UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Characters and the City Quillevere, Hanne Guldberg 1965

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C H A R A C T E R S A N D THE C I T Y IN THE A I — X A N D R I A Q U A R T E T by H A N N E Q U I I I _ V E R E B.A., The University of British Columbia, 1959 AT H E S I S S U B M T T E D IN P A R T I A L F U I ^ I I M E N T O F THE R E Q U I R E M E N T S F O R THE D E G R E E O F M A S T E R O F A R T S in the D e p a r t m e n t of English  W e accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard  THE UNnERSITI O FB R I T I S H C O L U M B I A April 1965  In presenting  t h i s t h e s i s i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of  the requirements for an advanced degree at the U n i v e r s i t y of • B r i t i s h Columbia,, I agree that a v a i l a b l e f o r reference  and  the L i b r a r y s h a l l make i t f r e e l y  study..  I f u r t h e r agree that  per-  m i s s i o n f o r extensive copying of t h i s t h e s i s f o r s c h o l a r l y purposes may  be granted by the Head of my Department or  his representatives.  I t i s understood that copying or p u b l i -  c a t i o n of t h i s t h e s i s for f i n a n c i a l gain s h a l l not without my  written  permission*  fAty {/[ft  Department of  The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, Vancouver 8, Canada Date  (^XJ  SiO  by  be  allowed  ABSTRACT  The A l e x a n d r i a Q u a r t e t b y L a w r e n c e  Durrell  has r e c e i v e d g r e a t n o t i c e f r o m c r i t i c s b o t h as a d i s t i n g u i s h e d work o f a r t i n i t s own r i g h t a n d a s an i n d i c a t i o n o f a new d e v e l o p m e n t temporary l i t e r a t u r e .  i n con-  P a r t i c u l a r i n t e r e s t has been  shown i n D u r r e l l ' s t e c h n i q u e s o f c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n and i n h i s h a n d l i n g o f p o i n t o f v i e w i n t h e s e n o v e l s . My o b j e c t h a s b e e n t o a n a l y z e D u r r e l l s 1  concept o f  t h e p s y c h e a n d t o show how i t g i v e s r i s e t o h i s t e c h n i q u e s o f c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n and t o h i s h a n d l i n g o f point of view.  I n a n a l y z i n g D u r r e l l ' s concept of the  p s y c h e , I have t r i e d  t o show how t h i s  concept has been  i n f l u e n c e d b y t h e w r i t i n g s o f t h e German and d o c t o r , G e o r g G r o d d e c k ,  psychologist  and b y t h e c o n c e p t o f r e -  l a t i v i t y w h i c h h a s h a d so p r o f o u n d a n i n f l u e n c e n o t o n l y on t h e p h y s i c a l s c i e n c e s b u t on many o t h e r a r e a s o f human t h o u g h t .  Durrell believes that this  concept  o f r e l a t i v i t y must n e c e s s a r i l y a l t e r our v i e w o f t h e n a t u r e o f t h e human p s y c h e and t h a t a s a r e s u l t t h e t r a d i t i o n a l v i e w of t h e p s y c h e as a s e p a r a t e and s t a b l e e n t i t y e x i s t i n g d i s t i n c t f r o m t h e r e s t o f t h e w o r l d and  s u b j e c t i n t h e main t o t h e d i c t a t e s o f a c o n s c i o u s p e r s o n a l w i l l must b e s u p e r c e d e d .  The v i e w o f t h e  human p s y c h e p r e s e n t e d i n The A l e x a n d r i a Q u a r t e t i s strikingly  l i k e t h a t o f Groddeck, and throughout t h e  novels Durrell  s t r e s s e s t h e supreme i m p o r t a n c e o f t h e  powers o f t h e i m a g i n a t i o n , powers which Groddeck i d e n t i f i e d w i t h t h e I t a n d w h i c h b o t h he a n d D u r r e l l c o n s i d e r a s a l i e n t o t h e ego a n d i n h i b i t e d b y man's ratiocinative faculty.  But the i d e a o f f r e e w i l l has  t r a d i t i o n a l l y been l i n k e d w i t h t h e ego; w i l l thought of as a conscious f u n c t i o n .  has been  To a n y o n e who r e -  t a i n s t h i s view o f the w i l l , D u r r e l l ' s characters i n e v i t a b l y a p p e a r a s w i l l l e s s p e o p l e whose l i v e s a r e in  e v e r y i n s t a n c e d i r e c t e d by f o r c e s beyond t h e i r  trol.  con-  My i n i t i a l s t u d y o f D u r r e l l ' s i m a g e r y ( s e e  Chapter I I ) s u b s t a n t i a t e s t h i s  claim.  However, a f u r -  t h e r a n a l y s i s o f D u r r e l l ' s i m a g e r y l e a d s one t o m o d i f y t h i s view o f the characters. D u r r e l l conceives of w i l l  I t becomes a p p a r e n t  that  not as a conscious f u n c t i o n  i n man b u t a s a f u n c t i o n o f t h e i m a g i n a t i v e p o w e r s t h a t b e l o n g t o man's u n c o n s c i o u s b e i n g .  F r e e d o m t h e n becomes  a m a t t e r o f t h e s u b j e c t i o n o f t h e ego t o t h e i m a g i n a t i v e life,  a n d what l o o k s i n i t i a l l y l i k e  a deterministic  a c c o u n t o f human l i f e i s a c t u a l l y a n a c c o u n t o f how t h e  human b e i n g may, a n d i n some c a s e s f r e e d o m by a f u l l  submission  powers o f t h e i m a g i n a t i o n . clearly  does, a c h i e v e  of conscious  self tothe  Such s u b m i s s i o n  shown i n t h e l i v e s o f t h o s e  a r t i s t h o o d and most n o t a b l y i n t h e l i f e  The  role of the C i t y i s important  of Darley.  i n thecharacteriza-  D u r r e l l d e p i c t s the nature o f  t h e human p s y c h e b y s h o w i n g t h e n e c e s s a r y able c o n f l i c t  in  strive  b e c a u s e i n v a r i o u s ways i t r e p r e s e n t s t h e p o w e r s  of the imagination.  ing  i s most  c h a r a c t e r s who  for  tion,  true  how t h i s  and i n e v i t -  b e t w e e n e g o a n d i m a g i n a t i o n a n d b y showconflict  i m a g i n a t i v e power.  three d i s t i n c t  can and s h o u l d  l e a d t o an i n c r e a s e  In doing t h i s D u r r e l l  presents  but r e l a t e d views o f h i s characters:  t h e v i e w o f m a n - w i t h i n - L a r g e r Man, t h e v i e w o f t h e C i t y as i d e n t i c a l  w i t h Groddeck's I t and o f t h e c h a r a c t e r s  as egos, and t h e v i e w o f t h e C i t y a s t h e o n l y acter i n the Quartet.  char-  This l a s t view of the characters  may p r o v e t o be D u r r e l l ' s most n o t a b l e t e c h n i c a l ment i n t h e s e n o v e l s , f o r h e r e , e l a b o r a t e "prism-sightedness,"^ psyche i n unusual  achieve-  with h i s technique of he p r e s e n t s  d e p t h and d e t a i l .  t h e human  TABLE  Chapter I :  OF  CONTENTS  Introduction Durrell's idea of the nature of the psyche *  C h a p t e r I I : An i n i t i a l v i e w o f D u r r e l l ' s c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n , b a s e d on h i s i m a g e r y Animal imagery I m a g e r y o f i n s e c t s a n d webs Images e x p r e s s i n g p a s s i v i t y a n d h e l p l e s s n e s s i n human b e i n g s Images f r o m p l a y i n g c a r d s , c h e s s , a n d t h e drama C h a p t e r I I I : T h e i n t e r p e n e t r a t i o n o f t h e human a n d the n a t u r a l worlds C h a p t e r I V : Two c o n c e p t s o f c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n i n t h e Quartet The m a n - w i t h i n - L a r g e r Man  concept  The c o n c e p t o f t h e C i t y a s G r o d d e c k s I t and o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l c h a r a c t e r s as egos T  C h a p t e r V:  A t h i r d concept o f c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n i n t h e Q u a r t e t : The C i t y a s t h e o n l y character 1 Summary a n d c o n c l u s i o n  "The s o r t o f p a t t e r n we make s h o u l d b e o f i n t e r e s t t o someone; o r i s i t j u s t a  meaningless  display o f coloured f i r e w o r k s , the actions of human b e i n g s o r o f a s e t o f d u s t y p u p p e t s  which  c o u l d be hung up i n t h e c o r n e r o f a w r i t e r ' s mind?"  (from  Clea)  When B a r l e y , t h e s t r u g g l i n g n o v e l i s t and n a r r a t o r o f The A l e x a n d r i a Q u a r t e t ,  reveals t o Clea  t h a t he i s c o n s i d e r i n g w r i t i n g a book o f c r i t i c i s m , she  s l a p s him f u l l  a powerful  a c r o s s t h e mouth.  That i n i t s e l f i s  d e t e r r e n t t o anyone approaching  w i t h i n t e n t t o analyze and, i f p o s s i b l e , of  t h e s t r a n d s o f imagery and thought  a b l e work.  clarify  i n this  some  remark-  However, I t a k e c o u r a g e f r o m t h e f a c t  D u r r e l l h i m s e l f has seen f i t t o devote to  the Quartet  time and  t h e a p p r a i s a l and e v a l u a t i o n o f o t h e r  that energy  people's  w r i t i n g s , n o t a b l y i n h i s Key t o M o d e r n P o e t r y w h i c h i s in  itself,  s u r e l y , p r o o f t h a t such e n d e a v o u r i s on  occasion worthwhile. to  literature  To be s u r e , t h e c r i t i c a l  i s a t most a " s e c o n d  i d e a l being a d i r e c t apprehension ness and i n t u i t i o n .  b e s t " approach, t h e compounded o f s e n s u o u s -  ("It i s a great p i t y " ,  says  D u r r e l l i n K e y t o M o d e r n P o e t r y , " t h a t we c a n n o t poems l i k e approach  scents  . ..."-M  has i t s uses:  whole.-  inhale  Nevertheless, the c r i t i c a l  i t e n a b l e s one a r b i t r a r i l y t o  a r r e s t t h e f l u x o f an a r t i s t i c upon t h e s t i l l  approach  experience and eoncentrate  image, t h e d e t a i l s t h a t go t o m a k i n g t h e  The a t t e m p t  t o a r r i v e a t a conceptual syntax i s  b o t h u s e f u l a n d c o n s t r u c t i v e when i t i s a s u p p l e m e n t t o  2  the d i r e c t experience  o f t h e work o f a r t , r a t h e r  t h e s u b s t i t u t e f o r such  than  experience.  W e l l t h e n , where i s one t o b e g i n w i t h The Alexandria Quartet?  As I have c h o s e n t o d e a l w i t h t h e  p r e s e n t a t i o n o f c h a r a c t e r i n t h e s e n o v e l s , i t seems reasonable  t o b e g i n w i t h one o f t h e i d e a s t h a t  e m p h a s i z e s most i n K e y t o M o d e r n P o e t r y when of t h e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y modern i n today's t h e c o n t e m p o r a r y i d e a o f t h e psyche'. cusses  this at length, relating  Durrell  speaking literature*  Durrell  dis-  i t t o t h e concept  of  r e l a t i v i t y w h i c h i s coming t o a f f e c t n o t o n l y t h e p h y s i c a l sciences but a l l areas The  o f contemporary  thought.  w r i t e r A r n a u t i , a c h a r a c t e r i n v e n t e d by D u r r e l l and  much q u o t e d ,  t h o u g h he n e v e r a c t u a l l y a p p e a r s i n t h e  Quartet, puts  i t most  succinctly:  "For t h e w r i t e r people as p s y c h o l o g i e s a r e finished. The c o n t e m p o r a r y p s y c h e h a s e x ploded l i k e a soap-bubble under t h e i n v e s t i g a t i o n s o f t h e m y s t a g o g u e s . What now remains t o the w r i t e r ? ^ That i s , the i d e a of p e r s o n a l i t y as a d i s t i n c t and stable entity,  s u b j e c t i n t h e main t o t h e d i c t a t e s o f  a conscious personal w i l l — t h i s i f n o t d i s p r o v e d by p s y c h o l o g y Freud.  That,  a t any r a t e ,  i d e a h a s been  questioned  as i t has developed  i s Durrell's conviction.  since  3  D u r r e l l has t h a t i n f l u e n c e d him it  i s not  i n d i c a t e d the  i n forming  source  t h i s view of the  doctor,  a brilliant  psychoanalysis  Georg Groddeck  d o c t o r who  i n h i s own  (1S66-1934).  made much u s e  of  work o f h e a l i n g , r e m a i n e d  throughout h i s career outside the mainstream of p r a c t i c e b a s e d , a s t h a t p r a c t i c e was, to  study  upon a  o f the e x t e r n a l causes of d i s e a s e .  the philosophy has  "philosophy"  i s not  the  strict  devotion i t is  based  Certainly his i s a  when  philosophy  c o n c e r n f o r c o m p l e t e n e s s and  logical  inter-dependence of p a r t s w i t h i n the whole t h a t a s s o c i a t e s with p h i l o s o p h i c a l systems. deep and  the  one  Groddeck had  abiding d i s t r u s t of a l l systematizing--a  t r u s t D u r r e l l seems t o s h a r e . alarming  He was  ease w i t h which l i v i n g  t h o u g h t c a n be  so.  the c h i e f reason f o r h i s having  to the  re-  dogma  He h i m s e l f r e f u s e d  t i d y h i s i d e a s i n t o a " s y s t e m " and d i s c i p l e s f r o m t r y i n g t o do  dis-  o b s t a c l e t o t h e man  search of f u r t h e r understanding.  a  a l w a y s aware o f  duced t o a system of deadening concepts, w h i c h t h e n becomes a f o r m i d a b l e  that  perhaps  q u i t e t h e r i g h t word t o u s e  d e a l i n g w i t h Groddeck.  medical  Now  u p o n w h i c h t h a t p r a c t i c e was  so much i n t e r e s t e d D u r r e l l — t h o u g h  without  psyche:  so much J u n g a s t h e l i t t l e - k n o w n German  p s y c h o l o g i s t and T h i s man,  clearly  discouraged  in to  would-be  Perhaps r i g h t here i s been so l o n g  neglected  4  as a t h i n k e r w i t h  something o f importance t o s a y .  Those o f Groddeck's English, print, of  books t h a t have appeared i n  some i n a b r i d g e d f o r m , h a v e l o n g b e e n o u t o f  except f o rt h e l i m i t e d  c i r c u l a t i o n o f The Book  t h e I t among m e d i c a l s t u d e n t s , a n d one w o n d e r s how  D u r r e l l came a c r o s s h i m i n t h e f i r s t  place.  B u t come  a c r o s s h i m he d i d , a n d was s o much i m p r e s s e d b y w h a t he f o u n d t h a t he o n c e d i d a c r i t i c a l for  Horizon's  study o f Groddeck  "Men o f G e n i u s " s e r i e s and d e v o t e d a n  e n t i r e c h a p t e r i n h i s own K e y t o M o d e r n P o e t r y t o a p r e s e n t a t i o n o f Groddeck's  i d e a s a s b e i n g among t h e  most d i s t i n c t l y modern a n d e n l i g h t e n i n g o f c o n t e m porary thought. in  This i s not t o say that D u r r e l l  sees  G r o d d e c k a man who b r e a k s w i t h a l l p r e v i o u s t h i n k i n g .  On t h e c o n t r a r y , D u r r e l l f i n d s h i m " a p h i l o s o p h e r whose It-concept i s positively and  a n c i e n t Greek i n i t s c l a r i t y  d e p t h " ^ a n d he l i n k s h i m w i t h L a o - t s e a n d t h e  t e a c h i n g s o f a n c i e n t Taoism,  b u t he s e e s i n G r o d d e c k ' s  p h i l o s o p h y an i n v i g o r a t i n g l i b e r a t i o n f r o m t h e r a t i o n a l , c a u s a l i t y - b a s e d t h i n k i n g which has dominated  i n the  w e s t e r n w o r l d s i n c e D e s c a r t e s and which, D u r r e l l believes,  has succeeded  o n l y i n l e a d i n g w e s t e r n man  a p h i l o s o p h i c dead-end.  Hence D u r r e l l ' s r e l a t i v e  into dis-  r e g a r d o f F r e u d , whom he r e g a r d s a s h e a r k e n i n g b a c k t o  5  the  nineteenth  the  ego,  the  century  conscious  p a r t o f a s t a b l e and For  and  Darwin i n h i s emphasis  I , as b e i n g  separate  a vital  e n t i t y , the  and  active  total  psyche.  D u r r e l l t h i s view of the psyche, d e s p i t e the  i n s i g h t s i t has c a u s e b a s e d on i s what he  a f f o r d e d modern man,  on  i s limited  deep be-  "the n a t u r a l b e l i e f i n c a u s a l i t y . %  says i n h i s a r t i c l e  in  Here  Horizon:  The s c i e n c e s o f t h e day h a v e d e v o t e d a l m o s t the whole of t h e i r i n t e r e s t t o the o u t w a r d c a u s e ; t h e y h a v e n o t as y e t s u c c e e d e d i n escaping from the p h i l o s o p h i c impasse c r e a t e d by t h e n a t u r a l b e l i e f i n c a u s a l i t y , and s i d e by s i d e w i t h t h i s a b e l i e f i n t h e ego as b e i n g endowed w i t h f r e e - w i l l . In a l l t h e m a r v e l l o u s p a g e s o f F r e u d we f e e l t h e a n a l y t i c a l i n t e l l e c t pursuing i t s c h a i n of c a u s e — a n d e f f e c t ; i f o n l y t h e l a s t l i n k can be e s t a b l i s h e d , t h e w h o l e p a t t e r n w i l l be made clear. Yet f o r Groddeck such a p r o p o s i t i o n was f a l s e ..... What, t h e n , In h i s c r i t i c a l  a r e G r o d d e c k ' s i d e a s on  so The  much a s i d e , and c l e a r an  are the  essential ideas,  Quartet,  c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n of  i t seems p r o f i t a b l e t o  t h e m i n some d e t a i l a t t h i s  terms of the  conscious  examine  point.  I n c o n t r a s t t o F r e u d who in  leav-  a s t h e s e a r e t h e i d e a s w h i c h show  i n f l u e n c e upon the  Alexandria  subject?  d i s c u s s i o n s of the p s y c h o l o g i s t , D u r r e l l  t o u c h e s on what t o h i m ing  this  and  thought of the  psyche  u n c o n s c i o u s m i n d and  the  6  r e l a t i o n s h i p between t h e s e two, Groddeck  emphasized  s o m e t h i n g much more i n c l u s i v e and f a r - r e a c h i n g , unknown s o m e t h i n g t o w h i c h he g a v e t h e most name he c o u l d f i n d , t h e  an  neutral  "It":  The sum t o t a l o f an i n d i v i d u a l human b e i n g , p h y s i c a l , m e n t a l , and s p i r i t u a l , t h e organism w i t h a l l i t s f o r c e s , the microcosmos, t h e u n i v e r s e w h i c h i s a man, I c o n c e i v e o f a s a s e l f unknown and f o r e v e r u n k n o w a b l e , and I c a l l t h i s t h e " I t " a s t h e most i n d e f i n i t e term a v a i l a b l e without e i t h e r emotional or intellectual associations. The I t - h y p o t h e s i s I r e g a r d n o t a s a t r u t h — f o r what do any o f u s know a b o u t t r u t h ? — b u t a s a u s e f u l t o o l i n w o r k and i n l i f e ; i t h a s s t o o d t h e t e s t of y e a r s o f m e d i c a l work a n d e x p e r i m e n t a n d so f a r n o t h i n g h a s h a p p e n e d w h i c h w o u l d l e a d me t o a b a n d o n i t o r e v e n t o m o d i f y i t i n any e s s e n t i a l degree. I assume t h a t man i s a h i m a t e d b y t h e I t w h i c h d i r e c t s what he d o e s and what he g o e s t h r o u g h , and t h a t t h e a s s e r t i o n " I l i v e " o n l y e x p r e s s e s 'a s m a l l and s u p e r f i c i a l part of the t o t a l experience " I am l i v e d b y t h e I t " ....<Thus, w h i l e F r e u d ' s emphasis  on t h e ego as t h e  e s s e n t i a l t h i n g i n p s y c h o l o g y e n a b l e d him t o t h i n k the  processes of l i f e  a s b e i n g t o some e x t e n t w i t h i n  c o n t r o l of t h e c o n s c i o u s mind, was  t h e ego  The  ego,  i n Groddeck's  the  f o r Groddeck  m e r e l y a f u n c t i o n o f t h e unknown, u n k n o w a b l e ,  powerful I t .  of  v i e w , was  all-  a sort  mask t h a t t h e I t assumed i n o r d e r t o c o n v i n c e man's intellect  o f i t s own  w o r t h and t o e n a b l e man  to  orient  of  7  himself i n t e l l e c t u a l l y  i n a w o r l d w h i c h must t h e n  s e e n a s " t a i l o r e d " t o man's p a r t i c u l a r  specifications.  That i s , i t i s an i l l u s i o n t o suppose t h a t t h e and  e n t i t i e s p e r c e i v e d by t h e i n t e l l e c t h a v e  They a r e t h e  t a s i e s — l a r g e l y unrecognized—of  the conscious  been supported  by  laws  any  o b j e c t i v e e x i s t e n c e or v a l i d i t y .  T h a t t h i s i s so h a s now  be  fanself.  science,  says  Durrell: Another aspect of the R e l a t i v i t y t h e o r y i s t h e manner i n w h i c h i t s i d e t r a c k s c a u s a l i t y . Our b e l i e f i n c a u s a l i t y i s a v e r y s t r o n g l y g r o u n d e d one .... Y e t t h e new t h e o r y o f t h e p h y s i c i s t s i n v i t e s us t o m o d i f y t h i s c o n c e p t i o n i f not a c t u a l l y to question i t s v a l i dity. So f a r a s phenomena a r e c o n c e r n e d , we a r e t o l d , t h e u n i f o r m i t y o f n a t u r e d i s a p pears. The P r i n c i p l e o f I n d e t e r m i n a c y , a s i t i s c a l l e d , i s f o u n d e d upon t h e t h e o r y t h a t we c a n n o t o b s e r v e t h e c o u r s e o f n a t u r e w i t h out d i s t u r b i n g i t . T h i s i s t h e c o m p l e t e opp o s i t e o f t h e s t r i c t d e t e r m i n i s m which has r e i g n e d i n s c i e n c e up t o now: a n d t h i s i s one o f t h e g r e a t r e v o l u t i o n s i n t h o u g h t w h i c h c h a r a c t e r i z e t h e age we a r e t h i n k i n g about Again, U n d e r t h e t e r m s o f t h e new i d e a a p r e c i s e k n o w l e d g e o f t h e o u t e r w o r l d becomes an i m possibility. T h i s i s b e c a u s e we and t h e o u t e r w o r l d ( s u b j e c t and o b j e c t ) c o n s t i t u t e a w h o l e . I f we a r e p a r t o f a u n i t y we c a n no l o n g e r objectivize i t successfully. And  where does t h i s l e a v e t h e psyche?  One  may  8  indeed  agree with Arnauti  a s o a p - b u b b l e " and at a l l i t w i l l D u r r e l l has by  t h a t i t has  t h a t i f we  h a v e t o be  are  "exploded  t o use  the  concept  dealt with i n another  c h o s e n t o d e a l w i t h i t i n t h e way  Groddeck, but  before  I go  on  to d i s c u s s the  t o quote Groddeck once more, a t  Here i s h i s d e s c r i p t i o n of the I t a s he  o r i g i n and  way.  suggested  niques of c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n t h a t a r i s e from t h a t I would l i k e  like  techchoice,  length.  nature  of  the  sees i t : Some moment o f b e g i n n i n g must be s u p p o s e d f o r t h i s h y p o t h e t i c a l I t , and f o r my own p u r p o s e s I q u i t e a r b i t r a r i l y suppose i t to s t a r t w i t h f e r t i l i z a t i o n ... and I assume t h a t t h e I t comes t o an end w i t h t h e d e a t h o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l ... Now the h y p o t h e t i c a l I - u n i t , whose o r i g i n we h a v e placed at f e r t i l i z a t i o n , contains w i t h i n i t s e l f two I t - u n i t s , a m a l e and a f e m a l e ... I t i s p e r h a p s n e c e s s a r y h e r e t o comment upon t h e e x t e n t of our i g n o r a n c e c o n c e r n i n g t h e f u r t h e r development of the f e r t i l i z e d ovule. For my p u r p o s e s i t i s s u f f i c i e n t t o s a y t h a t a f t e r f e r t i l i z a t i o n t h e egg d i v i d e s i n t o two s e p a r a t e b e i n g s , two c e l l s a s s c i e n c e p r e f e r s t o c a l l them. The two t h e n d i v i d e a g a i n i n t o f o u r , i n t o e i g h t , i n t o s i x t e e n and so on, u n t i l f i n a l l y t h e r e comes t o be what we commonly d e s i g n a t e a human b e i n g ... Now i n t h e f e r t i l i z e d o v u l e , m i n u t e as i t i s , t h e r e must be s o m e t h i n g o r o t h e r — t h e I t , we h a v e assumed?— which i s able to take charge of t h i s multitudinous d i v i d i n g into c e l l s , to g i v e them a l l d i s t i n c t i v e f o r m s and f u n c t i o n s , t o i n d u c e them t o g r o u p t h e m s e l v e s a s s k i n , bones, eyes, ears, b r a i n , e t c . What becomes o f t h e o r i g i n a l I t i n t h e moment o f d i v i s i o n ? I t must o b v i o u s l y i m p a r t i t s p o w e r s t o t h e c e l l s  9  i n t o w h i c h i t d i v i d e s , s i n c e we know t h a t e a c h o f them i s a b l e t o e x i s t and r e - d i v i d e i n d e p e n d e n t l y o f t h e o t h e r ... I t must n o t be f o r g o t t e n t h a t t h e b r a i n , and t h e r e f o r e t h e i n t e l l e c t , i s i t s e l f c r e a t e d by t h e I t ... L o n g b e f o r e t h e b r a i n comes i n t o e x i s t e n c e t h e I t o f man i s a l r e a d y a c t i v e and " t h i n k i n g " w i t h o u t t h e b r a i n , s i n c e i t must f i r s t c o n s t r u c t t h e b r a i n b e f o r e i t can use i t t o t h i n k w i t h . This i s a fundam e n t a l p o i n t and one we a r e i n c l i n e d t o i g n o r e or f o r g e t . I n t h e a s s u m p t i o n t h a t one t h i n k s o n l y w i t h t h e b r a i n i s t o be f o u n d t h e o r i g i n o f a t h o u s a n d a n d one a b s u r d i t i e s , t h e o r i g i n a l s o o f many v a l u a b l e d i s c o v e r i e s and i n v e n t i o n s , much t h a t a d o r n s l i f e and much t h a t makes i t u g l y ... O v e r and a g a i n s t t h e I t t h e r e s t a n d s t h e ego, t h e I , w h i c h I t a k e t o be m e r e l y t h e t o o l o f t h e I t , b u t w h i c h we a r e f o r c e d by n a t u r e t o r e g a r d as t h e I t ' s m a s t e r ; w h a t e v e r we say i n t h e o r y t h e r e r e m a i n s a l w a y s f o r u s men t h e f i n a l v e r d i c t " I am I " ... We c a n n o t g e t away f r o m i t , and even w h i l e I a s s e r t Hie p r o p o s i t i o n i s f a l s e I am o b l i g e d t o a c t as i f i t w e r e t r u e . Y e t I am, by no means, I , b u t o n l y a c o n t i n u o u s l y c h a n g i n g f o r m i n w h i c h my " I t " d i s p l a y s i t s e l f , a n d t h e " I " f e e l i n g i s j u s t one o f i t s ways o f d e c e i v i n g t h e c o n s c i o u s m i n d and m a k i n g i t a pliant tool 8 D u r r e l l a t one sum,  a t any  given time,  p o i n t d e f i n e s c u l t u r e as of a l l the  to i n t e r p r e t the universe  e f f o r t s man  about him".^  s u c h a f o r m a s i t i s a v a i l a b l e t o man,  "the  i s making  Truth then, i s a matter  in of  one can 'how,  a t any  the u n i v e r s e  one  time,^most s a t i s f a c t o r i l y i n t e r p r e t s  t o himseiyAs we  have seen, the  traditional  c o n c e p t o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l ego no l o n g e r s a t i s f i e s D u r r e l l and t h u s , i n h i s v i e w , h a s no i m p o r t a n t p a r t i n modern  10  culture.  B u t t h e moment we  grave problems  arise.  o f f r e e - w i l l and  rooted i n this t r a d i t i o n a l  What h a p p e n s t o t h e s e c o n c e p t s i f we Descartes' f i r s t the I t " ?  Do  this,  F o r a r e n o t our c o n c e p t s of  m o r a l i t y , o f g o o d and e v i l , ibility,  a g r e e w i t h D u r r e l l on  respons-  c o n c e p t o f t h e ego? substitute for  premise a statement l i k e  " I am l i v e d  t h e y n o t d i s a p p e a r , a n d a r e we  not  by  left  w i t h t h e p o r t r a i t o f an A l e x a n d r i a t h a t " l i v e s " i t s characters?  I t i s e a s y enough t o f i n d p a s s a g e s i n w h i c h  D a ^ l e y s a y s a s much: I s e e a l l o f us n o t a s men and women any l o n g e r , i d e n t i t i e s s w o l l e n w i t h t h e i r a c t s o f f o r g e t f u l n e s s , f o l l i e s , and d e c e i t s — b u t a s b e i n g s u n c o n s c i o u s l y made p a r t o f p l a c e , b u r i e d t o t h e w a i s t among t h e r u i n s o f a s i n g l e c i t y , s t e e p e d i n i t s v a l u e s .... Again, We a r e t h e c h i l d r e n o f o u r l a n d s c a p e ; i t d i c t a t e s b e h a v i o u r and even t h o u g h t i n t h e m e a s u r e t o w h i c h we a r e r e s p o n s i v e t o ^'11 The  r e a c t i o n o f c r i t i c s t o t h i s v i e w o f human  c h a r a c t e r has been m i x e d ,  though few o f t h e c r i t i c s  whose 12  v i e w s a r e p r e s e n t e d i n The W o r l d o f L a w r e n c e have r e a l l y The  o n e s who  examined  Durrell  Durrell's characterization  h a v e d w e l t m o s t on i t ,  closely.  e s t a b l i s h e d men  like  Bonamy D o b r e e and marked u n e a s i n e s s ,  Lionel Trilling,  have r e a c t e d  i f not w i t h condemnation, t o  p r e s e n t a t i o n of c h a r a c t e r , w h i l e at the p r a i s i n g h i s obvious t a l e n t .  and  For L i o n e l T r i l l i n g ,  an  early review  were " a s p e c t s "  o f J u s t i n e and  Quartet  Quartet  Having i n d i c a t e d  Balthazar that  there  o f D u r r e l l ' s work w i t h w h i c h he was  q u i t e a t ease, T r i l l i n g g o e s on t o s a y  the  s p e c u l a t i o n about a p o s s i b l e  change i n t h e f u n c t i o n o f t h e n o v e l . in  Durrell'  same t i m e  absence of i n d i v i d u a l w i l l as a f o r c e i n t h e b r i n g s some m i s g i v i n g s  with  i n a l a t e r review  of the  not  entire  j u s t what i t i s t h a t t r o u b l e s  him  Now t h a t I h a v e r e a d t h e t h i r d and a f o u r t h o f w h a t Mr. D u r r e l l c a l l s t h e Alexandria Quartet. Mountolive published e a r l i e r t h i s y e a r and t h e r e c e n t C l e a , I know what d i s q u i e t e d me. I t i s t h a t a l l the n o v e l s , and t h e Q u a r t e t a s a w h o l e , s t a n d i n a p e c u l i a r negative r e l a t i o n to the w i l l . Having i d e n t i f i e d the d i s t u r b i n g element, I must a d m i t t h a t I c a n n o t p u t i t f o r w a r d a s an a e s t h e t i c f a u l t . Who w o u l d u n d e r t a k e t o s a y t h a t t h e f a c u l t y o f t h e w i l l s h o u l d be m a n i f e s t i n any g i v e n n o v e l t o t h i s o r t h a t e x t e n t , o r t h a t i t must be j u d g e d t o h a v e one o r a n o t h e r d e g r e e o f i m p o r t a n c e i n human l i f e ? Y e t t h e h i s t o r y o f t h e n o v e l shows i t t o be t h e g e n r e w h i c h i s c h a r a c t e r i z e d by i t s p r e o c c u p a t i o n w i t h t h e w i l l , and we n a t u r a l l y r e s p o n d w i t h some s u r p r i s e o r u n e a s i n e s s when t h e t r a d i t i o n a l t e n d e n c y d o e s n o t show i t s e l f , or i s reversed. Trilling  g o e s on t o o b s e r v e t h a t s u c h w i l l  come t o e x p e c t i n t h e n o v e l  as we  i s , i f i t appears i n  have The  Alexandria  Quartet,  of the characters, place  i n these  an a t t r i b u t e o f t h e c i t y i t s e l f , n o t a n d t h a t m o r a l i t y a s s u c h h a s no  novels:  I t i s n o t ... t h a t t h e human v i r t u e s t h a t we know h a v e no e x i s t e n c e a n d no a p p e a l . Loya l t y , devotion, tenderness, concern f o r t h e welfare o f others are, indeed, d i s p l a y e d i n a n o t a b l e way by a l l t h e c h a r a c t e r s o f t h e Q u a r t e t . " M o r a l " i s a w o r d t h a t w o u l d be beyond t h e i r powers o f u t t e r a n c e , p e r h a p s beyond Mr. D u r r e l l ' s , y e t t h e i r l i v e s a r e t o u c h e d b y c o n s i d e r a t i o n s o f goodness a t every p o i n t ; what i s l a c k i n g i s t h e b i n d i n g f o r c e o f t h e w i l l which keeps steady t h e o b j e c t s o f t h e i r d e s i r e , and c r e a t e s t h e i d e a o f permanence and i n t e n t i o n . T h i s a c c o u n t s f o r t h e ease and g r a c e o f t h e i r e x i s t e n c e , f o r t h e i r n e v e r b e i n g t o r n b e t w e e n t w o p o s s i b l e ways o f b e h a v i o r , f o r t h e i r never d i s p l a y i n g t h e harshn e s s o f m o r a l judgment o f each o t h e r . Two t h i n g s o n l y a r e o f undoubted v a l u e i n t h e Q u a r t e t and b o t h a r e beyond t h e r e a c h o f the moral w i l l . They a r e l o v e a n d a r t - - l o v e w h i c h m u s t f o l l o w i t s own l a w s a n d i s n o t t o be c o n s t r a i n e d ; a r t w h i c h s u b m i t s t o no r u l e or purpose, e x i s t i n g f o r i t s e l f . 