Iain Cameron's Diary
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2005-04-17 - 3:06 a.m.

Met Steve at Leamington Starbucks and worked through some issues - including some branding basics from Thursday - I produced a set of brand attributes. I have to meet him at Leamington Station at 7.15 am on Monday so that we an go and see a client - by all accounts quite an important one. We did various sketches and looked around for some new terminology for some of the fundamental ideas we are shaking out.

Rover gets worse and worse - no more walkies for that bad doggie. I have run out of brown sugar. But I managed to mail a pianist who is interested in some KK business.

It seems Jack in Seattle is mastering Flo’s band’s CD - at a very decent price. Jack has something impressive to do with the start of Nirvana. I listened to the first side of the Marvin Gaye compilation. B Babbit is on Smile, by the way.

The discussion with Laurence about Garsington prompted me to revisit my engagement with that cluster. It is an odd moment in the evolution of cultural life in the UK and deserves more attention than its current ‘footnote to Bloomsbury’ implies. For example it is just very odd how D H Lawrence linked up with B Russell and A Huxley. The Huxley-DHL link is very strong indeed.

We forget how important Principia Mathematica was . Philosophers have tended to give all the credit to Frege but it was Russell who discovered the paradox. He met Wittgenstein and got him into philosophical logic and by the end of the First World War LW was an international star on account of the Tractatus. The movement had enormous momentum and attracted stunning minds like Godel and Turing who between the wars laid the foundations of a technology which is absolutely everywhere now.

So if Russell (with all that) met Lawrence at Garsington - given the stature of DHL in the early modernist novel - then that was quite a thing. Plus you have Keynes Sassoon, Graves Gertler and Cecil Beaton drifting in and out. I think Ahux met his wife there. People like to denigrate O Morrell the hostess - but she was a romantic with money who wanted to have an outsider salon and managed to get several geniuses to come for tea. There should be more like her - in this century too. Her aim was “an oasis perhaps, isolated not only from war but from all material values, a place where artists, writers and other sensitive people might relax and express themselves in a congenial atmosphere." They seemed to have argued a lot but so what .

I talked to Laurence about the J B S Haldane book about babies in bottles (an idea you find in Huxley’s first novel which is based on Garsington) and I A Richards’ Science and Poetry - something that Mark and I have been discussing. People think Cambs English goes back for ever but it started just after the FWW with Richards, Empson and Leavis. Its odd that some of the core ideas got published for the wider audience as a kind of Wellsian futurological speculation - a publishing fad. (Esp as Leavis thought Wells was crap). This is how they describe themselves these days:

‘ Because of the generous openness with which both Part I and Part II papers are constructed, at every point in the course students have a great deal of choice in the texts and topics which they can address. The English Faculty was founded in 1919. It was the first Faculty in the country to encourage the study of English Literature up until the present day and the first to approach English literature from a 'literary' point of view, rather than as a manifestation of the history of the language. Founders of the method of practical criticism, including I.A. Richards, William Empson and F.R. Leavis were members of the Faculty in its early years, and made a lasting impression on how literature is studied today. ‘

There’s that VFT thing. As Alison mark explains. The way the relationship between the cognitive and emotional aspects of knowledge - a subject inherited from I A Richards like her interest in science and poetry - is explored in her thesis. Some neighbors of B Wells were taught prac crit by FRL - directly to supplement the pension. Neither of us had any idea what that meant. Bob Dylan said in 1965 that one of his favourite poets is Smokey Robinson. Not quite prac crit but at least you get Einstein and T S Eliot.

I am thinking about the water colour sketch of the theatre in Arykanda - one of the lesser twins in the Lycian federation. Also of doing my own version of Trouble Man.

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