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The Interview-Question and answers

Q.1. Describe opinions for and against the interview as are given in the lesson.


 Why do the celebrities despise and condemn ‘interview’? Describe their viewpoint.

Ans: An interview is formal meeting, interaction or a kind of discussion with some one. In other sense it is a kind of conversation which aims at obtaining information. In actual practice the interview has become an indispensable feature of journalism today. Some call it a great art. In the same way the celebrities, criminals and victims are interviewed. In case an incident involves a celebrity, the media immediately rush to him for interaction. Most often the celebrities do not like to face the interviewer since it is like the stealing of one’s soul. It even makes them feel that it somehow diminishes them.

In the words of Nobel laureate, V.S. Naipaul, “Some people are wounded buy interviews and lose a part of them”. They feel a part of their personalities stolen. Lewis Carroll, the author of ‘Alice in Wonderland’ was said to have had a just horror of the interviewer and he never consented to be interviewed. Caroline, the wife of Rudyard Kipling, went on saying that an interview is vile, crime and all offence. No respectable person would ask it, much less give it. On the other hand H.G. Wells referred it to be an interviewing ordeal. Nobel laureate Saul Bellow took it like thumb-prints on his windpipe.” Thus most of the celebrities do not find favour with interview but the interviewer hold a position of great power and influence.


Q.2. How does Eco find the time to write so much?

Ans: David Lodge was a famous English novelist. He was much amazed how Umberto Eco could do all the things he did. Mukund Padmanabhan put the same question to Eco of writing scholarly works and the novels simultaneously. Eco answered very modestly. Revealing his secret, Eco remarked that he was always doing the same thing. Eco pointed out that he had some philosophical interests.

Eco tells that’s there are empty spaces in the universe. In the same way there are empty spaces in the lives of us all. He calls these empty spaces as ‘interstices or intervals. He explains his style of working in empty spaces through an example. He tells when he waits for somebody coming from the elevator from first to the third floor, he won’t sit idle. He would write during his arrival. Till the person arrives, he has already written an article. Thus by utilizing these empty spaces he finds time to write so much. Mukund is much amazed at his dexterity.


Q.3.In what way have the interviews become a common place of journalism?

Ans: Over the last 130 years, the interviews have become a commonplace of journalism. Almost everybody will have read an interview at some point during their life time. Several thousand celebrities have been interviewed over the years. It is a great serviceable medium of communication. The interviewer holds position of unprecedented power and influence.


Q.4.Why does some of the celebrities think the interview as an unwarranted intrusion into their live?


Why do most celebrities despise being interviewed?

Ans: Most of the celebrities do not like to be interviewed at all. They consider it as an ‘unwarranted intrusion’ into their lives. According to V.S. Naipaul that a man loses a part of himself during an interview. Rudyard Kipling has more condemnatory attitude about the interviewer. He called the interview to be immoral, a crime, cowardly or vile.


Q.5. What is the secret of Umberto Eco’s working style?

Ans:  He talks there are empty spaces in the lives of us all. He calls these empty spaces as ‘interstices or intervals. He explains his style of working in empty spaces through an example. He tells when he waits for somebody coming from the elevator from first to the third floor, he won’t sit idle. He utilises these intervals for his creative work.


Q.6.Did Eco consider himself a novelist first or an academic scholar?

Ans: In his interview with Mukund, Eco states, “I am a professor who writes on Sundays. I participate in academic conferences and not at the meeting of pen clubs and writers. I identify myself with the academic community. I became a novelist only by an accident.”


Q.7.“The Name of the Rose” deals with medieval history. Was it responsible for the novel’s success?

Ans: Mukund tells Eco that “The Name of the Rose” got a huge success because of its medieval background. Eco did not seem to agree with it. A lot of books have been written about the medieval past much before him and they did not get much success. Perhaps his novel was written at the most appropriate time.


Q.8. What is the concept of ‘interstices’ as declared by Umberto Eco?

ANS.According to Umberto Eco ‘interstices’ are the empty spaces in our lives.  We should make the best use of these empty spaces. He means to say that we should not waste our free time. It must be utilized for some creative works.


Q.9. What do you understand by the expression’ thumbprints on his windpipe’?

ANS.Saul Bellow has described interview as being ‘thumbprints on his windpipe’. If somebody presses our throat, our windpipe is choked and we can not breathe properly. Similarly, he felt choked and suffocated during the interviews which made him difficult to breathe.


Q.10. How does Rudyard Kipling condemn an Interview?

ANS. According to Rudyard Kipling interview is immoral. It is a crime. It is just like an attack on somebody. Hence, it is punishable. He adds that it is a cowardly and unpleasant act. No respectable man should ask anybody to give interview.


Q.11. What are the distinguishing features of the novel by Umberto Eco entitled ‘The Name of the Rose’.

ANS.‘The Name of the Rose’ is a very serious novel. It is a detective yarn.  It is a novel in which there is the taste of religion, metaphysics, and medieval history.


Q.12. Why, according to Umberto Eco, were the journalists puzzled at the popularity of the novel ‘The Name of the Rose’?

ANS.According to Umberto Eco the journalists were puzzled because journalists believed that people liked the writings of poor quality. They thought that difficult reading experiences were not liked by people. But they were wrong. The novel was liked by millions of people even if it had difficult experiences.


Q.13. What was distinctive about Umberto Eco’s writing style?

ANS.Umberto Eco writes in a playful manner. There is a personal touch in all the non- fictional works done by him. The best quality of his writing is that his essays have narrative aspect. It means he writes as if he is telling a story.


Q.14. Why does Umberto Eco regard the success and popularity of the novel ‘The Name of the Rose’ as a mystery?

ANS.Umberto Eco believes that the success of the popularity and huge success of the novel can not be predicted. It was written at the right time. If he had written the same novel ten years earlier or ten years later it would have been failed. Its success is a mystery.


Q.15. Why do most celebrity writers despise being interviewed?

ANS. Most celebrity writers despise (hate) being interviewed because they think it to be an undue interference in their private lives. Rudyard Kipling calls it immoral, vile and a crime. V. S. Naipaul feels that it hurts our feelings. H.G. Wells calls it an ‘Ordeal ’.It makes difficult to breathe when we are being interviewed.


Q.16. How does Umberto Eco compare himself as an academician and as a novelist?

ANS.Umberto Eco says that as an academician he simply writes about his philosophical interests. He works in empty spaces. His style of writing is personal, playful and narrative. On the other hand, he writes novels on Sundays. He mixes the tastes of all types of people in his novels.


Q.17. List some of the positive views on interviews.

ANS. Interviews have many positive aspects. It is an art and a source of truth. It is a very good medium of communication. We can get information about our contemporaries through interview. Impressions are formed and selections are made on the basis of interviews.


Q.18. Why did Lewis Carroll grudge interviews?

ANS. Lewis Carroll grudges the interviews because he thinks it to be ‘a horror’. He did not want to be treated as an important person.

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