the same from Prospero's Cell all the way to Caesar's Vast Ghost.  It's the same guy I love, whose voice has aged and changed over time, but basically the same.  He's an old friend.  He's the prodigal son who strays and wanders but who returns because he's basically the same.  I don't see all this as very complicated.  (I haven't read the books you mentioned but will check them out.)


-----Original Message-----
>From: william godshalk <godshawl at email.uc.edu>
>Sent: Jul 7, 2007 6:04 PM
>To: Bruce Redwine <bredwine1968 at earthlink.net>, ilds at lists.uvic.ca
>Subject: Re: [ilds] baboonism
>Bruce, I agree that the idea of multiple personalities (which Durrellrecurrently writes about) is strained. But there is absolutely adifferent between the words that Durrell puts on the page and the manhimself -- the man who lived and died. We find historical traces of thisDurrell. But words on a page will never (I believe) be the same as thisman who shits. See Ernest Becker's The Denial of Death and MilanKundera's The Unbearable Lightness of Being for starters. How canwords on a page have a copy identity? 
>I question that, thatLawrence Durrell is his own created fiction, who invents and reinventshimself whenever he writes.  This implies he could be anything hewanted to be.  He isn't.  He is a single personality with aunique vision and a unique manner of expressing it.  That's what weread and respond to.  He is a self with a core identity, not aschizophrenic with multiple personalities.  The fact he alters thereality around him for the purposes of storytelling -- that I considerincidental.  Writers and artists like to propagate ideas abouthaving multiple selves -- Keats most famously -- but I don't believeit.  I see Keats as one person who could project his imaginationinto different contexts.  The same with Durrell.

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