O tell me the truth about nothing of love. Interview with Hanif Kureishi.
«There are many things in this story». The English writer Hanif Kureishi is speaking about his new book, The nothing (Faber and Faber Limited), published in Italy by Bompiani with the appropriate title Uno zero, chosen by translator Davide Tortorella. The author of My beautiful laundrette and The Buddha of suburbia tells us the affairs of a old director, Waldo, his beautiful wife Zenab and his friend Eddie. A story of betrayal and revenge, eros and trick.
- Saturday, 22 July 2017
Could we find, in The nothing, some echoes of Lawrence's masterpiece, Lady Chatterley's Lover?
Lady Chatterley's Lover is a wonderful novel. The nothing is set much later: it's the story of a man who is disabled, who is betrayed perhaps by his wife and by his friend. I guess there are similarities, but this is a very modern novel: it's about London today, about aging and about a conman, a trickster.
In Intimacy and in other books it's very important topic of choice, his possibility...
As a writer I want to try to put characters into very difficult situations and I have put them in more of choice. This is also the way that the reader would identify with the character. The reader would say: “what could do this character – he or she – in this situation?”, or more: “what would I do in this situation? What would I do in terms of my pleasure, in terms of my family, in terms of my future?”.
Is not the choice always ethical?
It's not always ethical while it's choice ethical in some century or another. You have to think about the good, about pleasure, about your family: this is the essence of your right. Hamlet is about this story: should Amlet murder the man who killed his father? This choice owns all of the cliches.
What do you think about representation of sexuality in books and movies?
Sexuality is crucial to our lives and to civilisation. Talking about sexuality or how sexuality changes, there are very good tv shows, because basically in America tv shows there are about sexuality, about lesbianism, about being transgender. A new form of sexuality started to emerge: I would say tv shows it's best font concerning this issue.
What do you think about gouvernment of Theresa May and the place that writer has in England now?
Theresa May did'nt win with the big majority that she expected to the last election. We are in a sort of gap. We'll be need more voice in the culture – we have very limited media in England, much more limited than you have in Italy –, we need more people speaking, more alternatives, and that's what writers and intellectuals comprovide.
In your opinion social integration is in danger today?
Social integration is very difficult when gap is colossal between riches and poors. In London and U.K. started domination by rich people who have mostly access to resources, to the best education, to the best housing and the rest that is left is very little, then process of integration is very difficult to proceed.
And about your future projects?
I'm writing a tv show with one of my sons, Sachin. It's about a Syrian refugee who cames to London and begins to work as rockstar. I hope that it will be on tv next year.
And about your next book?
I have a new book coming out in Italy the next year: it's a story called – provisionally – Love + hate and Bompiani will publish it.