About the Author
Born into a Jewish family in London in 1925, Harris joined the RAF directly from Haileybury, serving as a Lancaster flight mechanic at the RAF Experimental Establishment at Boscombe Down. Later he was German interpreter to Afrika Korps prisoners of war in the Egyptian desert, in Cairo playwright in RAF Repertory Company and news reader on the Forces Network. In 1948 Harris emigrated to Brazil where he taught English and learned colloquial Portuguese. He contributed to an English language newspaper, and wrote and presented a sponsored series of music programmes on Radio Nacional, Rio de Janeiro. He moved to North America in 1953, worked for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in Toronto, and in New York was accredited radio interviewer for CBC, the first interviewee being TV impresario Ed Sullivan. In 1958 Harris returned home, continuing as interviewer for CBC and the BBC, which produced his radio plays. Harris organised six BBC TV documentaries on Holland and Morocco, shown on Wednesday Magazine, the first daytime programme screened by the BBC at its Lime Grove studios in Shepherd’s Bush. In 1960 Harris made an archival spoken word LP, Theatre 60, under the distinguished ARGO record label. It covered all aspects of theatre, its participants including Noel Coward, Peter Ustinov, Peter Hall, Albert Finney, Harold Pinter and Kenneth Tynan. On the opening night of Beyond The Fringe at the Fortune Theatre, Harris interviewed Peter Cook, Dudley Moore, Alan Bennett and Jonathan Miller. When Bob Guccione founded Penthouse, Harris became motoring correspondent, as well as contributing short stories and articles. He continued to broadcast and contribute to several newspapers and magazines. His first published novel Clovis appeared in 1970. Prior to his 80th birthday, Harris met Alison with whom he has been living and travelling for nine years. They have been chased by pirates off Zanzibar, ridden the zip wire down the Arenal Volcano in Costa Rica; when Harris told the despatcher that he was 87, the man crossed himself before despatching him with a valedictory lumbar punch into the thick mist high above a rain forest, where he got stuck in a crosswind and had to be rescued. Godhead took some ten years to write, but Harris hasn’t put down his pen for long. By the time he is 90, in less than two years’ time, Patagonia Press will have published three volumes of his memoirs, under the generic title of Absent Virtue.