[ilds] cowper powys (miller/durrell)

James Gifford odos.fanourios at gmail.com
Fri Dec 7 19:40:46 PST 2007


I'm privileged to be here any night Bill signs on your behalf.

I believe there's a new biography on Powys out, which A.S. Byatt's 
sister reviewed in the a recent /TLS/.  It looks to be wonderful stuff, 
and it makes me want to spend more time in the library's basement with 
Powys' letters.

But, in all seriousness, with my own G+T in hand, what about those who 
somehow got lost from the literary radar from the very late 30s into the 
50s or so?  I'm thinking of Powys, Lowry, Durrell, Smart, and so many 
others of that generation -- rather than some naive sense of "why don't 
they like me" response, what catches my attention is the possibility 
that something in these works conflicts with our dominant literary 
norms.  Yet, I can't see how to make those works interact with what 
developed from, say, Beckett.

Just what that difference is, I'm keen to know, but I must admit that I 
haven't been able to pin it down quite yet.  I know it's not the 
lashings of sex in their works, and I doubt the reactionary "dead white 
male" is a legitimate reason (especially for Smart), which leaves only 
the unabashed neo-Romantic verbal play in their works.  Or, is it 
something else?

So, what is rendered redundant in Joyce and Woolf after this 'group'?  I 
must, to some degree, that I agree with Charles' assessment.  I lived in 
Joyce and Woolf for many years until I read Durrell, Lowry, and Miller. 
  The first two are particularly strong influences in making me want 
something more from Woolf and Joyce -- I still enjoy teaching them, but 
I can't help but feeling that I always want something more from 
_Lighthouse_ or _Portrait_ than they can offer...

(okay, I've only had one drink, so I suppose I'm still James).

slighcl wrote:
> On 12/7/2007 10:22 PM, william godshalk wrote:
>> Charlie
> Did Bill just sign my name in his email?  The honor is mine.
> C&c.

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