[ilds] ILDS Digest, Vol 102, Issue 8

mail at durrelllibrarycorfu.org mail at durrelllibrarycorfu.org
Wed Oct 28 07:09:12 PDT 2015


I'm told that Bruce sent the following reply to my note about Diboll and Marouchi as post-Saidian critics, but for some reason it didn't come thru this system. See my reply to Bruce beneath his
Richard, thanks for the recommendations. Diboll?s book is hard to get and has its problems, but overall the study is worth reading, in particular his treatment of the Wafd (the Egyptian nationalist party) and its correspondences in Mountolive. Some may recall, years back, when Diboll and Haag had a spirited debate on the Wafd in the Quartet. I think Diboll is right.

Bruce


Bruce, Diboll's book is useful even though it omits all reference to B. Carter's important book "The Copts in Egyptian Politics" - a work he should have known, but acknowledged to me that he didn't. Nevertheless his book was sufficiently important that I agreed to write a Foreword to it and I'm glad that I did so.
Marouchi's work is of a different order - more informed, detailed, incursive and questioning in a manner that anyone not from Marouchi's - or Said's - background and preoccupations cannot appreciate - which is most of us I guess, especially those who pontificate from ahigh level of ignorance about the postcolonial condition. Marouchi made a very big impact when he was here for the Durrell School (when his books were only just beginning to appear) and I was very gratified that he made the journey to (doubly) postcolonial Corfu.
RP


-----Original Message-----
From: ilds-request at lists.uvic.ca [mailto:ilds-request at lists.uvic.ca]
Sent: Tuesday, October 27, 2015 03:00 PM
To: ilds at lists.uvic.ca
Subject: ILDS Digest, Vol 102, Issue 8

Send ILDS mailing list submissions to	ilds at lists.uvic.caTo subscribe or unsubscribe via the World Wide Web, visit	https://lists.uvic.ca/mailman/listinfo/ildsor, via email, send a message with subject or body 'help' to	ilds-request at lists.uvic.caYou can reach the person managing the list at	ilds-owner at lists.uvic.caWhen replying, please edit your Subject line so it is more specificthan "Re: Contents of ILDS digest..."Today's Topics: 1. Said and Marx (Bruce Redwine) 2. Re: ILDS Digest, Vol 102, Issue 7 (mail at durrelllibrarycorfu.org)----------------------------------------------------------------------Message: 1Date: Mon, 26 Oct 2015 12:51:08 -0700From: Bruce Redwine To: James Gifford ,	Durrell list	Cc: Bruce Redwine Subject: [ilds] Said and MarxMessage-ID: Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8"James,Edward W. Said acknowledges his debt to Michel Foucault (power, discourses, epistemes, etc.), but I think his basic instincts are Marxian. Foucault buttresses his biases. By that I mean, Said interprets or misinterprets or misrepresents Western/capitalist behavior as having ulterior motives, ones that are always exploitive and hegemonic, if you will.Take for example Said?s rhetoric in the first section of Orientalism: ?Knowing the Oriental.? Said describes a 1910 debate in the UK Parliament between A. J. Balfour (Tory leader) and J. M. Robertson (Liberal MP). Robertson challenges Balfour to justify the government?s rule in Egypt (its ?tone of superiority?). Balfour answers that the ?British statesman? (i.e., HMG) ?knows? Egypt and, in Said?s interpretation, knows what is best for Egypt. Said equates knowing Egypt as power over Egypt. He then concludes that Balfour?s use of ?we? means that the Tory speaks for the ?English? and leaves the impression that Balfour also speaks ?for the civilized world, the West, and the relatively small corps of colonial officials in Egypt? (p. 34). Said, however, has downplayed the fact that Robertson and others object to the ?hypocrisy? of HMG. Those strenuous objections were the subject of Robertson?s long speeches in Commons (unreported by Said). So, Balfour does not speak for a! ll ?the English,? although Said suggests he does. Why? Because that suits Said?s argument, which seeks to paint the British and the West as behaving, deliberately and categorically, in an overbearing, dominant, and racist way.Said?s method is typically Marxist. In Empire (2002), Niall Ferguson, the British