14 So  i t i s that, despite his i n i t i a l  which i n c i d e n t a l l y are never q u i t e s t i l l e d Trilling  misgivings, i n h i s review,  c a n go on t o s a y t h a t , h o w e v e r u n o r t h o d o x h i s  methods, D u r r e l l has a c h i e v e d  something o f importance  w i t h h i s c h a r a c t e r s : he h a s made them o b j e c t s o f wonder ... l i k e C l e a a n d D a r l e y i n one o f t h e i r u n d e r w a t e r s c e n e s , f l a m i n g w i t h phosphorus. I find i t possible to s u p p o s e t h a t i f t h e y w e r e t o be t a k e n " i n t h e m s e l v e s , " a s we s a y , t h a t w o u l d n o t be s o  13  v e r y i n t e r e s t i n g , b u t i n t h e i r ambience o f A l e x a n d r i a a n d of" w o n d e r t h e y e x i s t w i t h a quite splendid intensity of l i v e . ^ On t h e w h o l e , T r i l l i n g seems t o h a v e come t o t e r m s g r a c e f u l l y w i t h t h e "new" a p p r o a c h o f D u r r e l l . Not  so Bonamy D o b r e e .  ing  t h e Quartet  perience,".^ to  0  the reader  W h i l e he a c k n o w l e d g e s t h a t  read-  i s a " s p l e n d i d l y c o l o r e d , v i v i d ex-  he a t t a c k s i t s e v e r e l y b e c a u s e i t o f f e r s no s e n s e o f v a l u e s , no h e l p t o w a r d s a  s o c i a l o r i e n t a t i o n , no c l a r i f i c a t i o n o f t h e p r o b l e m s inherent  i n t h e human c o n d i t i o n . F o r whom i n t h e s e v o l u m e s c a n we f e e l a d m i r a t i o n , o r even r e s p e c t ? Which o f t h e s e p e o p l e h a s a n y t r a c e o f n o b i l i t y , even of t h a t s e l f - d i s c i p l i n e without which t h e bonds o f s o c i e t y a r e l o o s e d ? Among t h e women, C l e a , i n h e r w i l l t o p a i n t , c l a i m s some r e g a r d , a n d L e i l a , t h e C o p t i c m a t e r f a m i l i a s , i n h e r care f o r Mountolive"s intellectual h e a l t h and i n h e r l o v e f o r h e r son Nessim, i s a p e r s o n one c a n r e s p e c t . Among t h o s e men who f i g u r e as main c h a r a c t e r s i t i s o n l y M o u n t o l i v e a n d N e s s i m t h a t we c a n a t a l l , i n some d e g r e e , a d m i r e ; a n d i t i s t o be n o t e d t h a t when M o u n t o l i v e met N e s s i m f o r t h e f i r s t t i m e he " i n s t a n t l y r e c o g n i z e d i n h i m a p e r s o n o f h i s own k i n d , a p e r s o n whose l i f e was a c o d e . " (M. 2 6 ) A p l e a s a n t m e e t i n g f o r u s a l s o , a f t e r companioning w i t h amoral people i n whom t h e r e i s no r e a l c e n t r a l c o n f l i c t , and so no r e a l l y d r a m a t i c b e i n g . , „  Dobree goes on,  14  . . . what i s i t t h a t Mr. D u r r e l l wants h i s n o v e l to do? What k i n d of v i s i o n of humanity does t h i s work provide? His o b j e c t i n w r i t i n g may be, as Pursewarden's was, " t o grow a p e r s o n a l i t y which i n the end enables man to transcend a r t , " (B. 141) but the o b j e c t of r e a d i n g , one imagines, i s not only to deepen and i l l u m i n e o n e ' s experience of l i v i n g , however v i c a r i o u s l y , but a l s o to a d j u s t , s t r e n g t h e n , and develop one's sense of v a l u e s , n o t a b l y , where the n o v e l i s concerned, o n e ' s s o c i a l v a l u e s , those which make s o c i e t y l i v a b l e . Mr. D u r r e l l has l a t e l y asked (Times L i t e r a r y Supplement, 27': May I960), "Can the a r t i s t o f f e r no c l u e s to l i v i n g ? A l a s , no; h i s p u b l i c does t h a t f o r h i m . " S u r e l y that i s too easy an evasion of r e s p o n s i b i l i t y . Not that one would wish f o r a p r e c h i s - p r e c h a s . . . but one asks f o r c l a r i f i c a t i o n . . . What problems are presented here? What sense of humanity do the c h a r a c t e r s . g i v e us? . . . what i s i t one can f e e l about them? On the whole, j u s t p i t y . . . . 18 While I d i s a g r e e deeply with Dobre'e's here,  criticism  I have quoted h i s views at l e n g t h because I t h i n k  they most f u l l y r e f l e c t the k i n d of mind which t h i n k s of the human b e i n g i n the t r a d i t i o n a l , as a r e l a t i v e l y  accepted way,  independent b e i n g endowed w i t h a con-  s c i o u s w i l l and some measure of freedom, and which sees t h a t freedom e x e r c i s e d most f u l l y the c r i t i c a l  i n moral c h o i c e .  judgment which he makes on the b a s i s  t h i s way of t h i n k i n g i s unjust i n the case of  That of  Durrell  and a m i s c o n s t r u c t i o n of The A l e x a n d r i a Quartet I hope to prove by a thorough a n a l y s i s of D u r r e l l ' s  character-  i z a t i o n and t h e p h i l o s o p h y  inherent w i t h i n i t .  My  approach t o the c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n i s through D u r r e l l ' s i m a g e r y , and as t h e r e i s a v a r i e t y o f k i n d s o f i m a g e r y w h i c h i n t h e end c a n be s e e n t o work t o g e t h e r f o r a common e f f e c t , in  turn.  I will  b e g i n by d i s c u s s i n g t h e s e  M o s t w i l l be s e e n t o c o n f i r m , a t l e a s t  initially,.the  opinions of T r i l l i n g  the characters of the Quartet their  kinds  own.  and Dobree t h a t  are without  a will  of  16  FOOTNOTES  ''"Lawrence D u r r e l l , Key t o Modern Poetry (London: Peter N e v i l l , 1952), p. 84. D u r r e l l , Justine (London: Faber and Faber, 1956), p. 113. Hereafter footnotes to t h i s work w i l l consist merely of J . plus the page reference. •^Durrell, Key to Modern Poetry, p. 3$9. 4-Durrell. "Studies i n Genius: VI Groddeck", Horizon, v o l . XVII Jjune 194B), p. 3& 8. t  ^Georg Groddeck, M.D., The World of Man as R e f l e c t e d i n A r t , i n Words and i n Disease (London: C.W. Daniel Co., 1934), p. 73. 6 D u r r e l l , Key to Modern Poetry, pp. 29-30. 7  I b i d . , p. 30.  % r o d d e c k , The World of Man, pp. 74-77. Q 7  D u r r e l l , Key to Modern Poetry, p. 1.  •^Lawrence D u r r e l l , Balthazar (London: Faber and Faber, 1956), p. 225. Hereafter footnotes to t h i s work w i l l consist merely of B. plus the page reference. 1 : L  J . p. 41.  H a r r y T. Moore, ed.. The World of Lawrence (New York: Dutton, 1964). 1 2  Durrell,  L i o n e l T r i l l i n g , "The Quartet: Two Reviews". The World of Lawrence D u r r e l l , Harry T. Moore, ed..(New York, Dutton, 1964), p. 57. 1 3  1 Z f  I b i d . , PP-  1 5  61-62.  T r i l l i n g , "Two Reviews", p. 65.  17  Bonamy Dobree, " D u r r e l l s Alexandrian S e r i e s " , The World of Lawrence D u r r e l l , Harry T. Moore ed. (New York, Dutton, 1964), p. 204. T  1 7  I b i d . , pp. 199-200. 'Ibid., p.  202-203.  CHAPTER I I  There i s a whole h o s t o f images showing characters  a s a n i m a l s and b i r d s .  t o v a r i o u s u s e s by D u r r e l l , thumbnail sketches fattish l i t t l e hats  from simple  of character  ("The E n g l i s h c o n s u l a r  means o f s u g g e s t i n g  simple  and wore  unforgettable, description  turkeys^,"),  t o i t s use as a  t h e p e r s o n a l i t y and t h e f u n c t i o n o f  Here D u r r e l l p r o v i d e s  o r two i m a g e s nature  ("Mrs. T e l f o r d wa;s a  group has t h e d i s c o n s o l a t e a i r  of a f a m i l y of moulting  relatively  but d e l i g h t f u l  d u c k who u s e d mauve l i p s t i c k  like pincushions*"and  characters.  This imagery i s p u t  c h a r a c t e r s who  a gamut f r o m t h e  c a n be summed up i n one  ( C a p o d i s t r i a , whose s e x u a l  and  predatory  i s s u g g e s t e d i n t h e image o f h i m a s a s n a k e ;  B a l t h a z a r , whose P a n - l i k e a n d m y s t e r i o u s n a t u r e sented the  i s pre-  t h r o u g h images o f h i m as a goat and a crow; and  g e n t l e a n d l o v e l y M e l i s s a whose p o i g n a n t p r e d i c a m e n t  i s t h a t o f "a g a z e l l e h a r n e s s e d t o a w a t e r - w h e e l " ) t o t h e more c o m p l e x p e o p l e who show more t h a n one p r o f i l e t o the observer. nature  Among t h e s e a r e C l e a , t h e a r t i s t  i s sometimes d e s c r i b e d  a w i l d b i r d , whose l a u g h  whose  as t h a t o f a swallow o r  i s a n i g h t i n g a l e ' s laugh  and  whose p a i n a t h e r l o v e f o r J u s t i n e i s t h a t o f "a y o u n g  19  s t a g w i t h a broken a n k l e " .  On  the whole, hers i s  a g e n t l e n a t u r e t h a t , l i k e M e l i s s a ' s , becomes t a r g e t f o r the f o r c e s of d e s t r u c t i o n " , ^ but are other  characters  d e s t r o y e r and able.  i n whom one  there  discerns both  t h e v i c t i m , t h e u g l y and  the  Narouz, the h a r e - l i p p e d younger brother  of a b u l l solicit  6  7  o r a m a s t i f f , ' y e t he  of that  c a n be g e n t l e  and  h i s mother's a f f e c t i o n l i k e a c o l t . ^  f o r m e d , h i s u g l i n e s s on g r e a t b r o w n toad,"^ and c a r n i v a l he  a bat."^9 but  the  admir-  Nessim H o s n a n i , i s of a s t r e n g t h d e s c r i b e d as  the  "a  i  n  occasion when he  i s t h a t o f "some  seeks out  hangs i n the c o r n e r  during "like  a "wounded  i g n o r a n t , l o u t i s h b e a d l e s who  come t o wash t h e b o d y t u r n h i m a dead h a r e on  Clea  of the door  d e a t h he i s m a g n i f i c e n t ,  once dead t h e  De-  have  o v e r l i k e the body  a kitchen t a b l e .  a m a n y - s i d e d c h a r a c t e r and  lionj'^  1 0  of  Justine, too, i s  i s variously described  11 as a c a t , a s n a k e and predatory  a swallow.  Her  obviously  n a t u r e shows i n t h e i m a g e s o f h e r a s  lioness, a leopard,  and  an e a g l e , y e t  a prey to a stronger f o r c e s , a " r u f f l e d who, i n t h e magnificent  she  a  is herself  black  dove"  l a s t image D a r l e y g i v e s o f h i s o n c e so 12 l o v e , i s o n l y "a dead b i r d i n a g u t t e r . " ^  It  w o u l d be i m p r a c t i c a l , i n t h e s p a c e  a v a i l a b l e here,  t o deal with a l l the animal  in  the Quartet—sooner  is  presented  or later  imagery  everyone i n t h e novels  i n imagery o f t h i s k i n d — b u t  the total  e f f e c t o f i t i s t h a t one comes t o s e e t h e c h a r a c t e r s l e s s a s p u r e l y human ( i n t h e o r d i n a r y , e v e r y d a y  sense  o f t h e word) t h a n a s p a r t s o f t h e n a t u r a l w o r l d , a s c r e a t u r e s a s s i g n e d a c e r t a i n p l a c e and f u n c t i o n and u n a b l e t o do o t h e r t h a n laid  down b y n a t u r e .  c o n d u c t t h e m s e l v e s i n t h e way  Thus some h a v e b e e n g i v e n t h e ro.  of predator while other characters are t h e i r T h e r e i s no c h o i c e i n e i t h e r  prey.  case.  T h i s h e l p l e s s n e s s o f t h e c h a r a c t e r s i s made e v e n c l e a r e r b y means o f a n o t h e r vading the Quartet:  k i n d o f imagery  t h e i m a g e r y o f i n s e c t s andwabs.  I n d i v i d u a l human b e i n g s  a r e o f t e n seen as ants and t h e  l a r g e r human community a s a n a n t h i l l . Darley  per-  speaks of t h e c i t y  ants' nest"; i n Mountolive  I n Clea  stirring to l i f e the British  " l i k e an  ambassador,  a s s a u l t e d by a hoard o f c h i l d p r o s t i t u t e s , f e e l s  like  a man a t t a c k e d b y a n t s ; t h e h o o d e d r e v e l l e r s a t c a r n i v a l are l i k e in  "a new f o r m o f i n s e c t l i f e " ;  Darley,  h i s e f f o r t s t o comprehend t h e c i t y and i t s i n h a b i t -  21  a n t s , s e t s a b o u t " t o examine made b y human b e i n g s  t h e shapes and  w i t h t h e detachment  contours  o f an entomol13  ogist  s t u d y i n g a h i t h e r t o unknown s p e c i e s o f i n s e c t " .  N o r i s he t h e o n l y one t o s e t h i m s e l f up a s " e n t o m o l o g i s t " i n s u c h a manner.  The f a t h e r o f t h e v i r t u o u s  Semira adopts t h a t a t t i t u d e towards h i s daughter's romantic  s u i t o r , A m a r i l ; a n d N e s s i m t o o , when  with having feels " a l l  to t r yto bribe the Minister f o r Interior, the passionate  an e n t o m o l o g i s t men."  faced  c u r i o s i t y a b o u t t h e man  m i g h t have f o r a n u n c l a s s i f i e d  which  speci-  14 x  I n l i n e w i t h images o f t h e c i t y as an a n t - hill  a r e o t h e r images  showing i t as "a h i v e o f w h i t e  m a n s i o n s " a n d " a g r e a t honeycomb o f f a c e s a n d the c i t y ' s buzzing  gestures/V  s t r e e t s a t the approach of a procession  " l i k e a great hive with the contagion  of the  15 knowledge,"^  The e f f e c t i s a v i e w o f human b e i n g s  as  creatures u n c o n d i t i o n a l l y subject t o the laws o f n a t u r e , whose l i f e stood  a n d f u n c t i o n a r e t o be f u l l y  under-  o n l y i n t e r m s o f t h e g r o u p o r community t o w h i c h  t h e i n d i v i d u a l i s a l w a y s and c o m p l e t e l y  subordinate.  T h e r e a r e i m a g e s w h i c h f o c u s on t h e i n d i v i d u al insect,  so t o s p e a k , a n d do,  n o t a t t e m p t t o show  22  him  a s a "community-member" t o t h e  t h e a n t - h i l l and  h i v e i m a g e s do,  same e x t e n t  and  here the  dator-and-prey r e l a t i o n s h i p , described animal  i m a g e r y , shows up  a spider,".^ a n d  t h e man  h o m o s e x u a l T o t o de  again.  he k i l l s  as pre-  earlier  by  Narouz i s " h a i r y during c a r n i v a l ,  B r u n e i , i s found w i t h the  as the  huge  h a t p i n d r i v e n sideways i n t o h i s head " p i n n i n g  him  l i k e a moth i n t o h i s v e l v e t h e a d p i e c e . " T h e  death  of Narouz h i m s e l f  un-  i s i r o n i c a l l y f o r e c a s t by  w i t t i n g N e s s i m who,  i n h i s own  apprehension f o r h i s  f a t e a t M e m l i k ' s h a n d s , d r a w s "a t i n y p e n c i l on t h e b a c k o f an  an  gallows  in  envelope w i t h a small f l y 17  l i k e v i c t i m hanging from i t . %  Memlik decides  "misunderstand" information gathered and  orders  up by  his  to spies  the younger Hosnani murdered i n s t e a d  Nessim, i n order  t h a t he may  w i t h t h e demand o f E g y p t i a n  seem t o h a v e  of  complied  a u t h o r i t i e s and  yet  con-  t i n u e t o e x t r a c t money f r o m t h e w e a l t h i e r o l d e r Narouz" l a s t b r e a t h  i s "a l o n g d e a t h - r a t t l e , f a d i n g  i n t o t h e b u z z o f a f l y c a u g h t i n some r e m o t e web,"^  Darley  and  Justine, before  t h e i r a f f a i r , move t h r o u g h t h e occupations  brother.  the break-up  cobweb o f t h e i r  l i k e people already parted;  D a r l e y meets J u s t i n e a g a i n ,  spider's  later,  of  prewhen  t h i s image i s r e i n v o k e d  and  it  becomes p l a i n t h a t J u s t i n e was,  and r e m a i n s , t h e  p r e d a t o r s p i d e r " m o v i n g o b s e s s i v e l y up and down t h e cobweb o f h e r own  devising" while  D a r l e y was  the  v i c t i m who,  h o w e v e r , h a s managed i n t h e meantime t o  escape.  ...  lou  ("  t h i s new  h a v e e s c a p e d me  s e l f - p o s s e s s i o n of yours!  somewhere.") ^ 1  This,  does n o t p r e v e n t J u s t i n e f r o m becoming tim i n turn.  however,  herself a  vic-  When N e s s i m f i r s t u r g e s h e r t o j o i n  him i n the i n t r i c a t e p o l i t i c a l  d e s i g n which f o r him  passes f o r a m a r r i a g e , J u s t i n e suddenly f e e l s as i f she "had become c a u g h t up i n some g r e a t cobweb, i m prisoned  by l a w s w h i c h l a y b e n e a t h t h e l e v e l o f h e r 20  conscious w i l l ,  her d e s i r e s , . . . " ^  image o f h e r l a t e r as N e s s i m ' s m a r r i e d a n d hung up  wife:  There i s a l s o " t h e w i f e he  an had  i n a cobwebbed c o r n e r o f h i s l i f e ,  b y t h e w r i s t s , l i k e a m a r i o n n e t t e on s t r i n g s ! "  2 1  And  so t h e g r i m b u s i n e s s o f p r e d a t o r and p r e y g o e s o n . One  s e e s i t on a l a r g e  r a i d on A l e x a n d r i a  s c a l e i n t h e w a r , when an a i r  i s r e n d e r e d a s an a t t e m p t  by  s e a r c h l i g h t s t o seek out p r e y : . . . t h e s e a r c h l i g h t s had begun t o c o n g r e g a t e , q u i v e r i n g and s l i d i n g i n t h e i r u n g a i n l y f a s h i o n , l i k e d a d d y - l o n g - l e g s . They i n t e r s e c t e d a n d c o l l i d e d f e v e r i s h l y , and i t was c l e a r t h a t some s i g n a l h a d r e a c h e d them  w h i c h t o l d o f t h e s t r u g g l e s o f some t r a p p e d i n s e c t on t h e o u t e r cobweb o f darkness. A g a i n and a g a i n they c r o s s e d , p r o b e d , merged, d i v i d e d . Then a t l a s t we saw what t h e y w e r e b r a c k e t i n g : s i x t i n y s i l v e r m o t h s m o v i n g down t h e s k y l a n e s w i t h w h a t seemed u n b e a r a b l e s l o w n e s s . 2 2 But  t h e g r e a t e s t p r e d a t o r o f a l l , seen through  i m a g e r y o f i n s e c t s and webs, i s i n some way with the city approaching  itself.  the f r o s t The  began t o p r i c k t h e on-  as t h e b a c k c l o t h o f t h e European  i t s e l f began t o l i g h t street, u n t i l  identified  D a r l e y d e s c r i b e s i t once i n  dusk,."as the l i g h t s  coming d a r k n e s s ,  this  up window b y window, s t r e e t b y  t h e w h o l e l o o k e d l i k e a cobweb i n w h i c h  has s e t a m i l l i o n  glittering  brilliants". -^  whose m e c h a n i c a l  man,  inventions l i k e h i slimousines " l i e  webbed i n a w i n t e r l i g h t ,  man  2  c r e a t o r o f t h a t cobweb i s n e v e r f i n a l l y r e v e a l e d ,  t h o u g h one g u e s s e s t h a t i t i s man h i m s e l f , c i t y  and  city  expressing only the silence  power o f a l l m a c h i n e r y w h i c h w a i t s f o r t h e f a l l o f "  2 / f  The  fall  o f man!  The w o r d s e v o k e t h e o l d  p i c t u r e o f man a s j u s t a l i t t l e  lower than t h e a n g e l s ,  man a s t h e c r e a t i o n o f God, made i n H i s i m a g e , endowed w i t h a f r e e s p i r i t and t h e power w i l f u l l y t o damn h i m self  i f he s o c h o o s e , man a s a t r u l y  free being.  But  s u r e l y t h e words have an i r o n i c used here i n t h e Quartet I dom?  The n o v e l s  r i n g as t h e y a r e  F o r w h e r e i s man's f r e e -  are steeped  i n imagery  emphasizing  t h e p a s s i v i t y a n d h e l p l e s s n e s s o f human b e i n g s .  It  confronts the reader  Some  of these ical  a t every t u r n o f t h e page.  i m a g e s a c t u a l l y show man a s a s o r t o f mechan-  contrivance  but b r i e f l y  (indeed,  one c h a r a c t e r who  appears  i s d e s c r i b e d a s p r e c i s e l y t h a t ) a s when  M e l i s s a , placed i n a hot bath, u n c u r l s from " l i k e one o f t h o s e m a r v e l l o u s  Japanese  sleep  paper-flowers  w h i c h open i n w a t e r " , o r a s when t h e o l d f u r r i e r drops out of Darley's tilted  life  Cohen  (" .... t h e k a l e i d o s c o p e h a d  o n c e more a n d he h a d s u n k o u t o f s i g h t l i k e  vanished  chip of coloured g l a s s " ) . ^ 2  a  I t i s more common,  however, t o f i n d t h e c h a r a c t e r s d e s c r i b e d as  completely  c a u g h t up b y n a t u r a l l a w , s o m e t i m e s a t i t s m e r c y , sometimes  i n obedient  response t o i t .  There i s an e a r l y  image o f t h e c i t y ' s i n h a b i t a n t s " d r i f t i n g l i k e o f seaweed t o w a r d s t h e l i g h t e d town",  a bed  cafes o f the upper  a n d i m a g e s o f men's l i v e s a s g o v e r n e d b y t h e  t i d e become i n c r e a s i n g l y f r e q u e n t  after that.  Clea, at  t h e end o f J u s t i n e , speaks o f a t i d e t h a t h a s t u r n e d in  her nature;  t h e essence and t h e f a s c i n a t i o n o f c a r -  n i v a l are t h e "dark t i d e s o f E r o s " which " b u r s t out  during  carnival like  s o m e t h i n g l o n g dammed u p " ^ o v e r -  f l o w i n g t h e human s o u l .  Darley,  having  more t o t h e c i t y i n C l e a , f e e l s h i m s e l f again  t o f l o a t upon t h e s h a l l o w s  old tide-marks in  returned  once  "turned  adrift  of Mareotis  o f a p p e t i t e s and d e s i r e s " ;  with i t s  t h e change  h i s r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h C l e a , t r o u b l e d by h e r a g o n -  izing  sense o f p a s t  g u i l t and imminent punishment,  w a x e s a n d wanes l i k e a t i d e ;  a n d a t t h e end o f t h e  Quartet  as w e l l as other  when s h e a n d D a r l e y ,  characters, at l a s t f i n a l l y speaks of i t s being our  leave  the city,  main  Clea  "as i f t h e whole c o m p o s i t i o n  l i v e s were b e i n g  of  s u d d e n l y d r a w n away b y a new  current". ? 2  Again, living  there  i n obedient  Balthazar describes  a r e i m a g e s s h o w i n g human  beings  r e s p o n s e t o n a t u r a l l a w , a s when J u s t i n e as moving " l i k e  some  sulky planet  i n the social l i f e  o f t h e town" o r as  when D a r l e y ,  l o o k i n g a t dancers at t h e C e c i l h o t e l ,  o b s e r v e t h e women m o v i n g r o u n d t h e f l o o r l y f o l l o w i n g t h e motion of t h e s t a r s , it  curved  into  space'.'. ^ 2  "unconscious-  of t h e e a r t h as  B u t t h e most a b s o r b i n g i m -  agery o f t h i s k i n d i s t h a t from t h e p l a n t world. we a r e t o l d , any  i s a p l a n t o f many v a r i e t i e s  other p l a n t , i t can w i t h e r . 9 2  Love,  and, l i k e  Human b e i n g s t o o a r e  a k i n d of p l a n t l i f e . flowers  do  Women g r a v i t a t e t o A m a r i l  to s u n l i g h t " ; t h e i r faces  diplomatic  t u r n towards  M o u n t o l i v e " l i k e flower-trapsJ" ^°  " t a k e s l o v e a s p l a n t s do w a t e r , l i g h t l y , r e s p o n d s t o N e s s i m "as  and  t h e two  as  "like  comes t o see  a flower".-  responds to light," ^  her,  f l o w e r C l e a i s " s m i l i n g and  too,  as  irresponsible  L e i l a ' s l o v e f o r N a r o u z comes t o  3  a t h r e a t to her ivy  thoughtlessly"  o f them, a b s o r b e d i n t h e i r i n t r i g u e , b e n d  towards each other Darley  a flower  the  Justine  x  she  "as  son,  like  "some b r i l l i a n t  seem  parasite  which s t r a n g l e s the growth of a t r e e . % - ^  Qne  memorable p i c t u r e o f a r e l i g i o u s f i g u r e i s t h a t o f f a m o u s b l i n d p r e a c h e r H u s s e i n "who tree, magnificent nine  i n the  elf-light,  human b e i n g s ,  There are  and  r e c i t i n g the  t h e most p a r t , t h e n , i t w o u l d seem when r e s p o n d i n g f u l l y t o t h e  l a w s g o v e r n i n g t h e i r l i v e s and  in  l i k e an  oak ninety  h o l y names."^^^ For  not  stood  the  t o r e s p o n d i n t h i s way, each case the leads  natural  growth, are not  c a s e s , however, where c h a r a c t e r s i f not  can  a r e M o u n t o l i v e and  The  unhappy. be  seen  a c t u a l l y t o r e b e l , a;  r e s u l t i s s u f f e r i n g f o r the  to destruction.  that  human b e i n ;  o b v i o u s examples h e r e  Nessim Hosnani.  Having begun h i s  28  ambassadorial  career with a vertiginous f e e l i n g of  freedom o f a c t i o n , Mountolive  soon f i n d s h i m s e l f  " g r i p p e d by t h e g r a v i t a t i o n a l f i e l d o f p o l i t i c s . " ^ ^ N e s s i m t o o , " s o l o n g s e l f - d e l u d e d b y t h e same dreams of a p e r f e c t f i n i t e a c t i o n , f r e e and h e e d l e s s impulse  of a d i r e c t e d w i l l ,  now f o u n d h i m s e l f ,  as t h e like  his  f r i e n d , a prey  lie  i n h e r e n t i n the t i m e - s p r i n g o f our a c t s , making  them s p r e a d ,  t o the g r a v i t a t i o n a l f o r c e s which  r a m i f y and d i s t o r t t h e m s e l v e s ...."y-^  Indeed, ...now t h e m a s t e r s w e r e b e g i n n i n g t o f i n d t h a t t h e y were, a f t e r a l l , t h e s e r v a n t s of t h e very f o r c e s which they had s e t i n p l a y , and t h a t n a t u r e i s i n h e r e n t l y i n governable. T h e y w e r e s o o n t o be drawn a l o n g ways n o t o f t h e i r c h o o s i n g , t r a p p e d i n a m a g n e t i c f i e l d , a s i t were, by t h e same f o r c e s w h i c h u n w i n d t h e t i d e s a t t h e moon's b i d d i n g , o r p r o p e l t h e g l i t t e r i n g f o r c e s o f s a l m o n up a c r o w d e d r i v e r . . . . ^ At t h i s p o i n t I would l i k e t o t u r n t o a d i f f e r e n t type  o f imagery from t h e Quartet,  imagery  w h i c h i n one s e n s e c o m p l e m e n t s what I h a v e a l r e a d y d e a l t w i t h and y e t , I f e e l , still  p o i n t s t h e way t o w a r d s  o t h e r t h i n g s i n t h e n o v e l s and u l t i m a t e l y towards  a s o l u t i o n t o t h i s problem of " c h a r a c t e r - a n d - w i l l " which I have so f a r p r e s e n t e d .  This imagery i s o f three  29  kinds:  i m a g e s f r o m p l a y i n g - c a r d s , f r o m t h e game  of chess,  a n d f r o m t h e drama. Images f r o m p l a y i n g - c a r d s a r e numerous i n  the Quartet  b u t they a r e , I t h i n k , s i g n i f i c a n t ,  I s h o u l d m e n t i o n h e r e t h a t I s e e no e v i d e n c e  though  of  D u r r e l l * s h a v i n g used t h e Tarot as an e x t e n s i v e for characterization. that D u r r e l l  On t h e c o n t r a r y , t h e one t i m e  i s e x p l i c i t and says e x a c t l y what  J u s t i n e suggests,  basis  card  i ti s a card from our conventional  d e c k : t h e Queen o f S p a d e s . - ^  Various other  people,  t o o , a r e l i k e n e d t o p l a y i n g - c a r d s , though n o t as e x a c t l y : t h e Sheik  a n d h i s s o n s whom t h e H o s n a n i s  i n t h e d e s e r t a r e "a g a l l e r y o f p l a y i n g c a r d s " ; Clea's f i r s t  l o v e r and l o n g u n i d e n t i f i e d ,  visit  Amaril,  i s "like a  p l a y i n g card which had always been t h e r e , l y i n g  ...  f a c e downwards"; M e l i s s a ' s c h i l d by N e s s i m n u m b e r s  her-  s e l f among " t h e p l a y i n g - c a r d c h a r a c t e r s o f t h e l i v i n g " t h a t D a r l e y has d e s c r i b e d f o r h e r and she i s i m p a t i e n t t o t a k e up h e r own p l a c e i n t h e " g a l l e r y . " L a s t l y there i s the s i g n i f i c a n t reference t o the "'selective f i c t i o n s ' which l i f e mixing  s h u f f l e s o u t l i k e a pack o f c a r d s ,  and d i v i d i n g , withdrawing  and r e s t o r i n g ^ " *  H e r e s u r e l y i s a c l e a r p i c t u r e o f human b e i n g s  1  as a l t o -  g e t h e r i n t h e h a n d s o f a l a r g e r power w h i c h , f o r l a c k of  a more e x a c t t e r m , we  can here c a l l l i f e .  There  i s t h e i n d i c a t i o n t h a t t h e s e human b e i n g s v a r y i n v a l u e a s t h e y do i n f u n c t i o n , t h a t t h e y a r e a l l n e v e r t h e l e s s p a r t s o f a w h o l e , and t h a t t h e p r o c e s s i n which they are t a k i n g p a r t i s not meaningless,  since  a game i s c a r r i e d on i n a c c o r d a n c e w i t h c e r t a i n a n d must i n t h e end be e i t h e r won  or  rules  lost.  Much t h e same p i c t u r e emerges f r o m use of chess imagery, though here t h e r e are  Durrell's cases  where, a t l e a s t o s t e n s i b l y , the c h a r a c t e r s are i n control  o f t h e game.  M o u n t o l i v e and B a l t h a z a r v e r y o f t e n  p l a y chess t o g e t h e r .  B a l t h a z a r ' s f r e q u e n t communica-  t i o n by p o s t c a r d t o f r i e n d s e l s e w h e r e i n t h e M i d d l e E a s t , t h e s u b j e c t b e i n g b o t h c h e s s and t h e C a b a l , i s b e l i e v e d by t h e E g y p t i a n s t o be a r e l a y o f  political  i n f o r m a t i o n ; and a s t h e v a r i o u s c h a r a c t e r s and s i t u a t i o n s a r e more t h a n o n c e d e s c r i b e d , f r o m political  p o i n t of view, as a c h e s s b o a r d , ^  between p o l i t i c s and  the  the  2  c h e s s seems p r e t t y c l e a r .  makes s e n s e , f o r most o f t h e c h e s s i m a g e r y Q u a r t e t w i t h M o u n t o l i v e and  strategy.  link This  enters the  s e r v e s a s a good  t i o n of h i s attempts at p o l i t i c a l  their  illustraI t also  makes f o r a p e r f e c t i l l u s t r a t i o n  of the  very  Nessim.  soon r e a c h e d by h i m s e l f  imagery f r o m c h e s s does not political  game.  apply  solely to  s e v e n drowned s a i l o r s d i s c o v e r e d and  Darley  by  swim a r e  f i g u r e s roped i n canvas sacks. one  "of scrupulous  "like  i n the Quartet,  y e t t o be  i s the  i s a great v a r i e t y of i t ,  upright  and  characters  concluded.  i m a g e r y f r o m drama.  very  i l l ,  having  There  G r e e k drama  masks o f a l l k i n d s ,  Shakesperean tragedy,  When D a r l e y  and  engaged i n , are  marionne*tte t h e a t r e , s i l e n t f i l m s ,  i n cinema a r t .  to  everything  j u s t Greek, p l a y a b i g p a r t i n the Q u a r t e t ) , commedia d e l l " a r t e ,  pieces  i f listening  i n c l u d i n g the  p e r f o r m e d w i t h masks ( i n d e e d  rock-  surely symbolic  s i n c e these too are  Then t h e r e  The  chess  s i t u a t i o n of a l l the  p a r t o f , a game w h i c h h a s  by  Moreover, t h e i r a i r  a t t e n t i o n , as  These s a i l o r s are  meant t o s u g g e s t t h e  also  Clea i n the  some momentous d e b a t e w h i c h w o u l d d e c i d e f o r them"."