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eBook The Water Theatre ePub

eBook The Water Theatre ePub

by Lindsay Clarke

  • ISBN: 1846881307
  • Category: Genre Fiction
  • Subcategory: Literature
  • Author: Lindsay Clarke
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Alma Books (April 18, 2011)
  • Pages: 448
  • ePub book: 1256 kb
  • Fb2 book: 1307 kb
  • Other: lit azw txt lrf
  • Rating: 4.4
  • Votes: 834

Description

Lindsay Clarke (born 1939, Halifax, West Yorkshire) is a British novelist

Lindsay Clarke (born 1939, Halifax, West Yorkshire) is a British novelist. He was educated at Heath Grammar School in Halifax and at King's College Cambridge. He worked in education for many years, in Africa, America and the UK, before becoming a full-time writer. The Water Theatre was selected as a winner of the inaugural Fiction Uncovered competition in 2011 and was included among The Times's Books of the Year.

The Water Theatre by Lindsey Clarke is actually his third book which offers Jungian concepts, although .

The Water Theatre by Lindsey Clarke is actually his third book which offers Jungian concepts, although Clarke himself came to some of these themes to due to his own explorations of myth as well as his interest in Jung (as mentioned in this interview on his publisher, Alma Publishing Company's web page).

You may be forgiven for wondering where Lindsay Clarke had got to since winning the 1989 Whitbread prize for . The answer (apart from transferring to a smaller publisher) seems to be ancient Troy.

You may be forgiven for wondering where Lindsay Clarke had got to since winning the 1989 Whitbread prize for his alchemical fantasia The Chymical Wedding. Clarke spent the intervening years between the prizewinning novel and the follow-up churning out contributions to Harper Collins's series of popular retellings of Greek legend.

The Water Theatre" was the first Lindsay Clarke book I've read and I was delighted at his style of writing. You can't help feally tht your reading literature with Clarke rather than just a novel. So I was delighted when he agreed to an interview for The Interview Online. He was utterly charming and when pressed about the lovely mysticism in his writing (something which he hand "The Water Theatre" was the first Lindsay Clarke book I've read and I was delighted at his style of writing.

Lindsay Clarke's best known novel is the Chemical Wedding, which brings together the worldly and the mystical (and much more) - this book treads a similar path and certainly reaches back to writers.

As war-reporter Martin Crowther arrives in Umbria, still raw from a recent assignment in Africa, and from a failing love affair back home, a storm hits and the sky opens. Lindsay Clarke's best known novel is the Chemical Wedding, which brings together the worldly and the mystical (and much more) - this book treads a similar path and certainly reaches back to writers.

After that my sleep was troubled by dreams, of which one in particular stayed with me. I was sorting out a century of junk stacked in an attic room at Cripplegate Chambers – old ledgers, unsorted papers, broken furniture and Victorian engravings with cracked glass.

As war reporter Martin Crowther arrives in Umbria, still raw from a recent assignment in Africa and from a failing love affair back home, a storm hits and the sky opens

As war reporter Martin Crowther arrives in Umbria, still raw from a recent assignment in Africa and from a failing love affair back home, a storm hits and the sky opens.

The Water Theatre opens with sicty-something war reporter Martin Crowther caught in a thunderstorm in Umbria. Lindsay Clarke has an enviable command of character, time, and place. Haunted by the ghost of his dead father and by nightmares of the atrocities he sas witnessed recently in Africa, he is on an errand into the past. He is almost Lawrentian in his ability to depict both the power and beauty of landscape, and tender or tragically fraught emotional relationships. He handles the lives of Crowther and the Brigshaws masterfully over almost half a century, and it is only in the last quarter of the novel that doubts begin to creep in as to its direction.

Title : The Water Theatre. Product Category : Books. Lindsay Clarke is the author of 7 novels, including The Chymical Wedding, which won the Whitbread Award for Fiction in 1989. He has been Writer in Residence at the University of Wales, Cardiff, where he became a long-term Associate of the MA Creative Writing programme, is Creative Consultant to the Pushkin Trust in Northern Ireland, and has directed conferences at Dartington, been at Schumacher College, and has lectured widely in England abroad and tutored many courses for the Arvon Foundation.