historian, describes this aspect of Marxism as follows: ?The central nationalist/Marxist assumption is, of course, that imperialism was economically exploitative: every facet of colonial rule, including even the apparently sincere efforts of Europeans to study and understand indigenous cultures, was at root designed to maximize the surplus value that could be extracted from the subject peoples? (p. xvii; my italics). In Marxism, colonialists can do no good, and that is certainly the tenor of Said?s argument. As discussed previously, he?s tendentious, ignores opposing views, and has little historical perspective. He sees what he wants to see.Despite my criticism of his method, Edward Said was a major critical voice in the twentieth century. Unfortunately, his faults have been replicated and compounded by some of his followers, namely, Shaden M. Tageldin in Disarming Words (2011) and Hala Halim in Alexandrian Cosmopolitanism (2013).Bruce> On Oct 25, 2015, at 12:03 PM, James Gifford > wrote:> > Hello all,> > I have several students from Bangladesh as well as Syria, Libya, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and so forth -- they have their eyes open to the larger complexities of the interests of varying state actors, which is partly why they study where they do. They see that everyone has an angle even if the scope is wildly inequitable. There's no corner shop near me anymore, but lots of people hold plenty of contradictory opinions for plenty of reasons just as they hold to plenty of forms of different faiths (or not).> > There's very little in Durrell about left/right: surprisingly little given his time and milieu, and what there is is often ironical or sarcastic. In any case, to be concerned with the legacies of imperialism, especially in the 1950s during the rapid decolonization of Africa and the heat of the Cold War, is hardly surprising -- for Said to shift attention away from the Marxist paradigm of (largely Africa-centred) decolonization literatures of those 50s & 60s to a Foucauldian attention to institutions in the late 1970s and the Middle East is also hardly surprising. But it reminds us that Orientalism was a scholarly discipline in academic institutions that disciplined a body of knowledge as a "way of knowing" and that Said's leverage grew out from an existing set of often race-based decolonization movements that were used to thinking in terms of class rather than through institutions. That "way of knowing" has largely gone underground now into area studies or the retitlin! g of departments, but it's operation continues apace. The commonplace today of regarding universities as a factory producing trained labour reflects the same kind of processes as the service of the university to national(ist) culture, though maybe now to global capital as well. Let's not grow too starry-eyed over the free exchange of ideas such that we overlook the /production/ of knowledge... As Said's critique takes on the aura of having accomplished its goals with the dissipation of schools of Orientialist Studies, we have to stay attentive to the persistence of service by their successor departments to the same and new interests.> > Said was one-eyed in the sense of being polemical, but it was a polemic very much needed in 1978. To ask the same book to sort out our changed situations in 2015 isn't likely to work out well, although there's much to be said of reading it in tandem with his later /Culture and Imperialism/. I critique Said often for the specific things I work on, but he's one of the defining critical voices of the latter part of the 20th century.> > I still think the signal word in "Bitter Lemons," to me at least as a reader, is "unsaid" and how it catches to the other negation, "unshed."