^  the  characters.  o f human s i z e " w i t h t h e i r l e a d w e i g h t e d ,  is  the  l i k e t h a t c a r r i e d on  w i t h the a i d of p l a y i n g - c a r d  p o o l where she  But  I t i s clear that i t applies  t o a much l a r g e r "game", one life  and  stalemate  and  not  the  masque, t o y the  latest  f i r s t m e e t s M e l i s s a she  b e e n d r u g g e d a t a p a r t y , and  her  is  32  features are " l i k e a catastrophic  Greek comic  mask".^  V o i c e l e s s i n h e r s t u p o u r , she l o o k s " l i k e a f i l m o f h e r s e l f w i t h o u t a sound-track."^"^ Narouz p a s s  ceremoniously  When N e s s i m a n d  t h r o u g h t h e g a l l e r y a t Karm,  t h e y a r e f o r a b r i e f moment t r a n s f o r m e d q u i n s . ^° in  M o u n t o l i v e , caught  into  harle-  up b y c o n f l i c t i n g  loyalties  t h e p o l i t i c a l game, w a k e s up i n t h e m o r n i n g " t o t h e  sound o f h i s c u r t a i n s b e i n g d r a w n — s l o w l y  and r e v e r -  e n t l y a s one m i g h t s l i d e b a c k t h e c u r t a i n s o f J u l i e t ' s 47 tomb."^ and  His strange involvement w i t h L i z a  Pursewarden  h e r b r o t h e r i s d e s c r i b e d a s a " w e i r d masque.";*^  Darley, observant of l i f e "scenes  o f domestic  life  t h e a t r e s ) seemed f i l l e d significance.%^9  i n t h e Arab q u a r t e r , sees which  (lighted l i k e toy  w i t h a tremendous dramatic  The f i g u r e s o f t h e d e a d s a i l o r s i n  t h e r o c k - p o o l s t a n d " f l i n c h i n g and f l i c k e r i n g s o f t l y 50 l i k e f i g u r e s i n an e a r l y s i l e n t f i l m ! ' ^ ^ The A l e x a n d r i a n s , l i v i n g on i n t h e i r t o r m e n t e d c i t y , move "inside the murex-tinted cyclorama" of the l i f e  they  51 imagine. The c i t y i s a s t a g e .  The V i r t u o u s S e m i r a  "makes h e r f i r s t a p p e a r a n c e on t h e p u b l i c s t a g e " when she g o e s t o t h e A u b e r g e B l e u e w i t h A m a r i l t h e d a y a f t e r  33  t h e i r wedding.  M e l i s s a q u i e t l y l e a v e s t h e same s t a g e  when she t a k e s t h e t r a i n t o J e r u s a l e m , s c e n e - s h i f t e r the s t a t i o n packs  away  and  " q u i c k as  a  advertisement 52  a f t e r advertisement,  s t a c k i n g them i n t h e  F o r o t h e r s , t h e e x i t i s more p a i n f u l . sexual,  enraged  sailors  on l e a v e , a n d  i s o f a " w i t h e r e d o l d h a n d , now  s e t t l e w i t h the approach ic  of the r i g o r  g e s t u r e — a s o f someone w a r d i n g  P u r s e w a r d e n , whose l i f e commits s u i c i d e ,  o l d homo-  lonely death  beginning to into  the  " E a c h man  reflects,  image  a  histrion-  o f f a s t a g e blow/y  simply steps behind  music,"Darley  the l a s t  becomes u n b e a r a b l e  v a n i s h i n g from the scene.54 own  The  S c o b i e , d r e s s e d a s a woman, i s k i c k e d t o  d e a t h by o f him  darkness/'^-  so t h a t he curtains,  goes out t o h i s  w i t n e s s i n g Cohen's  i n a h o s p i t a l room.  Despite a  shabby  r e c o r d Cohen manages t o d i e w i t h some m e a s u r e o f nity.  Others,  like  the a i r r a i d  are not g i v e n t h e chance;  J  v i c t i m s of the  digwar,  "a s t r e t c h e r - p a r t y J_ w a l k s _ 7  a p a t h e t i c a l l y o f f s t a g e w i t h a sagging l o a d from  a  56 bombed building.",1, T h o u g h some o f t h e c h a r a c t e r s t a k i n g p a r t i n t h e s e v a r i e d human d r a m a s f e e l t h a t t h e y h a v e c h o s e n t o a c t t h e way  t h e y do,  a l l have i n f a c t been a s s i g n e d  34  their roles. do  T h a t i s made v e r y  clear.  over "the pretence, the e t e r n a l  a c t i n g one h a s t o i n d u l g e  he  "a c h i l d  dressed  a s Queen E l i z a b e t h f o r a c h a r a d e , % o r a s when  Nessim s i g h s  "If  roles  n o t a l w a y s s i t easy w i t h them o r c o n v i n c e t h e  a u d i e n c e , a s when L i z a a p p e a r s l i k e up  Their  i n even w i t h  play-  one's f r i e n d s . "  x  o n l y we d i d n o t h a v e t o k e e p o n a c t i n g a p a r t . . . % ;  says t o J u s t i n e .  Y e t J u s t i n e ' s a n s w e r makes i t  c l e a r t h a t f o r h e r h e r r o l e i s t h e essence o f h e r l i f e and  t h a t w i t h o u t i t she w o u l d b e n o t h i n g .  Nessiml she  Then I s h o u l d  says t o D a r l e y j  "Ah ...  n o t know who I w a s . " ^  " I t w o u l d be s i l l y  Earlier  t o spread so  much harm a s I h a v e done a n d n o t t o r e a l i z e t h a t  i ti s  fid  my r o l e . " *  Nessim's r o l e ,  too,  i s e s s e n t i a l t o him,  t h o u g h J u s t i n e r e a l i z e s i t more c l e a r l y t h a n he d o e s himself. and  When f o r a w h i l e  t h e r o l e i s taken from him  t h e p a i r a r e put under house-arrest  a t Karm, N e s s i m  l o s e s a l l h i s f a s c i n a t i o n f o r J u s t i n e and she f i n d s i t impossible  t o love him. You s e e , when he d o e s n o t a c t , N e s s i m i s n o t h i n g ; he i s c o m p l e t e l y f l a v o u r l e s s , not i n touch w i t h h i m s e l f a t any p o i n t . Then he h a s no r e a l s e l f t o i n t e r e s t a woman, t o g r i p h e r . I n a w o r d he i s r e a l l y a pure i d e a l i s t . When a s e n s e o f d e s t i n y consumes h i m he becomes t r u l y splendid. I t was a s a n a c t o r t h a t he  m a g n e t i s e d me, i l l u m i n a t e d me f o r m y s e l f . But as a f e l l o w p r i s o n e r , i n d e f e a t — he p r e d i s p o s e s t o e n n u i , m i g r a i n e , t h o u g h t s of u t t e r b a n a l i t y l i k e s u i c i d e ! ^ "When he d o e s n o t a c t ...."* how,  w h i l e we  two s e n s e s ,  I t i s curious  so o f t e n u s e t h e w o r d i n e i t h e r o f i t s  we r a r e l y u s e i t w i t h b o t h m e a n i n g s  a p p a r e n t t o u s a t t h e same t i m e .  Y e t how  the word s u i t s D u r r e l l ' s purposes h e r e ! the Quartet p e o p l e who  may  be r e g a r d e d  "Action" i n  e i t h e r as t h e d o i n g s o f  f e e l r e s p o n s i b l e o r as a performance  at a stage-master's d i r e c t i o n .  e v e n i f i t i s an i l l u s i o n ,  the novels.  Though  given  Durrell surely i n -  t e n d e d u s t o s e e i t b o t h ways, f o r a c t i o n action!),  admirably  ("free"  has meaning i n  " e n g a g e d " b y an unknown management  f o r a s l o n g a s t h e p e r f o r m a n c e s h a l l go o n , t h e a c t o r s yet r e t a i n a sense of r e s p o n s i b i l i t y ,  often of g u i l t ,  f o r what t h e y  This too i s part  of the design.  do and a r e made t o d o .  About t h e u l t i m a t e meaning o f  dramas, t h e c h a r a c t e r s  can o n l y guess.  a c t s w i t h d e s p a i r when t h e n a t u r e  these  Mountolive  o f h i s own  re-  r o l e be-  comes c l e a r t o h i m : Y e t i f he h i m s e l f were p o w e r l e s s , now, how much more so t h e / o t h e r s ? L i k e the e t i o l a t e d p r o j e c t i o n s or a s i c k imagination, t h e y seemed, d r a i n e d o f m e a n i n g , empty a s s u i t s o f c l o t h e s ; t a k i n g up e m p l a c e m e n t s i n  36  t h i s c o l o u r l e s s drama o f c o n t e n d i n g wills. N e s s i m , J u s t i n e , L e i l a — t h e y had an u n s u b s t a n t i a l a i r n o w — a s o f dreamprojections a c t i n g i n a world populated by e x p r e s s i o n l e s s w a x w o r k s . I t was diffic u l t t o f e e l t h a t he owed them e v e n l o v e any longer.^ I n d e e d , the meaning t h a t can s e r v e r i s o f t e n as ceives i t .  The  gotten  Balthazar  r i d o f by an  once speaks of  Darley,  by an  s i n i s t e r as M o u n t o l i v e  e x p e n d a b l e , and  p o s s i b l e to. l i v e , and  construed  ill-fitting  (lives  forever disappeared  l e a v i n g s c a r c e l y a memory and  no  im-  garments)";  brought face to face w i t h the  t h a t M e l i s s a has  are  director.  "useless l i v e s  shed l i k e  per-  become  at that point  implacable  ob-  here  a c t o r s , l i k e c o s t u m e s , can  unsatisfactory, simply  be  realization  from h i s  pain i n her  l i f e — lover  except the p a i n of h i s f e e l i n g c a l l o u s — M e l i s s a "simply  one  o f t h e many c o s t u m e s o f  As  a matter of f a c t ,  have w h a t one o f F o s c a and oppresses the p l a n n e d by  l i f e ! " ^  t h e s e dramas n e v e r  would c a l l happy e n d i n g s . Pombal t h e  the  reader.  invisible  human a c t i o n s , and  In the  sheer p o i n t l e s s n e s s of "How  i r o n i c a l l y i t had  s t a g e - m a s t e r s who  w i t h what s p e e d ! " ^  a b l y , t o o , a t l e a s t i f one  was  does n o t  How  story death  been  direct inexplic-  l o o k beyond t h i s  one  37  " p e r f o r m a n c e " a n d seek f o r a l a r g e r p a t t e r n .  What  t h a t l a r g e r p a t t e r n may be i s s u g g e s t e d b y t h e s t o r y of C l e a and D a r l e y terminates  and o f t h e d r e a d f u l a c c i d e n t  their life  together  w h o l e , p e r f e c t summer t h e y  i n Alexandria.  spend t o g e t h e r  r e t u r n t o t h e c i t y was, s a y s D a r l e y , f o r e and w i t h o u t  their  upon  that That Darley's  planned long be-  knowledge:  . . . i t had a l l a l r e a d y happened, had been o r d a i n e d i n s u c h a way a n d i n no o t h e r . T h i s was, so t o s p e a k , o n l y i t s " c o m i n g t o p a s s " - - i t s stage o f m a n i f e s t a t i o n . But the s c e n a r i o h a d a l r e a d y b e e n d e v i s e d somewhere, t h e a c t o r s c h o s e n , t h e t i m i n g r e h e a r s e d down t o t h e l a s t d e t a i l i n t h e mind o f t h a t i n v i s i b l e a u t h o r — w h i c h perhaps would prove t o be o n l y t h e c i t y i t s e l f : t h e A l e x a n d r i a o f t h e human e s t a t e . ^ c  He g o e s on t o d e s c r i b e i t a g a i n  i n terms  back t o t h e p l a n t imagery d e a l t w i t h  hearkening  earlier:  The s e e d s o f f u t u r e e v e n t s a r e c a r r i e d within ourselves. They a r e i m p l i c i t i n u s and u n f o l d a c c o r d i n g t o t h e l a w s o f t h e i r own nature./-/And  s o we a r e b a c k t o a v i e w o f man a s a n  i n t e g r a l part of the natural world of that world, there  and, l i k e t h e r e s t  subject t o t h e laws that govern i t .  i s something very  i n t e r e s t i n g about t h i s  r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n man a n d n a t u r e ,  But  integral  and i t i s t h i s :  j u s t a s man world,  i s shown a s b e i n g a t one  so t h a t w o r l d c a n be  characteristics.  with the n a t u r a l  seen t o m a n i f e s t  human  39  FOOTNOTES  "^Lawrence D u r r e l l , C l e a (London: Faber and Faber, I960), p . 157. H e r e a f t e r f o o t n o t e s t o t h i s work w i l c o n s i s t m e r e l y o f £. p l u s t h e page r e f e r e n c e . 2  J.23l.  3See J.33, 2 - 9 1 , C.253, J.51. 4  S e e J.76, C.96, C.77, J.227-228.  5j.200. 6  B.68.  ^ D u r r e l l , M o u n t o l i v e (London: F a b e r and F a b e r , 1958), p . 23"! H e r e a f t e r f o o t n o t e s t o t h i s w o r k w i l l c o n s i s t m e r e l y o f M . p l u s t h e page r e f e r e n c e . 2B.96.  9see B.232, B.229. 1 0  S e e M.312, M.318-319.  i;L  S e e J.32, C.53, C.112.  l See 2  C.HS,  J.86 a n d 221, J.49, B.118, C.62.  !3See C.96, M.292, B.201, B.221. U s e e M.153, M.253. ^ S e e C.63, C.64, C.267. l 6  S e e B.68, B.211.  1  ?M.267.  1  %.313-  40  S e e J . 2 0 9 , C.54,  1 9  20  M.201.  2 1  B.128.  22  G.25.  2  3B.153.  2  %.189.  C.  2 5  S e e M.263, M.177, J.103.  2 6  J.105.  2 7  S e e J.244, B.190, C.63, C.235, C.279.  2 g  S e e B.128', B.234.  2  9see J.74, 0.233.  30see B.133, M.133. 3 S e e J . 8 2 , M.202, M.202. 1  3 C.95. 2  33M.302. 34B.155. 35M.270. 3 % . 214. 37M.214. 3 ^ C a r l B o d e , i n h i s e s s a y "A G u i d e t o A l e x a n d r i a " , t a k e s up t h e m a t t e r o f D u r r e l l u s i n g t h e T a r o t i n h i s c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n ; he e v e n g o e s so f a r a s t o s a y a t one p o i n t t h a t t h e Tarot i s " t h e c h i e f source o f symbolic s u g g e s t i o n s " ( S e e The W o r l d o f L a w r e n c e D u r r e l l , p. 211); b u t w h i l e he g o e s on w i t h v a r y i n g d e g r e e s o f c e r t a i n t y t o l i n k some o f D u r r e l l ' s c h a r a c t e r s t o T a r o t c a r d s —  41  Pursewarden t o t h e F o o l , C a p o d i s t r i a t o t h e D e v i l , B a l t h a z a r t o t h e Magician, Narouz t o t h e Hierophant and ( v e r y t e n t a t i v e l y ) C l e a t o t h e S t a r , M e l i s s a t o t h e H i g h P r i e s t e s s a n d J u s t i n e t o t h e E m p r e s s , Bode d o e s no more t h a n p o s i t a c o n n e c t i o n a n d f a i l s t o s a y i n what way t h i s h a s s e r v e d t o e n r i c h t h e s y m b o l i s m o f t h e Q u a r t e t o r e v e n what a d d i t i o n a l u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f t h e characters t h i s provides. 39G.15. 4 0  3 e e B.88-, C.256,  4 1  C . 276-27 7.  42  4  M.127.  3see C.230, C.23O.  4 4  J.55.  4 5  J.55.  4 6  B.74.  47  M.237.  4 8  C.173.  4 9  J.99.  50  C.230.  51  C.65.  5 2  S e e C.89, J.102.  53B.172. 54  _.155.  5 5  J.112.  5 6  C.3l.  57See C.188, M.233. 5$M.233. 59 M.234. 6 0  J.87.  6l  C.58.  62,  1.270.  63 See B.139, C.41. 64C.209. 65C.223. 66'C.223.  CHAPTER I I I  The penetrate. Quartet  human a n d t h e n a t u r a l w o r l d s  The e x t e n t t o w h i c h t h i s i s s o i n t h e  was p e r h a p s n o t made f u l l y a p p a r e n t  e a r l i e r discussion of Durrell's nature is  inter-  i n my  imagery.  It  n o t o n l y t h a t man's l a c k o f f r e e w i l l i s b e s t  sented  i n terms of h i s being a creature f u l l y  pre-  dependent  upon n a t u r e as a p l a n t i s dependent; e v e r y t h i n g i n man's l i f e  i s best understood  natural processes.  when s e e n a s p a r t o f  Man's l o v e a n d man's  suffering,  his  s i l e n c e and h i s c o n v e r s a t i o n , h i s i l l - t e m p e r and  his  songs, h i s body, p e r s o n a l i t y , f a m i l y o r i g i n s , h i s  thoughts all  and i n v e n t i o n s , h i s very  r e l i g i o n and a r t ,  c a n b e s e e n t o be i n t e g r a l a s p e c t s o f t h e n a t u r a l  world,  c o m i n g i n t o b e i n g a n d p a s s i n g away l i k e t h e  wind, t h e t i d e s and t h e v e g e t a t i o n . is ing  l i k e a landscape, suddenly  changing  i n harsh  block of Darley's l i f e others belonging  weather.  Much o f man's  s l o w l y over y e a r s ,  life  alter-  When M e l i s s a d i e s , a  f a l l s into the sea.  1  She a n d  t o t h e p a s t o f t h o s e who l i v e on  " s i n k s l o w l y d e e p e r a n d d e e p e r i n t o t h e o c e a n o f mem-  44  ory."  In the  her heart i n the  c a s e o f C l e a , "The  river  hoarded i t s images, ever r e f l e c t i n g  can."^  A more  p e r s o n l i k e Pombal " f l o w s i n g r e a t s h a l l o w r i v e r bed  of h i s  of  them  r a c i n g c u r r e n t , l e t t i n g them s i n k d e e p e r  memory t h a n m o s t o f u s  the  deep s t i l l  into  superficial  good humour o v e r  experience."  4  When N a r o u z i s d r a w i n g c l o s e t o d e a t h he "all  n i g h t l o n g now  ...  lies  i n t r o u b l e d s l e e p among t h e  l u x u r i a n t g r o w t h s o f h i s own  f a n t a s y , dense as  a  t r o p i c a l v e g e t a t i o n " ; he w a l k s " i n a f o r e s t o f h i s  own  5  heart-beats." brother  S i l e n c e p o u r s between him  "like a drifting  s t r e t c h e s away on Y e t he  and  every  dune."^  and  N e s s i m ' s own  s i d e " l i k e the d e s e r t  J u s t i n e spend " l o n g evenings  ...  out f o r e a c h o t h e r  to  the  like  "like  7  wineseek  the t a p - r o o t s of t r e e s f o r  T h e i r g r e a t house i s " p e r p e t u a l l y a l i v e  9  cool fern-like patterns  foundering  itself."  e v e n i n g s when a t h o u s a n d c o n v e r s a t i o n s  0  moisture."  silence  in a wilder-  n e s s o f c o n v e r s a t i o n , a f o r e s t o f p l a t e s and bottles,"  his  of a q u a r t e t ,  plunge of saxophones c r y i n g to the  c u c k o l d s . ""^  d a r k s t r e e t ...  Outside,  or t o  the  night  " a d r u n k e n whore w a l k s i n a  shedding s n a t c h e s of song l i k e p e t a l s . "  J u s t i n e , c o m i n g f r o m a m e e t i n g w i t h a l o v e r , i s "as i f still  dusted  by t h e p o l l e n of h i s k i s s e s . "  1 2  The  light  x  45  in  a C o p t i c d e s e r t c h u r c h i s " s o f t a n d c o n f u s e d by-  incense t o t h e colour of pollen"; -^  The s o u n d  1  choir  i s one o f "deep v o i c e s r u n n i n g l i k e a r i v e r  the gravel-bottomed Liturgy of S t . B a s i l . " s t r u c t u r e of t h e church i t s e l f ,  with  1 4  e a r l y r e l i g i o n s were b u i l t o n a c e l l  over  The  i t s grouped  c a l l s f o r t h t h e o b s e r v a t i o n from Purse/warden "all  of the  cells,  that  pattern,  15 i m i t a t i n g who-knows-what b i o l o g i c a l l a w . " I n e v e r y t h i n g man's l i f e rest of nature.  imitates that of the  M e l i s s a ' s s l e n d e r body w i t h i t s s l a n t -  i n g r i b s has t h e " s t r u c t u r e of f e r n s . "  1 6  The l i t t l e  v i l l a g e on t h e i s l a n d where D a r l e y works i s " s o t i g h t l y woven ... b e a u t i f u l a n d s y m m e t r i c a l l i k e a s w a l l o w ' s nest."-'-  7  The s h y b u t p e r s i s t e n t a t t e m p t s o f t h e  E n g l i s h b r i g a d i e r , Maskelyne, Telford,  t o impress h i s subordinate,  impress Darley as resembling t h e c o u r t i n g  p r a c t i c e s o f a male  bird:  I detected, i n the slow elaborate f i g u r e he t r a c e d b e t w e e n o u r d e s k s , t h e t r a c e s o f a n u n c o n s c i o u s c o q u e t r y — I was r e m i n d e d o f t h e way a p e a c o c k s p r e a d s i t s g r e a t s t u d d e d f a n o f e y e s b e f o r e t h e f e m a l e ... I am s u r e i t was q u i t e u n c o n s c i o u s E v e n man's m e c h a n i c a l i n v e n t i o n s f i t  i n t o t h e whole.  H i s b a t t l e s h i p s s q u a t u n d e r t h e i r guns " l i k e h o r n e d  19 toads";  46  e l s e w h e r e , t h e guns t h e m s e l v e s a r e d e s c r i b e d a s c o n s c i o u s ... n e s t i n g a w k w a r d l y  "self-  as cranes i n i n c o n 20  g r u o u s n e s t s o f t a r p a u l i n a n d webbing."^ d e a t h , sudden,  E v e n man's  u n j u s t o r m e a n i n g l e s s a s i t may  him, has a p l a c e . cannon-shells  seem t o  There i s t h e " r i c h h a r v e s t o f spent  ... an a l m o s t c o n t i n u o u s s p l a s h i n g o f  golden metal tumbling from the breeches of the skyp o i n t e d guns."  2 1 x  And  there i s the s t r e t c h e r with  dying Fosca b e i n g c a r r i e d ashore "swinging l i k e cradle, l i k e a basket of f r u i t o f an Arab."« The  the  a  upon t h e d a r k s h o u l d e r s  22  examples  a r e i n n u m e r a b l e , b u t two  great  i m a g e s e s p e c i a l l y s t a n d o u t t o show man's i n t e g r a l r e l a t i o n s h i p t o n a t u r e , and w i t h t h e s e I w i l l r e s t case.  One  he h a s  loved:  my  comes f r o m A r n a u t i ' s r e f l e c t i o n s u p o n a woman  You t e l l y o u r s e l f t h a t i t i s a woman y o u h o l d i n y o u r arms, b u t w a t c h i n g t h e s l e e p e r you see a l l h e r growth i n t i m e , the u n e r r i n g u n f o l d i n g of c e l l s which group and d i s p o s e t h e m s e l v e s i n t o t h e b e l o v e d f a c e w h i c h r e m a i n s a l w a y s and f o r e v e r mysterious-repeating to i n f i n i t y the s o f t b o s s o f t h e human n o s e , an e a r b o r r o w e d f r o m a s e a - s h e l l ' s h e l i x , an e y e b r o w t h o u g h t p a t t e r n e d f r o m f e r n s , o r l i p s i n v e n t e d by b i v a l v e s i n t h e i r dreaming union. A l l t h i s p r o c e s s i s human, b e a r s a name w h i c h p i e r c e s y o u r h e a r t , a n d o f f e r s t h e mad dream o f an  47  e t e r n i t y w h i c h t i m e d i s p r o v e s i n e v e r y drawn breath. And i f human p e r s o n a l i t y i s an illusion? And i f , a s b i o l o g y t e l l s u s , every s i n g l e c e l l i n our bodies i s r e p l a c e d e v e r y s e v e n y e a r s by a n o t h e r ? A t t h e m o s t I h o l d i n my a r m s s o m e t h i n g l i k e a f o u n t a i n o f f l e s h , c o n t i n u o u s l y p l a y i n g , and i n my mind a rainbow o f d u s t . ^ ^ The o t h e r  i s Darley's  free at last  d e s c r i p t i o n o f h i s f e e l i n g s when,  f r o m J u s t i n e , he r e t u r n s t o t h e c i t y :  I f e l t l i k e t h e Adam o f t h e m e d i a e v a l l e g e n d s : t h e world-compounded body o f a man whose f l e s h was s o i l , whose b o n e s w e r e s t o n e s , , whose b l o o d w a t e r , whose h a i r was g r a s s , whose e y e s i g h t s u n l i g h t , whose b r e a t h was w i n d , a n d whose t h o u g h t s w e r e c l o u d s . . 0  I t i s j u s t a short step  f r o m t h i s v i e w o f man  as compounded o f h i s e n v i r o n m e n t t o a v i e w o f t h a t e n v i r o n m e n t a s a k i n d o f g r e a t e r man. is  the step  t h a t one s c a r c e l y n o t i c e s when i t i s t h a t  the landscape i s f i r s t terms.  described  The i m a g e s seem so r i g h t ,  description.  I n d e e d , so s h o r t  In a light  necks with a f a i n t  i n organic  a n d i n human  so a c c u r a t e  as sheer  w i n d t h e p a l m t r e e s "sway t h e i r  dry formal  clicking ^ 5 1  2  Desert  swell "like  a bruise"  in  Dawn i s " a p a l e d i s j u n c t i v e shudder" ''  spring.  2 6  w i t h t h e o n c o m i n g o f t h e Khamseen 2  the h o r i z o n .  The d e s e r t  skies  s t r e t c h e s away w i t h  7  at  "knuckles  28 of rosy limestone,"^ ridges"  2 9  "bronze knuckles  o f ... s a n d s t o n e  a n d "shadowy f l a n k s " ^ o f d u n e s .  Friable  48  sandstone "forms t h e backbone"  o f a whole  desert  p r o m o n t o r y . Some m i l e s away t h e s e a pounds a t " t h e l o n g drawn w h i t e  s c a r o f t h e empty beach."32  The this  way.  c i t y , too, i s accurately described i n  " N i p p l e d m i n a r e t s " 3 3 r i s e t h e r e , and beyond  them t h e M o q u a t t a m h i l l s , finger-nail."34  "pink and nacreous a s a  Through t h e c i t y r u n s " t h e l o n g bony  s p i n e o f t h e C a n o p i c Way."-^5 beyond j u s t a c c u r a t e  d e s c r i p t i o n and suggest t h a t t h e  c i t y as w e l l as t h e landscape a g i a n t organism w i t h a l i f e a c l o s e look a t t h e landscape serves  i t seemingly  around and beyond i t a r e o f i t s own. through  mind.  taking  a t e l e s c o p e , ob3  o f t h i s phenomena f o l l o w , b u t  the i d e a o f a l i v i n g landscape  the reader's  Darley,  b r e a t h i n g " s o f t l y and irregularly."-  Technical explanations still  Y e t c e r t a i n i m a g e s go  In Justine Darley  has entered speaks of " s t r e e t s  t h a t r u n back from the docks w i t h t h e i r t a t t e r e d r o t t e n supercargo  of houses, b r e a t h i n g i n t o each o t h e r s '  37 mouths, k e e l i n g o v e r . " bending and i n c l i n i n g ,  I n the c i t y ' s harbour,  "idly  e f f o r t l e s s l y b r e a t h i n g as i f i n  r h y t h m s o f t h e e a r t h ' s own s y s t o l e a n d d i a s t o l e , t h e yachts  turn their  s p a r s a g a i n s t t h e s k y . "3°*  " a b a n d o n e d a n d d i s e m b o w e l l e d houses."39  There a r e  Shops f i l l and  empty " l i k e l u n g s " a l o n g t h e Rue d e s S o e u r s .  "We  turn  49  a c o r n e r a n d t h e w o r l d becomes a p a t t e r n ies,""* ^ says D a r l e y .  of a r t e r -  E l s e w h e r e he s p e a k s o n c e o f ' t h e  0  membrane o f g r a v i t y / ' ^ a n d a t t h e b e g i n n i n g o f C l e a 4 1  when h e f a c e s a r e t u r n t o t h e c i t y , "the  he s p e a k s o f  g r o t e s q u e o r g a n i s m o f w h i c h we h a d a l l once b e e n  p a r t , v i c t o r s and v a n q u i s h e d a l i k e . " x  4 2  Clearly then,  man i s somehow " c o n t a i n e d " w i t h i n t h i s l a r g e r o r g a n ism.  E v e n man's c o m m u n i t i e s a r e so c o n t a i n e d : t h e  " s h u d d e r s o f m o n e t a r y t r a n s a c t i o n s r i p p l e t h r o u g h them l i k e wind i n a wheatfield."^ -^ 4  " S o c i e t y i s an organism, not a system*' ^ 4 4  says Pursewarden  once.  I f we t a k e t h i s v i e w  w h e r e d o e s t h a t l e a v e t h e human c h a r a c t e r s w i t h i n s u c h an o r g a n i s m ? at  Moreover,  t h i s l a r g e r organism, t h e c i t y  society i n the Quartet)?  "contained"  how a r e we t o l o o k  ( f o r the c i t y i s  What i s i t s n a t u r e ?  uses a f a s c i n a t i n g and s i g n i f i c a n t  literally,  Durrell  illustration i n  K e y t o Modern P o e t r y when he i s t r y i n g t o show how t h e part i s r e l a t e d t o the whole: T h e r e i s an o r g a n i s m w h i c h f l o a t s a b o u t i n the G u l f Stream, c a l l e d t h e s i p h n o p h o r a . I t c a n be f o u n d a s a s i n g l e c e l l a n d a l s o as a l a r g e c l u s t e r o f c e l l s . Now t h i s i s the c u r i o u s t h i n g about i t : t h e s i n g l e c e l l i s a complete animal, equipped with d i g e s t ive a p p a r a t u s , e n t i r e unto i t s e l f . However  50  when s e v e r a l t h o u s a n d o f t h e s e c e l l s j o i n up t h e y u n d e r g o a r a d i c a l m o d i f i c a t i o n and become p a r t s o f a n e q u a l l y e n t i r e b u t much l a r g e r a n i m a l . Some o f t h e s i n g l e c e l l s t a k e on t h e work o f t h e d i g e s t i v e a p p a r a t u s , some s h a p e t h e m s e l v e s i n t o a n a l i m e n t a r y t r a c t , a n d s o o n . Soon t h e r e i s o n l y one b i g a n i m a l , and no t r a c e o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l s composing i t . 45  To  be s u r e , i n t h i s p a r t i c u l a r c o n t e x t D u r r e l l i s d i s -  cussing the relation body o f t h o u g h t , siphnophora  o f any s i n g l e i d e a t o t h e whole  b u t I t h i n k t h e image o f t h e  n e v e r t h e l e s s c a s t s c o n s i d e r a b l e l i g h t on  his conception of Alexandria. strikingly like  it,  There i s a n o t h e r  i n w h i c h he a t t e m p t s  image,,  t o sum up  Alexandria: The c i t y ... moves n o t o n l y b a c k w a r d s i n t o o u r h i s t o r y , s t u d d e d b y t h e g r e a t names w h i c h mark e v e r y s t a t i o n o f r e c o r d e d t i m e , b u t a l s o b a c k and f o r t h i n t h e l i v i n g p r e s e n t , s o t o s p e a k — a m o n g i t s contemporary f a i t h s and r a c e s ; t h e hundred l i t t l e spheres which r e l i g i o n o r l o r e c r e a t e s and which cohere s o f t l y t o g e t h e r l i k e c e l l s t o form t h e g r e a t sprawling j e l l y f i s h which i s Alexandria t o day. J o i n e d i n t h i s f o r t u i t o u s way b y t h e c i t y ' s own a c t o f w i l l , i s o l a t e d on a s l a t e p r o m o n t o r y o v e r t h e s e a ... t h e c o m m u n i t i e s s t i l l l i v e and communicate., , 46  What i s man i n t h i s " j e l l y f i s h a c e l l w i t h i n t h e whole? a g a i n and a g a i n through city  i s presented.  The t h o u g h t  organism" but  suggests  itself  t h e o r g a n i c imagery i n which t h e  I t s s t r e e t s r a d i a t e out " l i k e the  arms o f a s t a r f i s h  from the  Memlik's house, with  a x i s o f i t s f o u n d e r ' s tomb,"  i t s grotesque m i x t u r e of a r c h i -  t e c t u r e f r o m d i f f e r e n t e p o c h s , s u g g e s t s "a s o r t Ottomon-Egyptian-Gothic E u s t o n S t a t i o n had Having r e t u r n e d  ...  For  a l l the  m u l t i p l i e d by  once more t o t h e  world  of  as i f  b i n a r y f i s s i o n I"48 c i t y , Darley  reflects  that i t i s s o m e t h i n g w h i c h I m y s e l f had d e f l o w e r e d , a t whose h a n d s I h a d l e a r n e d t o a s c r i b e some p a r t i c u l a r meaning to f o r t u n e . These p a t c h e d and f a d e d w a l l s , t h e l i m e wash c r a c k i n g i n t o a m i l l i o n oyster-coloured patches, only i m i t a t e d t h e s k i n s o f t h e l e p e r s who w h i n e d h e r e on t h e edge o f t h e A r a b q u a r t e r ; i t was s i m p l y t h e h i d e o f t h e p l a c e i t s e l f , p e e l i n g and c a k i n g away u n d e r t h e s u n . ,  4V  T h e r e a r e many o t h e r organic native  but  images of the  s p e c i f i c a l l y human.  city  as not  c i t y l i k e a human b e i n g appetites  and  p r o p h e t s , and  fears.  only  A w a l k down a n a r r o w  s t r e e t where p r o s t i t u t e s ' booths crowd  another at e i t h e r side leads  0  one  to the thought t h a t  "a  collects i t s predispositions,  I t grows t o m a t u r i t y ,  utters i t s  d e c l i n e s i n t o h e b e t u d e , o l d age  l o n e l i n e s s w h i c h i s worse than  the  That the  fat  of i t s i n h a b i t a n t s i s bound i n e x t r i c a b l y t o t h a t of  the  city  out  i s s u g g e s t e d by  side t h e i r  booths.  either.%50  or  the p i c t u r e of the p r o s t i t u t e s  Unaware t h a t t h e i r m o t h e r c i t y was d y i n g , t h e l i v i n g s t i l l s a t t h e r e i n t h e open street, l i k e caryatids supporting the d a r k n e s s , t h e p a i n s o f f u t u r i t y upon t h e i r very e y e l i d s ; s l e e p l e s s l y watching, t h e i m m o r t a l i t y - h u n t e r s , throughout t h e whole f a t i d i c length of time. c l  pl  Yet t h e c i t y victims.  i s without  p i t y f o r t h o s e who become i t s  The m o r n i n g a f t e r M e l i s s a ' s  smiles "with a heartbreaking  death, the c i t y  indifference, a  r e f r e s h e d b y t h e darkness," ^5  cocotte  Elsewhere, Darley  2  o f " A l e x a n d r i a , p r i n c e s s a n d whore." 