Posted: November 7, 2007 in Gao Xingjian, Soul Mountain
Summary: A Texas writer who listens to “Soul Mountain” while driving in his car around Houston describes Gao Xingjian’s ambivalence towards the modern novel and traditional storytelling.
The Peripatetic Novel
This review is a little special: it’s about a book I heard completely while driving around in my car. I recently returned to my home town, Houston, a city where people spend unbearable amounts of time in the solitude of their cars, driving from work to home and work again. In Houston waiting in traffic is synonymous with living. One passes through neighborhoods in air-conditioned comfort, cursing the red lights and slow-moving cars. The purpose of Houston life, it seems, is to wander around without having to feel the breeze or notice the trees, people or shops. The only interruption to the routine are the weekly visits to the gas station, where the traveler parks, inserts his debit card into the machine and pumps gas into his tank Then, if he is lucky, he can leave as quickly as he came, merging into the grumbling fog of traffic. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: November 7, 2007 in Edward Said, Out of Place
Out of Place: a memoir is the account of Edward Said’s life prior to his professional career. As such, it helps to explain some of the many paradoxes of Said’s identity as a public intellectual, literary theorist and political activist. The conditions of Said’s life are crucial to an understanding of his theories, political and literary.
Faced with a possibly fast approaching death, Out of Place: A memoir was written with a sense of urgency: Edward Said tries to make sense of the early part his own life, to reflect on the past and how it has transpired into the present. Said, a distinguished Professor of Comparative Literature at Columbia University, a celebrated public intellectual and one of the world’s best known advocates of Palestinian issues, was diagnosed with leukemia in 1991 and began to write this memoir in 1994. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: October 10, 2007 in Literary Magazine, Ulysses
By Helene Monsacré
Literary magazine n° 221
Juillet/Août 1985 (File literature and the exile).
“Oh! not, nothing is softer than fatherland and parents; in the exile, what good is the richest residence, among foreigners and far from its parents?”
It is at the time when Ulysses has just declined his identity in Phéaciens, and before even beginning the long account of its adventures, which it makes reference to the hardness of the exile. And what a exile! Ten years with guerroyer under the walls of Troy with the other Greeks, nine years to be wandered on the seas with the research of the way of the return. Because,it is to it the post-war period; it is the account of the returns of the Greek heroes in their hearths, more particularly the recit of the return of Ulysses. During nearly ten years, Ulysses fights to leave the inhospitable regions where, inlassablement, it fails; during ten years, this so difficult return will lead it of one exile to the other.
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By Jean-Baptist Baronian
The Literary Magazine n°468
In addition to Alfred Jarry and Octave Mirbeau, the white Review accomodated talented writers, aujourd’hui forgotten.
Jarry and Octave Mirbeau, the white Review accomodated talented writers, aujourd’hui forgotten.
“Center of rallying of all the divergences” according to the formula d’André Gide, the white Review regularly makes l’objet, these last decades, d’études and of work. Witness, the very recent bibliography of the a hundred and forty pounds qu’elle published, of 1892 to 1902, established by Patrick Fréchet with the editions of Lérot (see the literary Magazine n° 461). Read the rest of this entry »
By Jean Montalbetti
Literary magazine n° 198
1983. Whole Europe celebrates the centenary of Kafka. In Paris, a conference is devoted to him to the Sorbonne. But Prague, city whose Kafka is indissociable, continuous to regard it as a declining author, of which proscire is needed work and the memory.
“It seemed to to me that the nature of works of Kafka is such that it is likely to make of him the completely frightening civil servant of the Castle which he describes (…) It is the humour which prevents Kafka from becoming this monument petrified and risen by the mass of interpretations that one brings.”
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