> > All best,> James> _______________________________________________> ILDS mailing list> ILDS at lists.uvic.ca > https://lists.uvic.ca/mailman/listinfo/ilds-------------- next part --------------An HTML attachment was scrubbed...URL: ------------------------------Message: 2Date: Tue, 27 Oct 2015 10:21:36 +0000From: mail at durrelllibrarycorfu.orgTo: ilds at lists.uvic.caSubject: Re: [ilds] ILDS Digest, Vol 102, Issue 7Message-ID: Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"On the subject of Said's (and "Orientalism"'s) enduring reputation (or otherwise) may I recommend two works by scholars who might have been "Saidians" but who recognise the need to critique his work in the light of later studies and commentary? Michael Diboll's "Lawrence Durrell's Alexandria Quartet in its Egyptian Contexts" and, more especially (by a former student of Said),Mustafa Marrouchi's "Edward Said at the Limits" (2004) and "Signifying with a Vengeance: Theories, Literatures, Storytellers"" (2002).Richard Pine-----Original Message-----From: ilds-request at lists.uvic.ca [mailto:ilds-request at lists.uvic.ca]Sent: Monday, October 26, 2015 03:00 PMTo: ilds at lists.uvic.caSubject: ILDS Digest, Vol 102, Issue 7Send ILDS mailing list submissions to	ilds at lists.uvic.caTo subscribe or unsubscribe via the World Wide Web, visit	https://lists.uvic.ca/mailman/listinfo/ildsor, via email, send a message with subject or body 'help' to	ilds-request at lists.uvic.caYou can reach the person managing the list at	ilds-owner at lists.uvic.caWhen replying, please edit your Subject line so it is more specificthan "Re: Contents of ILDS digest..."Today's Topics: 1. Re: Retirement Age during the British Raj (James Gifford) 2. Re: Durrell's letter to British Governor of Cyprus (Bruce Redwine) 3. Rick Stein plugs Paddy Leigh Fermor and Gerald Durrell (Denise Tart & David Green)----------------------------------------------------------------------Message: 1Date: Sun, 25 Oct 2015 12:03:17 -0700From: James Gifford To: ilds at lists.uvic.caSubject: Re: [ilds] Retirement Age during the British RajMessage-ID: <562D2775.7030304 at gmail.com>Content-Type: text/plain; charset=windows-1252; format=flowedHello all,I have sever! al students from Bangladesh as well as Syria, Libya, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and so forth -- they have their eyes open to the larger complexities of the interests of varying state actors, which is partly why they study where they do. They see that everyone has an angle even if the scope is wildly inequitable. There's no corner shop near me anymore, but lots of people hold plenty of contradictory opinions for plenty of reasons just as they hold to plenty of forms of different faiths (or not).There's very little in Durrell about left/right: surprisingly little given his time and milieu, and what there is is often ironical or sarcastic. In any case, to be concerned with the legacies of imperialism, especially in the 1950s during the rapid decolonization of Africa and the heat of the Cold War, is hardly surprising -- for Said to shift attention away from the Marxist paradigm of (largely Africa-centred) decolonization literatures of those 50s & 60s to a Foucauldian a! ttention to institutions in the late 1970s and the Middle East is also hardly surprising. But it reminds us that Orientalism was a scholarly discipline in academic institutions that disciplined a body of knowledge as a "way of knowing" and that Said's leverage grew out from an existing set of often race-based decolonization movements that were used to thinking in terms of class rather than through institutions. That "way of knowing" has largely gone underground now into area studies or the retitling of departments, but it's operation continues apace. The commonplace today of regarding universities as a factory producing trained labour reflects the same kind of processes as the service of the university to national(ist) culture, though maybe now to global capital as well. Let's not grow too starry-eyed over the free exchange of ideas such that we overlook the /production/ of knowledge... As Said's critique takes on the aura of having accomplished its goals with the dissipation of schools of Orientialist Studies, we have to stay attentive to the! persistence of service by their successor departments to the same and new interests.Said was one-eyed in the sense of being polemical, but it was a polemic very much needed in 1978. To ask the same book to sort out our changed situations in 2015 isn't likely to work out well, although there's much to be said of reading it in tandem with his later /Culture and Imperialism/. I critique Said often for the specific things I work on, but he's one of the defining