53  talks  From e i t h e r  x  p o i n t of view, both of which a r e those of a  subordin-  a t e , t h e c i t y ' s human i n h a b i t a n t , t h e c i t y  i s really  i n d i f f e r e n t t o man's m o r a l c o n s i d e r a t i o n s .  I t would  have t o be t o be t h e " a u t h o r " a s were m e n t i o n e d  o f s u c h p a i n f u l dramas  earlier.  So f a r t h e i d e a o f t h e c i t y l a r g e r human b e i n g  as a sort of  containing individual  characters  w i t h i n i t h a s been a d v a n c e d l a r g e l y on t h e b a s i s o f the organic and  imagery through which t h e c i t y  i s presented  o f a l i n k i n g o f t h e s i p h n o p h o r a image w i t h t h e  Quartet's fish.  image o f t h e c i t y  as a giant sprawling  jelly-  There a r e , however, other t h i n g s i n D u r r e l l ' s  w r i t i n g s which strengthen  the supposition.  Purse-  w a r d e n , i n t h e c o u r s e o f much p h i l o s o p h i z i n g , s a y s  53  t h a t "a c i v i l i z a t i o n  i s s i m p l y a great metaphor which  d e s c r i b e s the a s p i r a t i o n s of the i n d i v i d u a l s o u l i n collective  n54  form  s u g g e s t i o n t h a t we  This i s very close to a  see s o c i e t y ,  c i t y whose l i f e r e a c h e s f a r b a c k o f man and  or i n t h i s case t h e into history,  on a l a r g e s c a l e , whose l o n g - r a n g e  endeavours  as a  aspirations  a r e seldom or n e v e r r e a l l y u n d e r s t o o d  i n d i v i d u a l human b e i n g s .  D u r r e l l suggests  s i m i l a r when, i n h i s a r t i c l e  on G r o d d e c k ,  sort  by  something he d e a l s  with the r a t i o n a l i s t ' s o b j e c t i o n s to Groddeck s I t T  hypothesis.  The r a t i o n a l i s t i s i m a g i n e d a s  saying  'That a c a s e o f i n o p e r a b l e c a n c e r , s a y , w h i c h d e f i e s e v e r y o t h e r f o r m o f t r e a t m e n t , c a n be made t o y i e l d b e f o r e a G r o d d e c k i a n a t t a c k b y m a s s a g e and a n a l y s i s , i s w i t h i n t h e b o u n d s of b e l i e f . E v e n t h e I t - h y p o t h e s i s m i g h t be conceded as a u s e f u l w o r k i n g t o o l i n t h i s c a s e ... B u t i f a t h o u s a n d p e o p l e c o n t r a c t t y p h o i d f r o m a c o n s i g n m e n t o f f r u i t a r e we t o assume t h a t t h e i n d i v i d u a l I t o f each and e v e r y sane o f t h e m h a s c h o s e n t h i s f o r m o f s e l f e x p r e s s i o n i n a d e s i r e f o r s e l f - p u n i s h m e n t ? ' r <And  hereis Durrell's  answer:  I t i s t h e s o r t of q u e s t i o n t o which you w i l l f i n d no a n s w e r i n G r o d d e c k ' s b o o k s ; y e t i f he seems c o n t e n t t o p r e s e n t t h e I t as a p a r t i a l h y p o t h e s i s i t i s because h i s major i n t e r e s t i s i n i t s i n d i v i d u a l manifestation. Yet there i s nothing i n the  54  s u c h a q u e s t i o n he m i g h t v e r y e a s i l y h a v e a s s e r t e d t h a t j u s t as t h e c e l l has i t s I t - e g o p o l a r i t y , and t h e w h o l e i n d i v i d u a l h i s , so a l s o c o u l d a n y body o r community d e v e l o p i t s own. The c o n v e n t i o n s o f t h e l o g i c t h a t we l i v e b y demand t h a t w h i l e we c r e d i t t h e i n d i v i d u a l w i t h h i s i n d i v i d u a l i t y , we d e n y such a t h i n g t o concepts such as ' s t a t e ' , 'community', ' n a t i o n ' - - c o n c e p t s w h i c h we d a i l y use as thought-counters. Y e t when o u r n e w s p a p e r s s p e a k o f a 'community d e c i m a t e d by p l a g u e ' o r a ' n a t i o n c o n v u l s e d by h y s t e r i a ' we a c c e p t t h e i d e a e a s i l y enough, though our c o n s c i o u s n e s s r e j e c t s t h e s e forma t i o n s as f i c t i o n s . Y e t i n time o f war a n a t i o n i s t r e a t e d as an i n d i v i d u a l i t y w i t h certain specified characteristics; politicians 'go t o t h e n a t i o n ' ; The T i m e s d i s c u s s e s t h e 'Health o f t h e Nation' w i t h t h e help of relevant statistics. T h i s u n i t y w h i c h we c o n s i d e r a f i c t i o n - - c o u l d i t not r e f l e c t , i n i t s component p a r t s , t h e shadows o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l u n i t y , which i s , a c c o r d i n g t o G r o d d e c k , no l e s s a f i c t i o n ? I f a national ego why n o t a n a t i o n a l I t ? 5 5 To r e t u r n t o c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n i n t h e Q u a r t e t , my own f e e l i n g i s t h a t D u r r e l l h a s i n c o r p o r a t e d  this  v i e w o f m a n - w i t h i n - L a r g e r Man i n t o h i s n o v e l s . B u t I a l s o f e e l t h a t t h i s v i e w i s o n l y one p o s s i b l e way i n w h i c h t o r e g a r d human c h a r a c t e r , a n d t h a t t h e r e a r e a t l e a s t two o t h e r ways i n w h i c h t h a t c h a r a c t e r c a n a l s o be s e e n , one b e i n g a v i e w o f t h e c i t y  as i d e n t i c a l  with  Groddeck's I t , and t h e o t h e r a v i e w o f t h e c i t y a s t h e only character i n the novels. were i n t e n d e d  I b e l i e v e a l l t h r e e ways  b y D u r r e l l t o become a p p a r e n t a s one r e a d s  t h r o u g h t h e Q u a r t e t , and what I p r o p o s e t o do is  here  c o n s i d e r e a c h o f t h e s e v i e w s o f human c h a r a c t e r  in turn.  I shall  start  with the view already  upon, t h a t of m a n - w i t h i n - L a r g e r  Man.  touched  FOOTNOTES  2  J.235.  3  B.53.  B.104.  4  S e e M.300, M.301.  5  °B.92. B.128.  7  %.207. 9  B.47.  10  M.207.  1:L  1 2  l3  14  J.14.  J.15. M.122.  M.122.  15  M.122.  16  M.171.  17  C.273.  18  C.159.  19  M.277.  20 ^C.27.  21C.25-26. 22c. 211. 23C.98. 24c.6325j.l03. 26j.i47. 27j,2l428M..V3V. 29M.1^630M.HQS• 31^.16^32j.161. 33M.132. 34M.132. 35j.237. 36j.i69. 37j.24. 3°j.221. 39B.156. 40  U  J.139.  B.55.  42c.11. 43B.151.  58  44  M.63.  /, 5  Key t o M o d e r n P o e t r y , pp. 2-3. In a footnote to h i s i l l u s t r a t i o n D u r r e l l does a d m i t t h a t t h i s v i e w o f t h e s i p h n o p h o r a o r g a n i s m h a s b e e n q u e s t i o n e d by some biologists. 46  B.151.  47  C.63.  4  %.254.  49  C.65.  5 0  J.188.  51  J.188.  52  J.239.  53  G.63.  54  C.143.  " S t u d i e s i n G e n i u s : V I G r o d d e c k , " H o r i z o n , p. 394. The i d e a o f s e l f - p u n i s h m e n t f o r t h e I t comes i n w i t h Groddeck's b e l i e f t h a t the I t , i n i n f a n c y , experiences t h e w e l l - k n o w n F r e u d i a n c o m p l e x e s and c o n s e q u e n t l y deve l o p s an i n e v i t a b l e f e e l i n g o f g u i l t w h i c h h a s t o be expiated. 5 6  Durrell,  " V I G r o d d e c k , " H o r i z o n , p.  394.  CHAPTER I V  I n t h i s v i e w , man becomes r e a l l y " c e l l " whose i n d i v i d u a l i d e n t i t y , single-celled merged w i t h the  like  a sort of  that of the  s i p h n o p h o r a , d i s a p p e a r s when he becomes  the l a r g e r , c o l l e c t i v e entity.  That  being  c a s e , man's r o l e becomes t h a t o f a n y c e l l w i t h i n a  l a r g e r organism: t o f u l f i l l  i t s functions as d i c t a t e d  by  i s i n a l l things  t h a t organism.  Eventually, its  life  l i k e any c e l l ,  life  i tw i l l  d i e a n d be  subservient. replaced;  w i l l n o t be f u l l y u n d e r s t o o d i f one f o c u s e s  o n l y on i t . the  The c e l l  I t must u l t i m a t e l y be s e e n i n r e l a t i o n t o  o f the l a r g e r organism.  This,  o f course, i s  h i g h l y u n s a t i s f a c t o r y t o the ego--the conscious  "I"--of  the  other  "cell".  Tfte^may i n d e e d b e u s e d f o r p u r p o s e s  t h a n t h o s e i t c o n c e i v e s o f a s i t s own. quieting, u n s e t t l i n g thought. the  thought of a c h i l d  fronted with its  It is a  dis-  Indeed, i t i s r a t h e r  i n a science  c l a s s who, when  like con-  o u r day's p i c t u r e o f t h e atom, sees i n  s t r u c t u r e a r e f l e c t i o n of t h e s t r u c t u r e of the great  universe  i n w h i c h he h i m s e l f  i b l y presents  itself:  t i n y ''universe'' w i t h  "Just  lives.  The i d e a  suppose t h a t t h i s  i t s electron planets  irresistatom, t h i s  circling  about  a  c e n t r a l s u n ... j u s t s u p p o s e t h a t i t i s i n d e e d  universe,  that i t contains  a  i n i t w o r l d s a n d men who  a r e t h e m s e l v e s made up o f l e s s e r atoms w h i c h i n t u r n And  again,  suppose t h e g r e a t u n i v e r s e  ..  I live i n i s i n  f a c t a n o t h e r ''atom-* l i k e t h e one on t h e p i c t u r e a n d t h a t i t i s o n l y an i n f i n i t e l y s m a l l p a r t o f some u n known, l a r g e r b e i n g mind, indeed lies vertigo. and  who i n t u r n  The c h i l d ' s  any mind, r e e l s a t t h a t p o i n t .  T h a t way  The t h i n g t o d o , i f one i s p r a c t i c a l  s e n s i b l e , i s t o k e e p the i m m e d i a t e w o r l d  even i f doing  s o means d i s t o r t i n g  view of a l a r g e r r e a l i t y . life  ...."  i n i t s true  i n focus,  or foregoing  one's  Y e t i f one w i s h e s t o s e e one  s e t t i n g , one h a s t o s e e i t a s p a r t o f  a larger process.  A f t e r much s u f f e r i n g a n d s t r u g g l e t o  understand, Darley  comes t o r e g a r d  Alexandria  h i s own l i f e i n  t h a t way: ... I t h o u g h t t h e w h o l e s t o r y t h r o u g h from b e g i n n i n g t o end, s t a r t i n g i n t h e d a y s b e f o r e I e v e r knew M e l i s s a a n d e n d i n g somewhere s o o n i n a n i d l e p r a g m a t i c d e a t h i n a c i t y t o which I d i d not belong; I say that I thought i t through, but strangely enough I thought o f i t n o t a s a p e r s o n a l h i s t o r y w i t h a n i n d i v i d u a l a c c e n t s o much as p a r t o f t h e h i s t o r i c a l f a b r i c o f t h e place. I d e s c r i b e d i t t o m y s e l f as p a r t and p a r c e l o f t h e c i t y ' s b e h a v i o u r , comp l e t e l y i n keeping w i t h e v e r y t h i n g t h a t had gone b e f o r e , a n d e v e r y t h i n g t h a t w o u l d f o l l o w it. I t was a s i f my i m a g i n a t i o n h a d become  s u b t l y d r u g g e d by t h e a m b i e n c e o f t h e p l a c e and c o u l d n o t r e s p o n d t o p e r s o n a l , i n d i v i d u a l assessments.. A little  l a t e r he  adds:  I t o o k i t as a m e a s u r e o f my m a t u r i t y t h a t I was f i l l e d no l o n g e r w i t h d e s p a i r i n g s e l f p i t y b u t w i t h a d e s i r e t o be c l a i m e d by t h e c i t y , e n r o l l e d among i t s t r i v i a l o r t r a g i c m e m o r i e s — i f i t so wished.-, To  take  yet another look  L a r g e r Flan p r o p o s i t i o n , i t i s n o t seem a t f i r s t , On  the  nor  at t h i s  man-within-  so f a n t a s t i c a s i t  i s i t an i d e a new  t o t h e human m i n d .  c o n t r a r y , much r e l i g i o u s t h o u g h t , f o r e x a m p l e  t h e C h r i s t i a n i d e a o f t h e M y s t i c a l Body, i s based this  may  concept.  St. Paul  on  writes,  ... we a r e t o g r o w up i n e v e r y way i n t o h i m who i s t h e h e a d , i n t o C h r i s t , f r o m whom t h e w h o l e b o d y , j o i n e d and k n i t t o g e t h e r by e v e r y j o i n t w i t h w h i c h i t i s s u p p l i e d , when e a c h p a r t i s w o r k i n g p r o p e r l y , makes b o d i l y g r o w t h and u p b u i l d s i t s e l f i n l o v e . But  P a u l p o s i t s some c o n t r o l on t h e p a r t o f t h e i n -  dividual will  " c e l l s " o r members as t o w h e t h e r o r n o t  merge and  "grow" w i t h i n the  l a r g e r body.  when d i s c u s s i n g t h e r e l a t i o n o f t h e misses the and,  idea of  ego  to the  they  Groddeck, I t , dis-  s u c h c o n t r o l a s mere e g o - i l l u s i o n  f o r the purposes of h i s novels  anyway, D u r r e l l  62  a p p e a r s t o do  so t o o .  i s r u l e d out,  the  Nevertheless,  though  free-will  i n d i v i d u a l "cells'" that are D u r r e l l * s  c h a r a c t e r s a r e not always found to l i v e  harmoniously  w i t h i n t h e g r e a t e r w h o l e t h a t c o n t r o l s them. ers l i k e Mountolive, and  N e s s i m , t o some e x t e n t  even J u s t i n e ( t o t h e  e x t e n t t h a t she  CharactBalthazar,  wilfully  Nessim i n h i s p l a n s ) , these  characters at least  to r e b e l against the nature  o f t h i n g s and  will  o f t h e i r own,  Mountolive political  and  aids  appear  insist  on  a  a s s u m i n g a power o f i n d i v i d u a l a c t i o n .  Nessim, of course,  s t r a t e g y and  do  this  through  counter-strategy.  does i t t h r o u g h h i s a t t e m p t s t o use  their  Balthazar  the Cabal  to  over-  come h i s i n v e r s i o n o r a t l e a s t i t s o v e r t  manifestations  and  As  so " e x p u n g e t h e p a s s i o n a l n a t u r e . " ^  4  shown  e a r l i e r w i t h t h e i m a g e r y o f man's p a s s i v i t y and lessness,  s u c h a t t e m p t s a r e doomed t o f a i l u r e ;  v a r i a b l y l e a d to s u f f e r i n g i f not There i s a g r e a t out  the Quartet,  w i t h these  and  d e a l of d e a t h imagery  t h e i r attempts at  Nessim's o f f i c e ,  e c t s h i s i n d u s t r i a l and  political  " s a r c o p h a g u s o f t u b u l a r s t e e l and the  they i n -  death.  much o f i t i s u s e d i n  c h a r a c t e r s and  directed action.  also to  help-  e l e v a t o r t h a t t a k e s him  connection will-  f r o m w h i c h he concerns,  dir-  is a  l i g h t e d glass."*  to i t i s " l i k e a  through-  Even  Byzantine  63  sarcophagus."^ i s reached  When t h e s t a l e m a t e w i t h  and  N e s s i m and  Mountolive  J u s t i n e f e a r death  is  imminent, they l i e " m o t i o n l e s s as the e f f i g i e s A l e x a n d r i a n t o m b s , s i d e by  s i d e i n the dark  upon  room,  their  open eyes s t a r i n g i n t o each o t h e r w i t h t h e s i g h t l e s s n e s s o f inhuman o b j e c t s , m i r r o r s made o f q u a r t z , dead  7 stars.%  I t i s d u r i n g t h i s time, too, t h a t Nessim  r e n d e z v o u s w i t h J u s t i n e and  B a l t h a z a r a t t h e museum  one  o f them s i t t i n g ,  n i g h t and  f i n d s t h e two  like  two  s t a t u e s , on a m a r b l e s a r c o p h a g u s l i d ; t h e y make room for  him when he  arrives.  Mountolive,  Nessim's oppon-  e n t i n t h e p o l i t i c a l game, f e e l s h i s i n n e r m o s t "become a s d u s t y , a s a i r l e s s a s an E g y p t i a n when h i s own  and  c l e a r t o him. for  h i s former  Forced  soul  tomb"  9  f r i e n d ' s p r e d i c a m e n t becomes  t o go t o t h e E g y p t i a n  authorities  a c t i o n a g a i n s t N e s s i m , he p r e s e n t s h i m s e l f t h e r e  "like  some f r e t f u l mummy."  D a r l e y , whose  deception  by J u s t i n e i s a t l e a s t p a r t l y a p o l i t i c a l n e c e s s i t y o f the Hosnanis,  recognizes i n t u i t i v e l y his mistress'  death-tending  nature  a l l t h e w h i l e t h a t he l o v e s  and when he m e e t s h e r and  Nessim again i n C l e a the  i m a g e r y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h them i n d i c a t e s t h e i r beyond a doubt.  her; death  situation  Karm, a t w h i c h t h e y h a v e been c o n f i n e d  u n d e r h o u s e - a r r e s t , has  "a somewhat f u n e r e a l f l a v o u r . " ^ ! !  64  J u s t i n e ' s k i s s when s h e g r e e t s D a r l e y i s " c o l d a s a n obituary,"  and h e r "dead w h i t e  1 2  overpowdered f a c e "  has  " t h e p a s s i v e b e a u t y o f some P r o p e r t i a n mummy w h i c h  had  been c l u m s i l y p a i n t e d t o g i v e t h e i l l u s i o n  Her  anguished,  g u i l t y words r a t t l e  o f s o d s o n a n empty c o f f i n . " ed, that  of l i f e . " - ^ 1  down " l i k e a h a i l  Nessim t o o h a s s u f f e r -  1 4  a n d i n h i s l o s s o f a n e y e a n d a f i n g e r ( w i t h what suggests  of h i s h a v i n g  of castration) there i s the indication been l a r g e l y d e p r i v e d o f l i f e .  His i n -  j u r i e s come a b o u t a s a r e s u l t o f a i r r a i d s on t h e c i t y , and  i n this  connection  i t should  be n o t e d  t h a t man's  i n v e n t i o n o f machinery i s everywhere i n t h e Quartet associated w i t h d e s t r u c t i o n and the wish f o r death. The  cars o f the Alexandrians 15  sarcophagi." mind Darley litter  The F r e n c h of "malevolent  of tanks  are " l i k e  warships  gleaming  i n the harbour r e -  tombstones." °  a n d guns l e f t b e h i n d  The r u s t i n g  b y t h e w a r on t h e  beaches l i e there " l i k e the skeletons o f d i n o s a u r s , " reminding  1 7  man o f t h e e x t i n c t i o n t h a t a w a i t s h i m t o o .  Elsewhere i n the Quartet  t h e r e i s an o v e r t r e f e r e n c e t o  " t h e d e a t h - b r i n g i n g t o o l s w i t h w h i c h /~~man_7 e x p r e s s e s h i s fear of l i f e , " ons  a n d t h e r e f e r e n c e h e r e i s n o t t o weap-  o f war but simply t o those  technological inventions  o f man w i t h w h i c h he t r i e s to. e s t a b l i s h h i s c o n t r o l o v e r  nature. Lastly, there  i n t h i s discussion of death  i s B a l t h a z a r , whose s t o r y u n f o l d s  that of the other  apart  c h a r a c t e r s mentioned here.  imagery, from The e x -  t e n t t o w h i c h B a l t h a z a r r e l i e s on t h e i n t e l l e c t conscious  self i n controlling l i f e ,  the l i f e  of others  a s w e l l a s h i s own, i s r e v e a l e d w i t h p a r t i c u l a r ity  of the  clar-  i n an i n c i d e n t t o w h i c h C l e a once r e f e r s and o f  w h i c h he h i m s e l f o n c e t e l l s M o u n t o l i v e . ed t h a t he c o u l d i n d u c e  He h a d c l a i m -  m u t u a l l o v e i n two t o t a l  s t r a n g e r s by a s o r t o f c o n t r o l - e x p e r i m e n t ,  and d u r i n g  c a r n i v a l he a c t u a l l y c a r r i e s o u t t h a t e x p e r i m e n t , hoping  t o h u m i l i a t e an o l d enemy by d o i n g  "caught pretending lesson.%  x 9  He i s  t o be God, a n d l e a r n s a b i t t e r  The l o v e a f f a i r he i n s t i g a t e s e n d s i n t h e  suicides both of the g i r l his  so.  i n v o l v e d and o f h e r f a t h e r ,  o l d enemy. B a l t h a z a r h i m s e l f s u f f e r s much b o t h  mentally  and p h y s i c a l l y as a r e s u l t o f h i s a t t e m p t a t  d i r e c t i n g h i s own l i f e  (one g a t h e r s  f r o m h i s own a c c o u n t  t h a t t h e a t t e m p t b a c k f i r e d and p u s h e d h i m i n t o a passionate,  hopeless,  degrading  love f o ra  worthless  G r e e k a c t o r ) , a n d when D a r l e y m e e t s h i m a g a i n he  i s r e c o v e r i n g from attempted s u i c i d e .  i n Clea  E v e n s o , he  speaks o f h i s r e c o v e r y as h i s " r e t u r n from t h e deadiy But i f f r e e - w i l l  i s r u l e d o u t f o r t h e human  " c e l l s " w i t h i n t h e L a r g e r Man, w h a t i s one t o s a y o f such apparent r e b e l l i o n as these c h a r a c t e r s attempt? W h i l e on t h e s u r f a c e i t l o o k s as though t h e y c a n r e f u s e t h e i r subordinate roles,  even i f t h i s r e s u l t s o n l y i n  s u f f e r i n g and d e f e a t f o r themselves, y e t a c l o s e r examination of f u r t h e r imagery  i n the Quartet reveals  t h a t s u c h a p p a r e n t l y r e b e l l i o u s and i n d e p e n d e n t  action  i s i n a c t u a l f a c t o n l y a n o t h e r way i n w h i c h t h e p u r p o s e s o f t h e L a r g e r Man a r e f u l f i l l e d . is  For l i f e  shown i n t h e Q u a r t e t s t r i v e s a l w a y s t o w a r d s  as i t self-  r e a l i z a t i o n , t h i s t o be u n d e r s t o o d i n o t h e r a n d l a r g e r ways t h a n t h e m e r e l y r a t i o n a l , a n d s u c h tion of  self-realiza-  seems i n e v i t a b l y t o be o b t a i n a b l e o n l y a t t h e c o s t  suffering. Perhaps  t h e b e s t way t o e x p l a i n i t i s t o s a y  t h a t t h e p i c t u r e here i s s t r i k i n g l y C h r i s t i a n account of the r e b e l l i o n Satanic angels, the F a l l  l i k e that i n the i n Heaven b y t h e  o f Man a n d t h e s u b s e q u e n t  Redemption through t h e C h r i s t . of t h e C h r i s t i a n mythology  Somehow t h e s e  events  a r e b o t h i n e v i t a b l e and de-  •khey ahe  sirable;  i n no way t h e s o l e r e s u l t o f i l l - u s e d  freedom  67  on  t h e p a r t o f S a t a n o r o f man, b u t s o m e h o w  mysterious-  A  l y part of t h e d i v i n e plan. Theologians, making r e l i g i o n l o g i c a l , the  illogicality  have o f course  wrestled  of t h i s f o r centuries without  i n my o p i n i o n , m a k i n g i t seem l o g i c a l . n o t mean t h a t i t i s n o t n e v e r t h e l e s s of C h r i s t i a n t h i n k i n g . fully  dedicated t o with  ever,  B u t t h a t does  t h e h e a r t and c o r e  S i m i l a r l y , the spectacle of  c o n t r o l l e d " c e l l s " who a r e n e v e r t h e l e s s  able t o  " r e b e l " a g a i n s t t h e d i c t a t e s o f t h e L a r g e r Man c o n t a i n ing  them--only t o succeed i n a c t u a l l y f u l f i l l i n g t h e  p u r p o s e s o f t h a t g r e a t e r and m y s t e r i o u s is  completely  illogical.  it  less valid  as an o b s e r v a t i o n  all,  being-?-this too  Does t h a t n e c e s s a r i l y make on human l i f e ?  i t i s d i s t u r b i n g a n d u n s a t i s f a c t o r y t o man  ( o n l y ! ) s o l o n g a s he p e r s i s t s i n c o n c e i v i n g in  After  p u r e l y i n d i v i d u a l and r a t i o n a l  only  o f purpose  terms.  I w i l l now l e a v e t h i s p a r t i c u l a r v i e w o f manw i t h i n - L a r g e r Man a n d t u r n t o t h e s e c o n d p o s s i b l e v i e w o f D u r r e l l ' s c h a r a c t e r s , b e c a u s e t o some e x t e n t s i m i l a r t o t h e f i r s t v i e w , and i m a g e r y t h a t  i t i s  illustrates  t h i s s e c o n d v i e w w i l l u s u a l l y a l s o be s i g n i f i c a n t regard  to the f i r s t .  In this  characters, the c i t y i s again  with  second view o f D u r r e l l ' s seen as l i v i n g  seen as p a r a l l e l t o Groddeck's I t .  The human  a n d c a n be characters  that l i v e Thus,  i n t h e c i t y and a r e c o n t r o l l e d by i t a r e egos.  from t h i s  s e c o n d p o i n t o f v i e w , we f i n d t h e  human p s y c h e s p l i t i n t o i t s two c o m p o n e n t s . b i n a t i o n o f t h e ego, t h e i n d i v i d u a l D u r r e l l  A comcharacter,  w i t h t h e I t t h a t i s t h e c i t y g i v e s a c o m p l e t e human being—or rather,  i tgives a v a r i e t y  o f c o m p l e t e human  b e i n g s , s i n c e t h e r e i s a g r e a t number o f i n d i v i d u a l characters. this  Seeing the c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n of the novels  way d o e s n o t s o l v e t h e p r o b l e m o f f r e e w i l l i f  one i n s i s t s  on s e e i n g freedom as a p r e r o g a t i v e o f t h e  ego, o f t h e c o n s c i o u s " I " .  B u t why n o t s e e i t a s a 20  f u n c t i o n of the I t instead? the  source of a l l c r e a t i v e  F o r Groddeck,  t h e I t was  e n e r g y a n d was c o m p l e t e l y  f r e e i n t h e sense t h a t i t o p e r a t e d beyond c a u s a l i t y e r e c t e d b y man's i n t e l l e c t .  t h e frame o f  I t s purposes  ( e v e n l i k e t h e p u r p o s e s o f God I) were n o t t o be u n d e r s t o o d by t h a t i n t e l l e c t b u t o n l y b y s u c h i n t u i t i o n man m i g h t h a v e .  Indeed, t h e I t f o r Groddeck  as a  was o f t h e  n a t u r e o f God, a n d s u c h r e a l i t y a s C h r i s t h a d f o r h i m was o n l y t o be g r a s p e d b y a s u b m e r s i o n o f t h e ego i n t o the  I t , a t w h i c h p o i n t a s y m b o l i c C h r i s t became a p p a r -  ent. Well then, s u r e l y those of D u r r e l l ' s  characters  w h i c h a r e most open t o t h e i n f l u e n c e s o f t h e I t must  also  be  t h e most c r e a t i v e p e o p l e ?  characters i n the Quartet be  correct.  cut o f f from l i f e .  tion  proves t h i s  N e s s i m , a s was a l r e a d y  images o f h i s symbolic  tivity  A close look at the supposition to  i n d i c a t e d by t h e  c a s t r a t i o n , h a s somehow b e e n  He o n c e h a d some m e a s u r e o f c r e a -  and a t a l e n t f o r p a i n t i n g , b u t an Oxford  "succeeded i n developing  educa-  h i s p h i l o s o p h i c bent t o  t h e p o i n t w h e r e he was i n c a p a b l e  of p r a c t i s i n g the  21 art.%  F r o m t i m e t o t i m e he v o i c e s a d e s i r e t o p a i n t  again,  a n d o n c e he a c t u a l l y p a i n t s J u s t i n e , b u t t h e  artistic  impulse  remains thwarted  i n him.  I n c o n t r a s t t o N e s s i m t h e r e i s C l e a who h a s c o n s i d e r a b l e a r t i s t i c t a l e n t a n d who k e e p s on p a i n t i n g r e g a r d l e s s o f what h a p p e n s — e x c e p t f o r t h a t one crous  i n s t a n c e when she f i n d s h e r s e l f s t u c k  P u r s e w a r d e n f o r h e l p f o r h e r " m i s e r y " 1^2 she  attains f u l l  ing,  clearly and  n  t  n  e e n (  }  She h a s become "a r e a l  at last" 3 2  as a r e s u l t of s u f f e r  of her ego-consciousness  symbolized  i n her accident  (which i s  and near-drowning)  an awakening t o awareness o f t h e u n c o n s c i o u s powers  in l i f e , Clea  an a r t i s t  t h e "death"  a n d goes t o  a r t i s t h o o d a n d a p l a c e among t h e R e a l  Ones ( P u r s e w a r d e n ' s p h r a s e ) . human b e i n g ,  j  ludi-  o f w h i c h t h e Hand i s s y m b o l i c .  The f a c t  c a n t a l k a b o u t h e r new s t a t u s i n c o m p l e t e l y  that object  70  t e r m s i s an o b v i o u s ered the i l l u s i o n  i n d i c a t i o n of her having  surrend-  of being i n c o n t r o l of her l i f e .  The  road t o h e r s a l v a t i o n s t a r t s from h e r a g o n i z i n g sense o f g u i l t a b o u t N a r o u z . The c r y i n g t h a t h a u n t s h e r f o r months i s t h a t o f Narouz when he came t o s e e h e r d u r i n g c a r n i v a l a n d she f e l t  only disgust a t h i s declaration  o f l o v e ; t h e n a g a i n , she r e f u s e d o u t o f d i s g u s t t o come t o N a r o u z when he was d y i n g . leads through  an e x p e r i e n c e  From t h i s t h e way  w h i c h makes h e r r e a l i z e  t h a t s u c h g u i l t h a s no c l a i m w h a t e v e r on t h e human and  t h u s l e a d s on t o w h a t one m i g h t t r u l y  being,  c a l l a free  life. In  Pursewarden's "Conversations  with  B r o t h e r A s s " t h e r e i s an e x p l i c i t r e f e r e n c e t o t h e s o r t of experience particularly  Clea undergoes. of the a r t i s t ' s  h e n c e he c a l l s t h e e x p e r i e n c e  Pursewarden i s t a l k i n g c r e a t i v e f u n c t i o n and "the poetic act":  But t h i s a c t , t h e p o e t i c a c t , w i l l cease t o b e n e c e s s a r y when e v e r y o n e c a n p e r f o r m i t f o r h i m s e l f . What h i n d e r s them, y o u a s k ? W e l l , we a r e a l l n a t u r a l l y a f r a i d t o s u r r e n d e r o u r own p i t i f u l l y r a t i o n a l i s e d m o r a l i t y — and t h e p o e t i c jump I'm p r e d i c a t i n g l i e s t h e other s i d e of i t . I t i s only t e r r i f y i n g bec a u s e we r e f u s e t o r e c o g n i s e i n o u r s e l v e s t h e h o r r i b l e g a r g o y l e s which decorate t h e totem p o l e s of our churches—murderers, liars, a d u l t e r e r s a n d so o n . (Once r e c o g n i s e d , t h e s e papier-mache'' m a s k s f a d e . ) 2 4  71  T h a t i s t o s a y , i n some way t h e human b e i n g must come t o terms w i t h h i s sense o f g u i l t i n order t o d i s p e l t h a t g u i l t and a t t a i n f r e e d o m . bent would c a l l fits  A t h i n k e r with a C h r i s t i a n  t h i s e x p i a t i o n , b u t t h a t word  i n t o D u r r e l l ' s thought i n t h e Quartet.  "poetic a c t " should  Rather, the  be s e e n a s a s o r t o f b i r t h i n t o a  new a n d d i f f e r e n t l i f e ;  indeed,  t h i s i s t h e image t h a t  D u r r e l l u s e s f o r i t when he d e s c r i b e s of  hardly  Darley's  revival  Clea: I t must have h u r t , a s t h e f i r s t f e w b r e a t h s h u r t a newly b o r n c h i l d . The b o d y o f C l e a was p r o t e s t i n g a t t h i s f o r c i b l e r e b i r t h . And a l l o f a s u d d e n t h e f e a t u r e s o f t h a t w h i t e f a c e moved, composed t h e m s e l v e s t o express something l i k e p a i n and p r o t e s t . (Yes, but i t h u r t s t o r e a l i s e . ) 2 5  The p a i n t h a t a c c o m p a n i e s t h i s i n t o a new s t a t e o f a w a r e n e s s accompanies  " b i r t h " o f a human  i s such p a i n as i n v a r i a b l y  growth.  B u t what o f t h e o t h e r Q u a r t e t c h a r a c t e r s are a r t i s t s ?  A r n a u t i , J u s t i n e ' s f i r s t husband,  writer with considerable not  enough,  being  talent.  who  i sa  He h a s i n s i g h t , b u t  as Balthazar points out i n h i s c r i t i c i s m of  him.  H i s a r t i s hampered b y h i s F r e n c h b e n t f o r r a t i o n -  ality  and o r d e r .  H i s account o f J u s t i n e i n t h e novel  72  Moeurs has been pruned Arnauti for  e i t h e r d i d not understand  melodrama.  unconscious  o r f e a r e d w o u l d make  I n other words, ego-consciousness i s  strong i n Arnauti.  of  of a l l the things that  What a w a r e n e s s he d o e s h a v e o f t h e  powers o f l i f e  he c h a n n e l s i n t h e d i r e c t i o n  Freudian psychoanalysis.  H i s response  to Justine's  n e u r o s i s i s t o t a k e h e r f r o m one p s y c h o a n a l y s t t o a n o t h e r , back and f o r t h a c r o s s Europe. u n d e r s t a n d i n g t h a t he c a n n o t another  He i s f a r f r o m  control either the l i f e of  o r h i s own. Then t h e r e i s P u r s e w a r d e n whose p o s i t i o n i s  strangely ambivalent.  