Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Water and St Bob

"Water," the final (rather bleak) film in Deepa Mehta's Elements trilogy, was shown at our film society last evening. It describes the tragic lives of widows in pre-Second World War India: their treatment "disguised as religion, it's just about money," as the male lead says.

Bob Dylan must have made a great deal of money from his songs over the years, but their indebtedness to the bible does not, by contrast, seem to me in the least exploitative. The lecture by Malcolm Guite at the Cambridge Centre for the Study of Jewish-Christian Relations last month may have surprised Dylan by the number of connections it drew out! See "In the time of my confession", Memory, prayer and religious roots in the music of Bob Dylan. You can read it to the accompaniment of lots of the songs referred to just by subscribing to Spotify: it's free! A no-brainer.

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