M. Kneale about "Anglų keleivių": "I described the horrifying British-style behavior of the Victorian times" | culture

M. Kneale (born in 1960) – son of Nigel Kneale, a famous screenwriter and son of children's author Judith Kerr, who has released seven novels and two non-editable books, all of which were hugely successful and rewarded with prestigious prizes. M. Kneale studied the modern history of Oxford, later lived in Japan, where he began writing. Currently the writer lives in Italy.

The author of the novel "Anglų Keleiviai" describes the 19th century. a boat from Great Britain to Tasmania. Twenty storytellers, twenty fates. Breakthroughs in civilization. Relaxing nature, wonder and history. Comedy and tragedy.

Every sail passenger seeks out his goal, for example, the provincial predecessor wants to prove that the Bible Garden of Paradise existed in Tasmania, the cynical surgeon is planning to bring London aboriginal bones to London masters, and the captain of the Isle of Man's ship to smuggled brandy and tobacco.

The novel illustrates in an impressive way the conflict between civilizations, the real life of the aboriginal revolt, the theory of brutal societies and the terrible events that are intertwined with deceptive adventures, tricks and surprises. In the garden of paradise there are many invisible animals, but the horrors of colonization are not lacking, events change with incredible speed and all this is described with a great dose of humor.

Interview M. Kneale talks about actors in the book, racism and fiction clash with reality. He speaks about the portal "Compulsive reader " Chief. Editor Magdalen Ball.

– In the other II told you that you have designed the novel "Fishing Passengers" by bus in South America. Then came the idea of ​​a certain period or simply the main idea of ​​the work?

– I had already written a book about the terrible behavior of the British, living Queen Victoria, in my homeland of London, so it makes sense to start thinking about it, as well as the gruesome British British behavior of British times. I remembered a documentary about the events of the 19th century in Tasmania, I saw him at the age of eighteen. The basis of the film is the racial conflict between the Caucasus and the Aborigines. Then he did not go to my head for long – so far I can not forget it.

Are you inspired by historical events or is the idea of ​​a novel first and then covered with historical details?

– Then I had too little knowledge about the subject I was interested in, I did not know and I wanted to write about it. The biggest problem was that it took a long time to collect the material. It took a long time before I got all the information and could make a story out of it. I admit it – there were moments of despair.

Are you already familiar with the meaning of the menu's (ie art, one of the British Isles) before you write a novel, or has it become your subject?

– My father is from the Isle of Man, I have been interested in this place for a long time. I went there and found Arthur W. Moores Dictionary or Men & # 39; s Dialects, an extraordinary book. As soon as I found it, I immediately realized that I had to add this dialect to my novel.

Book cover / book

Book cover / book "Visserspassagiers"

You have been given "Anglų keleiviai" for "Anglų keleiviai" Whitbread bonus and nominated Booker for the price. How did you change your life as a writer?

I have no doubt that it is good. The rewards do not make you arrogant, but they help you believe that the result is worth it. At the same time I feel like I have to write lectures. You are still afraid to write something that you will read and understand one day. You still have to make sure that your work is fun and enjoyable.

Both of your parents are writers. Have you always wanted to write yourself?

– I liked the idea of ​​writing, but in fact I started to write at the beginning of the third decade. Until then, I have not imagined myself as a writer. It has been so far that I went to Japan and lived there for many years – at that time I decided to try luck – I started to make short stories. And I chose to study history because I liked it. I just thought it was worth studying history, and I never lost interest. I thought it was a good idea to write fiction, but in the beginning the story did not change my story, although there was no specific reason for it. Only later did I start writing about the events of the past. I could not call myself a writer of historical novels. First of all, I am a fiction writer, even though most of my described events are real.

Tell me about Pievehonest character. The acquaintance with the reader described an important historical event. Is he a fictional character or have you found his match in history?

– When I made a pivium character, I was referring to a real personality, but for the most part it is the fruit of my imagination. I thought of more than one type of character: both a person who reads quickly and someone who is completely independent and does not bother to resist the government. In the person of Pivaius I have brought different types of people together in one go, which in my opinion is very common in fiction.

The biggest problem was that it took a long time to collect the material. It took a long time before I got all the information and could make a story out of it. I admit it – there were moments of despair.

Although Piuyus – an attractive personality, have you not worried about the "stomping" of the native – that is the answer to the aboriginal lips? Maybe even consult the Aboriginal Culture Council?

– I understood that this was a delicate issue and a risky decision, but it was inevitable. The book has twenty storytellers and everyone tells about their story. If I had made an exception for Piviera, I think that this would upset the style of the book, and even more – it seems that I am promoting a kind of discrimination in his book. I have never tried to write a book from the point of view of the Aboriginals, but the main theme of the novel is the English people and the terrible crimes in Tasmania, and I could only convey the Aborigines' experience by telling Piviai. Without this element, the book would simply have been meaningless. I felt that it was a necessity. I thought it could cause problems and I was surprised that the book was made so well. It turned out that this was by no means a problem.

I liked the turn of the plot at the end of the novel, a table with the inscription "An Unknown Man, presumably a Tasmanian Aboriginal". Are there still people who believe in eugenics or socio-engineering?

– Yes, there is. In recent decades, it seems that the popularity of these theories has also returned. It is more a personal attitude than science, although people of this kind only make science more tangible. There are always people who tend to racism. The world would be better if you did not feel people, but I think they will always be there.

One of the more interesting conflicts described in the book is one of the so-called goodwillers who try to change the Aboriginals in Christianity, change their names and dress in western clothing – an oral one, like Robson. Is this another racist form?

– No doubt possible. This kind of behavior eventually became as cruel as open aggression. This is a peculiar phenomenon, only more modern. A real English torture method.

You write the afterword: "All fiction is indeed, and unpopular, focused on what it represents, this is one of its first tasks." Tell us more about what you wanted to say in these words.

– In my opinion, this is inevitable. The writing process itself requires priorities, because telling the story can not expand too much. What you write will not be the only truth, but you must concentrate on something. This is done by writing both fairy and non-fiction literature. The key is to try to grasp the truth of the truth. I think that if someone succeeds in conveying the spirit of a moment and in this way, perhaps from the past to raise the particle of truth and the reality of that time – this is more than the fact that the detailed factual testimony could be made. Probably the story is very important to me. I am honest with the story and look at it seriously. I do not like it when it is distorted, but because the ability to change the truth is typical of people, it is also one of the most important features of fiction.

By compulsivereader.com, prepared by Monika Grigutytė

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