As war reporter Martin Crowther arrives in Umbria, still raw from a recent assignment in Africa and from a failing love affair back home, a storm hits and the sky opens. Things are powerfully on the move inside him too as he comes to the small village of Fontanalba, on a mission to track down two friends from a lifetime ago. Adam and Marina are the estranged children of his mentor, Hal Brigshaw, who is nearing the end of a turbulent life and wants to summon them home. But there are good reasons for their self-imposed exile – not all of them are understood, and not all are in the past. An air of secrecy also surrounds preparations for an event at Fontanalba in which Adam and Marina have an extraordinary role to play. As Martin waits, trapped between duty and desire, he is both intrigued and dismayed by his dealings with a close-knit community who seem bent on protecting their own – and on shaking the ground of Martin's life.

Comments

Goktilar Goktilar
I enjoyed very much the first part of the book, with its many allusions to ancient Roman practices and beliefs, and the main character, late in midlife, still struggling with past events and choices, and thrust into this beautiful landscape as a battered escapee from his chosen past. However, the character of his idealized lover from his youth, whom he continues to follow through the course of the book, was never sufficiently realized for me. Likewise her dysfunctional family, whom I found maddeningly one dimensional (with the exception of the mother, whom I felt was beautifully realized).

The final segment and climax of the book was marred for me by the inclusion of the fabulously rich Countess and her friends, and their staging of the final events. Must there always be the equivalent of an enchanted castle? The person of the female love interest remained as obscure for me at the end of the book as at the beginning.
Kefrannan Kefrannan
Beautifully crafted with mystical undertones, The Water Theatre explores fundamentally human themes of love/loss, loyalty/betrayal, reconciliation/redemption. Lindsay Clarke is an admirer of Jungian philosophy and these concepts, reflected in his writing, make a captivating tale. I'm looking forward to reading more by this author.
Winn Winn
As I shuffle the books I've read which have underlying Jungian themes or Carl Jung as an actual character, I have to wonder where to start. Because or despite the fact that many of Jung's concepts and techniques are now a cohesive structured method for psychotherapy, they are also as highly diverse as he was, during the stages of his life both on an outward and inward scale.

A number of the novels which feature Jung in the character line-up feature him at the pivotal stage when he'd broken or was to break his association/apprenticeship with Freud and delve into the subconscious, which led him to discover first hand so much about how the psyche works.

I've decided to take the angle of the Mystical Tour, because this is the way I encountered Jung's techniques and my own subconscious. I'm not going to start with the pivotal book which changed my life and opened my eyes, The Magus, by John Fowles,because, I must admit, I'm not ready to write a review which could do justice to The Magus. , however I will start with a somewhat similar book although it takes place later in the time frame than The Magus. While Clarke's Alice's Masque addresses similar themes, I believe The Water Theatre may be more accessible to younger thinkers and readers.

The Water Theatre by Lindsey Clarke is actually his third book which offers Jungian concepts, although Clarke himself came to some of these themes to due to his own explorations of myth as well as his interest in Jung (as mentioned in this interview on his publisher, Alma Publishing Company's web page).

In all three books, which also include, Alice's Masque and The Chymical Wedding, we find the same subtle dangers taking place in both known landscapes, Yorkshire and foreign landscapes, Africa and Umbria when dealing with the psyche and the journey it must undertake to become whole.

The Water Theatre is the first in the series but I want to offer it first since it's the most chilling and the most transformative.

Three English characters in a town in Yorkshire: Martin, a young man who has grown up in a cellar apartment with working class parents, becomes the unlikely friends of Marina and Adam Brighshaw, whose father is a wealthy diplomat and political author. Martin finds himself trapped at their home during a snowstorm and witnesses not only their privileged lifestyle at High Sugden Grange, but is also exposed to the outside world by another guest, a man from Africa who is attempting to save his country form political cruelty and domination. Martin and Adam met as adolescents, when these adult influences intrude for the good and the bad and direct each of them away from their true inner selves, into developing personas later in life to accommodate other people's and society's expectations. While this is an attempt to undo the harm they encountered growing up, they later realize how heavy the cost. They each choose ways to rebel or be accepted in an unconscious way. They struggle to find love and someone else "knowing" their true selves, despite glaring flaws and mistakes, needing approval and understanding of their life choices. However this is not forthcoming and as they blunder on, hurting others as they try to hold fast to these impossible burdensome shells, they're drawn to each other, somewhere deep inside, knowing that within this triangle, healing can occur, once they have the courage to undertake the psychological process of accepting paradox in both the polar level but also in the alchemical union of lunar and solar, "the midnight sun."

