[ilds] Et in Arcadia ego

Bruce Redwine bredwine1968 at earthlink.net
Mon Jul 9 12:37:23 PDT 2007


That's what I think needs to be discussed -- what else is going on.  All fine and well to point out the allusions, a pleasurable literary pursuit indeed, but what interest me, and perhaps few others, are the chinks in the armor, as Durrell says in a letter about Hamlet.  Being "gorgeously drunk" is one of those chinks.  Durrell presents this as a positive virtue, a manly virtue in the Latin sense, but it strikes me as symptomatic of a big problem.  Little hints like this are being dropped throughout the story -- the bombing and hospital episode, when Mrs. Lewis turns up, is another example, which Michael has already pointed out.  Another is Clito's Cavern.  Why are women being kept out of this male domain?  Indeed, they're largely and apparently deliberately being kept out of the entire story.  The story up to now has a fine veneer of jovial and convivial pastoralism.  But I see something sinister in the cavern.  Charles points out Polyphemos's cave.  I'd like to add Plato's allegory of the cave in the Republic, where we mistake shadows for the real.  I find Durrell's manipulation of the Greeks a little sinister and self-promoting.  It's all very pastoral, but et in Arcadia ego, "death is even in Arcadia," as George III explained when he saw a Reynolds painting.

Bruce

-----Original Message-----
>From: william godshalk <godshawl at email.uc.edu>
>Sent: Jul 9, 2007 11:20 AM
>To: Bruce Redwine <bredwine1968 at earthlink.net>, ilds at lists.uvic.ca
>Subject: Re: [ilds] RG Bitter Lemons -more than male-bonding
>
>Much more than Homerallusions and male-bonding seems to be going on here.  writesBruce.
>
>Okay, that seems likely, but what else is going on? As you point out,drinking is going on. But why and what else?
>
>Bill
>
>***************************************
>W. L.Godshalk          *
>Department ofEnglish         *
>University ofCincinnati           Stellar disorder  *
>Cincinnati OH 45221-0069      *
>513-281-5927
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