Lear and Eurydice

Who is it that can tell me who I am?’ King Lear’s baffled and angry cry comes as he begins to recognise that what has hitherto ‘told’ him who he was – the attitudes of those around him, the visible trappings of power – has vanished. We rely on all sorts of things to tell us who we are; and when the tangible cues or pointers begin to disappear, the questions become a source of real pain. I need to have something that I can reasonably say about myself ; and for this I need cues outside myself, or so it has normally seemed.

Rowan Williams, Lear and Eurydice: Religious experience, crisis and change, The Way Supplement, 1992/82 p.75

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