He r e f e r s a t one p o i n t t o h i s  " c l a s s i c a l head and r o m a n t i c heart," ^ and p e r h a p s u  h e r e i s t h e b e s t summation o f h i s d u a l i t y . p o i n t o f v i e w he seems t o d e v e l o p t o w a r d s from t h i s angle h i s l i f e  i s a failure  right  From one despair.  Seen  i n spite of h i s  deep i n s i g h t s ; he h a s f a i l e d t o come t o t e r m s w i t h t h e g u i l t he f e e l s f o r h a v i n g c o m m i t t e d  incest.  (One  should note i n t h i s connection the d e s t r u c t i v e of  h i srelationship to Liza, the blindness that  t h e i r c h i l d as w e l l as h e r , t h e e a r l y death child,  a n d t h e sombre e f f e c t o f L i z a  Quartet u n t i l ,  nature afflicts  of that  throughout t h e  i n t h e l a s t p i c t u r e o f her, she s i t s  beside t h e ashes of t h e i r l i f e  together; h i s love  letters  73  t o h e r w h i c h she h a s b u r n e d . )  Pursewarden*s  s u i c i d e w o u l d t h e n be w h a t some c r i t i c s h a v e c l a i m e d i t is,  a f i n a l n e g a t i o n of the value of l i f e . 7 2  Yet  from  a n o t h e r p o i n t o f v i e w h i s s u i c i d e c a n be s e e n a s a r e j e c t i o n only of the sort of l i f e h i s ego-consciousness has l e d him i n t o — t h a t i s ,  o f t h e s i a l e and  t r u c t i v e p o l i t i c a l game i n w h i c h he comes t o while h i s writing  t o L i z a t h a t he w a n t e d  des-  meddle—  to free  her  f r o m t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p must be c r e d i t e d w i t h some truth.  I n t h a t c a s e , h i s d e a t h t a k e s on t h e o v e r t o n e s  of w i l l i n g s a c r i f i c e f o r others, a s a c r i f i c e through w h i c h he s i m u l t a n e o u s l y f r e e s h i m s e l f f r o m bondage t o t h e ego; h i s d e a t h becomes t h e f u l l e s t s u b m i s s i o n 28 of e g o - s e l f t o the I t . p a r t l y because  I advance t h i s second  of Pursewarden's  s u i c i d e , p a r t l y because  own  i n an i n t e r v i e w t h a t " P u r s e w a r d e n s s u i c i d e of a true  statement  s u i c i d e i s the 29 cathar." There i s a l s o 1  sacrificial  account of h i s  of D u r r e l l s e x p l i c i t T  view  74  the  s t r i k i n g image o f h i m i n d e a t h a s a  Pan."*.  "resurrected  I n any case, i t i s hard t o w r i t e him o f f  as e n d i n g i n d e s p a i r  s i n c e we a r e made t o f e e l t h a t h i s  s t a t u r e a s an a r t i s t  i s greater  else i n the Quartet. brother's ing  than that  o f anyone  L i z a ' s statements about h e r  w r i t i n g s and B a r l e y ' s  own r e a c t i o n when r e a d -  Pursewarden's l e t t e r s t o L i z a c o n t r i b u t e t o t h i s  impression,  a s does t h e esteem t h a t a l m o s t everyone i n  t h e Q u a r t e t h a s f o r Pursewarden a s an a r t i s t . t h e v i e w s on l i f e  Again,  that Pursewarden expresses i n h i s  works as w e l l as i n t h e Q u a r t e t a r e q u i t e s i m i l a r t o t h e v i e w s o f Groddeck, and t h e y emphasize above a l l t h e v a l i d i t y o f hope a n d t h e p o s s i b i l i t y ed i f man s t r i v e s h a r d enough simply could  f o ri t .  Such views  w o u l d n o t be a v a i l a b l e t o anyone who i n t h e e n d deny t h a t l i f e  thing that  has value.  There i s s t i l l  l i k e s o many o t h e r e v e n t s i n t h e  Q u a r t e t i t changes shape and meaning l o o k i n g a t i t a n d when.  with this  one more  c o u l d be s a i d a b o u t P u r s e w a r d e n ' s s u i c i d e ,  though, and i t i s t h i s :  is  o f j o y t o be a t t a i n -  d e p e n d i n g u p o n who  Surely Durrell's intention  i s t o s u g g e s t n o t t h a t t h e t r u t h about an ev-  ent  or a person i s d i f f i c u l t  t o discern but that  are  a t l e a s t a s many " t r u t h s " o f t h e s e t h i n g s a s t h e r e  are  observers t o consider  them.  there  To q u o t e P u r s e w a r d e n ,  75  We l i v e ... l i v e s b a s e d upon s e l e c t e d f i c t i o n s . Our v i e w o f r e a l i t y i s c o n d i t i o n e d by o u r p o s i t i o n i n s p a c e and t i m e - - n o t by our p e r s o n a l i t i e s a s we l i k e t o t h i n k . Thus e v e r y i n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f r e a l i t y i s based upon a unique p o s i t i o n . Two p a c e s e a s t o r w e s t a n d t h e whole p i c t u r e i s changed. Again, T h e r e a r e o n l y a s many r e a l i t i e s a s y o u to imagine. Keats might  j u s t get mention  here.  care  He i s  p r e s e n t e d i n C l e a , somewhat u n c o n v i n c i n g l y , as h a v i n g become a w r i t e r i n p o t e n t i a l i f n o t i n f a c t .  But h i s  r e a l function i n the Quartet, surely, i s to  illustrate  t h e c o n t r a s t b e t w e e n j o u r n a l i s m and l i t e r a t u r e c l e a r e s t p o s s i b l e way.  F o r K e a t s , what m a t t e r s a r e t h e  f a c t s o f any g i v e n c a s e .  He  s u f f e r s from "the mania t o everything.%31  perpetuate, t o r e c o r d , to photograph As a r e s u l t  he r e m a i n s ,  u n t i l t h e change i n C l e a ,  the s u p e r f i c i e s of r e a l l i f e acts),"y32  He  i n the  ( a c t s and f a c t s  "on  about  does n o t u n d e r s t a n d what D a r l e y comes t o  u n d e r s t a n d , t h a t p o e t r y i s "more r e a l  than  observed  truth."/3 3 D a r l e y , o f c o u r s e , f i n a l l y becomes a f l e d g e d w r i t e r a t t h e end  of the Quartet.  ment i s s i m i l a r t o t h a t o f C l e a and  full-  His develop-  i t s last  stage i s  76  the  same a s h e r s .  The d e c i s i v e p o i n t f o r D a r l e y  when, t r y i n g t o f r e e C l e a f r o m t h e w r e c k , he the  determination  decides—  comes n o t f r o m h i s c o n s c i o u s  from the depths of the I t — t o  s e l f but  b r i n g her a l i v e t o the  surface o r remain i n t h e rock-pool w i t h h e r . the d e c i s i v e submission  comes  This i s  o f h i s e g o - s e l f t o t h e I t , and  it  enables  h i m t o become c r e a t i v e a s n e v e r b e f o r e .  is  through  t h i s new p o w e r t h a t he i s a b l e t o r e v i v e  Clea.  His intellect tells  b u t he l i t e r a l l y source  h i m t h a t she i s a l r e a d y  w i l l s her to l i f e ,  of t h i s w i l l  It  dead,  and a g a i n t h e  i s n o t t h e ego b u t t h e I t .  It will  be u s e f u l h e r e t o l o o k a g a i n a t G r o d d e c k ' s v i e w o f t h e human p s y c h e o r p e r s o n a l i t y . will the  as a conscious  We  a r e used t o t h i n k i n g o f  f o r c e i n man a n d t o l i n k i n g  ego a s t h e d i r e c t o r o f human a c t i o n .  a v i e w was f a l s e  t o Groddeck.  explains i t i n h i s a r t i c l e  T h i s i s how  i t with  But such Durrell  i n Horizon:  ... t h e Whole was a n unknown, a f o r e v e r u n k n o w a b l e e n t i t y , whose shadows a n d . f u n c t i o n s we a r e . O n l y a v e r y s m a l l c o r n e r o f t h i s t e r r i t o r y was f r e e t o be e x p l o r e d by t h e w a t c h f u l ^ o n l y t h e f r i n g e s o f t h i s u n i v e r s e l a y w i t h i n t h e comprehension of t h e f i n i t e human m i n d '.which i s a f u n c t i o n o f i t  -56  77  T h u s , what g i v e s d i r e c t i o n t o man's l i f e  i s always the  i n a c c e s s i b l e , unconscious part of h i snature. his it  conscious  will  can only concur w i t h i t .  At worst  c a n t r y t o oppose i t a n d t h u s c r e a t e d i s o r d e r i n  man's c o n s c i o u s  being.  But conscious  e f f e c t i v e d i r e c t o r o f human l i f e should  be n o t e d o f D a r l e y ,  will  as the  i s an i l l u s i o n .  i n this  connection,  development towards a r t i s t h o o d i s f a c i l i t a t e d stage his  It that h i s  a t every  by a t e n d e n c y on h i s p a r t n o t t o a t t e m p t t o d i r e c t  own l i f e .  J u s t i n e , Darley in  At best  E a r l y i n the Quartet,before confesses  to having  he m e e t s  r e a c h e d a dead end  himself. I l a c k t h e w i l l - p o w e r • t o do a n y t h i n g w i t h my l i f e , t o b e t t e r my p o s i t i o n by h a r d w o r k , t o w r i t e : e v e n t o make l o v e . I do n o t know w h a t h a s come o v e r me. T h i s i s t h e f i r s t time I have e x p e r i e n c e d a r e a l f a i l u r e o f the w i l l t o s u r v i v e . ^  When, a f t e r M e l i s s a ' s d e a t h ,  he r e t i r e s t o t h e Greek  Island t o think over h i s l i f e  i n A l e x a n d r i a and t o  write, this i s a fortuitous choice, w h i c h I am f o r c e d t o r e g a r d own n a t u r e i ' x ^ ^ without  "born o f  impulses  a s o u t s i d e t h e r a n g e o f my  H i s summons b a c k t o A l e x a n d r i a comes  h i s having  solicited  I t , and h i s s i g n i f i c a n t  m e e t i n g t h e r e w i t h C l e a comes a b o u t "by c h a n c e , n o t d e -  signl' 3?  Few  x  things i n Darley's  l i f e are  consciously  willed. So  f a r I have d e a l t w i t h  through submission to  artists  nificant to  to the  self-realization  creative I t only with  or would-be a r t i s t s .  But  c h a r a c t e r s i n the Quartet  being a r t i s t s .  Old Scobie  who  says of  l a y no  artificial  ages, i s s u r e l y m a g n i f i c e n t l y a l i v e Clea  sigclaim  f o r example, i n s p i t e  a i l i n g h e a l t h , c r e a k i n g b o n e s and  human b e i n g .  there are  regard  and  of  append-  s u c c e s s f u l as  a  him,  T h e r e i s a k i n d o f p e r f e c t i o n t o be a c h i e v e d i n m a t c h i n g o n e s e l f t o one's c a p a c i t i e s - at every l e v e l . T h i s must,- I i m a g i n e , do away w i t h s t r i v i n g , and w i t h i l l u s i o n s t o o . , I m y s e l f always a d m i r e d o l d S c o b i e as a t h o r o u g h l y s u c c e s s f u l example o f t h i s a c h i e v e ment i n h i s own way. He was q u i t e s u c c e s s f u l l y himself, I thought.^ One  could  endeavour t o t i e Scobie  g r o u p by  saying t h a t the elaborate  b u i l t up  about h i s f r i e n d  lesser extent with r e l i s h artistic to  regard  tion.  Other roads,  those  (and  to  f r o m w h i c h he  has a  quotes  o p p o r t u n i t y , c o n s t i t u t e s an  c r e a t i o n i n i t s own a r t as o n l y one  artist  " m y t h o l o g y " he  Toby M a n n e r i n g  a b o u t B u d g i e ) , and  at the f i r s t  i n w i t h the  right.  road  But  leading to  i t is  simpler  self-realiza-  of s e x u a l l o v e , of  religion  79  (though t h i s road g e t s l e s s a t t e n t i o n t h a n any o t h e r from ive  D u r r e l l ) and even q u i t e s i m p l y o f p a t i e n t  attent-  l i v i n g i n harmony w i t h t h e l a r g e r w o r l d o f t h e I t ,  these t o o lead t o s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n . road l a s t mentioned.  In truth,  Scobie has taken t h e  he i s p r o b a b l y t h e one  human b e i n g i n t h e Q u a r t e t who comes c l o s e s t t o a i d e n t i f i c a t i o n with the c i t y .  full  I t i s significant i n  t h i s r e g a r d t h a t he i s o f t e n d e s c r i b e d a s a w r i n k l e d o l d tortoise,  t h e same image u s e d  as t h e c i t y  f o r the city.^'  And j u s t  i s v a r i o u s l y regarded by t h e c h a r a c t e r s i n  the Quartet,so there a r e d i f f e r e n t o p i n i o n s of Scobie. To M a s k e l y n e ,  whose l i f e  M o u n t o l i v e ' s o r Nessim's, old  i s a c o d e more t h a n  even  Scobie i s simply a f o o l i s h  p e r v e r t , u s e l e s s i n t h e a d m i n i s t r a t i o n and a s c a n d a l  on t h e p o l i c e f o r c e .  But t o h i s f r i e n d s Scobie i s a  d e l i g h t f u l human b e i n g , a n d t o t h i s r e a d e r a t a n y r a t e he i s a f i n e c o m i c c r e a t i o n . little  h a b i t s arejmmaiwM  humanity.  H i s "Tendencies"  and odd  n o q u a l i f i c a t i o n o f h i s warm  On t h e c o n t r a r y , I f e e l  t h e y a r e i n t e n d e d by  D u r r e l l t o p o i n t up t h e e x t e n t o f h i s i d e n t i f i c a t i o n with t h e unconscious e v e n t u a l l y prove  forces of l i f e .  h i sundoing,  The  "Tendencies"  but i n h i s resurrection  as E l Scob, p a t r o n s a i n t o f t h e n a t i v e q u a r t e r , t h e y a r e t r i u m p h a n t l y emphasized as i n c o n t e s t a b l e evidence  of h i s  h o l i n e s s , a n d b a r r e n women i n v o k e h i s a n c i e n t b a t h tub f o r f e r t i l i t y ,  apparently with results.  s i g n i f i c a n t t h a t D u r r e l l suggests a l i n k  It i s  between o l d  S c o b i e a n d t h e m y t h i c a l f i g u r e o f T i r e s i a s who i s c e l e b r a t e d i n a p o p u l a r song c u r r e n t i n t h e c i t y . a s T i r e s i a s i s b o t h man a n d woman, s o S c o b i e  Just  through  h i s b i s e x u a l n a t u r e sums up h u m a n i t y a n d shows t h e e x t e n t o f h i s submission t o t h e I t which double-sexed.  i s always  Here t o o i s a t l e a s t a p a r t i a l  explana-  t i o n f o r t h e homosexual n a t u r e o r t e n d e n c i e s so o f t e n encountered  among t h e c h a r a c t e r s o f t h e Q u a r t e t .  t o an u n u s u a l  extent d i v o r c e d from accepted  Being  morality  and h a v i n g h i g h l y i n t r o s p e c t i v e a n d p e r c e p t i v e n a t u r e s , t h e y a r e a l m o s t bound t o c o n f r o n t t h e b i s e x u a l i t y o f t h e human p s y c h e and t o some e x t e n t e x p r e s s i t i n t h e i r lives. There remains  y e t a t h i r d road t o s e l f -  r e a l i z a t i o n f o r man, t h e r o a d o f s e x u a l l o v e , a n d i n this  connection something  must be a d d e d t o what I h a v e  a l r e a d y s a i d about t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p o f C l e a and D a r l e y . I d e a l t w i t h Clea's near-drowning Darley i n terms o f the a r t i s t ' s  and h e r r e v i v a l by  s u b m i s s i o n o f h i s ego-  consciousness to the c r e a t i v e I t .  But t h e experience  81  also  i s a n i l l u s t r a t i o n o f how l o v e becomes a means b y  w h i c h t h e human b e i n g d r a w s c l o s e r t o a r e c o g n i t i o n o f his  own e s s e n t i a l n a t u r e .  s a y s on t h a t  H e r e i s what D u r r e l l  himself  score:  The s c e n e s y o u m e n t i o n , w h i c h some c r i t i c s f i n d s i l l y — t h e l o v e scenes and t h e underw a t e r s c e n e s — a r e r e a l l y a mime a b o u t r e b i r t h on t h e p a r a b l e p l a n e . P e r h a p s i t was a s i l l y i d e a , I d o n ' t know. The l o v e - a c t i s , s y m b o l i z e d by t h e b r e a t h i n g - t r o u b l e , t h e break through t o p o e t i c i l l u m i n a t i o n , t h e s t a r k c h o i c e w h i c h must be a c c e p t e d . You know what " b r e a t h " means i n i t s A l e x a n d r i a n connotation? I n t h e T r i s m e g i s t i c sense I mean? S e x a n d k n o w i n g become p r i m a l h e r e where I t r y t o s y m b o l i z e t h e achievement of " a r t i s t h o o d " — t h e mysterious secret of w h i c h P u r s e w a r d e n was t r y i n g t o p a s s on t o Darley. Yes, i n t h e Hermetic sense i t i s a m a t t e r o f l i f e and b r e a t h ! , L o v e i s a means b y w h i c h m o s t o f D u r r e l l ' s characters approach t h e i r goal o f s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n . Love i n t h e Q u a r t e t  i s a l w a y s a means t o t h i s  end, t h o u g h  the  c h a r a c t e r s u s u a l l y do n o t f u l l y r e a l i z e i t , a t l e a s t  for  a while.  and  i s n e c e s s a r i l y l i n k e d with the l i f e  human b e i n g being's The  The b e l i e f t h a t l o v e i s an end i n i t s e l f  i s an i l l u s i o n  ego-oriented  illusion  t h a t a r i s e s o u t o f t h e human  nature,  and i t i s e s s e n t i a l t o l o v e .  c a n be d i s p e l l e d , b u t when t h a t h a p p e n s  the love i n question for  of another  invariably dies, l i k e Darley's  J u s t i n e , or i s transformed  i n t o something e l s e .  love Clea  puts i t t h i s  way:  There i s something about l o v e - - I w i l l n o t say d e f e c t i v e f o r t h e d e f e c t l i e s i n o u r s e l v e s : b u t s o m e t h i n g we h a v e m i s t a k e n about i t s n a t u r e . F o r example, t h e l o v e y o u now f e e l f o r J u s t i n e i s n o t a d i f f e r e n t l o v e f o r a d i f f e r e n t o b j e c t b u t t h e same l o v e y o u f e e l f o r M e l i s s a t r y i n g t o work i t s e l f o u t t h r o u g h t h e medium o f J u s t i n e . Love i s h o r r i b l y s t a b l e , and each o f us i s o n l y a l l o t t e d a c e r t a i n p o r t i o n of i t , a ration. I t i s c a p a b l e o f a p p e a r i n g i n an i n f i n i t y o f f o r m s and a t t a c h i n g i t s e l f t o an i n f i n i t y o f p e o p l e . But i t i s l i m i t e d i n q u a n t i t y , c a n be u s e d u p , become s h o p w o r n and f a d e d b e f o r e i t r e a c h e s i t s t r u e object. F o r i t s d e s t i n a t i o n l i e s somewhere i n t h e d e e p e s t r e g i o n s o f t h e p s y c h e where i t w i l l come t o r e c o g n i z e i t s e l f a s s e l f l o v e , t h e g r o u n d upon w h i c h we b u i l d t h e s o r t of h e a l t h of the psyche. I do n o t mean e g o i s m o r n a r c i s s i s m . Groddeck's  t h i n k i n g i s very s i m i l a r here: We c a n o n l y l o v e w h a t i s w i t h i n o u r s e l v e s , what we r e c o g n i z e a s s y m b o l i c o f o u r s e l v e s , s o m e t h i n g t h a t we b e l i e v e i n , s o m e t h i n g a l l o w e d u s by o u r human n a t u r e . .,  Love, l i k e  a r t , i s a means by w h i c h man  "I  we  suppose  grows i n  spirit.  a r e a l l h u n t i n g f o r t h e s e c r e t s o f growth^"  J u s t i n e says once.  As a r e s u l t  o f s u c h g r o w t h , man  e v e n t u a l l y pass beyond t h e need f o r l o v e i n t h e form h a s p r e v i o u s l y known i t . ing  This w i l l  t o Pursewarden, because  he  come a b o u t , a c c o r d -  t h e human p s y c h e w i l l  attained that state of " o r i g i n a l  will  have  innocence" ^ which f o r 4  him  is full  self-realization.  n o t e b o o k s g i v e n i n C l e a he  In the e x t r a c t s from h i s  talks at l e n g t h — t o o  a l e n g t h , f o r i t t i r e s the r e a d e r — will  mean f o r man's l i f e  and  r e l a t i o n s h i p o f D a r l e y and  great  a b o u t what  culture.  this  But i n t h e  Clea, e s p e c i a l l y at the  end  of t h e Q u a r t e t , t h e r e i s a c l e a r example o f t h e k i n d o f a r t and stature.  l o v e man Art w i l l  t i o n o f t h e ego  will be  and  know when he h a s  become an h a r m o n i o u s e x p r e s s i o n Love w i l l  p a s s i o n a t e and  painful illusion  something l i k e  deep and  will  f o r some o f t h e  volume o f t h e Q u a r t e t .  c e a s e t o be  i t was  and  will  the  become  And  r i g h t here,  criticism  I  of the  last  C r i t i c s have v o i c e d t h e i r hi6  dis-  Clea  helatf'onzhip *i'\+h  w h i c h seems so tame a t h i n g a f t e r ^ J u s t i n e .  As  t h e i d e a l , when d e l i b e r a t e l y p r e s e n t e d  observa-  ful  i s less interesting  the  suspect,  a p p o i n t m e n t o v e r t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p of D a r l e y and  tion,  of  a b i d i n g f r i e n d s h i p ; here too  cease to dominate.  i s the reason  full  c o m p l e t e l y f r e e d o f theytiomina-  t h e c o m p l e t e human p s y c h e .  ego  reached  for  always  t h a n t h e p r e v a l e n t and  pain-  human c o n d i t i o n . For the g r e a t e r p a r t of the Quartet,  D u r r e l l f o c u s e s on l o v e a s i l l u s i o n , form of s u f f e r i n g . n o v e l s and  l o v e a s an  however, intense  S u f f e r i n g i s everywhere i n the  w o u l d seem t o be a l m o s t  a natural condition  of l i f e , i n e v i t a b l e l i k e L e i l a ' s  smallpox,  Fosca's  sudden death,  or t h e blindness that helps lead  into incest.  B u t more t h a n a n y o t h e r f o r c e i t i s l o v e  t h a t causes s u f f e r i n g , and t h e f u l l e s t the nature o f such l o v e i s o f course tioned e a r l i e r , presented  the animal  Liza  expression of  Justine.  As men-  imagery through which she i s  shows r e p e a t e d l y h e r p r e d a t o r y  nature, but  t h i s i s o n l y o n e way i n w h i c h J u s t i n e ' s r o l e a s d e s t r o y e r i s brought out. varied the  images emphasizing i t .  S p h i n x a t noon."^^'  whose e v e r y  4  Darley, axe  ;  Her eyes a r e " o r b i t s o f  F o r A r n a u t i s h e i s "a woman  k i s s was a b l o w s t r u c k on t h e s i d e o f d e a t h .  In her passional l i f e ingj'^ ^'  T h e r e a r e numerous o t h e r a n d  she i s " d i r e c t — l i k e  When a t N e s s i m ' s i n s t i g a t i o n she thereby  falling."^^  cleaves h i s l i f e  an a x e f a l l -  she seeks out i n two " l i k e a n  A w h i s p e r e d word f r o m h e r s i n g s  t h e w h i s t l e o f a bullet"**' ' i n D a r l e y ' s mind. 1  "like  Nessim,  l i s t e n i n g t o h e r v o i c e , f i n d s i t "jumbled i n t h e back of h i s b r a i n l i k e t h e sound-track backwardsj'*^  Darley, having  o f an earthquake r u n  fallen  i n love with her,  f e e l s as i f t h e whole c i t y had crashed l e a v i n g him an a i m l e s s  about h i s e a r s ,  survivor i n the r u b b l e . ^  So  great i s t h e emphasis on J u s t i n e as d e s t r o y e r t h a t i n two  m e m o r a b l e i m a g e s s h e seems no l o n g e r human b u t  85  r a t h e r one w i t h s u c h f i g u r e s o f d e s t r u c t i v e d i v i n i t y a s c a n be f o u n d throughout  i n myths.  One image i s u s e d r e p e a t e d l y  t h e Quartet,and  though i t i s never  l i n k e d with J u s t i n e the reader  directly  i s t e m p t e d t o make t h a t  l i n k , between t h e f a c e o f J u s t i n e and " t h e a u s t e r e mindless  primeval face of Aphrodite,"^^  Aphrodite  T h i s image o f  i s s t r i k i n g l y l i k e a s e c o n d image w h i c h i s  s p e c i f i c a l l y u s e d f o r J u s t i n e : h e r f a c e , when s h e h a s accepted  Nessim's p a c t ,  of S i v a . %  i s " e x p r e s s i o n l e s s a s a mask  S i v a i s a Hindu d i v i n i t y ,  of Hinduism's t r i n i t y ,  the third  member  known a l s o a s "The D e s t r o y e r . " ^  As a c h a r a c t e r J u s t i n e , t h e n , f u n c t i o n s a t l e a s t  partly  a s a superhuman f i g u r e o f m y t h i c a l s i g n i f i c a n c e .  This  is  so p a r t i c u l a r l y  i n the f i r s t  novel of the Quartet  before Darley i s f o r c e d t o modify sion of her. Quartet  his original  But J u s t i n e a l s o f u n c t i o n s throughout t h e  a s a human b e i n g , o r r a t h e r a human  we a r e s t i l l  J u s t i n e t o o i s "a hunter  such  i n t h e Quartet f o r another.  ego,since  c o n s i d e r i n g t h e c h a r a c t e r s a s egos more o r  l e s s a l i e n a t e d from the I t .  As  impres-  Like a l l the Alexandrians,  of pain i n search o f herself."^'  s h e i s one w i t h t h e many o t h e r  who s e e k t o f i n d t h e m s e l v e s  figures  through  love  The s e a r c h i s b o u n d t o end i n s u f f e r i n g ,  f o r though s e x u a l l o v e f o r D u r r e l l i s t h e source  of a l l  r e a l k n o w l e d g e , y e t man what he the He  p e r s i s t s i n the i l l u s i o n  loves i s separate  from h i m s e l f , "out  there" i n  e x t e r n a l w o r l d w h i c h he p e r c e i v e s w i t h h i s l o v e s an i l l u s i o n ;  cages t h a t M o u n t o l i v e  he  is like  that  ego.  the s i n g i n g b i r d s i n  sees i n the n a t i v e  quarter:  . . . s i n g i n g b i r d s whose c a g e s were f u l l o f m i r r o r s t o g i v e them t h e i l l u s i o n o f company. The l o v e s o n g s o f b i r d s t o companions they imagined--which were o n l y r e f l e c t i o n s of themselvesl How h e a r t b r e a k i n g l y they sang, t h e s e illustrations o f human l o v e I 57-  This  i s f o r me  t h e one  i n the e n t i r e Alexandria Quartet, a paraphrase i s i n f e l i c i t o u s i s important  m o s t memorable i m a g e and  to say  to f o l l o w i t with  the l e a s t .  t o n o t e t h a t t h i s image, c l e a r and  g e t t a b l e as i t i s , i s not D u r r e l l makes e x p l i c i t  t h e o n l y means b y  h i s view of love.  let i t unfor-  which  Justine  very  58  e a r l y says e x a c t l y the b r u s h e s i t o f f as b e i n g she  same,  though Darley  t r u e only of her.  then  "It is  idle, \  writes, to i m a g i n e f a l l i n g i n l o v e as a c o r r e s pondence of minds, o f t h o u g h t s ; i t i s a s i m u l t a n e o u s f i r i n g o f two s p i r i t s e n g a g e d i n t h e autonomous a c t o f g r o w i n g up. And the s e n s a t i o n i s of something having n o i s e l e s s l y e x p l o d e d i n s i d e e a c h o f them. Around t h i s e v e n t , d a z e d and p r e o c c u p i e d , t h e l o v e r moves e x a m i n i n g h i s o r h e r own experience;  T  87  h e r g r a t i t u d e a l o n e , s t r e t c h i n g away towards a mistaken donor, c r e a t e s the i l l u s i o n t h a t she c o m m u n i c a t e s w i t h h e r f e l l o w , but t h i s i s f a l s e . The l o v e d o b j e c t i s s i m p l y one t h a t has s h a r e d an e x p e r i e n c e a t t h e same moment o f t i m e , n a r c i s s i s t i c a l l y ; and t h e d e s i r e t o be n e a r the beloved o b j e c t i s at f i r s t not due t o t h e i d e a o f p o s s e s s i n g i t , b u t s i m p l y t o l e t t h e two e x p e r i e n c e s c o m p a r e "themselves, l i k e r e f l e c t i o n s i n d i f f e r e n t mirrors. A l l t h i s may p r e c e d e t h e f i r s t l o o k , k i s s , or touch; precede ambition, p r i d e or envy; precede the f i r s t d e c l a r a t i o n s w h i c h mark t h e t u r n i n g p o i n t — f o r f r o m here love degenerates i n t o h a b i t , possession, and b a c k t o l o n e l i n e s s . }  r/i  So  l o n g , t h e n a s a human b e i n g ' s  founded i n i l l u s i o n , suffering, his  for i t w i l l  loneliness.  d i s e a s e and  injured,  truth  i s an  are her,  "a s m a l l c h i l d s k i p p i n g n e a r  p i e c e of u n p r o t e c t e d  machinery."*^ but not  Though  e v e r y o n e i s so  O s t e n s i b l y M e l i s s a d i e s of t u b e r c u l o s i s ; i n f a i l e d to l o v e her  h e r s e l f i s i n c a p a b l e of l i v i n g  w i t h the r e a l i z a t i o n being  like  she d i e s b e c a u s e D a r l e y h a s  b e c a u s e she  in  a l l of which  Clea's love f o r Justine leaves  Clea i s not destroyed,  fortunate.  o n l y c o n f i r m him  Hence t h e many i m a g e s o f d e s t r u c t i o n ,  her f a t h e r ' s eyes,  a powerful  i n t h e end  l o v e be a c a u s e o f  b l i n d n e s s i n the Quartet,  linked with love. in  so l o n g w i l l  l o v e remains  illusion.  any  and  longer  t h a t l o v e as a t i e t o a n o t h e r " M o n s i e u r , ,je s u i s d e v e n u e l a  human  88  61' s o l i t u d e meme." "  Her  much t o e x p l a i n h e r  r e s i g n a t i o n and  q u i e t words t o Pursewarden fatigue.  Melissa i s  not  strong  enough, p h y s i c a l l y o r s p i r i t u a l l y , t o  for  long.  Her  as i f a f t e r Darley  feels guilty,  "Possession The  of  but  no  live  swaddled  irreparable accident."  one  can  be  a human h e a r t — d i s e a s e  blamed. without  t r u t h of Pursewarden's o b s e r v a t i o n  often confirmed is  body i n d e a t h i s "bandaged and  some c o n s u m i n g and  do  elsewhere i n these  remedy."  i s only  novels.  too  Here,  love  a s o r e t h a t w i l l n o t h e a l , ' a "synonym f o r d e r a n g e -  6S ment o r i l l n e s s , " o r i g i n w h i c h may  a " c a n c e r o u s g r o w t h o f unknown t a k e up  i t s s i t e anywhere w i t h o u t  s u b j e c t knowing or w i s h i n g wished to f a l l deeply  i n love.  d i s t u r b e d and,  i t . " ^  When he  Yet F o s c a ' s d e a t h l e a v e s him  Pombal c e r t a i n l y  d o e s he i s a t  f o r a time,  the  ecstatically  " l i k e a man  never  once happy.  recovering  67 from a severe s t r o k e "  and  irreparable loss like  a man  E v e n J u s t i n e , who falls  severs  the  s u f f e r through her  who  t a l k s to Darley i s under  of h i s  anaesthetic.  c a u s e s so much harm t o o t h e r s , h e r s e l f  v i c t i m to l o v e .  acquires  he  The  self-possession that  t i e s b e t w e e n them and  Darley  l e a v e s her  i n c r e a s e d l o n e l i n e s s , "a p a t i e n t  to on  an o p e r a t i n g t a b l e , h a r d l y b r e a t h i n g . " ^ - 9 I n l o v e t h e way o f s u f f e r i n g so o f t e n l e a d s  to  89  destruction. the  As w i t h  religion,  f i n a l t r u t h s , t h o s e who  t h e most.  One  Magzub, who  thinks  "had  another road  towards  approach the closest  of the  sought the  f a n a t i c h o l y man,  suffer the  f i n a l t r u t h s of r e l i g i o n  In beneath the  mask o f madness."^  whose e y e s , t o w a r d s t h e a new  end,  And are  t h e r e i s Narouz  "full  of t h e  s o r t o f k n o w l e d g e w h i c h owed l i t t l e  pain  t o the  of sterile  71  revolutions  o f reason."^  Pursewarden, Blinded  Above a l l t h e r e i s L i z a  a s E r o s by  surprise. . 71  Her  blindness  i s s y m b o l i c evidence of the  t r u c t i v e p o w e r o f l o v e when i t c u t s society  seeks t o impose upon i t .  i n t h i s story blinded of the  of  c h i l d who  L i z a and  fullest see  sterility,  i s how  yet  i s there  b r o t h e r and  of t h e i r  and  the  l e t t e r s he  D a r l e y comes t o r e a d a r e  mistake to of  And  a r t i s t h o o d of Pursewarden h i m s e l f ?  that  of the  across a l l that  d i e s , at l e a s t a p a r t i a l  i s dedicated t o her, and  her  u t t e r l y des-  artistic  explanation A l l his  has  an  everything  It i s surely  coming t o  C e c i l y Mackworth sees i t . ^  s h i p , p r e c i s e l y b e c a u s e i t i s so  Out  her  instance  t h i s i n c e s t u o u s r e l a t i o n s h i p as a "of  poetry  written  s a i d t o be  achievement.  