Monday, January 24, 2011

Sylvia Beech Talks of Shakespeare and Co. in Paris in 1919, and of Ernest Hemingway and James Joyce


Sorry guys for going all blue stocking again, and so soon ... but, having put out a post on my extraordinary experience with respect to the famous English language bookshop in Paris 'Shakespeare and Company' (LINK) ...


... I couldn't resist another when I stumbled across a 1950s interview with its 1919 founder, Sylvia Beech.


Sylvia and girlfriend Adrienne Monnier, ...


... who ran a French language lending library, ...


... formed, as the little documentary surrounding the interview says, 'the nexus for the interchange between French and English literature' in the 1920s and beyond. 'Shakespeare and Company' was one of the major centres for much of activity of the ex-pat American artistic community.

In this interview, Sylvia Beech talks about her friendship with writer James Joyce and her publishing his 'Ulysses' in 1922. It had been serialised in 'The Little Review' between 1918-1922.


She also speaks about her relationship with Ernest Hemingway ...


As with all footage like this, for me the thing is getting a sense of the person, as much as engaging with the content. A bit like Peter Seller's 'being there'.

video

Really hope you like this one!

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