Holiday distractions

Ed Page of Danger Blog! observes that the BBC audio archive includes clips from interviews with Noel Coward, Vladimir Nabokov, Roald Dahl, George Bernard Shaw, Albert Speer, Virginia Woolf, e.e. cummings, Joseph Heller, and many others.

In a recent Evening Standard article about J.M. Coetzee’s general unwillingness to be interviewed, David Sexton observed that Vladimir Nabokov insisted that any “interviewer’s questions [had] to be sent to [him] in writing, answered by [him] in writing, and reproduced verbatim.”

For a 1969 interview with James Mossman (see link above) at least, Nabokov made an exception.

He spoke about his “view of other writers and the difference between genius and talent,” “how he react[ed] to criticism or speculation about his private life,” and “the abrupt loss of childhood and his view of contemporary Russia.”


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