critical voices of the latter part of the 20th century.I still think the signal word in "Bitter Lemons," to me at least as a reader, is "unsaid" and how it catches to the other negation, "unshed."All best,James------------------------------Message: 2Date: Sun, 25 Oct 2015 12:20:26 -0700From: Bruce Redwine To: james.d.gifford at gmail.com, ilds at lists.uvic.caCc: Bruce Redwine Subject: Re: [ilds] Durrell's letter to British Governor of CyprusMessage-ID: <30111125-C677-4FF7-82E4-1C6F14D04296 at earthlink.net>Content-Type: text/pl! ain; charset="windows-1252"Yes, it will surely be an exciting talk. And yes, Durrell wrote for different audiences and used different methods.I believe the list discussed before ?The American Institute of International Relations,? mentioned in Bitter Lemons, and someone (Richard Pine?) suggested the name was probably invented for fictional purposes, although Durrell claims elsewhere he wrote (anonymous? initialed?) articles of a political nature.The fact he would do so is interesting, for that took away time from his poetry and fiction. But he had a multi-faceted personality, and one facet was political, deeply involved in the complicated politics of the day. It helps to be a genius.Where are those quotations from?Russian proposals and Muslim views? It?s useful to keep in mind that Russia has had a long interest in the Eastern Mediterranean, at least as far back as Catherine the Great. And now we have President Putin keeping up the tradition.Probably a whole conference could be devoted to Durrell on Cyprus. Those are the crucial years in terms! of his development and the political situation. Moreover, as David Green points out, Bitter Lemons is simply a great book. I think it?s underappreciated.Bruce> On Oct 25, 2015, at 10:00 AM, James Gifford wrote:> > That will surely be an exciting talk! And let's not forget the articles Durrell mentions writing anonymous for an "American Institute of International Relations" in /Bitter Lemons/...> > One of the unspoken issues in Durrell's conflicted writings on Cyprus was the larger Cold War context, which seeps through in his non-fiction prose, such as his attention to the "Russian proposals" and the importance of Muslim views. As he rather delicately puts it for the Turkish population, "they have shown a desire to be ruled by something a little more liberal than the Greek-oriented administration. One can respect their point of view, also, remembering that they are Moslems, and that counts for something."> > Which to my mind is to say, there are the things Durrell wrote fo! r his job, the things he wrote for his reading public, and then the other things he nudges a reader to see he's aware of but not able to discuss overtly for either aesthetic or political reasons -- I tend to think such matters show up in a manner akin to Hemingway's theory of omission: through juxtapositions, palpable aporia, and irony.> > All best,> James> > On 2015-10-25 9:49 AM, Bruce Redwine wrote:>> Panaiotis,>> >> Thanks for the letter. I was unaware of it. The last paragraph is>> interesting, especially its guarded tone about working for the British>> government on Cyprus. He indicates that his Greek ?personal contacts?>> will disapprove of such an appointment. George Seferis? What or whose>> ?psychological obstacles?? But I guess this is the subject of your talk>> at the conference on Crete.>> >> Bruce>> >> >> >> >> >> >>> On Oct 25, 2015, at 5:13 AM, Panaiotis Gerontopoulos>>> >> wrote:>>> >>> Dear All>>> >>> >>> I do not know if the participants of this discussion about>>> the/Retirement Age during the British Raj ,/Said's/Orientalis! m,/and>>> Durrell's /Bitter Lemons/are aware of the following hand-written>>> application letter submitted by Durrell to the Governor of Cyprus in>>> February 1953 or 1954. It was discovered in the State Archive of>>> Nicosia by Barbara Papastavrou Koroniotaki, and first published in>>> /New Griffon/ (Gennadius Library, Athens) in 2003. Since then, it has>>> been reproduced several times and should be taken into consideration>>> in any discussion regarding Durrell's venture in Cyprus. Based on>>> information collected from various sources I intent to present to the>>> ILDS meeting in Rethimnon a paper on this highly controversial>>> subject, and if accepted I hope to see you all there.