[ilds] evil empire

Vittorio Celentano vcel at ix.netcom.com
Wed Jul 11 12:47:59 PDT 2007


I think this may be of interest in discussing Bitter Lemons: "It is the Greek and Greek Cypriot thesis, from which nothing will move them, that Turkish interest and involvement, which would otherwise have remained quiescent, was fomented by the British, especially by Anthony Eden. One must say straightaway that there was a motive. The British had decided that they would have to leave the Suez Canal and were now planning to transfer the whole panoply of their Middle East Command to Cyprus, thus for the first time giving it the military significance it was supposed to have in 1878. C   Nevertheless the Greek assumption that with British goodwill the island could have been swiftly transferred, complete with sleeping Turks, to Greek rule without serious conflict may well be questioned. It does not follow from the fact that Britain's two reasons for staying--strategic and the need to avoid stirring up Greco-Turkish hostility--were mutually supporting, that one of them had to be bogus. After all, Greece and Turkey were both military allies of Britain and of each other". From:


  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Michael Haag 
  To: ilds at lists.uvic.ca 
  Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 3:19 PM
  Subject: [ilds] evil empire

  Bill seems to think that everywhere is postcolonial now. Certain Greek voices would not agree, and they would lay the blame squarely with Lawrence Durrell.

  Bitter Lemons is regarded by many Greek Cypriots as the work of one of the chief spin doctors of Western imperialism. In the novel Closed Doors by the Cypriot writer Costas Montis, its translator David Roessel, known to the ILDS, writes in his introduction:

  'For Durrell, the lemons of Cyprus were bitter for a few years; for Montis, some of the doors closed by colonialism are still closed. Durrell and the British could walk away from the intractable problem that they helped to create on Cyprus; in fact, Durrell never visited the island again. For Montis, the bitter lemons and closed doors remain part of daily life on the divided island. If Montis's book seems too angry and polemical, it is because both he and his island are still living with the legacy of the colonial government that Durrell served. It may be that we in the West will have to learn how to read "answers" that re-appropirate a colonial narrative before we can truly appreciate them.'

  [Costas Montis, Closed Doors: An Answer to Bitter Lemons by Lawrence Durrell, Minneapolis 2004]



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