HTMLGIANT Interviews Lee Rourke about His New Novel, The Canal

At HTMLGIANT, Catherine Lacey interviews Lee Rourke about boredom, the writing process, dialogue, foxes, and his new novel The Canal. Read our review of The Canal here. From the interview:

Your narrator speaks a lot about his philosophy on boredom. How much of this do you share with him?

Well, I would have to say quite a lot. I mean, I truly believe – as Bertrand Russell did before me – that if we truly embraced boredom there would be less violence in the world. When I say truly embrace boredom I mean that we should make an effort not to fight it – we especially shouldn’t do something just to stop us from feeling bored (this just leads to the type of passive nihilism the philosopher Simon Critchley warns us about). I think we should just accept it and naturally feel bored and ultimately do nothing. Fighting boredom only leads to friction, which can cause myriad things, including the type of violence that haunts my novel. But I know this is a losing battle. It is a losing battle because boredom reveals to us the nothingness that makes up our lives: the gaping void of our existence, its meaninglessness and finiteness. Obviously this gaping void scares the shit out of us. And it is because of this intrinsic fear that we mostly fail.

1 thought on “HTMLGIANT Interviews Lee Rourke about His New Novel, The Canal”

  1. For Heideggger, who supplies the epigraph to this schoolboyish (in every way, including technicl competence) effort, it is our finitude and our consequent struggle with angst that is the precondition for authenticity, and thus meaning. It is the third-person point-of-view of the “they,” man as object of impersonal “technical” forces, that encodes the essential nihilism of the modern “world picture” (world-as-picture).

    Not that I agree with Heidegger.

    Simon Critchley is OK, but considerably overrated. When his publisher started biggin him up he bought a pair of leather trousers and changed girlfriend.

    Love and kisses.


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