not,  a  symbol  a d e a d end "^ w h i c h ;  of  this relation-  destructive,  comes i n -  s i g h t and i n c r e a s e d u n d e r s t a n d i n g p r i c e unbearably  of s e l f .  h i g h ' \ someone w i l l ;  "But a t a  s a y . To t h a t one  c a n o n l y a n s w e r t h a t no p r i c e seems t o be t o o h i g h i n t h i s Alexandrian world.  M o r e o v e r , t h e human b e i n g s  m u s t p a y t h e p r i c e do n o t c o n t r o l t h e c o u r s e l i v e s a n d so h a v e n o c o n s c i o u s  that  some o f i t s i n h a b i t a n t s , l i k e  Achieve  payment. How i s i t  D a r l e y and C l e a ,  t h e i r goal w i t h l e s s s u f f e r i n g than  while s t i l l  of t h e i r  say about such  What s o r t o f j u s t i c e t h e n r u l e s t h i s w o r l d ?  who  others apparently perish?  others,  Clearly  such  j u s t i c e as t h e r e i s i n D u r r e l l ' s world i s u n l i k e t h e j u s t i c e o f man.  One i s r e m i n d e d o f C h r i s t ' s p a r a b l e o f  t h e h a r v e s t w h e r e some g r o u n d y i e l d s a h u n d r e d some much l e s s , cal  some n o t h i n g o r o n l y t a r e s .  h a r v e s t i s d e p e n d e n t upon g r a c e ;  human l i v e s  fold,  The  bibli-  t h e outcome o f  i s d e p e n d e n t n o t on man's c o n s c i o u s  inten-  t i o n s o r s t r i v i n g s b u t o n how c l o s e l y h i s l i f e h a s approached t h e f o r c e s o f i m a g i n a t i o n t h a t a r e grounded in "We  t h e I t . "We become what we dream," ^ s a y s B a l t h a z a r . achieve  i n reality,  i n substance,  only the p i c t u r e s  of t h e imagination."^'^*  S e e n i n t h i s l i g h t no one who h a s s u b m i t t e d t o the l i f e  o f t h e I t c a n be c o u n t e d  ever p a i n f u l ,  a human f a i l u r e ,  how-  d e s t r u c t i v e o r even s e l f - d e s t r u c t i v e h i s  91  life  may  seem t o o b s e r v e r s .  failure, are  nor i s L i z a ,  t h o s e who  Pursewarden  nor Melissa.  have remained  The  use.  The  real  earlier  disto  Where t h a t a n i m a t i o n does n o t  t h e ego r e m a i n s , l i k e  an u n u s e d mask, i n t h e  wings.  What we  of  to e x p r e s s and p e r p e t u a t e i t s e l f .  such f a i l u r e  and  i n the  ego must be a n i m a t e d by t h e I t b e f o r e i t c a n  come about  believe,  Maskelyne.  a s drama, s u c h p e o p l e a r e n e v e r p u t  be p a r t o f t h e d r a m a .  life  failures  ego-ridden, l i k e  L i k e t h e masks o r costumes mentioned cussion of l i f e  i s not a  h a v e h e r e i s an u n a c c o u n t a b l e  c a n n o t be b l a m e d on t h e ego.  failure  In the  end  Rather,  I  i t i s evidence i n D u r r e l l s view of the  trial  T  e r r o r by w h i c h  life,  like natural  towards  increased s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n .  fulfill  the purposes  and a r e l o s t .  evolution,  develops  Some i n d i v i d u a l s  of n a t u r e or of l i f e ;  o t h e r s do  not  Again, the process of s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n  is  once d e s c r i b e d as a p r o c e s s whereby t h e i d e a of t h e individual g r a f t may  s o u l i s g r a f t e d on t o human b e i n g s . - ^ 7  o r may  n o t be  s u c c e s s f u l ; man  g r o w a s o u l , d e p e n d i n g u p o n how in  may  o r may  strong i s the l i f e  The not with-  him. And  dox.  yet at the heart of that l i f e  The more f u l l y man  comes a l i v e  i s a para-  by s u b m i t t i n g t o  t h e I t , t h e more c e r t a i n he i s o f a s w i f t d e s t r u c t i o n . It  i s as though t h e very f u l l n e s s o f l i f e  for  t h e human b e i n g t o b e a r ,  sumes h i m . and  i s t o o much  so t h a t b e f o r e  I think the figures of Liza,  l o n g i t con-  of Pursewarden  o f N a r o u z a r e most f u l l y u n d e r s t o o d when s e e n i n  t h i s way.  A l l three a r e f o r a short time  magnificent-  ly  "The s o - c a l l e d a c t o f l i v i n g , "  says  alive.  P u r s e w a r d e n , " i s r e a l l y an a c t o f t h e i m a g i n a t i o n . " 7 6 R i g h t t h e r e i s t h e c e n t r a l i d e a o f The A l e x a n d r i a Quartet, itly  a n d s u r e l y i t s t r u t h i s nowhere more  demonstrated than  Pursewarden's  explic-  i n L i z a ' s a c c o u n t o f h e r own and  childhood:  We h a d no r e s o u r c e s e x c e p t i n e a c h o t h e r . He c o n v e r t e d my b l i n d n e s s i n t o p o e t r y , I saw w i t h h i s b r a i n , he w i t h my e y e s . So we i n v e n t e d a w h o l e i m p e r i s h a b l e w o r l d o f p o e t r y t o g e t h e r — b e t t e r by f a r than t h e b e s t o f h i s b o o k s . . . . T h i s i s how I became t h e s t r a n g e m y t h o l o g i c a l queen o f h i s l i f e , l i v i n g i n a v a s t p a l a c e o f s i g h s - - a s he u s e d t o s a y . S o m e t i m e s i t was E g y p t , somet i m e s P e r u , sometimes B y z a n t i u m . I suppose I must h a v e known t h a t r e a l l y i t was an o l d farmhouse k i t c h e n , w i t h shabby d e a l f u r n i t u r e and f l o o r s o f r e d t i l e . A t l e a s t when the f l o o r s had been washed w i t h c a r b o l i c s o a p w i t h i t s p e c u l i a r s m e l l I knew, w i t h h a l f my m i n d , t h a t i t was a f a r m h o u s e f l o o r , and n o t a p a l a c e w i t h m a g n i f i c e n t t e s s e l a t e d f l o o r s b r i l l i a n t w i t h snakes and e a g l e s and p y g m i e s . B u t a t a w o r d he b r o u g h t me b a c k t o r e a l i t y , a s he c a l l e d i t .  93  P o e t r y i s i n d e e d more r e a l t h a n o b s e r v e d t r u t h . F o r L i z a and h e r b r o t h e r i t i s t h e p o e t r y o f f a n t a s y and fairy tale.  F o r Narouz  i ti s t h e p o e t r y o f t h e Psalms:  ... he saw t h e w o r l d , n o t so much a s a p o l i t i c a l chessboard but as a pulse b e a t i n g w i t h i n a g r e a t e r w i l l which o n l y t h e p o e t r y o f t h e p s a l m s c o u l d i n v o k e and b o d y f o r t h . To awaken n o t m e r e l y t h e i m p u l s e s o f t h e forebrain with i t s l i m i t e d formulations, but the s l e e p i n g beauty u n d e r n e a t h — t h e p o e t i c consciousness which l a y , c o i l e d l i k e a spring, i n the heart of everyone. n 0  Narouz, as Nessim r i g h t l y p e r c e i v e s , has t h e makings o f a religious his  leader.  As i t i s , N a r o u z  attempts through  p r e a c h i n g t o combine t h e r o l e s of p r e a c h e r and  leader of a p o l i t i c a l artistic  cause.  H i s aim i s s i m i l a r  a i m s d e s c r i b e d by P u r s e w a r d e n :  "inflame the sleeping w i l l . " ^ 7  t o the  b o t h men s e e k t o  That i s , t h e y  emphasize  the  i m p o r t a n c e o f s u b o r d i n a t i n g man's e g o - i d e n t i t y t o  the  I t , i f human l i f e  i s e v e r t o approach t h e i d e a l .  B u t N e s s i m , l o o k i n g a t h i s b r o t h e r , s e e s t h a t he w i l l never succeed i n s u s t a i n i n g the i m a g i n a t i v e g i f t f o r long. He was a p r o d i g y o f n a t u r e b u t h i s p o w e r s w e r e t o be d e p l o y e d i n a b a r r e n f i e l d w h i c h c o u l d n e v e r n o u r i s h them, which i n d e e d would s t i f l e them f o r e v e r .  The  f a u l t , t h o u g h , i s n o t r e a l l y i n man's  There i s something i n h e r e n t l y f a u l t y  environment.  i n human  w h i c h makes i t u n a b l e t o s u s t a i n t h e f u l l life  f o r more t h a n a b r i e f d u r a t i o n .  brother,  nature  imaginative  For Liza  t o o , the perfection of a poetic l i f e  and h e r comes  q u i c k l y t o an e n d . ... when t h e g u i l t e n t e r e d t h e o l d p o e t i c l i f e began t o l o s e i t s magic ....^ Nevertheless, I pointed  this poetic  out before  a r t he c r e a t e s if  t h a t Pursewarden's i n s i g h t  effect. and t h e  o u t o f i t come b o t h i n l a r g e m e a s u r e  indeed not completely  gether.  e x p e r i e n c e has l a s t i n g  from t h e i r p o e t i c l i f e t o -  On t h e one hand g u i l t i s a d e a d l y f o r c e of t h e i r l i f e  that  extinguishes  the brightness  on t h e o t h e r  hand i t m u s t a l s o be s e e n a s a n e c e s s a r y  development towards t h e e x p r e s s i n g of t h a t p o e t i c imagination reach others And  there  ( f o r Pursewarden)  i n an a r t i s t i c  form t h a t  and n o t remain o n l y w i t h h i m s e l f  i s t h i s strange  as a " r e s u r r e c t e d Liza  together;  Pan]'^^  says about t h e i r l i f e  will  and L i z a .  image o f P u r s e w a r d e n i n d e a t h I t l i n k s up w i t h  something  together.  L a t e r , when he s t a r t e d l o o k i n g f o r j u s t i f i cations f o r our love instead of just simply b e i n g p r o u d o f i t , he r e a d me a q u o t a t i o n f r o m  a book. 'In the A f r i c a n b u r i a l r i t e s i t i s the s i s t e r who b r i n g s t h e dead k i n g b a c k t o life. I n Egypt as w e l l as Peru the K i n g , who was c o n s i d e r e d a s God, t o o k h i s s i s t e r to w i f e . B u t t h e m o t i v e was r i t u a l and n o t s e x u a l , f o r t h e y s y m b o l i s e d t h e moon and t h e s u n i n t h e i r c o n j u n c t i o n . The k i n g m a r r i e s h i s s i s t e r b e c a u s e he, a s God t h e s t a r , w a n d e r i n g on e a r t h , i s i m m o r t a l a n d may t h e r e f o r e not propagate h i m s e l f i n the c h i l d r e n o f a s t r a n g e woman, any more t h a n he i s a l l o w e d t o d i e a n a t u r a l d e a t h . ' a 0  A  s i m i l a r note  s e r v a n t s who "an  i s sounded a t t h e death o f Narouz.  come t o t a k e h i m b a c k t o t h e h o u s e  enormous p u r p l e c u r t a i n " ^  They rea.ch t h e h o u s e " l i k e  i n which  p r o c e s s i o n b e a r i n g t h e body o f t h e y o u n g e r and  i n t h e c h a n t s o f t h e women who  has  R e s u r r e c t i o n and rection  elops c y c l i c a l l y .  died. the p o s s i b i l i t y  Darley's l i f e , I t i s one  of  resur-  experiences are r e l i v e d m o d i f i e d form.  nature of  f o r instance,  encounter  i n s l i g h t l y but  T h i s : i s how  to  man's l i f e  the  dev-  of e n c o u n t e r w i t h the  a n d w i t h d r a w a l f r o m i t , and a t e a c h  life  son^"  m y t h s , o f women  some e x t e n t i t c a n b e l i n k e d t o t h e c y c l i c  the  religious  i s an i m p o r t a n t theme i n t h e Q u a r t e t and  characters' lives.  him.  come t o mourn h i s  death are echoes of the o l d f e r t i l i t y w e e p i n g f o r t h e god who  bring  to carry  some g r o t e s q u e  The  city  certain  significantly develops,  of nature through the changing seasons,  like moving  1 N  through But in  the f u l l these  another and is  c y c l e towards a greater r e a l i z a t i o n significance  novels  city.  life.  of t h i s c y c l i c a l development  can o n l y be  grasped  i f we  l o o k a t t h e p a t t e r n c r e a t e d by t h e  their  of  I n t h i s t h i r d and  the o n l y c h a r a c t e r i n the  take  yet  characters  f i n a l view, the  Quartet.  city  97 FOOTNOTES  ^Justine, 2  p . 190.  J.190-191.  3»The L e t t e r . , o f P a u l t o t h e E p h e s i a n s " , C h a p t e r 4 , v e r s e s 15-17, i n The H o l y B i b l e . R e v i s e d • s t a n d a r d V e r s i o n , (New Y o r k , N e l s o n , 1953). C.67.  4  J.29.  5  %.115. M.215.  7  J.177.  g  9  M.191.  10  M.271.  ^ C . 51. 1 2  1  3c.49.  1 4  1  C.46\  C.53.  5c.66.  l 6  1 7  l g  1 9  C.2&\ C.195. C.274. C.74.  ^ A f t e r a l l , i f we g o back t o S t . P a u l a n d t h e C h r i s t i a n t e a c h i n g c o n s i d e r e d e a r l i e r , he h i m s e l f s p e a k s o f man's s l a v e r y t o t h e Law, m e a n i n g man's a t t e m p t s t o j u s t i f y 2  98  h i m s e l f , b y h i m s e l f , w i t h o u t r e l y i n g on t h e power o f God. Freedom a s S t . P a u l c o n c e i v e s o f i t i s something t h a t man a t t a i n s when, a n d o n l y when, he becomes i d e n t i f i e d i n p u r p o s e w i t h t h e l a r g e r community and t h e C h r i s t o f whom a l l a r e members, w i l l i n g o r o t h e r w i s e . 2 1  J.28.  2 2  C.109.  2 3  C.281.  24  C.153.  25  C.153.  26  B.239.  27 'See f o r e x a m p l e C e c i l y M a c k w o r t h , " D u r r e l l a n d t h e New R o m a n t i c i s m , " The W o r l d o f L a w r e n c e D u r r e l l , p. 35.  28 I am p o s i t i n g h e r e a n I t g o i n g b e y o n d t h a t o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l man, a n d i n s o d o i n g I r e q l l y go b e y o n d t h e b o u n d s I h a v e s e t f o r my t h r e e - w a y a n a l y s i s o f t h e characterization. N e v e r t h e l e s s , i t seems t h e o n l y s a t i s f a c t o r y account that agrees with D u r r e l l ' s e x p l i c i t view on t h e s u b j e c t ( s e e comment i m m e d i a t e l y f o l l o w i n g ) , a n d i t r e a l l y extends r a t h e r than c o n t r a d i c t s t h e ideas I am p r e s e n t i n g . 2 9  The  L a w r e n c e D u r r e l l , "The g n e l l e r Tape ( H a m b u r g ) , " i n W o r l d o f Lawrence D u r r e l l , p. 168.  30M.215.  3 B.14-15. 1  3 B.152. 2  33B.26. 34  B.26.  35c.30. 36  J.21-22.  99 37  J . 21-22.  J.  3 8  113-114.  39 C. 76. C.  4 0  C o m p a r e C. 88 and J . 19.  41  " T h e K n e l l e r Tape (Hamburg)", The World of Lawrence D u r r e l l , pp. 166-167.  4 2  4  120  J.  3  129-130.  G r o d d e c k , The World o f Man, p. 235.  44  4 5  C . 150.  4 6  C.  4 7  B . 15...  141-142.  4  8  J.  73.  4  9  J.  81.  5 0  B.  130.  5 1  B.  204.  J.  119-120.  5  2  53 J . 88. 54  M.  206.  55  M.  206.  5  6  J.  151  M . 286 58 In a c t u a l f a c t - - i f one can t a l k o f f a c t i n these n o v e l s — t h e s e a r e the words o f A r n a u t i , not J u s t i n e , s i n c e the notebooks she g i v e s t o D a r l e y , s a y i n g they a r e her d i a r i e s , a r e r e a l l y notes made by A r n a u t i (and c o p i e d out by h e r ) i n the course of h i s own work. 59  57  J . 49-50. 6 0  B.  49.  100  M.  168.  B.  28.  M.  165.  6 4  C.  69.  6 5  C.  256.  6 6  C.  106.  6 7  C.  214.  6 8  C.  219.  6 9  C.  61.  61  6 2  63  °B.  162.  71  M.  226-227.  72  M.  67.  7  73 C e c i l y Mackworth, " D u r r e l l and the New Romanticism", The World of Lawrence D u r r e l l , p. 35. 7 4  C.  64.  7 5  C.  148.  7 6  C.  153  7 7  C.  190-191.  78  '  M.  231.  79 M. 80  231.  M.  231.  C.  191.  8 1  M.  215.  C. 84 M.  191.  M.  308.  82  8 3  Qc  308.  CHAPTER  V  T h i s view develops q u i t e n a t u r a l l y out o f the view of t h e c i t y as t h e I t e x p r e s s i n g t h r o u g h a v a r i e t y o f egos.  That second view  a l o o k a t a g r e a t v a r i e t y o f human b e i n g s , c o m b i n a t i o n s , whose l i v e s  limited.  to the I t .  permitted  city-ego  c o u l d be s e e n a s more o r l e s s  s u c c e s s f u l d e p e n d i n g u p o n how f u l l y and s u b m i t t e d  itself  t h e ego r e s p o n d e d  Nevertheless,  such a view i s  W h i l e i t r e v e a l s much t h a t D u r r e l l  t o be t h e t r u t h o f human n a t u r e ,  considers  i ti s s t i l l f a r  from showing t h e c o m p l e x i t i e s o f the i n d i v i d u a l psyche.  human  F o r t h a t t h e r e a r e t o o many c h a r a c t e r s on h a n d .  B u t i n t h e t h i r d v i e w o f c h a r a c t e r t h a t emerges f r o m  this  w o r k , D u r r e l l d o e s d e p i c t t h e human p s y c h e i n u n u s u a l and d e t a i l , view w i l l  and t h e t e c h n i q u e s  t h a t b r i n g about  this  p e r h a p s p r o v e i n t h e e n d t o b e t h e one m o s t  o u t s t a n d i n g t e c h n i c a l achievement  of Durrell.  F o r here  he h a s a s good a s o v e r c o m e what he c o n s i d e r s t h e o b stacles hindering the a r t i s t the t r u t h .  depth  i n h i s attempt t o present  I h a v e d i s c u s s e d how he c o n s i d e r s t h e c o n -  cept o f a s t a b l e psyche, o f " p e r s o n a l i t y as something with fixed a t t r i b u t e s "  1  t o be an i l l u s i o n .  That  102  illusion,  i n h i s v i e w , has been d i s p e l l e d i n our day,  a n d w i t h i t m u s t go t h e o l d t e c h n i q u e s t h a t p r e s e n t e d a s t a b l e psyche.  T h a t i s , i t w i l l n o t do t o p r e s e n t t h e  o n e - s i d e d and o n e - d i m e n s i o n a l v i e w o f c h a r a c t e r i s a l l t h a t a n y one o b s e r v e r s e e s .  which  I t w i l l hardly  even  be enough t o p r e s e n t a s e r i e s o f s u c h v i e w s coming  from  d i f f e r e n t o b s e r v e r s and a t d i f f e r e n t t i m e s .  That  would  be c l o s e r t o t h e t r u t h , h o w e v e r , l i k e t h e d r e s s m a k e r ' s m i r r o r w h i c h g i v e s back f i v e Justine  seen from d i f f e r e n t  different pictures of angles.  B u t what i s n e e d e d 2  is  such a t e c h n i q u e o f " p r i s m - s i g h t e d n e s s " which  will  a l s o g i v e an i d e a o f t h e w o r k i n g s of time w i t h i n a psyche t h a t ing to  i n itself i s really  predispositions,"/  3  "an a n t - h i l l  o f oppos-  T h i s i s what D u r r e l l s e t s o u t  a c c o m p l i s h when he i m p l i c i t l y p r e s e n t s t h e c i t y a s  a s i n g l e human p s y c h e s e e n  i n close-up from  innumerable  a n g l e s a n d s e e n i n c o n t i n u o u s movement f r o m p r e s e n t t o p a s t and back  again.  One s t a r t s w i t h t h e i d e a , p r e s e n t -  ed i n my s e c o n d v i e w o f t h e c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n , o f t h e c o m b i n a t i o n o f I t a n d ego a s f o r m i n g a w h o l e .  But where-  a s i n t h e s e c o n d v i e w I w e n t on t o show t h e outcome o f this  a s a p r e s e n t a t i o n o f a g r e a t v a r i e t y o f human  b e i n g s , a l l c i t y - e g o c o m b i n a t i o n s , h e r e I go on t o a view of t h e c i t y as a s i n g l e psyche m a n i f e s t i n g a v a r i -  103  ety  of simultaneously  existing  v i e w , t h e i m p r e s s i o n was was no the  a relatively stability ego  herent  In the  given t h a t the  fixed entity.  i n the  either.  egos.  But  ego  second at  least  j u s t as t h e r e i s  e n t i r e p s y c h e , so t h e r e i s none i n  I t i s only the o v e r - s i m p l i f i c a t i o n i n -  i n human v i s i o n t h a t l e a d s t o s u c h a v i e w .  i s what G r o d d e c k s a y s a b o u t t h e m a n i f e s t a t i o n o f of " I - f e e l i n g i n which the poses of i t s  r t  that i n i t s e l f  I t manipulates  i s o n l y one  the  conscious  Here ego,  o f t h e ways mind f o r  pur-  own:  What i s u s u a l l y u n d e r s t o o d by t h e ego i s what I h a v e been c a l l i n g t h e g e n e r a l - I , b u t even t h i s i s no s i m p l e phenomenon t o be e a s i l y dismissed. W i t h i n a few moments t h e o b s e r v e r w i l l see i t t u r n t o h i m t h e m o s t d i v e r s e a s p e c t s o f i t s s e r r i e d and scintillating s u r f a c e . A t one moment i t i s an I f r o m c h i l d h o o d , t h e n i t i s a g r o w n up, e v e n m a g i s t e r i a l ; now i t i s m o r a l , now s e x u a l , o r a g a i n i t i s t h e I o f a m u r d e r e r or o f a s a i n t . Now i t i s p i o u s , a moment l a t e r , i m p e r t i n e n t . I n t h e morni n g i t may be t h e p r o f e s s i o n a l I , t h e o f f i c e r or c i v i l s e r v a n t , at mid-day perh a p s t h e m a r r i e d I , and i n t h e e v e n i n g a c a r d - p l a y e r , a s a d i s t o r a t h i n k e r . When you c o n s i d e r t h a t a l l t h e s e I ' s — a n d u n t o l d o t h e r s — a r e simultaneously e x i s t e n t i n the man, y o u w i l l be a b l e t o i m a g i n e how g r e a t i s t h e power o f t h e u n c o n s c i o u s w h i c h c a l l s them f o r t h ..... Whether or n o t nature  D u r r e l l owes h i s i d e a o f  of t h e e g o - s e l f d i r e c t l y t o Dr.  be d i f f i c u l t striking  to determine,  but  the  Groddeck would  certainly there i s a  s i m i l a r i t y between t h i s v i e w of  Groddeck's  and  D u r r e l l ' s own p r e s e n t a t i o n o f c h a r a c t e r i n t h e  Quartet. has  I t w i l l be r e a d i l y  s e e n t h a t what  Durrell  done i s d e p i c t t h e v a r i o u s a n d s i m u l t a n e o u s l y  e x i s t i n g e g o s o f a human p s y c h e i n g r e a t d e t a i l by t r e a t i n g them on one l e v e l  a s s e p a r a t e human  beings  and f o l l o w i n g up t h e i r d e v e l o p m e n t , w h i l e on a n o t h e r level  s u g g e s t i n g t h a t a l l a r e m i n u t e a s p e c t s o f one  complete  psyche r e v e a l i n g  i t s c o m p l e x i t y to/the b e -  holder.  Such a t e c h n i q u e  i s a n a t u r a l enough  out-  come o f h i s v i e w t h a t t h e s e p a r a t i o n o f s u b j e c t a n d o b ject,  o f o b s e r v e r and o b s e r v e d ,  f r o m human v i s i o n , it  t h a t always  results  i s an i l l u s i o n and t h a t r e a l i t y , i f  were a c c e s s i b l e t o man, w o u l d  comprise  He t a l k s a t l e n g t h a b o u t t h i s c o n c e p t P o e t r y , and i n doing the s o r t of technique  both  i n unity  i n Key t o Modern  so he comes c l o s e t o s u g g e s t i n g I f e e l he h a s u s e d i n t h e Q u a r t e t  ' I t seems a t l e a s t c o n c e i v a b l e t h a t w h a t i s t r u e o f p e r c e i v e d o b j e c t s may a l s o b e t r u e of p e r c e i v i n g minds; j u s t as t h e r e are w a v e - p i c t u r e s f o r l i g h t and e l e c t r i c i t y , so t h e r e may be a c o r r e s p o n d i n g p i c t u r e f o r consciousness. When we v i e w o u r s e l v e s i n space and time our c o n s c i o u s n e s s e s a r e obviously the separate i n d i v i d u a l s of a p a r t i c l e - p i c t u r e , when we p a s s beyond s p a c e and t i m e ( p r e s u m a b l y i n t o t h e c o n t i n u u m which i s formed o f a m i x t u r e o f both) they may p e r h a p s f o r m i n g r e d i e n t s o f a s i n g l e c o n t i n u o u s stream o f l i f e . As i t i s w i t h l i g h t a n d e l e c t r i c i t y , so i t may be w i t h l i f e ; t h e phenomena may be i n d i v i d u a l s  105  c a r r y i n g on s e p a r a t e e x i s t e n c e s i n s p a c e and t i m e , w h i l e i n t h e d e e p e r r e a l i t y b e y o n d s p a c e a n d t i m e we may a l l be members of one b o d y . I n b r i e f , modern p h y s i c s i s n o t a l t o g e t h e r a n t a g o n i s t i c t o an o b j e c t i v e i d e a l i s m l i k e t h a t o f Hegel.' T h i s t h i r d view of D u r r e l l ' s c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n , i n c i d e n t a l l y i s much l i k e  (which,  t h a t o f t h e C a b a l l a so o f t e n  m e n t i o n e d i n t h e s e n o v e l s ) c l e a r l y i s a k i n t o t h e manw i t h i n - L a r g e r Man i d e a t h a t I d i s c u s s e d f i r s t  of a l l .  However, t h i s t h i r d v i e w p e r m i t s a n i n s i g h t i n t o t h e depth  a n d d e t a i l o f t h e human p s y c h e ,  whereas t h e f i r s t  s t r e s s e d t h e d e p e n d e n c e o f t h e s u b o r d i n a t e human u n i t s within the larger  whole.  Now t h e n i f one l o o k s c l o s e l y a t t h e n a t u r e ?  of  t h e human p s y c h e a s D u r r e l l p r e s e n t s i t , i t w i l l  seen t h a t i t e x p r e s s e s  itself  i n a sort of c y c l i c a l  development towards t h e f u l l e r r e a l i z a t i o n o f s e l f everywhere i n t h e Quartet  i s t h e human g o a l .  s i m p l e s t way t o b e g i n u n d e r s t a n d i n g elopment i s t o observe in  the " l i f e "  his  life  it, first  of Darley.  And t h e  that c y c l i c a l  dev-  "ego-manifesta-  I mentioned before t h a t  i s one o f a l t e r n a t i n g e n c o u n t e r  and w i t h d r a w a l f r o m  which  of a l l , as i t i s found  ofnone of t h e psyche's  tionSj\ i n the l i f e  be  with the c i t y  i t , w h i l e a t each e n c o u n t e r  certain  experiences are r e l i v e d i n s i m i l a r but s i g n i f i c a n t l y  modified  form.  What I h a d i n mind was t h i s :  Darley"s  three  love a f f a i r s develops through  similar  stages,  tical  each of quite  and a t c e r t a i n p o i n t s an a l m o s t  note i s s t r u c k .  iden-  I t i s c l e a r l y i n t e n t i o n a l on  D u r r e l l " s p a r t and i m p o s s i b l e  t o m i s s on a c a r e f u l  reading. In J u s t i n e , a t the beginning r e l a t i o n s h i p with M e l i s s a , visit  Darley"s  s h e comes u n e x p e c t e d l y t o  h i m w e a r i n g "a new summer f r o c k o f a c r i s p v i n e -  l e a f pattern,*'^  on t h e o u t i n g brilliant  Towards t h e end o f t h e Q u a r t e t ^ C l e a  6  surprises Darley  by coming t o h i s f l a t  summer f r o c k  time of h e r v i s i t ; accident  t o i n v i t e him  t o t h e i s l a n d : she t o o i s w e a r i n g "a o f a c r i s p v i n e - l e a f pattern."^'  M e l i s s a h a d j u s t been r e l e a s e d  Darley  of  Clea  t h a t same d a y .  after that f i r s t  from h o s p i t a l a t the  i s t o be h o s p i t a l i z e d b y h e r A g a i n , when M e l i s s a h a s visit,  he g o e s o u t a  left  little  l a t e r to f i n d her • s i t t i n g i n t h e corner of a c o f f e e shop, alone, w i t h h e r hands s u p p o r t i n g h e r c h i n . Her h a t a n d h a n d b a g l a y b e s i d e h e r a n d s h e was s t a r i n g i n t o h e r cup w i t h a w r y r e f l e c t i v e a i r o f amusement.g I n t h e l a s t volume, D a r l e y s T  f i r s t meeting with  Clea  when he r e t u r n s t o t h e c i t y i s a n e x a c t echo o f t h a t  7  e a r l i e r meeting with  Melissa?  ... s h e was s i t t i n g where once ( t h a t f i r s t day) M e l i s s a h a d b e e n s i t t i n g , g a z i n g a t a c o f f e e cup w i t h a wry r e f l e c t i v e a i r o f amusement, w i t h h e r h a n d s s u p p o r t i n g h e r c h i n . The e x a c t s t a t i o n i n p l a c e a n d t i m e where I had once found M e l i s s a , and w i t h such d i f f i c u l t y m u s t e r e d enough c o u r a g e a t l a s t t o e n t e r t h e p l a c e a n d speak t o h e r . I t gave me a s t r a n g e s e n s e o f u n r e a l i t y t o r e p e a t t h i s f o r g o t t e n a c t i o n a t such a g r e a t remove of time, l i k e u n l o c k i n g a door which had r e mained c l o s e d and b o l t e d f o r a g e n e r a t i o n .  The  d o o r he r e f e r s t o i s t h e one he f e e l s  c l o s e when, i n  J u s t i n e , he r e t u r n s t o t h e c i t y t o f i n d M e l i s s a a l ready dead i n h o s p i t a l .  Looking  a t h e r t h e n he r e -  f l e c t s t h a t h e r f a c e i n d e a t h b e a r s no r e s e m b l a n c e t o the f a c e s of t h e l i v i n g  Melissa:  She b o r e no r e s e m b l a n c e t o a n y o f t h e m — and y e t s h e s e t them o f f , c o n c l u d e d t h e m . T h i s w h i t e l i t t l e f a c e was t h e l a s t t e r m of a s e r i e s . Beyond t h i s p o i n t t h e r e was a locked door.,^ Clea • l a t e r r e v e a l s that M e l i s s a , before her  to love Darley  she d i e d ,  asked  i n her place:  C a n n o t a f r i e n d make l o v e on a n o t h e r ' s behalf? I ask you t o sleep w i t h him as I w o u l d a s k t h e P a n a g h i a t o come down a n d b l e s s h i m w h i l e he s l e e p s — l i k e i n t h e o l d ikons. 11  108  And  indeed  i t i s as  how  turned  i n t o Clea.  lies and  " b a n d a g e d and  i f , at the  end,  Melissa's  M e l i s s a has  some-  body i n t h e h o s p i t a l  s w a d d l e d as i f a f t e r some c o n s u m i n g  irreparable accident";  there  i s a marked  simil-  a r i t y t o t h e b a n d a g e d f o r m of C l e a , h o s p i t a l i z e d w i t h her  s h a t t e r e d h a n d , i n a room s c e n t e d  nots. in  What i s e v e n more s t r i k i n g ,  t h a t room D a r l e y  relives  with  forget-me-  i n going  to see  her  i n d e t a i l a p a r t of h i s  past: I f o l l o w e d a d u t y n u r s e down t h e l o n g a n o n y mous g r e e n c o r r i d o r s whose o i l - p a i n t e d w a l l s e x u d e d an a t m o s p h e r e o f damp. The white phosphorescent bulbs which punctuated our p r o g r e s s w a l l o w e d i n the gloom l i k e s w o l l e n glow-worms. They had p r o b a b l y p u t her, I r e f l e c t e d , i n the l i t t l e ward w i t h t h e s i n g l e c u r t a i n e d bed which i n t h e p a s t had b e e n r e s e r v e d f o r c r i t i c a l c a s e s whose e x p e c t a t i o n o f l i f e was s h o r t . I t was now t h e emergency c a s u a l t y w a r d . A s e n s e o f g h o s t l y f a m i l i a r i t y was g r o w i n g upon me. In t h e p a s t I t was h e r e t h a t I had come t o see Melissa. C l e a must be l y i n g i n t h e same n a r r o w i r o n bed i n t h e c o r n e r by t h e w a l l . ( " I t w o u l d be j u s t l i k e r e a l l i f e t o i m i t a t e art at t h i s point."),-, One  should  add  that i t i s not  M e l i s s a t h a t he r e l i v e s . visit—hinted dying fused.  