As they grow and engage in the adult world, now set up against a backdrop of both England and Africa at the time of rebellions, coups, cruel wars in Equatoria and attempts to rebuild, as well as the rest of the world during the wars in Viet Nam, the three characters, now a poet, an artist and a war journalist, - still connected, yet torn apart- by love, yet fraught with mistakes, misunderstandings, betrayals, and loss. They all fall to pieces in different ways: break downs or rebellions, dangerous and risky behaviors and self defeating withdrawal. Eventually they feel summoned to The Water Theatre, in an ancient small village Fontanalba in Umbria, Italy, a place riddled with myth, folk lore and mystery, populated by mystical priests, musicians, artists, elders; Sybils and sarcastic actors, but ultimately The Dream Theatre serves as a divine alembic where each may thrash out their mistakes, in the alchemical stages of transformation and individuation as they offer their confessions, relieve their guilt, undergo experiences of atonement and absolution and come to comprehend the nature of forgiveness and understanding and finally come to acknowledge each true angle of their shattered psyches.

The Water Theatre, lush and eloquent in its prose, is also a taut and emotionally fragile story - as are the lives of its characters, the scenes can range from eerily beautiful - an enigmatic web of secrets, brutal and unforgiving, at times in landscapes where violence and brutality are the norm. Each character is broken, and through their suffering we are forced to see how deeply and tragically society is broken. But over a forty year span, we also see how the life force will struggle, despite it's periods of despair and depression, despite one tragic enlightenment after another - we learn that those who will, can prevail and find a way to their true selves, stumbling onto the numinous as they wander, fall, and finally, find the courage to stand back up fully comfortable in their own paradoxical natures.

The Water Theatre, like Alice's Masque to me is one third of the triumvirate of novels which best explain the process to individuation which dates back to ancient cultures like the Egyptian, Native American Indians and the shamanistic rites of initiation in every culture. Like Fowles, struggles with the concept of the, mystical mind, the introvert, as Jung described who must search inward as opposed to living outward in society. And The Water Theatre embraces various mythological experiences: the Orpheus journey, the meetings with daughter, mother and crone.

While research Lindsay Clarke's Lindsey Clarke, I found Jim Murdoch's insightful and thorough blog, The Truth About Lies, where he writes a long review of The Water Theatre ( don't read too far until after you've read The Water Theatre though due to spoilers in my opinion.
At [...] ,Clarke explains that like his other novels, The Water Theatre started with a dream, and he believes the novel is a primary method to explain the journey of the mystical mind.

"I think there's generally a misunderstanding about what mysticism is about in our culture. ... They think of mysticism as something rather strange and spooky and eerie in a way. In fact the origin of the word means healing; they're rites that heal wounds in people, deep wounds to the soul, spiritual wounds. And that's what I'm interested in doing now is writing the kind of novel which by unfolding its narrative in a hopefully entertaining way will take the central character on a journey by which the ego-based life which he's been living gets called profoundly into question."

While Clarke's language is sensory and poetic, and the theme transformational, Clarke doesn't shy away from the modern day political arena of the 1990's, indicating that the transformation of each individual, ultimately has an impact on the transformation of societies. Due to so many compelling insights on human nature, The Water Theatre is one of those rare novels capable of guiding the reader on their own transformational journey.

If you'd like to read more reviews - check out Amazon UK. They have many from diverse angles. I was quite surprised not to see any on Amazon US.
Zololmaran Zololmaran
This is a very slow, very "refined" story that failed to engage me as the main character is uninteresting, obviously he's some kind of observer of these unendingly fascinating other people that fail to fascinate me. If you want to know about Jung the best would be to read him directly. Now he is fascinating and both reading him or about him is fascinating.
krot krot
Thoroughly engaging. Beautifully imagined and gracefully written. Do not fear either the expense or time. Your investment will be well returned.
Nidor Nidor
Silly story full of shallow religiosity. I was interested in it because it was set in Italy, but it did not deliver any interesting reading experience for me.
Opilar Opilar
The Water Theatre is a literary masterpiece. The setting descriptions and character development are breathtaking. I loved reading a book worth thinking about.