tv Arts.21 - The Cultural Magazine Deutsche Welle January 13, 2019 6:30pm-7:00pm CET
downloads you just. to. add very courses for that into active exercises i think about that d w joe cole mustache documented on facebook in the app store. jammin for free with the devil you. land of the free home of the brave the american dream. the let's. generations of people have dreamed of enjoying freedom prosperity and success in the u.s. . but there's a dark side to this picture too wars violence and protest.
explode the us is the land of supposedly attempts here everything's a bit larger than life. even the landscape with its wide open spaces and seemingly endless horizons but is america still the land of our dreams so stop with the american dream the american dream is during the american dream zambian dream american dream is the icelandic dream which is to try to provide for your children to have at least as good if not a better life than you and to do little harm in the world that's what the american dream has. but it's the current it's the publisher. richard ford is one of the great american storytellers a master at observing the world around him is novels are populated by characters that have become part of world literature and when it comes to his homeland ford
likes to tell it like it is dispelling the myths and legends. everywhere he goes people come out in droves richard ford's books have won him millions of fans around the globe maybe he's right and we all do have the same dream but what exactly is that dream. this is the place he calls home made in the north east of the u.s.
ford lives here with christina his wife of more than fifteen years their house is located far from the big cities which have never been a draw for them in maine ford is surrounded by lakes and forests where he can go hunting. but most of all here he finds the peace and quiet to write always by hand he stores his notebooks in the freezer in case the house catches fire. it makes me laugh it's. pretty chaotic know myself well enough to know the chaos and all the different colored eggs and all those tiny little ever this is exactly what i want out of that. i wrote. this which is if we. all of his books are dedicated to his wife christina his most important reader. remember i said. before we were married. for.
our think i'm going to try to be a writer in sixty or sixty. or that's a good. maybe i'll get a job and used. books and that's exactly what we've if the years. during that time he's written seven novels five short story collections and a memoir and become world famous his best known character is named frank bascombe he first turned up in the sportswriter in one nine hundred eighty six back then bascom was a divorced failed writer in his late thirty's he became the hero actually the anti hero of three further books bascom changed careers battled cancer and fought about life and the state of the nation his observations were ironic conic and grand. we catch up with richard ford in hamburg he's come here to accept a literary award for his life's work. it's
a thrill to interview this renowned author but nerve racking too as ford has a reputation for getting unpleasant when he's annoyed. with course the next question. for instance when fellow writer alice huffman wrote a negative review of his novel the sportswriter for it got a copy of one of her books picked up his gun and so he says shot it. then he mailed her what was left of it. so let's focus on frank bascombe instead he's seen as a typical american every man a character in which everyone can recognize some aspect of themselves but ford says not true there is no such thing that's just something some cockamamie critic dreams up. he's a very specific man he's he's he's a divorced man and he's a he's a father of three children he takes
a job he lives in new jersey he could hardly be any more specific than he is the notion of every man is a far as a concerned a misguided idea. asks us to generalize about people in ways that blurs the individual and the literature invites us to see people in particular you know we can only do good in particular we can only do bad in particular so that's what i'm interested in i'm not interested in seeing the world from outer space spacy eternity that is i don't want to see people that way. the melancholy character frank bascombe travels throughout his country observing thinking about and commenting on the disasters that befall it both the public and private but he doesn't take anything or anyone too seriously nor does he let things get him down but the america he's described for over a quarter of
a century has changed quite a bit since twenty fourteen when the last bascom novel was published. what would best comes place be today's america and triumph america well that's a question i can answer i can tell you what richard feels about all these things but what frank bascombe who cares because my best i'm just a made up creature you know he would think whatever i made him think and i might make him think something like what i think which is that trump is a disaster and not even funny and threat to the world but if i were going to write about what frank thought about him. i would probably write a more nuanced view of president trump just to make it interesting you know i mean i have a kind of a working theory about not only my own life but yours and frank bascombe strew which is to which is what i call oppositional thinking so i would try to if i were
writing about frank and trump i would try to find something provocative for him to say. richard ford has never made any secret of his dislike for the current us president but he says the reasons that his country and perhaps the entire world is so divided go far beyond donald trump. was there too many people. a lot of those people don't have anything and they're living in places where they don't have enough food and they don't have any education but they've all got cell phones and they've all got t.v.'s they can very easily see that you notice right up here the other side of the ocean there are a lot of people who are doing a lot better than we are why is that as a sin fair it isn't fair and so what why are we divided we're divided about what we should do about those people those people who don't live in our country but who have a right to succeed and who have a right to thrive and who have
a right to humanitarian. resources and it's there is nothing any of us is going to be able to do to deny these people the equality that they seek because there are more of them then there are of us those who are privileged there are more of them and they have a more compelling reason to advance their interests so what we have to figure out how to do is a problem of a van and accommodate ourselves to them. yet the america that richard ford describes in his novels seems a little anacreon istic it's an america dominated by white people white men in particular it's an image that's been communicated to us for decades mostly by men. including great writers like john updike. philip roth.