at i n the  Cohen whom D a r l e y The  j u s t the going  There i s a l s o the l a s t bracketed  to  see  earlier  sentence—to  went t o see when M e l i s s a  d e s c r i p t i o n s of these t h r e e  the  re-  v i s i t s to  same h o s p i t a l room c o n t a i n w o r d - f o r - w o r d e c h o e s o f  the each  other. T h i s t h e n i s what I mean by ment i n D a r l e y ' s mere r e p e t i t i o n key  life.  and  develop-  T h a t i t i s d e v e l o p m e n t and  i s nowhere more a p p a r e n t t h a n i n  p a s s a g e s , one  Quartet  cyclical  o f w h i c h comes v e r y  the other towards the  end,  two  e a r l y i n the i n Clea.  i s t h e p a s s a g e f r o m J u s t i n e where D a r l e y t h e Moslem m o r n i n g p r a y e r w h i l e  not  listens  l y i n g beside  Here to  Melissa  i n a room n e a r t h e M o s q u e : I n t h a t e a r l y s p r i n g dawn, w i t h i t s d e n s e dew, s k e t c h e d u p o n t h e s i l e n c e w h i c h e n g u l f s a w h o l e c i t y b e f o r e t h e b i r d s awaken i t , I caught the sweet v o i c e of t h e b l i n d m u e z z i n f r o m t h e mosque r e c i t i n g t h e Ebed--a v o i c e h a n g i n g l i k e a h a i r i n the palm-cooled upper a i r s of A l e x a n d r i a . " I p r a i s e t h e p e r f e c t i o n of God, t h e F o r e ver e x i s t i n g " ( t h i s repeated t h r i c e , ever more s l o w l y , i n a h i g h sweet r e g i s t e r ) . "The p e r f e c t i o n of God, t h e D e s i r e d , t h e E x i s t i n g , t h e S i n g l e , t h e Supreme: t h e p e r f e c t i o n o f God, t h e One, t h e S o l e : t h e p e r f e c t i o n o f Him who t a k e t h u n t o h i m s e l f no m a l e o r f e m a l e p a r t n e r , n o r any l i k e Him, n o r any t h a t i s d i s o b e d i e n t , n o r any d e p u t y , e q u a l o r offspring. H i s p e r f e c t i o n be e x t o l l e d . " The g r e a t p r a y e r wound i t s way i n t o my sleepy consciousness l i k e a serpent, c o i l a f t e r s h i n i n g c o i l of words--the v o i c e of the muezzin s i n k i n g from r e g i s t e r to r e g i s t e r o f g r a v i t y — u n t i l t h e w h o l e m o r n i n g seemed dense w i t h i t s m a r v e l l o u s h e a l i n g powers, the i n t i m a t i o n s of a grace undeserv e d and u n e x p e c t e d , i m p r e g n a t i n g t h a t s h a b b y room where M e l i s s a l a y , b r e a t h i n g as l i g h t l y as a g u l l , r o c k e d upon t h e o c e a n i c splendours o f a l a n g u a g e she w o u l d n e v e r know.  110  And  here i s the  where D a r l e y  comparable passage from the l a s t  w a k e s up  window l i s t e n i n g  to f i n d  t o t h a t same  Clea standing  by  volume,  the  prayer:  She was s t a n d i n g a t t h e d r a w n c u r t a i n s t o w a t c h t h e dawn b r e a k o v e r t h e t u m b l e d r o o f s o f t h e A r a b t o w n , n a k e d and slender a s an E a s t e r l i l y . In t h a t spring s u n r i s e , w i t h i t s d e n s e dew, s k e t c h e d u p o n t h e s i l e n c e which e n g u l f s a whole c i t y b e f o r e t h e b i r d s awaken i t , I c a u g h t t h e s w e e t v o i c e o f t h e b l i n d M u e z z i n f r o m t h e mosque r e c i t i n g the E b e d — a voice hanging l i k e a h a i r i n the p a l m - c o o l e d upper a i r s of Alexandria. " I p r a i s e t h e p e r f e c t i o n of God, t h e F o r e v e r e x i s t i n g ; t h e p e r f e c t i o n o f God, t h e d e s i r e d , t h e E x i s t i n g , t h e S i n g l e , t h e Supreme; t h e P e r f e c t i o n o f God, t h e One, t h e S o l e " . . . . The g r e a t p r a y e r wound i t s e l f i n s h i n i n g c o i l s a c r o s s t h e c i t y as I w a t c h e d t h e g r a v e and passionate i n t e n s i t y o f h e r t u r n e d h e a d where she s t o o d t o o b s e r v e t h e c l i m b i n g sun t o u c h t h e m i n a r e t s and p a l m s w i t h l i g h t : r a p t and awake .... The b u o y a n c y o f a new f r e e d o m p o s s e s s e d me l i k e a d r a u g h t f r o m what t h e C a b a l once c a l l e d "The F o u n t a i n o f A l l E x i s t i n g Things".  15 Two  t h i n g s stand  out  and  even had  heard the prayer  she  understood i t ; stands. served  here.  C l e a i s " r a p t and  Secondly, the and  First,  M e l i s s a was she w o u l d n o t  awake" and  l o v e f o r M e l i s s a become, i n C l e a , t h e The  two  have under-  " i n t i m a t i o n s o f a g r a c e unde-  u n e x p e c t e d " t h a t come t o D a r l e y  freedom...."  she  asleep,  through  his  "buoyancy of a  passages are a l i k e i n s t r e s s i n g  new the  p o s s i b i l i t y o f a r e l e a s e f o r t h e c h a r a c t e r s f r o m an otherwise  limited life.  They d i f f e r  slightly  the f i r s t  p a s s a g e h a s t o do w i t h r e l e a s e  passional  l o v e , and here o n l y D a r l e y  i n that  through  i s aware o f i t .  I n C l e a t h e f e e l i n g o f new f r e e d o m comes a l s o love,  t h o u g h h e r e l o v e comes c l o s e r t o b e i n g  "friendship  ... t h i s  once m e n t i o n s .  side of love"  Again,  both Darley  o f w h a t t h i s means, a n d t h e r e  through a  such as C l e a and C l e a a r e aware  i s a h i n t h e r e o f man's  a b i l i t y t o a c t w i t h new f r e e d o m w h e r e a s i n J u s t i n e t h e r e was l a r g e l y  just passive  awareness.  i s t h e p r e r o g a t i v e of t h e a r t i s t ,  o f t h e p e r s o n whose  i m a g i n a t i v e p o w e r s h a v e been l i b e r a t e d , ation i s achieved  Free action  and such  liber-  only through the growth of the psyche  growth coming t h r o u g h t h e e x p e r i e n c e s  of l o v e and s u f -  fering.  i s really  "The s o - c a l l e d a c t o f l i v i n g  of t h e imagination,"  says Pursewarden.  an a c t  I f that i s so,  t h e n a man i s t r u l y a l i v e a n d f r e e o n l y t o t h e e x t e n t t h a t h i s i m a g i n a t i v e powers have developed. ratiocinative faculty perience  of sexual  stress l a i d  i n h i b i t s these  t h e human b e i n g .  powers; t h e ex-  l o v e augments them.  upon t h e v a l u e  The  Hence t h e g r e a t  of the loye experience f o r  Hence a l s o t h e p r e s e n t a t i o n o f D a r l e y .  growth as an a r t i s t  i n terms o f h i s l o v e  experience.  112  The  two p a s s a g e s q u o t e d a b o v e a r e s i g n p o s t s i n D a r l e y ' s  life;  they  i n d i c a t e h i s g r a d u a l development from a  p o i n t o f awakened i n s i g h t t o a s t a t e w h e r e s u c h i n s i g h t makes a r t i s t h o o d a r e a l  possibility.  So f a r I h a v e d e a l t w i t h c y c l i c a l  develop-  ment i n D a r l e y ' s l i f e m a i n l y w i t h r e g a r d t o t h e way i n w h i c h M e l i s s a ' s a n d C l e a ' s r o l e s seem t o " o v e r l a p " . T h e r e a r e many o t h e r i n s t a n c e s , h o w e v e r , i n w h i c h  such  o v e r l a p p i n g o f c h a r a c t e r s o c c u r s o r where e v e n t s r e peat  themselves  f o r Darley.  "A c i t y  becomes a w o r l d  when one l o v e s one o f i t s i n h a b i t a n t s , "  writes  x 7  D a r l e y i n J u s t i n e , a n d i t i s n o t c l e a r w h e t h e r he i s referring to Melissa or to Justine.  Much l a t e r e x a c t l y  t h e same p h r a s e o c c u r s , a n d h e r e D a r l e y u s e s i t i n r e f erence that  to Clea. ^ 1  suggest  T h e r e a r e a number o f o t h e r  t h a t C l e a i s an " e x t e n s i o n " - ' -  a s much a s s h e i s o f M e l i s s a . Darley's a f f a i r with Justine,  9  instances  of Justine  At the beginning of the following  dialogue  occurs: " I am a l w a y s so b a d t h e f i r s t t i m e , why i s i t ? " "Nerves perhaps. So am I . " "You a r e a l i t t l e a f r a i d o f me." 20 The  same d i a l o g u e , w i t h o n l y s l i g h t d i f f e r e n c e s , comes  113  a g a i n at the beginning Clea.  2 1  A g a i n , when t h e a f f a i r o f D a r l e y and  comes t o i t s end, arm  of D a r l e y ' s r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h  Justine l i e s  " l i k e a dead b i r d . "  2 2  Justine  i n the h o l l o w of h i s  Clea, the f i r s t night w i t h  D a r l e y , s l e e p s i n h i s arms " l i k e  a wild bird  by  i t s s t r u g g l e s w i t h a l i m e d twig." 3  is  striking,  2  ><  e s p e c i a l l y as t h e two  The  exhausted similarity  i m a g e s come q u i t e  c l o s e t o g e t h e r ; y e t t h e r e i s a l l the d i f f e r e n c e between d e a t h and Justine,  she  life.  I f C l e a i s an  extension  i s an e x t e n s i o n t h a t l i v e s  on when t h e  predecessor  has  of her r o l e  i n c o n n e c t i o n w i t h M e l i s s a , and  it  ceased to matter.  D a r l e y r e f l e c t s t h a t i n a way  his  This i s true, too,  he has  now  realizing retraced  s t e p s t o t h a t p o i n t i n the p a s t where J u s t i n e ' s  d e p a r t u r e had go ne  of  shattered his l i f e  and  M e l i s s a too  had  away. My s t e p s had l e d me b a c k a g a i n , I r e a l i s e d , r e m e m b e r i n g t h e n i g h t so l o n g ago when we had s l e p t d r e a m l e s s l y i n e a c h o t h e r ' s a r m s , t o t h e l o c k e d d o o r w h i c h h a d o n c e r e f u s e d me admission to her. L e d me b a c k once more t o that point i n time, that t h r e s h o l d , behind w h i c h t h e s h a d e o f C l e a moved, s m i l i n g and i r r e s p o n s i b l e as a f l o w e r , a f t e r a huge a r i d d e t o u r i n a d e s e r t o f my own i m a g i n i n g s . I had n o t known t h e n how t o f i n d t h e key t o t h a t d o o r . Now o f i t s own a c c o r d i t was s l o w l y opening. Whereas t h e o t h e r d o o r w h i c h had o n c e g i v e n me a c c e s s t o J u s t i n e h a d now locked irrevocably.  But such  cyclical  i t i s not just i n Darley's l i f e  that  development and p a t t e r n i n g o f e x p e r i e n c e  i s t o be f o u n d .  I t i s evident i n the l i v e s  c h a r a c t e r s as w e l l ,  of other  though t o a l e s s e r e x t e n t .  example, i n J u s t i n e ' s m a r r i a g e  For  t o Nessim t h e r e a r e a  few echoes o f h e r f o r m e r m a r r i a g e  to Arnauti.  This i s  o n c e e x p l i c i t l y m e n t i o n e d by D a r l e y who h a s r e a d A r n a u t i ' s n o v e l about those y e a r s . o f way t h i s  relationship  relationship band." 5  " I n a queer  echoed t h e p s y c h o - a n a l y t i c  d e s c r i b e d i n Moeurs by h e r f i r s t  Again, i n Justine's " d i a r i e s "  2  sort  hus-  (notebooks  of  Arnauti's) i ti s recorded how one m o o n l i g h t n i g h t t h e y g a i n e d a c c e s s t o t h e Museum a n d s a t f o r an h o u r among the s t a t u e s " s i g h t l e s s as nightmares" l i s t e n i n g to him t a l k . , 26 During her marriage  t o Nessim t h i s scene i s r e p e a t e d  when N e s s i m m e e t s h e r a n d B a l t h a z a r one n i g h t a t t h e museum. 27 So much f o r c y c l i c a l of the i n d i v i d u a l a s I am h e r e on, as I f e e l Quartet  development i n t h e l i v e s  c h a r a c t e r s — t h e "ego-manifestations"  c o n s i d e r i n g them. Durrell  I f t h e r e a d e r now g o e s  i n t e n d s h i m t o , and sees t h e  as a l e n g t h y and h i g h l y d e t a i l e d study o f a  single  human p s y c h e s e e n i n c l o s e - u p  angles  and from d i f f e r e n t  from  points i n time,  many t h i n g s become c l e a r e r .  innumerable a great  Such c y c l i c a l  develop-  ment a s c o u l d be s e e n i n t h e l i v e s o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l characters life  (ego-manifestations)  o f t h e one g r e a t  s a k e , we c a n c a l l the r e p e t i t i o n  a l s o shows up i n t h e  character which, f o r convenience's  the City.  In fact,  so r e c u r r e n t i s  and p a t t e r n i n g o f images and e v e n t s  t h a t one c a n h a r d l y a c c o u n t f o r them u n l e s s one p o s i t s t h a t t h e y a r e somehow p a r t o f t h e l i f e psyche.  I t i s n o t enough t o s e e such r e p e t i t i o n a s  part of the l i v e s of individual the pattern w i l l stance,  of a.single  certain  different  characters.  n o t make s e n s e t h a t way. i m a g e s r e c u r many t i m e s  c h a r a c t e r s , and c e r t a i n  Much o f For i n -  i n relation to  events of s t r i k i n g  s i m i l a r i t y a r e " r e l i v e d " n o t b y t h e same i n d i v i d u a l b u t by d i f f e r e n t  ones.  I n o t h e r words, t h e c y c l i c  ment i s s o m e t h i n g i n w h i c h a l l t h e i n d i v i d u a l ers take p a r t from time t o time, the  experience  of a single  a meaningful whole. to t h e p a r t played  This  developcharact-  b u t o n l y when s e e n a s  human p s y c h e d o e s i t f o r m i s p a r t i c u l a r l y so i n r e g a r d  by h i s t o r y  i n the Quartet, f o r  i n c i d e n t s and f i g u r e s  of the past  those  becoming apparent i n t h e l i f e  of t h e present,  often converge with now  116  o f t h i s D u r r e l l i a n c h a r a c t e r , now o f a n o t h e r . I  shall  Of t h i s  h a v e more t o s a y l a t e r . The  way i n w h i c h i m a g e s r e c u r i n t h e s e  novels  is  interesting.  I n my o u t l i n e o f c y c l i c a l  in  Darley's  I showed how t h e t h r e e women seem,  at  times,  life  t o m e l t i n t o e a c h o t h e r , a s when M e l i s s a  "becomes" C l e a  ( o r C l e a becomes a n " e x t e n s i o n " o f h e r ) .  A somewhat s i m i l a r use  development  e f f e c t i s achieved  of images elsewhere.  by t h e r e c u r r e n t  F o r example, a t t h e marriage  c e l e b r a t i o n of Nessim and J u s t i n e , L e i l a h e r new d a u g h t e r - i n - l a w )  (who h a t e s  says o f J u s t i n e t h a t she i s  " l i k e a s m a l l d a r k s n a k e c o i l e d up a t t h e c e n t r e o f Nessim's l i f e . " ^ 2 8  Later Darley  t h e same way, l i k e  "a s m a l l h a t e f u l s n a k e " a t t h e c e n t r e  sees L i z a  Pursewarden  29 of Mountolive's than  peaceful l i f e .  a superficial  More i s i n v o l v e d h e r e  s i m i l a r i t y b e t w e e n t h e two women.  A depth o f resemblance between J u s t i n e ' s s i t u a t i o n and t h a t o f L i z a becomes a p p a r e n t a s s o o n a s one l o o k s . When s h e m a r r i e s r i a g e behind  N e s s i m , J u s t i n e a l r e a d y h a s one mar-  her, the marriage  she l o s t h e r s m a l l d a u g h t e r . marries  t o A r n a u t i d u r i n g which The f a m i l y i n t o w h i c h s h e  i s r i c h and d i s t i n g u i s h e d , and h e r husband's  mother i s a remote f i g u r e l i v i n g  i n r e t i r e m e n t , widowed.  117  Compare L i z a  Pursewarden*s s i t u a t i o n : L i z a p r e v i o u s l y  l i v e d w i t h h e r b r o t h e r b y whom s h e h a d a c h i l d . little  g i r l ' s death  ended t h e i r  life  t o g e t h e r , and  l a t e r L i z a moves o n t o a r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h who w a n t s t o m a r r y h e r . distinguished; like  The  Mountolive  L i k e Nessim he i s r i c h and  N e s s i m , t o o , he t r i e s  repeatedly  t o g e t t h e woman o f h i s c h o i c e t o a g r e e t o m a r r i a g e . Again, M o u n t o l i v e s T  alone l i k e L e i l a ,  mother l i v e s i n r e t i r e m e n t and  a n d b e t w e e n h e r and M o u n t o l i v e  i s a very c l o s e r e l a t i o n s h i p , a s t h e r e i s between and h e r s o n .  there Leila  One c o u l d go o n a n d p o i n t o u t t h a t N e s s i m  and M o u n t o l i v e  a r e much a l i k e :  "by c a n d l e l i g h t t h e two  men seemed e x a c t l y o f a n a g e , i f i n d e e d n o t o f t h e 10 same f a m i l y . " ^ when he f i r s t solicitude and  just  L e i l a ' s a t t i t u d e towards  Mountolive  comes t o Karm i s " t h e f a i n t l y  o f a woman t o w a r d s h e r o n l y  apprehensive  man-child,"^3l  once she m e n t i o n s h e r uneasy f e a r t h a t p e r -  haps, a t t h e bottom o f t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p , 32 i n c e s t wish  on h e r p a r t .  Going s t i l l  i sa feeble  further i n this  t r a c i n g o f a p a t t e r n , t h e r e i s even t h e s i m i l a r i t y o f Mountolive's  a f f a i r with the ballerina  Nessim's b r i e f the E t o i l e . and  encounter  G r i s h k i n and  w i t h M e l i s s a who d a n c e s a t  M e l i s s a ' s c h i l d by Nessim i s b r o u g h t t o h i m  J u s t i n e l o n g a f t e r M e l i s s a ' s d e a t h , w h i l e i n a "work-  p o i n t " a t t h e end o f C l e a D u r r e l l b r o a c h e s t h e m a t t e r of G r i s h k i n ' s l i t t l e  girl  b e i n g brought t o M o u n t o l i v e  and L i z a a f t e r h e r m o t h e r ' s All image!  death.  t h a t from t h e r e c u r r e n c e of a  single  The " y i e l d " i s n o t a l w a y s t h i s g r e a t , b u t i n -  v a r i a b l y t h e r e c u r r e n c e of imagery  or the r e p e t i t i o n  o f e v e n t s i s r e v e a l i n g and s u g g e s t i v e of a l a r g e r pattern.  Leila,  like  Justine,  ity  apparent.  and r e c u r r e n t  i s a f i g u r e i n many ways  i m a g e r y makes t h e s i m i l a r -  L e i l a h a s " t h e m a g n i f i c e n t e y e s o f an  Egyptian s i b y l " ; e  f o r example,  3 3  t h e p h r a s e " t h e unmoved  sibyl's  y e » 3 4 o n c e sums up t h e s i l e n c e a n d d i g n i t y o f J u s t i n e  when  she a n t i c i p a t e s d e a t h .  Again, L e i l a  lives  t i r e m e n t a t Karm " l i k e a d e t h r o n e d E m p r e s s " ; ^ 3  i nr e Justine  u n d e r h o u s e - a r r e s t a t Karmihas t h e sombre a i r o f "a d i s p o s s e s s e d empress."/ ^  Together a t the marriage of  3  Nessim and J u s t i n e , t h e y s i t s i d e by s i d e ,  "the veiled  37  s p h i n x and t h e u n v e i l e d . "  D u r r e l l ' s purpose i n e s t a b -  x  lishing the similarity  here, i f considered from the  p o i n t of view o f i n d i v i d u a l  characters,  a p p e a r s t o be  b o t h t o w i d e n t h e i n c e s t theme b y s u g g e s t i n g t h a t Nessim l o v e s h i s mother through J u s t i n e  (Nessim  feels  38  " f r e e d " by h i s mother's political  death)  p  and to d i s p l a y t h e  i n t r i g u e o f t h e Hosnanis from y e t a n o t h e r  angle.  F o r j u s t a s J u s t i n e goes i n t o t h e a f f a i r  w i t h D a r l e y a t Nessim's  s u g g e s t i o n , so L e i l a  much  e a r l i e r t a k e s M o u n t o l i v e as h e r l o v e r a t t h e suggest i o n of h e r husband. at least  initially  w e l l be p o l i t i c a l young M o u n t o l i v e .  I n J u s t i n e ' s case t h e m o t i v e i s  political;  i n L e i l a ' s case i t might  t o o t o a degree u n s u s p e c t e d by t h e I t i s o n l y much l a t e r t h a t he b e g i n s  to suspect that L e i l a the Hosnani i n t r i g u e .  i s the r e a l d r i v i n g force behind Then a g a i n , when M o u n t o l i v e  m e e t s h i s f o r m e r l o v e r a g a i n , he i s s u r p r i s e d a n d d i s g u s t e d a t t h e change t h a t h a s come o v e r h e r : " s h e smelt l i k e  some o l d A r a b l a d y ! "  3 9  t h e same way a t t h e m e e t i n g w i t h  Darley reacts i n J u s t i n e : " t h e perfume!  A t s u c h c l o s e q u a r t e r s t h e s p i l l e d p e r f u m e was o v e r powering, almost nauseating." I f one now r e t u r n s t o t h e v i e w t h a t t h e Q u a r t e t h a s o n l y one c h a r a c t e r , t h i s p a t t e r n i n g o f e v e n t s and s i t u a t i o n s has t h e e f f e c t o f showing t h e r e a d e r two o r more v e r s i o n s o f what m i g h t t h e n b e s e e n as a s i n g l e a c t i o n engaged i n by t h e p s y c h e t h a t i s t h e sole character. would appear  The H o s n a n i i n t r i g u e ,  f o r example,  as t h e s t o r y o f L e i l a ' s i n t r i g u e a t t h e  u r g i n g o f h e r husband  i f s e e n f r o m one o b s e r v e r ' s  a n g l e o f v i s i o n . Seen by a s e c o n d o b s e r v e r a t a n o t h e r  time  i t w o u l d "become" t h e s t o r y o f N e s s i m  Justine.  Similarly,  J u s t i n e i s L i z a , and  and vice versa;  t h e i r s t o r i e s a r e t h e same s t o r y s e e n f r o m angles  by d i f f e r e n t o b s e r v e r s , a n d  s t o r y i s as t r u e as t h e o t h e r . o f a c t i o n a s an i l l u s i o n ,  We  each v e r s i o n of are back to the  that view  a s d e p e n d i n g f o r i t s semb-  l a n c e o f c l a r i t y and u n i q u e n e s s u p o n t h e p r o p e r t i e s of i n d i v i d u a l  different  restricting  vision.  I f two o r more e x p l a n a t i o n s o f a s i n g l e human a c t i o n a r e a s good a s e a c h o t h e r t h e n w h a t d o e s a c t i o n mean b u t an i l l u s i o n — a g e s t u r e made a g a i n s t t h e m i s t y b a c k c l o t h o f a r e a l i t y made p a l p a b l e by t h e d e l u s i v e n a t u r e o f human d i v i s i o n merely?^ The  " d e l u s i v e nature  o f human d i v i s i o n " b e i n g  a v o i d a b l e , what D u r r e l l h a s more t h a n one  done i s t o p r e s e n t  v e r s i o n o f t h e same e v e n t o r  This i s obvious  Justine  enough on t h e l e v e l o f c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n Here, f o r  gets continuously d i f f e r e n t views  o r o f N e s s i m , e v e n o f P o m b a l who,  s i m p l e a s he w o u l d seem t o be, ferent impressions Again,  always  character.  w h e r e t h e r e a r e many i n d i v i d u a l c h a r a c t e r s . e x a m p l e , one  un-  relatively  gives out w i d e l y  of himself to d i f f e r e n t  t h e r e a r e t h e many d i f f e r e n t a c c o u n t s  Pursewarden's s u i c i d e ,  of  dif-  observers. of  o f what h a p p e n e d t o J u s t i n e ' s  little  d a u g h t e r , even o f  wiring  i n the  so  Hosnani car  simple a thing  got  filed  down.  a s how  the  Transposed  t o the l e v e l of c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n where a l l a c t i o n  is  the  the  action  effect  of  one  of h i g h l y  D u r r e l l t r i e s to  character,  complex " p r i s m - s i g h t e d n e s s " w i t h suggest i f not  t u d i n o u s p o s s i b i l i t i e s and a s i n g l e human p s y c h e . o f a man  who  t h i s technique gives  t o encompass t h e  divergent impulses  L i k e Groddeck's  which multi-  within  illustration  d i s c l o s e s i n n u m e r a b l e egos i n a s i n g l e  day,  so t h i s c e n t r a l p s y c h e t h a t d o m i n a t e s t h e  Quartet d i s -  closes  e g o s and  itself  various  i n an a s t o u n d i n g v a r i e t y o f  r e l a t i o n s whose p r e c i s e  followed  up  over a period  of  s i g n i f i c a n c e can  be  time.  "What becomes o f p l o t ? " someone w i l l Seen i n t h i s way there only various an are  as  action  a wa.y  a t l e a s t two  this.  i n the  of i n d i c a t i n g the meaning of  central character  things  that  can  be  i t would not  at a l l .  psyche to a c t  i n t h e way  an  c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n as  one  be  There  s a i d i n answer to  l e a v e room f o r  i n d i v i d u a l character  Anyway, s u c h p l o t i s t h e r e as  be  the  F i r s t of a l l , a c l o s e - u p of a psyche, such  D u r r e l l h e r e a t t e m p t s , does not  the  ask.  Q u a r t e t w o u l d seem t o  e g o s by h a v i n g t h e m a c t i t o u t ;  a t t r i b u t e of the  in  soon as  one  looks  as  that would. upon  i n w h i c h many i n d i v i d u a l  c h a r a c t e r s appear.  Secondly, the k i n d of action that  most i n t e r e s t s D u r r e l l i s n o t s t r i c t l y at a l l but a process quotation already  of r e a l i z a t i o n .  speaking To r e p e a t  action a  used:  ... t h e s o - c a l l e d a c t o f l i v i n g i s r e a l l y an a c t o f t h e i m a g i n a t i o n . The w o r l d — w h i c h we a l w a y s v i s u a l i s e a s " t h e o u t s i d e " W o r l d — y i e l d s only to self-exploration I Now t h i s p r o c e s s the  o f s e l f - e x p l o r a t i o n c a n be o b s e r v e d i n  one s o l e c h a r a c t e r i n t h e Q u a r t e t .  I t shows up i n  much t h e same way a s i t d o e s i n t h e l i v e s o f t h e i n d i v i d u a l c h a r a c t e r s who a r e i t s Again,  an i l l u s t r a t i o n from t h e l i f e  character  i s helpful.  s p i r i t u a l l y by h a v i n g a number o f t i m e s . at i t . ilar  ego-manifestations. o f an i n d i v i d u a l  D a r l e y , f o r example, grows t o " r e l i v e " t h e same e x p e r i e n c e s  A t l e a s t t h a t i s one way o f l o o k i n g  A n o t h e r way i s t o s e e t h e s e  but nevertheless  experiences,  s i g n i f i c a n t l y v a r i e d , as d e r i v i n g  t h e i r q u a l i t i e s from t h e v i s i o n of Darley he i s l i v i n g t h r o u g h them.  " L e t us d e f i n e  h i m s e l f when 'man' a s a  poet p e r p e t u a l l y c o n s p i r i n g a g a i n s t h i m s e l f ^ " ^ Darley  i n Clea.  sim-  He h a s s u d d e n l y r e a l i z e d  4 3  says  that i n the  J u s t i n e he h a s l o v e d , a s i n t h e o t h e r women, t h e r e h a s n e v e r b e e n a n y t h i n g b u t t h e q u a l i t i e s w i t h w h i c h he h i m s e l f h a s endowed  them:  123  I had o n l y been a t t e s t i n g , i n a l l I had w r i t t e n , t o t h e power o f a n image w h i c h I h a d c r e a t e d i n v o l u n t a r i l y b y t h e mere a c t o f s e e i n g J u s t i n e . T h e r e was no question of true or f a l s e . Nymph? G o d d e s s ? V a m p i r e ? l e s , s h e was a l l o f t h e s e , a n d none o f them. She w a s , l i k e e v e r y woman, e v e r y t h i n g t h a t t h e m i n d o f a man ( l e t u s d e f i n e "man" a s a p o e t perpetually conspiring against himself)-t h a t t h e m i n d o f man w i s h e d t o i m a g i n e . She was t h e r e f o r e v e r , a n d s h e h a d n e v e r existed! U n d e r a l l t h e s e masks t h e r e was o n l y a n o t h e r woman, e v e r y woman, l i k e a l a y f i g u r e i n a dressmaker's shop, w a i t i n g f o r t h e poet t o c l o t h e her, breathe l i f e i n t o her.,. A man e x p e r i e n c e s w i l l manifest  w h a t he i s , t h e n ,  itself  and s p i r i t u a l  i n his a b i l i t y t o increase  i e n c e u n t i l h e becomes a w a r e , t h r o u g h i t , innermost nature,  the heart  growth  exper-  o f h i s own  of a l l reality  f o r him.  S e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n on t h e p a r t o f t h e one m a i n character,  the City, manifests  itself  i n a s i m i l a r way.  C e r t a i n e v e n t s a r e l i v e d a n d r e l i v e d , now by t h i s e g o , now b y t h a t .  I n Nessim's f e a r s o f being murdered by  the Egyptian  a u t h o r i t i e s t h e r e i s a n echo o f D a r l e y ' s  e a r l i e r f e a r s when Cohen was t h r e a t e n i n g h i m . The f i g u r e o f t h e f a n a t i c Narouz w i e l d i n g h i s whip i n a courtyard  s c a t t e r e d w i t h dead o r d y i n g b a t s  recalls the  e a r l i e r f i g u r e o f t h e f a n a t i c h o l y man, t h e Magzub, s t a n d i n g among t h e h y p n o t i z e d  v i c t i m s t h a t h i s power h a s  124  r e d u c e d t o c r a w l i n g on t h e ground. repeated  events  some c a s e s  The m e a n i n g o f s u c h  i s not always immediately  t h e r e c a n be l i t t l e  clear,  doubt o f i t .  buti n  When  M e l i s s a r e f u s e s t o see t h e d y i n g Cohen, t h e f o l l o w i n g dialogue  occurs: "0 i t i s s o d i s g u s t i n g ! P l e a s e do n o t make me g o . " "Of c o u r s e n o t " . "But i f y o u t h i n k I s h o u l d I w i l l h a v e t o . "  M e l i s s a d o e s n o t go; D a r l e y  goes i n h e r p l a c e .  When  C l e a i s a s k e d t o come t o Karm t o s e e t h e d y i n g a l m o s t e x a c t l y t h e same d i a l o g u e r e c u r s .  45  Narouz,  Nevertheless,  C l e a does a g r e e t o go, whereas M e l i s s a does n o t . M e l i s s a n e v e r shows a n y s e n s e o f g u i l t a b o u t h e r r e fusal, in  but f o r Clea  ( s h e does n o t make i t t o Karm) t h i s ,  c o n j u n c t i o n w i t h h e r o r i g i n a l d i s g u s t when N a r o u z  r e v e a l e d his l o v e f o r h e r , becomes t h e b e g i n n i n g haunting to  sense o f g u i l t .  T h i s l e a d s t o s u f f e r i n g a n d on  a g r e a t e r s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n f o r Clea, as I t r i e d to  show e a r l i e r through  on.  For the City,  Clea, of t h i s  the City  itself  then, the " r e l i v i n g " ,  experience  vance over t h e experience it  of a  o f r e f u s a l i s an a d -  as M e l i s s a had i t .  Through  comes t h a t much c l o s e r t o an u n d e r -  s t a n d i n g o f i t s own i n n e r  nature.  T h i s was an e x a m p l e o f an e v e n t w h i c h  recurs  125  o n l y once.  Others  r e c u r more f r e q u e n t l y and must  s e q u e n t l y be more i m p o r t a n t a s means t o w a r d s r e a l i z a t i o n f o r the C i t y .  first  self-  There i s f o r example  e x p e r i e n c e o f c a t a s t r o p h e and  con-  Darley's  d e s o l a t i o n when J u s t i n e  enters his l i f e : I t was a s i f t h e w h o l e c i t y h a d c r a s h e d a b o u t my e a r s ; I w a l k e d a b o u t i n i t a i m l e s s l y as s u r v i v o r s must w a l k a b o u t t h e s t r e e t s o f t h e i r n a t i v e c i t y a f t e r an e a r t h q u a k e , amazed t o f i n d how much t h a t had been f a m i l i a r was c h a n g e d .  46  D a r l e y has  t h e e x p e r i e n c e a g a i n When J u s t i n e  l e a v e s f o r P a l e s t i n e , and t h e e n t i r e p a s s a g e above i s r e p e a t e d to  present  tense.  l i v e s through  this  M e l i s s a suddenly Hosnani  exactly, 4 7  suddenly quoted  s a v e f o r a change f r o m  A third  time  past  i t i s Pursewarden  who  e x p e r i e n c e o f c a t a s t r o p h e when  c o n f i r m s f o r him the e x i s t e n c e o f  the  intrigue: I t was a s i f t h e w h o l e c i t y had down a b o u t h i s e a r s .  crashed  48  Each time the i n d i v i d u a l experience i s l e f t ruins.  c h a r a c t e r who  t o make what l i f e  D a r l e y , whose l i f e  undergoes the  he can o u t  w i t h M e l i s s a has  of  the  clearly  s h a t t e r e d by t h e a d v e n t of J u s t i n e ,  l i v e s on and  b u t M e l i s s a i s d e p r i v e d o f l o v e and  eventually dies.  been  learns,  126  With Justine's departure v i o l e n t l y upset, even t o b e g i n  and  Darley's  life  i s again  t h i s time i t t a k e s him  to rebuild i t .  two  years  Pursewarden, however  may  i n t e r p r e t h i s s u i c i d e , cannot r e b u i l d .  has  been  Too  much  destroyed. O t h e r e v e n t s l i v e d t h r o u g h by t h e C i t y ,  distressing,  show a more f r u i t f u l  whole complex of experiences  result.  o f l o v e and  through which the  madness, two  while  There i s a  i d u a l characters are brought face to face w i t h nature  indivthe  r e l a t e d phenomena.  