Apparently I am in a season of controversy, which to some degree I understand--after all, GREAT MEN OF GENIUS talks about L. Ron Hubbard and Scientology, and TONGUES WILL WAG contains autobiographical details of abortion--but it appears to be happening even to my older works.
THE UGLY AMERICAN aired on BBC Radio 4 last week, a rebroadcast from two years earlier when I first recorded it for them, and this time around generated a great deal of heat about language (sound familiar?), appropriateness (also familiar) and subject matter.
The BBC, completists that they are, covered the issue on air--the complete story is posted below.
BBC Feedback program on The Ugly American controversy.
I'm told that there's been so much response to this subject that they are actually doing another follow-up story this week--I'll post the additional audio when it becomes available. For the record, here's the short statement I sent in to the program:
Just to be clear--in last Friday's program, my monologue is introduced by talking about how it is about, "...his adventures, real and imagined...". This is quite inaccurate--this monologue, like all my monologues, is exclusively nonfictional.
I feel this is important, because the complexities of sex and violence in our lives are very real, and all too often we refuse to address them--silence is a common reaction to any controversial subject. THE UGLY AMERICAN strives to wrestle with these forces and address them honestly, without flinching--it is not a simple world we live in. As for listeners were sickened and appalled by a simple word, I would suggest that this says more about the listener than the work.