john irving. as well as younger authors like paul auster and jonathan franzen there is the world of america's white middle class one that's predominantly male. philip roth john updike you why on earth why are the so few successful female writers in america i think if you look closely you would find if there were not few if there were really quite a few quite quite many in fact on other words i think you have your statistics wrong you may be talking about mid century but again. if there was a time and i don't think it's true now but if there was a time when there was a disproportionate number of white male writers disproportionate number of fewer women writers it's because men were only publishing houses it wasn't because men were readers more than women and men were only publishing houses men were taking
advantage of universities women weren't allowed to go to ivy league schools until the sixty's all of these things these are not mysteries these are these are not criticisms they are corrected as fast as they possibly can. today america's diversity is being reflected in literature as an all of the arts like never before black writers like to call have won international acclaim nigerian author chimamanda ngozi adichie told the world how she only became black after coming to america and authors jennifer egan and donna tartt regularly feature on the bestseller lists so richard ford's right when he says there are more women there's more diversity though the book business is still largely in the hands of men and many critics still prefer to review the works of their favorite male authors nevertheless the literary world is changing.
richard ford's latest work is a trip into the past published in twenty seventeen between them remembering my parents is a memoir of two people who are gone and a way of life which is disappearing america as the land of opportunity where people could find prosperity and happiness your latest book between them is a memoir of your parents. my two to leave. my view as i wrote it i read it his large malleable fleshy face was given to smile on his first face was always the smiling one the long hours sleep the transparent blue eyes my eyes my mother must have noticed this when she met him wherever she did in hot springs or little rock some time before nine hundred twenty eight noticed this and liked what she saw a man who liked to be happy she had never been exactly happy only in exactly with
the nuns who taught her as salience and for smith where her mother had put her to keep her out of the way. richard ford was born in one thousand nine hundred four he was the long awaited only child and not and parker ford who were no longer young by the time he was born. parker was a traveling salesman and became a housewife after the birth of her son. but when richard was just sixteen years old his father died of a heart attack his parents and their hopes and dreams are the focus of ford's latest book. you write that your father was a man who liked to be happy yes it's a life goal you share yes it certainly is i mean who wouldn't want to be happy i mean i don't know anybody even the unhappiest people in the world who would
rather be happy there's a line of philip larkin poet he said about himself he said of all the unhappy people in the world i am the happiest. i wouldn't say that about myself because i'm not one of the unhappy people in the world but if he thought he was and he thought that that's what his basic human nature was was an unhappy man he was still the happiest day of the unhappy. for your father who died in one thousand nine hundred sixty when you were sixteen his american dream was to live in the suburbs and and have a car it would seem so and but you already said what it was you know maybe it was not your american dream what was your dream of life when you were young and when he
died stealing and breaking into houses and doing all that kind of foolishness i wanted to do that said to be adventurous to me. i point out to you with a look terrible society it was a race to be divided up are tied society we only lived in a part of it in that little part that we lived in it was made absurd by being separate from the rest of the population. we knew that we knew how absurd our life was and if you know that you're leading an absurd life i think means you can lead you to do absurd things so i did a lot of asserting yes and that and my goal was to get away with it and their goal
was to see that i did not get what. you said in interviews that you pounds were sort of like. characters and you wouldn't notice them if you meet them in the real world does that also apply to your fictional characters that you want to get them out of the shadows possibly possibly. it isn't that i think that everybody is interesting if you look closely at them i don't know if you would find my parents to be interesting if you look closely at them but when i write about them i am not just looking at them i am dedicating a language to them and in the process of dedicating a language to them to my close notice then i then i can. emphasize i can notice i can make important things that perhaps would not seem important or other words. with characters in fiction very much as with
characters in them or the role of the motorists are significant in fiction you can have the notice or notice anything in nonfiction in a memoir you could only notice what is going on we can only draw upon fact whereas you can make everything up you want to in fiction walk which is why i think so and finally for me is a more fruitful more rich way of noticing the world and of. many successful novels are adapted into films so it's surprising that only one of richard ford's books has made it onto the silver screen the drama wild life released in twenty eighteen is based on his novel of the same title set in montana in the one nine hundred sixty s. it's the story of how a sixteen year old joe's life goes off the rails first his father loses his job.