essence of l o v e i s i l l u s i o n a r i s i n g out d e s i r e t o overcome l o n e l i n e s s ; o u t  of i t , e v e n t u a l l y , increased  a b i l i t y t o l i v e w i t h t h a t l o n e l i n e s s and  grow i n  first"  The  o f t h e human  comes n o t v i c t o r y o v e r l o n e l i n e s s b u t an  "At  one  spirit.  w r i t e s Pursewarden, we s e e k t o s u p p l e m e n t t h e e m p t i n e s s o f o u r i n d i v i d u a l i t y t h r o u g h l o v e , and f o r a b r i e f moment e n j o y t h e i l l u s i o n o f c o m p l e t e n e s s . B u t i t i s o n l y an i l l u s i o n . F o r t h i s s t r a n g e c r e a t u r e , w h i c h we t h o u g h t w o u l d j o i n u s t o t h e body o f t h e w o r l d , s u c c e e d s a t l a s t i n s e p a r a t i n g u s most t h o r o u g h l y f r o m i t . L o v e j o i n s and t h e n divides. How e l s e w o u l d we be g r o w i n g ?  However, g r o w t h i n e v i t a b l y means g r o w t h o f power and his  of i n s i g h t .  The  individual  imaginative  character dispels  i l l u s i o n s o n l y by r e c o g n i z i n g them f o r what t h e y  are,  127  but  once they  aYe so r e c o g n i z e d  He a c q u i r e s a new of l i v i n g , virtue  insight into  t h a t supreme  they  enrich h i s l i f e .  the nature  of the a c t  " a c t of the i m a g i n a t i o n "  o f w h i c h he e x i s t s .  Seen i n t h i s l i g h t ,  i s a quite i n v o l u n t a r y , e a r l y form of a r t . first  amateurish  expression  by love  I t i s man's  of h i s imaginative  power.  "The a e t i o l o g y o f l o v e and madness a r e identical  e x c e p t i n degree^'^^O w r i t e s D a r l e y when he i s  d e s c r i b i n g t h e e f f e c t s upon C l e a o f h e r r e l a t i o n s h i p to J u s t i n e . reality  Madness i s l i k e l o v e i n t h a t h e r e t o o t h e  p e r c e i v e d by t h e c o n s c i o u s  g i v i n g way t o i l l u s i o n t h e c a s e o f madness, man  mind i s s h a t t e r e d ,  o r , as i t i s g e n e r a l l y c a l l e d i n  to delusion.  comes a g a i n s t a f e e l i n g  Here t o o , as i n l o v e ,  o f g u i l t w h i c h he  must  somehow l e a r n t o o v e r c o m e . The e x a m p l e o f C l e a i s a good one i n t h i s connection,  f o r h e r e l o v e a n d madness a r e v i r t u a l l y t h e  same phenomena, madness b e i n g  the l a t e r  manifestations  o f what b e g a n a s l o v e .  In her love f o r J u s t i n e , Clea  is  i n the long catalogue  "not spared  deceptions  anything  which c o n s t i t u t e a l o v e a f f a i r . "  t h e most d e t e r m i n e d e f f o r t s , from the r e l a t i o n s h i p .  of s e l f Despite  she c a n n o t f r e e h e r s e l f  On t h e c o n t r a r y , t h e more s h e  s t r u g g l e s , t h e more c o m p e l l i n g and  the experience  becomes,  t h e more i t e n c r o a c h e s on h e r n o r m a l s e n s e o f w h a t  is real.  Here too g u i l t  i s apparent:  ... t h e d i s t o r t i o n s o f r e a l i t y w e r e d e e p l y i n t e r e s t i n g t o someone who r e c o g n i s e d t h a t f o r t h e a r t i s t i n h e r s e l f some c o n f u s i o n s o f s e n s i b i l i t y were v a l u a b l e . Walking t o w a r d s t h e s t u d i o she w o u l d s u d d e n l y f e e l h e r s e l f becoming b r e a t h l e s s l y i n s u b s t a n t i a l , as i f she w e r e a f i g u r e p a i n t e d on c a n v a s . Her b r e a t h i n g became p a i n f u l . Then a f t e r a moment she was o v e r t a k e n by a f e e l i n g o f h a p p i n e s s and w e l l - b e i n g so i n t e n s e t h a t she seemed t o h a v e become w e i g h t l e s s . Only the w e i g h t o f h e r s h o e s , i t seemed, h e l d h e r t o t h e g r o u n d . A t any moment she m i g h t f l y o f f the earth's surface, breaking through the membrane o f g r a v i t y , u n a b l e t o s t o p . This f e e l i n g was so p i e r c i n g t h a t she had t o s t o p and h o l d on t o t h e n e a r e s t w a l l and t h e n t o w a l k a l o n g i t b e n t d o u b l e l i k e someone on t h e deck o f a l i n e r i n a h u r r i c a n e . T h i s was i t s e l f s u c c e e d e d by o t h e r d i s a g r e e a b l e s e n s a t i o n s - - a s of a hot clamp round her s k u l l , p r e s s i n g i t , of the b e a t i n g of wings i n her ears. H a l f - d r e a m i n g i n bed, s u d d e n l y h o r n s rammed downward i n t o h e r b r a i n , i m p a l i n g h e r m i n d ; i n a b r a z e n r e d g l a r e she saw t h e b l o o d - s h o t e y e s o f t h e m i t h r a i c animal. I t was a c o o l n i g h t w i t h s o f t p o c k e t s of chemical l i g h t i n the Arab town. The G i n k s w e r e a b r o a d w i t h t h e i r l o n g o i l e d p l a i t s and t i n s e l l e d c l o t h e s ; t h e f a c e s o f b l a c k a n g e l s ; t h e men-women o f t h e s u b u r b s . The  "mithraic animal"  i s a symbol of M i t h r a ,  the  a n c i e n t P e r s i a n god  o f l i g h t and  d a r k n e s s and  I t s a p p e a r a n c e s u r e l y i s meant t o  evil.  i l l u s t r a t e the d e s t r u c t i v e nature  t r u t h ^ ^ r t opponent  o f man's m o r a l  of  sense  and  t o i n d i c a t e how, t h r o u g h i t s d e s t r u c t i v e i n f l u e n c e ,  through t h e g u i l t which i t f o r c e s him t o f e e l , t o l e a d t h e human b e i n g  on t o w a r d s g r e a t e r  The g u i l t t h a t r e a r s up c l e a r l y sexuality.  Out o f t h e p a i n  comes, a s I s e e i t , the  insight.  i s the g u i l t  o f homo-  of t h i s experience  what c r e a t i v e a b i l i t y  early parts of the Quartet.  i t helps  of love  Clea has i n  L a t e r new r e l a t i o n s h i p s  s u s t a i n h e r development as a r t i s t . The e x a m p l e o f C l e a i s s i m i l a r t o t h o s e o f A r n a u t i and o f L e i l a , are not given  great  t h o u g h t h e madness o f t h e s e two  attention.  Arnauti's  experience  of 52  delusions  and a n g u i s h a f t e r t h e d e p a r t u r e  of Justine  i s n o t e v e n c a l l e d madness, y e t i t b e a r s a r e s e m b l a n c e to Clea's during  experiences  h i s madness.  as w e l l as t o t h o s e of Nessim L e i l a ' s i n t e r m i t t e n t periods of  m e n t a l i n s t a b i l i t y a r e "a q u i e t s u r r e n d e r wo r i d "  5  3  of the r e a l  s t emming f r o m h e r r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h  Mountolive  I t i s n o t e w o r t h y t h a t she a n d h e r s o n s l e a r n t o a c c e p t t h i s as almost n a t u r a l p a r t of h e r l i f e during  these periods  of retirement  long l e t t e r s t o Mountolive lationship that replaces  and t h a t i t i s  t h a t she w r i t e s h e r  a n d so c r e a t e s  t h e new r e -  t h e o r i g i n a l one.  T h e s e e x a m p l e s l e a d on t o t h a t o f N e s s i m whos  madness i s d e s c r i b e d  i n g r e a t d e t a i l and  of a l l s i m i l a r experiences rooted  i s the  i n the Quartet.  I t too i s  i n love—Nessim's love f o r Justine—and  d e l u s i o n s t h a t are described e n t a s w e l l as  type  at length g u i l t  in  the  i s appar-  jealousy.  He f e l t t h a t h i s m i n d h a d become a b a t t l e g r o u n d f o r t h e f o r c e s o f good and e v i l and t h a t h i s t a s k was t o s t r a i n e v e r y n e r v e t o r e c o g n i z e them, b u t i t was n o t e a s y . . At the  same t i m e ,  w i t h i n him  appeals  the i r r a t i o n a l  t h a t has  broken  loose  irresistably for allegiance:  T h e s e , he knew, w e r e n o t d e l u s i o n s b u t l i n k s i n an o c c u l t c h a i n , l o g i c a l and p e r s u a s i v e o n l y t o t h e m i n d w h i c h had passed beyond the frame of c a u s a l i t y . It was b e c o m i n g h a r d e r and h a r d e r t o p r e t e n d t o be s a n e by t h e s t a n d a r d s o f o r d i n a r y behaviour. He was g o i n g t h r o u g h t h e D e v a s t a t i o d e s c r i b e d by S w e d e n b o r g . Here i s a s t r i k i n g i l l u s t r a t i o n  of the  connection  tween a l l i l l u s i o n — e v e n t h a t of madness--and imaginative  i n s i g h t t h a t the a r t i s t  s t r i v e s to a t t a i n . when D a r l e y quiring  For a t the very  or the end  the  philosopher  of the  s e t s out f o r h i m s e l f the problem of  ( o r o f c r e a t i n g ? ) i n s i g h t and  be-  Quartet, ac-  understanding,  he u s e s t h e f o l l o w i n g i m a g e : One day I c a u g h t a t o r t o i s e a t my f r o n t d o o r ; on t h e b e a c h was a smashed t u r t l e ' s egg. Small items which p l a n t themselves i n  131  t h e s p e c u l a t i v e mind l i k e s i n g l e notes o f m u s i c b e l o n g i n g t o some l a r g e r compos i t i o n w h i c h I s u p p o s e one w i l l n e v e r hear. 5 6  The  task of the a r t i s t  and  i n the l a s t  himself—that t h e end,  i s to s t r i v e  t o comprehend--  a n a l y s i s t h a t means t o c r e a t e f o r  " l a r g e r compositionj'x  i s prepared  p r o g e s s as f a r .  This Darley,  t o t r y t o do.  N e s s i m does not  His long, almost l i f e l e s s  s t a y a t Karm  i s somewhat c o m p a r a b l e t o D a r l e y ' s w i t h d r a w a l s the c i t y , to can  and  a t t h e end  Nessim i s enabled  i t , as D a r l e y d o e s e a r l i e r , from i t before, l i k e T h i s b r i n g s me  to the l a s t  a c t e r , the C i t y , which manifests There are  to return  general  observa-  of the greater  itself  c e r t a i n themes, h i s t o r i c a l  of the i n d i v i d u a l c h a r a c t e r s .  One  theme emerges w i t h e x c e p t i o n a l f o r c e d u r i n g m a d n e s s when h i s m i n d i s c o m p l e t e l y memories of t h e C i t y ' s p a s t . comes i m m e d i a t e and ly  c a u g h t up  char-  through i t s and  m y t h i c a l - r e l i g i o u s , w h i c h a p p e a r and r e a p p e a r a s experiences  he  leaving i t forever.  t i o n I want t o make a b o u t t h e l i f e  many e g o s .  from  t o l e a r n what more  Darley  at  the  such  Nessim's  given over  to  D i s t a n t human h i s t o r y  p e r s o n a l t o N e s s i m a s he  b y t h e memory o f A l e x a n d e r  be-  i s sudden-  the Great  and  132  r e l i v e s a part of the conquerer's Alexandrian The d e t a i l s o f t h e e x t e r n a l w o r l d merged i n t h i s d e l u s i o n . there  are repeated  characters  experience.  are completely  sub-  Elsewhere i n the Quartet  images l i n k i n g  a number o f i n d i v i d u a l  t o t h e h i s t o r i c a l Antony and  Cleopatra  whose l i v e s a r e a l s o s i g n i f i c a n t i n t h e C i t y ' s memory. I t i s a s though t h e most s i g n i f i c a n t , ful it  experiences  f o rthe City,  t h e most m e a n i n g -  t h o s e t h a t most  allow  t o a p p r o a c h s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n , a r e t o be f o u n d h e r e  i n the experience of the great  o f t h e famous c o n q u e r o r a n d i n t h a t  l o v e r s who b r o u g h t r u i n on t h e m s e l v e s  t h r o u g h t h e i r consuming l o v e .  Through N e s s i m t h e C i t y  remembers a n d r e l i v e s t h e e x p e r i e n c e  of the conqueror—  t h e a t t e m p t t o dominate and c o n t r o l , t h e r e l i a n c e upon s t r a t e g y a n d f o r c e a n d w i l l — w h i c h m u s t n e c e s s a r i l y end in despair  and d i s i n t e g r a t i o n .  N e s s i m ' s own  political  i n t r i g u e m i r r o r s the m i l i t a r y s t r a t e g y of t h e conqueror whose r o l e he r e l i v e s .  I t i s a negative  o u g h l y gone o v e r b y a C i t y w i t h a l o n g  lesson  memory.  The l o v e o f A n t o n y a n d C l e o p a t r a and  relived  In a short  i n the lives  o f many i n d i v i d u a l  e x p l i c i t reference,  thor-  i s remembered characters.  A r n a u t i and J u s t i n e a r e  l i n k e d to the h i s t o r i c a l lovers.  "He i s when a l l i s  133  s a i d a n d done a s o r t o f m i n o r A n t o n y , a n d s h e a C l e o , ^ 7 n  says B a l t h a z a r .  H i s v i e w i s t h a t she has wrecked  A r n a u t i ' s c a r e e r a s a w r i t e r t h e way C l e o p a t r a r u i n e d Antony's generalship.  O t h e r women a r e a l s o s e e n i n  the r o l e of Cleopatra. h e r , "5c*  says Darley  " L i k e C l e o p a t r a , we u n r o l l e d  o f t h e s i c k M e l i s s a , whom  have wrapped i n a Bokhara r u g and taken p a r t y a t w h i c h he f i r s t  sees her.  they  away f r o m t h e  The image comes  again  when t h e wounded C l e a i s b e i n g t a k e n t o h o s p i t a l : The s a i l o r s b r o u g h t a t a r p a u l i n a s h o r e a n d s o f t l y we b a l e d h e r u p l i k e C l e o p a t r a . ^ Both M e l i s s a and C l e a , i n t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p t o D a r l e y , suggest  the figure of Cleopatra, but the role  g r e a t queen i s s u p r e m e l y r e e n a c t e d  by J u s t i n e .  of the Through  h e r he l e a r n s t h e meaning o f l o v e and s u f f e r i n g , a n d at  h e r d e p a r t u r e he i s l e f t  Antony d e s e r t e d a t Actium. the death  t o g r o p e f o r a way, l i k e Brought back t o t h e c i t y by  o f M e l i s s a , D a r l e y l e a v e s i t o n c e more a n d  r e t i r e s t o t h e Greek i s l a n d ,  l i k e Antony t o h i s  T i m o n i u m , t h e r e t o go o v e r t h e w h o l e s t o r y a g a i n a n d a g a i n i n h i s mind. But  o t h e r men t h a n D a r l e y a r e s e e n i n t h e  r o l e o f Antony.  The o l d f u r r i e r ,  Cohen, d i e s i n h o s p i t a l  134  with  some o f t h e t r a g i c  d i g n i t y o f Antony.  too M e l i s s a has been a k i n d o f C l e o p a t r a , t o come t o h i m a t h i s d e a t h .  To h i m and she r e f u s e s  Narouz a l s o suggests t h e  f i g u r e o f A n t o n y ; i n d e a t h h e i s l i k e "some c o n q u e r o r , some l o s t k i n g , breath  conscious  d i s s o l v i n g w i t h i n him."  s e t s o u t so d e t e r m i n e d l y  dying  o f t h e body a n d  And M o u n t o l i v e ,  t o succeed as a  who  diplomat  o n l y t o f i n d h i s p l a n s h o p e l e s s l y wrecked by t h e i n f l u e n c e o f a woman who f o r h i m s y m b o l i z e s Mountolive career  too r e l i v e s the experience  i s t o some e x t e n t  Egypt,  o f Antony.  His  a d u p l i c a t e o f Antonyms, a n d  i n a dream h e p u t s h i m s e l f c l e a r l y i n t h e p l a c e  of the  Roman Gene r a l . ... on t h e c o n f i n e s o f t h e dream t h e r e moved a n o t h e r b o a t , i n s i l h o u e t t e , w i t h two f i g u r e s i n i t — t h e b r o t h e r s : b o t h armed w i t h l o n g - b a r r e l l e d r i f l e s . Soon he w o u l d b e o v e r t a k e n ; b u t warm i n t h e c i r c l e o f L e i l a ' s a r m s , a s i f he w e r e Antony a t A c t i u m , he c o u l d h a r d l y b r i n g h i m s e l f t o f e e l f e a r . They d i d n o t s p e a k , o r a t l e a s t , he h e a r d no v o i c e s . A s f o r h i m s e l f , he f e l t o n l y t h e messages p a s s i n g t o a n d f r o m t h e woman i n h i s a r m s — t r a n s m i t t e d i t seemed o n l y b y t h e t i c k i n g b l o o d . The  A n t o n y a n d C l e o p a t r a theme i s b e y o n d a  d o u b t t h e one t h a t most o c c u p i e s  t h e C i t y ' s mind, y e t  o t h e r t h e m e s t o o c a n be d i s c e r n e d i n t h e a c t i o n s o f t h e  135  i n d i v i d u a l c h a r a c t e r s who a c t o u t i t s t h o u g h t s . m y t h i c a l a n d r e l i g i o u s theme o f t h e F a l l apparent,  especially i n the rock-pool  with the accident of Clea. the rock-pool are l i k e  s c e n e s t h a t end  a soul.  o f mythology,  6 4  When t h e i r f i g u r e s  a r e made p h o s p h o r e s c e n t b y t h e s t r a n g e thunderstorm,  o f Man i s  D a r l e y and C l e a p l a y i n g i n  the undines  creatures as y e t without  The  effect of the  t h e y s u g g e s t "an e a r l y p i c t u r e o f t h e 65  fall  o f L u c i f e r , l i t e r a l l y on f i r e , " *  The a c c i d e n t  J  i t s e l f , C l e a ' s near-drowning and D a r l e y s 1  d i v i n g t o f r e e her, symbolizes,  own r i s k i n  as D u r r e l l h i m s e l f has  p o i n t e d o u t , b o t h t h e s e x u a l a c t and s p i r i t u a l and  thus  sums u p t h e m y s t e r y o f t h e F a l l o f Man  rebirth, through  w h i c h man g r o w s up t o s o u l b y a s u b m e r g e n c e i n h i s sexual  nature. I t w i l l b e s e e n t h a t t h e theme o f t h e F a l l  o f Man r e i n f o r c e s t h e A n t o n y a n d C l e o p a t r a t h e m e , f o r t h e r e t o o t h e f i n a l m e a n i n g i s one o f a f f i r m a t i o n . S u f f e r i n g and d e s t r u c t i o n a r e n o t t h e f i n a l t r u t h s o f human l i f e .  Out o f them come s o u l o r , WSS^SSkWXSk  t h e i m a g i n a t i v e p o w e r s t h a t , make o f man " a r e a l human  66 being,  an a r t i s t  of t h e l a s t  at last."  T h i s i s t h e meaning a l s o  two themes t h a t I s e e o c c u p y i n g  the City's  136  mind. death  One i s t h e m y t h o l o g i c a l - r e l i g i o u s theme o f t h e and r e s u r r e c t i o n o f a g o d .  at t h e death and  T h i s i s t o u c h e d upon  o f Pursewarden, a t t h e v i s i t o f Darley  C l e a t o t h e tombs o f Kom E l S h u g a f a ,  at the death  o f N a r o u z who i n some ways  the f i g u r e o f C h r i s t .  and f i n a l l y suggests  I t i s n o t a theme t h a t i s f e l t  extensively i n the Quartet,  b u t i n so f a r a s i t i s  t h e r e i t r e i n f o r c e s t h e meaning o f t h e themes a l r e a d y mentioned.  So d o e s t h e theme o f t h e k n i g h t l y s e a r c h  f o r t h e Holy fulfilled  Grail.  I n a s e n s e t h i s theme i s o n l y  i n the romantic  f i g u r e o f A m a r i l who, when he  sets out t o c r e a t e — l i t e r a l l y  c r e a t e — t h e woman he  l o v e s , does so " w i t h a l l t h e a i r o f a k n i g h t i n s e a r c h of t h e Holy  Grail."^  F o r t h e r e s t , t h e images o f  k n i g h t s and knighthood Mountolive feating and  r e f e r t o t h e Hosnanis and t o  who a r e e n g a g e d i n t h e n e g a t i v e ,  efforts at political  disillusioned  strategy, l i k e  self-deirreligious  crusaders.  H a v i n g now d e m o n s t r a t e d a t some l e n g t h t h e way i n which the C i t y the Quartet, the exact  emerges a s t h e c e n t r a l c h a r a c t e r o f  i t will  be u s e f u l t o c o n s i d e r here/what i s  human n a t u r e  of t h i s character.  a c l e a r i d e a o f t h e human n a t u r e  Can one f o r m  of t h i s central  psyche  137  seen, as i t i s , i n close-up  f r o m s o many a n g l e s  d i f f e r e n t points i n the present  and t h e past?  and a t My a n s w e r  must b e t h a t , w h i l e t h e C i t y i s u n q u e s t i o n a b l y sented  pre-  as a c h a r a c t e r , i t i s h a r d l y p o s s i b l e t o des-  c r i b e i t i n such terms as a r e g e n e r a l l y used i n d i s c u s s i o n s o f f i c t i o n a l c h a r a c t e r s , and t h e d i f f i c u l t y arises out o f the very has  presented  thoroughness w i t h which  h i sCity.  Durrell  Because h i s technique  here  d o e s away w i t h t h e o v e r - s i m p l i f i c a t i o n o f o r d i n a r y human v i s i o n , way  i t i s i m p o s s i b l e t o see t h e C i t y i n t h e  t h a t one o r d i n a r i l y  definite, entities.  s e e s human b e i n g s :  as f a i r l y  ego-dominated and c o n s c i o u s l y c o n t r o l l e d Instead,  i t must b e s e e n a s a g r e a t  of v a r i o u s and s i m u l t a n e o u s l y  complex  existing egos—old  young, male and f e m a l e , a d m i r a b l e  and  and  contemptible,  m o r a l and i m m o r a l — a l l c a l l e d f o r t h by t h e u n c o n s c i o u s d e p t h s o f t h e psyche t h a t a r e beyond t h e r e a c h i n q u i r i n g mind.  ofthe  S i n c e I have a l r e a d y d i s c u s s e d t h e  "ego-manifestations^  any q u e s t i o n about t h e n a t u r e o f  t h e C i t y a s a c h a r a c t e r h a d b e t t e r b e r e v i s e d a n d made i n t o a question  about t h e n a t u r e  of this  unconscious  core o f t h e psyche which c o n t r o l s t h e whole.  Of t h i s  u n c o n s c i o u s c o r e , o n l y one t h i n g c a n be s a i d w i t h t a i n t y : i texpresses  itself  i n continuous  cer-  attempts t o  138  r e a l i z e and  i n c r e a s e i m a g i n a t i v e power.  accomplished, flict  through  How  t h e i n e v i t a b l e and  b e t w e e n t h e e g o ( s ) and  this  intended  the unconscious  have a l r e a d y t r i e d  individuality  t o show.  of character?  insight,  B u t what h a p p e n s t o I f a l l t h a t can be  w i t h c e r t a i n t y i s t h a t the unconscious human p s y c h e ( w h i c h  con-  forces,  the r e s u l t being s u f f e r i n g l e a d i n g to greater I  is  core of  the  said the  c o n t r o l s a l l of the conscious  life)  s t r i v e s f o r i n c r e a s e d i m a g i n a t i v e power, then  surely  t h e r e i s no  differ-  l o n g e r any  grounds f o r s e e i n g the  e n c e s b e t w e e n human b e i n g s  as a n y t h i n g but  since such d i f f e r e n c e s are  ego-based and  of unconscious one  motives that never vary  person t o the next  Only i n the matter w i t h i n them  cab;  being  o r no  o f how  product  essentially  strong i s the imaginative  human b e i n g s  simple  incredibly  the u r g i n g s  h u m a n i t y and  the  failures  aginative l i f e .  can be  (those  c o m p l e x i n i t s ways o f  I t i s the  and,  with That  the  seen a t once  i n i t s basic nature  of that nature  life  be d i s t i n g u i s h e d  c a p a c i t y f o r such l i f e ) p o i n t e d o u t .  sums up  essentially  from  same.  so, t h e C i t y , as the c e n t r a l c h a r a c t e r of  Quartet,  time,  the  but remain.always the  e s s e n t i a l l y f r o m e a c h o t h e r and little  superficial,  a t the  as same  expressing  towards a s t i l l  fuller  im-  g r e a t v a r i e t y o f s u c h ways  of  139  expression,  coupled  w i t h the l i m i t i n g nature  d i n a r y human v i s i o n , t h a t c r e a t e s t h e being  idea of  e s s e n t i a l d i f f e r e n c e s b e t w e e n human I n summary, I want now  of  or-  there  beings.  t o go b a c k t o a  con-  s i d e r a t i o n of the various i n d i v i d u a l characters i n the Quartet  and  t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p t o the G i t y t h a t d i r e c t s  their lives. sented the  T h i s b r i n g s us back t o the v i e w I  at the outset  i n d i v i d u a l s as  o f my  d i s c u s s i o n , the view of  e n t i t i e s c o n t r o l l e d by t h e  much as p u p p e t s a r e m a n i p u l a t e d t h i s i m a g e , so r e a d i l y  by  But  s u g g e s t e d by t h e a b u n d a n c e o f  c r i t i c s l i k e T r i l l i n g and  as the r e a c t i o n s  D o b r e e show.  so r e a d i l y made i s t h a t t h e human b e i n g the puppet, w h i l e  city  a puppeteer.  imagery from drama, i s m i s l e a d i n g ,  by  pre-  The  assumption  is  represented  the puppeteer i s environment  something e q u a l l y d e t e r m i n i s t i c .  But  of  t h i s i s an  or un-  s a t i s f a c t o r y view t h a t cannot begin  to account f o r a l l  the  Alexandria  things that are going  on i n The  Quartet.  I n p l a c e o f i t I h a v e s u g g e s t e d t h r e e ways i n w h i c h t h i s r e l a t i o n s h i p of the c h a r a c t e r s to t h e i r c i t y and  probably  s h o u l d , be  regarded.  None y i e l d s up  d e t e r m i n i s t i c p i c t u r e of a g i t a t e d but l e s s puppets.  Instead,  essentially  they y i e l d three  v i e w s o f r e a l human b e i n g s .  Human b e i n g s  may, the life-  different who  are  parts  140  of  a l a r g e r l i v i n g whole cannot  are  t h e i r l i v e s meaningless  mined.  be l i f e l e s s ,  nor  and m e c h a n i s t i c a l l y d e t e r -  R a t h e r t h e y become m e a n i n g f u l p a r t s o f an  o r g a n i c w h o l e whose l i f e  and g r o w t h  A g a i n , r e c o g n i z i n g a s we  do t h e l i m i t a t i o n s o f  r a t i o n a l p r o c e s s e s i n man's l i f e ,  i s also  theirs.  i t i s not j u s t  dismiss a l i f e  l i v e d i n harmony w i t h t h e  f o r c e s of l i f e  as b e i n g l e s s t h a n f u l l y  w i l l m u s t n e c e s s a r i l y be  human.  c o n s c i o u s and  c r e a t e d t h e s p l e n d i d i m a g e o f man  The  life  as  as a n  interplay has  a s g e n e r a t i n g and  by means o f h i s i m a g i n a t i o n .  unconscious, c r e a t i v e ground  of h i s being gives  r i s e t o an o f t e n a n t a g o n i s t i c c o n s c i o u s n a t u r e , o u t o f t h e i n t e n d e d and  and  and  i n e v i t a b l y i n t e r p l a y of these  f o r c e s come s u f f e r i n g and i l l u s i o n , art  an  deliberate.  c o n s c i o u s and u n c o n s c i o u s f o r c e s , D u r r e l l  e x p r e s s i n g h i s own  More-  as i t i s t o h o l d t h a t  L a s t l y , out o f h i s c o n c e p t i o n o f l i f e of  to  unconscious  o v e r , i t i s a t l e a s t as m e a n i n g f u l t o see w i l l aspect of the unconscious l i f e  the  above a l l u n d e r s t a n d i n g .  l o v e and  Life,  as  knowledge,  Durrell  p r e s e n t s i t h e r e , i s t r u l y an a c t o f t h e i m a g i n a t i o n , and l i v i n g man of  man  locK  of  the a r t i s t  sans p a r e i l .  a s a " s t a t u e w h i c h must d i s e n g a g e  m a r b l e w h i c h h o u s e s i t and  Hence t h e i m a g e itself A  o  s t a r t to live."* ? 0  from the Hence t h e  dull  141  i m a g e r y , so v e r y p r e v a l e n t i n t h e Q u a r t e t , o f t h e fresco,  70  drawing,72  a Byzantine painting, 0  71  a  cartoonist's  r a G r e e k s t a t u e come t o l i f e . ' '  Hence  7 3  a l s o t h e p e r s i s t e n t p r e s e n t a t i o n o f t h e e v e n t s i n man's life  as a r t i s t i c  achievements.  Things which o t h e r w i s e  w o u l d be o n l y d e s t r u c t i o n and c a u s e f o r d e s p a i r a r e s e e n a s somehow p u r p o s e f u l l y a r r i v e d a t and  lived  t h r o u g h a s a means o f a t t a i n i n g s e l f - k n o w l e d g e , s e l f realization.  An a i r r a i d o v e r t h e c i t y becomes a  s t u p e f y i n g but b e a u t i f u l t a b l e a u ;  Darley's  reunion  75 with Justine i s a tableau vivant;  the scene of F o s c a ' s  f a t a l a c c i d e n t draws t h e e y e s o f t h e o b s e r v e r s " a s i f 76 b y t h e l i n e s - o f - f o r c e o f some g r e a t m a r i n e All  painting."'  t h i n g s c a n be b o r n e and a r e meant t o be b o r n e .  D u r r e l l ' s p r e s e n t a t i o n of t h e mourning f o r Narouz i s a m a g n i f i c e n t s t a t e m e n t o f how man full  humanity.  b i t t e r n e s s man For, in  Out o f s u f f e r i n g  grows t o w a r d s a  e n d u r e d and p u r g e d o f  g a t h e r s the i n s i g h t t h a t g i v e s him a  w h a t e v e r may  soul.  have been t h e b i t t e r n e s s o f N a r o u z ,  t h e g r i e f f o r h i s d e a t h , w h e r e i n each mourner  i e n c e s a g a i n h i s own  p e r s o n a l sorrows, a l l such  experbitter-  n e s s i s purged: "the whole g r i e f of t h e c o u n t r y s i d e r e f u n d e d once a g a i n i n t o l i v i n g ,  was  purged of b i t t e r n e s s ,  r e c o n q u e r e d b y t h e l i v i n g t h r o u g h t h e dead i m a g e o f  Narouz  142  "What k i n d o f v i s i o n  o f h u m a n i t y d o e s t h i s work  provide?"  a s k s D o b r e e , a n d g o e s on t o t a l k o f h i s p i t y f o r t h e characters.  But p i t y i s out o f p l a c e .  Here s u r e l y i s  something d e s e r v i n g a d m i r a t i o n , a c o n v i n c i n g and artistic  a f f i r m a t i o n o f t h e w o r t h o f human  life.  143 FOOTNOTES  1  B.15. J.27.  2  3B.15. ^ G r o d d e c k , The W o r l d o f Man, p. 8 5 . 5Key t o M o d e r n P o e t r y , p . 3 0 . D u r r e l i s h e r e q u o t i n g f r o m S i r James J e a n s ' P h y s i c s a n d P h i l o s o p h y . J.59.  6  7  C.241.  3J.60. 9c.76-77. 10J.238. I : L  B.135.  12B.28. 13C.254. 1 4  J.25-26.  15c.99. 16j.244. 1 7  J.63.  1^0.228-229. l°T)arley u s e s t h i s t e r m a number o f t i m e s i n s u c h connection. 2 0  J.86.  ^0.97. C.62.  2 2  23c.96. C.95.  2 4  B.101.  2 5  J.101.  2 6  27j.i77. % . 99.  2  C.l68.  2 9  3°B.46. 3 1  32  3 3  M.25. M.53-54. B.77.  3 % . 217. 35  M.78.  3 6  3 7  C.196.  B.100.  3 C.266. g  39M.280. 4  °C.53•  41C.176. 4 2  4  C.153.  3c.56.  C.55-56.  44  4  5j.l04.  4 6  J.88.  4 7  J.220.  4  %.178.  49B.234. 50  B.56.  51B.55. 5 j.226. 2  53B.69. 54j.i94. 55j.193. 56c.277. 5 J.96-67. 7  5 8  59  J.57. C.253.  60c.227. 61j.ill. 6 2  M.312.  63  M.250.  ° C.228. 4  °5c.246. 6 6  C.28l.  C_;_ 229.  67  6g  M.155.  6 9  C.119.  7 0  M.118.  7 1  M.221.  72  M.28l.  7  3c.ll7.  74  7  C.25.  5c.48.  7 6  C.208.  7 7  M.317.  147  BIBLIOGRAPHY  D o b r e e , Bortamy. " D u r r e l l s Alexandrian Series," The W o r l d o f L a w r e n c e D u r r e l l . e d . H a r r y T. M o o r e , New Y o r k , T  1964, 184-204. Durrell,  Lawrence,  Balthazar.  London,  C l e a . London,  1956.  I960.  J u s t i n e . London,  1956.  Key t o M o d e r n P o e t r y . London,1952. "The K n e l l e r Tape (Hamburg), The W o r l d o f L a w r e n c e . D u r r e l l . New Y o r k , 1964, 161-168. M o u n t o l i v e . London,  1958.  " S t u d i e s i n Genius: V I Groddeck," H o r i z o n . X V I I (June 1948), 384-403. G r o d d e c k , G e o r g , M.D. The W o r l d o f Man a s R e f l e c t e d i n A r t , i n Words a n d i n D i s e a s e . L o n d o n , 1934. The Book o f t h e I t . New Y o r k , Vintage Press,  1961.  "The L e t t e r o f P a u l t o t h e E p h e s i a n s , " i v . 15-17. The H o l y B i b l e , R e v i s e d S t a n d a r d V e r s i o n . New Y o r k ,  1953.  Mackworth, C e c i l y . The W o r l d o f L a w r e n c e  " D u r r e l l a n d t h e New R o m a n t i c i s m , " Durrell. New Y o r k , 1964, 24-37. .  Trilling, Lionel. "The Q u a r t e t : Two R e v i e w s , " The W o r l d o f L a w r e n c e D u r r e l l . New Y o r k , 1964, 49-65.  

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