Monday, April 09, 2007

Lawrence Durrell On The Internet

One of the most persistent figures in the life of Henry Miller was Lawrence Durrell (1912-1990). As a young man, Durrell's reading of Tropic Of Cancer unlocked the possibilities within his own inate writing skills. Durrell sought Miller out, became a member of the Villa Seurat circle, then went on to become an esteemed author in his own right. Through the decades, in person and in letter, he and Miller remained confidants.

This posting is meant to be an internet resource for anyone wanting to know more about Lawrence Durrell, who has and will continue to make more detailed appearances in this blog.

Source: Miller's own autobiographical chronology:
1937 – “Momentus meeting with Lawrence Durrell.”
1939 (Aug) – Stay with Durrell in Corfu.
1959 – Art And Ourtrage incl Durrell.
1962 (Jul) – Meet Durrell at Edinburgh Writers’ conference/ Made tape with Durrell for BBC.
1962- Left with Durrell for Paris where we made readings for recordings from our books (for La Voix de l'Auteur).
1963 - Capricorn issued in paperback by Grove Press and A Private Correspondence, with Lawrence Durrell, (Dutton) and Black Spring (Grove Press).
1968 (Mar) – Durrell visits HM in Pacific Pallisades.

Read his biography on Wikipedia and Kirjasto. William Nedlake has created his own Durrell Archive, which includes a good overview of related information. IMDB has a chronoligcal list of Durrell's four spouses. But if you only have time to visit a single Durrell-related site, it should no doubt be that of the International Lawrence Durrell Society, which publishes its own journal and every two years holds a Durrell conference.

The British Library holds an extensive Lawrence Durrell Collection. The University of Lousiville has a holding of rare journals and first editions. The University of Victoria's Durrell collection holds various letters by Durrell, including those written to Alfred Perles. A smaller correspondence collection (1 letter to Miller, the rest to the Honors) can be found at McMaster University. There is also a Durrell Library in France and a Durrell School in Corfu.
Time Magazine published bulletins of Durrell's 1961 marriage and his first visit to the US in 1968. Egypt Today reports on efforts to save Durrell's home in Alexandria.
The photo above is credited to Terry Disney.

A full listing of Durrell-related articles in the New York Times. Kenneth Rexroth on Durrell. Peter Levi's Good Poet, Bad Novelist. Martin Turner is disappointed by his poetry. James Gifford's Reevaluating Postcolonial Theory in Lawrence Durrell's Alexandria Quartet. Shirley Lutz Zivley's A Quartet That is a Quartet: Lawrence Durrell's Alexandria Quartet. Stefan Herbrechter's Durrell, Encounter, Deconstruction. Matthew Bolton's "Spellbound by the Image": A Reflective Response to Lawrence Durrell's Alexandria Quartet. Beatrice Skordili's The Author and the Demiurge: Gnostic Dualism in The Alexandria Quartet. Jack Stewart's Objects in Space and Time: Metonymy in Durrell's Island Books. Paul H Lorenz's Quantum Mechanics and the Shape of Fiction:"Non-Locality" in the Avignon Quincunx. Mile Diboll's Durrell's Alexandria Quartet in its Egyptian Contexts. James Gifford's Oil for the Saint; Return to Corfu . Here's Gifford with Stephen Osadetz in Gnosticism in Lawrence Durrell's Monsieur: New Textual Evidence for Source Materials. Jeremy Robinson compares DH Lawrence and Durrell. Finally, here's Mark D Hawthorne's The 'Alexandra Quartet': the homosexual as teacher/guide. A list of more critical works.

A long interview in French on French radio. An interview in the Paris Review, 1959. The National Library of Australia has a holding of Durrell interview transcripts. Here's both a transcript and MP3 audio file of a 1986 Durrell interview with Lyn Goldman. This is not an interview, but you can hear Durrell horsing around with Alfred Perles and a microphone at UBUWEB.

First, some general bibliographical listings: LD Archive; Booksfactory; Alibris; Abebooks; and the bibliographic checklist. His plays: Doollee. Full text for some Durrell poems: at Poemhunter; at Oldpoetry; Nemea.

Excerpt from Bitter Lemons. A Penguin reader's guide to Justine.
The most crucial document is A Private Correspondence, covering the first letters exhanged between the two men to Miller's death: publication variations; a NY Times review; TIME review; reference to a radio dramatization of the letters.

The two men also collaborated on Art & Outrage: publ variations. Durrell edited and wrote the intro to The Henry Miller Reader. Miller wrote on essay called "The Durrell of the Black Book Days", in The World Of Lawrence Durrell. Durrell wrote the intro to The Mind and Art of Henry Miller as well as to Dear Dear Brenda, with a contribution as well to Happy Rock: A Book About Henry Miller. A quote by Durrell on Miller, from Henry's daughter's website.

References to letters between Miller and Durrell may be found in the PBA Gallery listings: 1, 2, 3. References to Durrell speaking on Pacficia Radio in honour of Henry's 8oth birthday.

Jeremy Robinson discusses the relationship between Durrell and Miller.
BBC programs written by Durrell. Quotations on BrainyQuote. Items available on Ebay. Member of the 1973 Cannes jury. His astrological chart. Nigel Anthony reading from Balthazar. The documentary, Spirit of Place: Lawrence Durrell's Greece. A tribute, with photo of a plaque erected at his former home in Greece. Buy yourself a Greek villa overlooking the house. Five photographs in the National Portrait Gallery.

And don't forget to search this blog for "Lawrence Durrell" in the bar up top.


Anonymous Anonymous said...


Frequently, The International Lawrence Durrell Society's conference will also have papers on Miller, Nin, and others in Durrell's orbit.

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Interesting and very useful post!

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I have 4 books of him, just 4 because I couldn't find more and they are very expensive now :S
He was a great writer, it's to sad he died.
Nice post

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