and then his mother falls in love with another man and consequently leaves her family. you see and you could see it as a melancholy farewell to the american dream and its ideals like so many of richard ford's books yeah. so why is it that only one of his best selling novels has been made into a film and. i mean by and large american movies are terrible. and so. maybe my books aren't terrible enough. so i mean paul dana just made wild life and i've seen it it's really quite good. but you know novels. that i write generally are all taken up with language and with the new with
the nuances of human behavior and with discovering motives and consequences of human behavior that were not known before i don't know if american films specialize in those kinds of nuanced approach is to life i think that that that they paint with a wider brush and that's because if i could be so bold as to say that in the united states making movies is about one thing and one thing only scratch no money and they're not going to spend any money if they're not going to get any money back and so it becomes very hard to make good movies. with a small amount of money i mean the whole independent movement in feature film making in america scrambles after nothing but money and eventually that just takes over so . they're looking for someplace. where it didn't cost as much to shoot the film
they're looking for actors who won't get their usual feed there you know people come to me all the time and they say. look we'd like to make a movie out of your book which happens to me fairly often and then they say unfortunately we don't have a lot of money and what i say is well good bye. because what i want from you is money here for it makes no distinction between big hollywood productions and art house cinema after all why should he give away his hard work and i'm not an idiot. and i have to buy eggs and bacon you know just like everybody else and so on that i just know the first i'm silly well we love your book we'd love to make a movie out of it unfortunately and this is the phrase that hollywood people say you know worst where we're using our own money for this and i say well that's funny
i use my own money when i buy a car doesn't seem exceptional i don't care if you steal it from your grandmother you know give it to me. i play myself here pretty tough talk but richard ford is someone who's always kept his feet firmly on the ground and as with all of his many accolades he views his equally glen's prize for his life's work as being about more than just himself. there are a lot of good writers in the world and whenever you get an award basically you're getting an award for your colleagues before the ones who don't happen to be here today i don't know if all of my colleagues believe that maybe they think that awards are always for their greater glory but i've been doing this long enough that i think that we're all writing books in the service of the same ends which is to say to induce people to read and to induce readers to undergo the experience of
literature which is to reaffirm life which is to renew language which is to say there's always something more in the world than what we may be a captive of on any given day. on the evening ahead of the award ceremony hundreds of people came to hear richard ford give a reading in hamburg he was greeted like a superstar. books by american authors are extremely popular in germany. but it's largely a case of unrequited love as few german books are translated into english for the american market so it's a little surprising that richard ford names thomas mine as one of his literary role models anyone else. is there any german writer you always wanted to read and didn't so far yeah good progress i've never really succeeded in reading good progress. good talk last was one of germany's best known writers
a nobel laureate and an intellectual who often courted controversy he died in two thousand and fifteen ford even knew him. though not terribly well i've tried to read the tin drum twenty times but i was old enough you know sometimes you really you don't read books not because the book is defective because you're not old enough for it is the same within reach james i haven't read all of her james i just haven't been old enough you have to you have to somehow be at the maturity. to to succumb to what the book is to be important and so i haven't tried the ten drop in a while. the tin drum is going to cause this seminal novel from one nine hundred fifty nine later it was made into an academy award winning film covering the history of the twentieth century as told by the dwarfish character oscar mattress.
and i knew going to so i'm embarrassed to say i knew him and his books but i did he read your books of course not going to ask you know he didn't read. what i read and i like what a laughable faith. and i don't hold it against him i mean some young american writer really doesn't know you know stealing away the audience from that might be his books i don't blame him i wouldn't read me. is richard ford really that self-deprecating or just trying to be funny because if there are any literary wish one burning desire that you have not fulfilled here i never had it to begin with so. all i ever wanted to do is my best. and i've done that i've written some good books i've stayed married to the girl i loved all these years i this.
i have in my brain and then my notebook all kinds of things that interest me i have another frank bascombe book not written but more or less ready to be written so if the book that i'm writing now doesn't succeed in my own terms i have something else to do. i try to make it be. life. thanking with the for thank you very much it's a pleasure for the pleasure to me if you're a company of i enjoyed or the best richard ford an american writer who is living out his own dream. thanks to her. and what. it was
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player. the loon audio player. this is devalue news live from berlin tragedy in austria as the death toll caused by heavy snowfall rises the bodies of three german skiers killed by an avalanche are recovered well helicopter crews use a break in the weather to help clear the mountain sides but the risk of further avalanches remains high.