>>> >>> P. Th. Gerontopoulos>>> >>> >>> >>> >>> >>> Bellapaix Abbey>>> Cyprus>>> Feb.17 1953>>> >>> H.E.Acting Governor>>> >>> >>> Island of Cyprus>>> >>> >>> The Levant>>> Your>>> Excellency>>> >>> Thank you for the great kindness with which you received me an for>>> your permission to reinfo! rce my application for the post under>>> discussion by a personal statement in the form of a letter. The chief>>> points which may have some bearing on my position as follows:>>> >>> 1) I have been closely in touch with Greeks since 1934 when I first>>> went to live in the island of Corfu.>>> 2) In the course of my F.O. Service I have had to prepare suitable>>> material for the Greek press both in the Dodecanese Islands and in>>> Alexandria. I helped in editing and orienting material for>>> broadcasting from ESB to Greece [G. Haniotis was the chief radio>>> feature editor at the time].>>> 3) My name is well-known in Athenian and Cypriot literary circles and>>> the Greeks of Cyprus have taken me very much to their bosoms. I have>>> been the subject of admiring criticism in "Cyprus Letters" and the>>> School at which I teach has put an exhibition of my books about Greece.>>> 4) In a brief Supplementary to my application I have noted a few>>> publications which have some bearing on Greece, the landscape,>>> folklore etc and which might enable me ! to be credited with the special>>> knowledge that comes from long residence in a country.>>> >>> I do not know whether the wide circle of personal contacts I have>>> made here would survive a public appointment such you have outlined;>>> nor do I know whether I could secure the whole-hearted cooperation of>>> those who now consider me their friend. But the nomination of a>>> well-known of a well-known Philhellene to a post of this sort would>>> place the Ethnarchy Council in a great dilemma since it is the Council>>> itself to which I owe my present post. If I could clear away a few of>>> psychological obstacles I might achieve a depth of penetration which>>> would justify the existence of such a costly establishment as the>>> CBS:and which might help to lull, though not to extirpate, Enotist>>> feeling.>>> >>> >>> I>>> remain, Sir>>> >>> Your>>> Obedient Servant>>> >>> >>> Lawrence Durrell>>> >> > _______________________________________________> ILDS mailing list> ILDS at lis! ts.uvic.ca > https://lists.uvic.ca/mailman/listinfo/ilds -------------- next part --------------An HTML attachment was scrubbed...URL: ------------------------------Message: 3Date: Mon, 26 Oct 2015 21:24:18 +1100From: Denise Tart & David Green To: Gmail , Durrell list Subject: [ilds] Rick Stein plugs Paddy Leigh Fermor and Gerald DurrellMessage-ID: <1E655835-7411-4081-8B69-7123C0519F38 at bigpond.net.au>Content-Type: text/plain;	charset=us-asciiEnglish cook and TV presenter Rick Stein has a new travel/food odyssey which takes him from Venice to Istanbul. In yesterday's program on Greece, he called at PLFs house which looks lovely. He showed us Fermors library and that Paddy was the kind of Englishman the Greeks love, along with Byron and Gerald Durrell - gregarious, fond of wine and song etc. found it odd he mentioned Gerald and not Lawrence. For many, Gerald is better known, but Larry is guy who really lived in, loved and wrote about Greece. Anyway good to see the guys getting a plug on international television. Paddy's home looks well worth a v! isit. His cook makes a mean moussaka.DavidSent from my iPad------------------------------Subject: Digest Footer_______________________________________________ILDS mailing listILDS at lists.uvic.cahttps://lists.uvic.ca/mailman/listinfo/ilds------------------------------End of ILDS Digest, Vol 102, Issue 7************************************-------------- next part --------------An HTML attachment was scrubbed...URL: ------------------------------Subject: Digest Footer_______________________________________________ILDS mailing listILDS at lists.uvic.cahttps://lists.uvic.ca/mailman/listinfo/ilds------------------------------End of ILDS Digest, Vol 102, Issue 8************************************
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