[ilds] "Facts"

Bruce Redwine bredwine1968 at earthlink.net
Fri Jul 22 16:11:06 PDT 2011


Yes.  Artists appear in their own works.  Painters have been known to do this — and I'm not referring to self-portraits.  Caravaggio?  Alfred Hitchcock walks through his own films.  I once had a professor, Ralph Rader, argue convincingly that Laurence Sterne plants clues that he himself is the father of Tristram Shandy and not Walter Shandy, the fictional father.  Etc., etc.  Offhand, however, I can't think of anyone going to the extent Durrell does to make himself a character in his own book.  A lot of people have been duped by Count D., but he's fictional in the sense he's not the person he appears to be.  This gets complicated, however, because he is real, as real as LD himself.  But was LD real?  Psychiatrists should have something to say about that.


On Jul 22, 2011, at 3:07 PM, Denise Tart & David Green wrote:

> No, I don't think "N." instead of "Nancy" is a lie.  We also have "E." (Eve) in Reflections on a Marine Venus.  The inventions I have in mind are ones such as the scene at Saint Arsenius, which a granddaughter questions as true (see Charles newspaper), and Count D., who is most probably old LD himself in disguise.  Then there's the whole issue of the plagiarism of Sophie Atkinson's An Artist in Corfu.  I would call such plagiarism a form of lying.
> Bruce
> My Dear Redwine, I have been reading over some passages of Prospero's Cell, arguable the finest book ever written in the English language, and find myself coming to your view that Count D is indeed a projection of /creation of the author - the artist as god of his own universe. Counts D's philosophical speculations are those of the author, the recluse in valley is what Larry became later, the love of wine and peasants, the knowledge of Shakespeare. Zarian, Theodore and Max appear in the book with their consent..but why then count 'D' who appears with his own consent? the author appears in his own book twice with the old count cradling the young author. on page 77 of my 1945 hardback Zarian says:-
> "if only he would write a book...it would be a work of genius...and if he can live without the thought of suicide.." something struck me about this - the literary ambition and Durrell dark side..mmm
> The character of the Count has always inspired me. perhaps because it is like meeting the author in his chosen landscape???
> David Whitewine

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