Dennie B

Another memory of Nancy in her NACRO era came this morning, this time from Dennie Briggs, an American who was at the forefront of both New Careers and the whole therapeutic community movement (hope I’ve got this right, Dennie!) He wrote:

“Nancy Hodgkin contacted me in 1970 while I was living in London, after having watched a television program in New York. The program focused on a project I’d been involved in for young prisoners, training them for new careers helping others—delinquents, mentally ill, children with short attention spans, and so on. She got interested enough to return to the States, looked up some of the former prisoners and the project’s director. From her interviews, she wrote articles for the press and spoke to professional organizations about how this procedure might work in the UK. She visited my classes at the North London Poly where I was involving former offenders and mothers on welfare in order to qualify them for jobs in the human services. And she accompanied me on home visits.

“So the Nancy Hodgkin her daughter Joanna, portrayed in her captivating & extraordinarily intimate account of the earlier years her mother was married to Lawrence Durrell, came to me as somewhat of a surprise. A testament to the infallibility of the soul; as one reviewer put it: damage also strengthened her. Perhaps Joanna can be persuaded to continue chronicling her mother’s remarkable journey. ”

I love the phrase “a testament to the infallibility of the soul” – her ability to live several lives in one life was inspirational, I think.

And now as the rain continues to fall outside (again, again) it’s time for a picture from Taormina, a year ago. Just because it is cheerful and warming.

Taormina sunset

Taormina sunset

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