Elizabeth Gilbert

  • Aired:  12/11/13
  •  | Views: 14,600

Elizabeth Gilbert talks about "The Signature of All Things," her sweeping novel about a woman botanist in the 19th century. (5:55)

>> WELCOME BACK, MY GUESTTONIGHT IS A BEST SELLING

AUTHOR WHOSE NEW BOOK ISCALLED THE SIGNATURE OF ALL

THINGS.

I'M HOPING TO GET MY COPYAUTOGRAPHED BY ALL THINGS.

PLEASE WELCOME ELIZABETHGILBERT.

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)>> THANK YOU.

>> FOR THOSE OF YOU PEOPLEOUT THERE WHO HAVE NOT

BOUGHT AND READ YOUR BOOKEAT, PRAY, LOVE, LET ME TELL

A FEW PEOPLE ABOUT YOU.

YOU ARE THE AUTHOR OFSEVERAL BOXES OF FICTION,

PILGRIM, STERN MEN,COMMITTED AND OF COURSE EAT,

PRAY, LOVE.

WHICH SOLD 10 MILLIONCOPIES.

(APPLAUSE)>> I KNOW THAT YOU BOUGHT

ONE BECAUSE ARE YOU JUSTRIGHT IN THE DEMOGRAPHIC.

>> ABSOLUTELY.

>> I HAVE WOMANLY HIPS.

NOW BOY, 10 MILLION COPIES.

NO PROBLEM EATING THESEDAYS.

>> OR LOVING.

>> REALLY, REALLY?

>> BUT NO-- BUT NO PRAYING.

>> NO, PRAYERS OF GRATITUDE.

>> OKAY, GOOD.

>> YEAH, GOOD.

NOW YOU'VE GOT A NEW BOOKCALLED THE SIGNATURE OF ALL

THINGS.

IS LIKE AN EAT PRAY LOVEELECTRIC BOOG A LOO.

>> IT.

>> I KIND OF WROTE THESEQUEL ALREADY BECAUSE RIGHT

AFTER EAT, PRAY LOVE I WROTETHIS BOOK CALLED COMMITTED

WHICH IS ABOUT GETTINGMARRIED.

AND I THOUGHT THAT WASENOUGH ABOUT ME, I THINK WE

COULD ALL AGREE.

>> Stephen: I DON'T FEELTHAT WAY.

>> ABOUT ME OR ABOUT YOU.

>> Stephen: ABOUT ME,ACTUALLY.

>> OKAY, WHAT ABOUT ME?

BUT I DECIDED TO GO BACK TOFICTION WHICH IS WHERE I GOT

MY START AND I WANTED TOWRITE THE KIND OF BOOK THAT

I ALWAYS LOVED TO READ.

A BIG GIANT DEKENSIAN EPICNOVEL OF IDEAS WITH ACTION,

ADVENTURE ON THE HIGH SEAS.

>> SO THIS IS ANOTHER BOOKABOUT A WOMAN IN THE 19th

CENTURY.

WHAT IS SHE-- SHE IS APOLITE-- SHE'S CALLED A

POLITE-- WHICH IS WHAT THEYCALLED WOMEN WHO DEBOTANIST

TO DISTINGUISH THEM FROM AMAN.

>> WHY MAKE HER A BOT ANNISIN THE 19th CENTURY.

FOR A WOMAN IN THE 19thCENTURY WOULDN'T A MORE

REALISTIC OCCUPATION BEDYING IN CHILDBIRTH?

>> PROFESSIONAL BLEEDING OUTWOMAN, YEAH.

UNFORTUNATELY, YES, HOWEVERTHERE WERE AN AMAZING NUMBER

OF FEMALE BOT ANNISES.

IT WAS THE ONLY SCIENCE THATWOMEN WERE A LITTLE BIT

WELCOMED IN TO BECAUSEFLOWERS.

>> Stephen: OH, FLOWERS AREGIRLS.

>> THEY KIND OF-- THE WORLDOF PLANTS IS REALLY BORING

TO WOMEN SO WOMEN KIND OFSNUCK INTO THAT WORLD OF

GARDENING AND ONCE THEY WEREIN THERE THEY MADE AMAZING

CONTRIBUTION, SO I WANTED TOWRITE ABOUT ONE OF THOSE

WOMEN.

>> Stephen: IS THERE-- SENSETHERE SEXY TIMES IN THIS

BOOK.

>> YEAH.

>> Stephen: REAL SEXY TIMESOR JUST PISTOLS AND

STAMMENS.

>> FLOWERS THEY SAY ARE SEXMADE EVIDENCE.

YOU DON'T HAVE TO LOOK VERYCARE FLOE AT AN ORCHID OR

GEORGIA O'KEEFFE PAINTING TOGET-- .

>> Stephen: WOW, SHOULD IPIXEL ATE MY ROSE GARDEN.

>> CROSS POLLINATE.

>> Stephen: I DO, BABY.

>> I THINK-- VERY SEXY TIME.

