Sunday, August 22, 2010

Old BBC TV interviews of novelists

Via Piece of Monologue, I've happened upon many televised interviews of British novelists in a BBC archive. I've just watched Malcolm Muggeridge's interview of Somerset Maugham from 1954. When asked about Harold Nicolson's silly claim that the novel is dead, Maugham interpreted it to mean merely that Nicolson was tired of reading novels.

I also watched John Lehmann's interview with a very modest Aldous Huxley. Simon Raven's short interview with Kingsley Amis (who according to the host 'likes living in Swansea') was intriguing, though I had the impression that throughout the roughly five-minutes of the session Amis was only just suppressing a desire to leap forth, punch, and then strangle Raven (and that Raven would have enjoyed that).

There are also interviews there of E. M. Forster, Virginia Woolf, William Golding, etc. And a delightful segment on Tolkien (with interviews of him and his students).

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