By Bernard Bergonzi
Bernard Bergonzi has been interpreting Graham Greene for a few years; he nonetheless possesses the unique version of The finish of the Affair that he obtained whilst it used to be released in 1951. After lots fresh awareness to Greene's existence he believes it's time to go back to his writings; during this severe learn Bergonzi makes a detailed exam of the language and constitution of Greene's novels, and strains the obsessive motifs that recur all through his lengthy occupation. so much prior feedback used to be written whereas Greene used to be nonetheless alive and dealing, and used to be to a point provisional, because the ultimate form of his paintings used to be now not but obvious. during this booklet Bergonzi is ready to take a view of Greene's complete profession as a novelist, which prolonged from 1929 to 1988. He believes that Greene's prior paintings used to be his most sensible, combining melodrama, realism, and poetry, with Brighton Rock, released in 1938, an ethical myth that attracts on crime fiction and Jacobean tragedy, because the masterpiece. The novels that Greene released after the Fifties have been very expert examples of skilful story-telling yet represented a decline from this excessive point of feat. Bergonzi demanding situations assumptions concerning the nature of Greene's debt to cinema, and makes an attempt to elucidate the complexities and contradictions of his non secular principles. even though this booklet engages with questions that come up in educational discussions of Greene, it truly is written with common readers in mind.
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Additional info for A Study in Greene: Graham Greene and the Art of the Novel
Everything depended on his next novel, Stamboul Train; here, ﬁnally, he directs his attention at contemporary English life; or at least a small segment of it travelling across Europe from Ostend to Constantinople (as Istanbul was still known) as passengers on the Orient Express. Greene observed, ‘for the ﬁrst and last time in my life I deliberately set out to write a book to please, one which with luck might be made into a ﬁlm. ’ The ﬁlm was not made for some time, but the novel was well enough received for it to be the choice of the English Book Society, which revived Greene’s fortunes for a while.
In It’s a Battleﬁeld Kay and Jules have ended their rural idyll with an unsatisfactory sexual encounter and the mutual realization that they are not right for each other. But they are young and can still hope. Whatever Greene’s own political views when he was writing it, It’s a Battleﬁeld is a pessimistic novel, which one can see as the work of the Augustinian Christian that Evelyn Waugh a few years later proclaimed Greene to be. It is in evident ways immature and overambitious, and too much in Conrad’s debt.
If Greene ever had an alter ego he might have been called Henry Brown. Jokes and private references provide a strand of unity in his large ﬁctional oeuvre, signalling the presence of the hidden author. Greene’s critics have been very ready to ﬁnd a deeper unity in the persistence of the themes of betrayal and lost innocence, notwithstanding the wide range of social and geographical settings. Roger Sharrock has referred to a ‘fresh disguise for the single novel he is writing all the time’, and remarks, ‘Greene’s obsessional, almost neurotic drive constantly reasserts itself so that it is nearer to the truth to express change as a reshufﬂing of the cards, not the introduction of a new pack’5.