SHE IS A WOMAN OF GREATPASSION AND DESIRE WHICH IS

SOMETHING THAT I WANTED TODO BECAUSE I FEEL LIKE AS A

CONTEMPORARY REQUIRE WRITINGABOUT THE 19th CENTURY I CAN

DO LIKE THE BRONTES AND JANEAUSTEN AND ELLIOTT COULD

ONLY HINT AT.

I CAN ACTUALLY SAY WHATHAPPENS.

>> ALL RIGHT WHAT DOESHAPPEN?

I MEAN WITHOUT GIVINGEVERYTHING AWAY, DOES

MR. DARCY COME IN AND THENTAKE HER AWAY AND THEN SHE

GETS ON TO THE IMPORTANTWORK OF CUTTING CRUSTS OFF

CUCUMBER SANDWICHES?

WHAT IS THE FUTURE FOR A19th CENTURY WOMAN.

>> WELL, THERE'S LOVE IN THESTORY BUT HE ESSENTIALLY

WHAT THIS IS A BOOK THATCELEBRATES A WOMAN'S

LOCATIONMENT BECAUSE I FELTTHAT IS A STORY WE'VE NEVER

HEARD.

AND AS A WOMAN WHO HERSELFHAS HAD HER LIFE SAVED SO

MANY TIMES BY HER PASSIONFOR HER WORK I WANTED TO

TALK ABOUT SOMEBODY WHOs WHOLIVES UP AND DOWNS AND

ROMANCES AND DRAMAS MAY COMEAND GO BUT WHAT IS AT THE

CENTRE OF IS IT IS THISDESIRE TO UNDERSTAND NOTHING

LESS THAN THE WORKING OF THENATURAL WORLD.

SHE SPENDS HER COMPLETE LIFEIN DEVOTION TO SCIENCE.

>> IS SHE OBSESSED.

>> SHE'S OBSESSED.

>> YOU DID A TALK ONCREATIVITY.

>> I DIDN'T AND ONE OF THETHINGS YOU SAID IS THAT YOU

DON'T THINK THAT PEOPLE HAVETO LIKE SUFFER TO BE AN

ARTIST, OKAY.

>> YEAH.

>> YOU HAVE SUFFERED?

>> SURE.

I HAVE SUFFERED.

>> OKAY, YOU'VE SUFFERED.

AND YOU'RE AN ARTIST.

>> I HAVE SUFFERED BUT IHAVEN'T DEVELOPED A

NARCISSISTIC ADDICTION TOTHE IDEA OF BEING A

SUFFERING ARTIST WHICH ISSOMETHING THAT I OBJECT TO.

BECAUSE I FEEL LIKE THERE ISTHIS HANGOVER FROM GERMAN

ROMANT CIVIL THAT SAYS IFARE YOU NOT MISSERABLE IN

MAKING EVERYONE AROUND YOUMISERABLE THAN YOU ARE NOT A

SERIOUS ARTIST.

AND I DISAGREE WITH THAT.

>> VAN GOGH DIDN'T CUT OFFHIS EARS ALIKE A WEIGHT

LOSS.

HE'S A MESSERABLE PERSON.

DON'T GREAT ARTIST, I'M NOTSAYING YOU AREN'T A GREAT

ARTIST.

PAIN ARE YOU AND ARE YOU NOTGIVING YOUR SUFFERING ENOUGH

CREDIT.

>> RIGHT.

I SHOULD SORT OF GO DEEPERINTO IT.

>> MAYBE YOUR NARCISSISM ISSAYING THAT I'M NOT A NARS

CYST-- NARSISYS.

>> I DON'T THINK ANYBODY WHOWROTE TWO MEMOIRS IN A ROW

SHOULD HAVE TO DEFENDEDQUESTION OF WHETHER OR NOT

SHE'S A NARSISYS.

THAT PUTS ME IN A BADPOSITION.

>> Stephen: HOW ABOUT THISIDEA.

WHAT IF EVERYBODY SUFFEREDBUT ARTISTS DO SOMETHING

ABOUT IT.

>> THAT'S TRUE.

>> THEY LEAVE THEIRSUFFERING OUT IN, LIKE PAINT

ON A PALACE.

>> YEAH.

>> AND THEN THEY SHOW YOUWHAT THEY'RE

RESPONSIBLE-- EVEN IF THEYARE NOT SHOWING YOU THEIR

SUFFERING, THEY DON'THAVE-- YOU DON'T HAVE TO

PAINT THE TIERS BUT YOU CANUSE THE TEARS TO PAINT

SOMETHING PRETTY.

>> DO YOU PAINT A LOT WITHYOUR TEARS.

>> I HAVE NEVER SUFFERED.

>> Stephen: THANK YOU SOMUCH FOR JOINING US.

>> ALWAYS A JOY, STEPHEN,THANK YOU.

>> Stephen: ELIZABETHGILBERT, THE SIGNATURE OF

ALL THINGS.