Even if The Lover itself could not be called a compromising text. A sort of Ugly, grotesque, destructive. If there is, if there can be a beauty in that, through these spare and disconnected sentences, Duras finds it, but only just. View all 4 comments. Feb 17, Laura rated it really liked it Shelves: fictionth-century , french-literature , e-books , novellas , read , erotica.
The End of Eddy by Édouard Louis review – a childhood in hell
Another masterpiece written by Marguerite Duras. View all 3 comments.
May 16, Sean rated it really liked it Shelves: The premise is similar to the later novella The Malady of Death in that a narrator describes an erotic scenario between a woman and a man. But here the narrator is present in the scene, acting almost as director in a tight, cinematic stretch of prose.
At one point the narrator tells the woman what the man is doing and what is happening to her. The story is more opaque than in Malady , and the narrator, though involved as an observer, has little insight to offer. Like in Malady , there is a juxtapo The premise is similar to the later novella The Malady of Death in that a narrator describes an erotic scenario between a woman and a man. Like in Malady , there is a juxtaposition with the natural world: a treeless plain extends to a river and beyond that a layer of mist hiding the sea.
The movement of the clouds is like that of this couple: they 'appear and advance together, following one another at a slow unhurried pace'.
He'd watch her coming towards him like a ghost returning from the path of stones. The narrator alternates between reflecting on the movements of the woman and the man and their meaning, and on the bare plain and the unseen sea. As in Malady , death clings to the text. It is hovering there, above and around the characters, waiting for its moment to arrive. While more explicitly discussed in Malady , it is more menacing here—less absolute in its threat but more chaotic in its approach. A haunting text, and one which almost demands to be read in parallel with The Malady of Death in case that wasn't already obvious.
Es verano. Ella lleva un vestido de seda, debajo nada. Consigue atraerlo. La pisa. Regresa a su sitio. Ella lo sigue. Lo busca, lo lame.
Ella pide ser golpeada Concisa, tremenda y cruel. Apr 02, Kelly B rated it liked it. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Once again, I read this in less than an hour, but I think it might take me the next month to actually process it. This lady is deep. At first I thought, okay, this is going to be a story like Malady of Death, a man and a woman trying to love each other over some unknown existential vastness that neither of them can cross.
At first, it was that. Then, I thought, this must be a dream. Duras must have dreamed this and then woken up and wrote it all down. Then, I thought, oh, this is like an Adam an Once again, I read this in less than an hour, but I think it might take me the next month to actually process it.
Then, I thought, oh, this is like an Adam and Eve story, the part where they explore each other's bodies and figure out how to have sex. Their bodies are totally foreign to each other; they don't know what they are for. And then, I thought, they are evolving, coming into real time now, and this is where the man says he will eventually kill the woman. Ah, this is about violence. This is about the spirits of the women who have been killed by men, watching in vain, impotent to help, watching another woman be killed by her lover.
View 1 comment. This is a jewel of a prose work. While reading, I felt like I was looking at timeless images from a photo album so rich and controlling is the language on the page. Read, then re-read. Sep 21, Cole Tucker rated it really liked it. The violent shift at the end has me confused, and unsure, so would have been 3-stars except for some exceptionally beautiful passages. Sep 29, Kundry rated it liked it. The work was first released in the United States with the title Le Rendez-vous The Meeting and contained questions at the end of each chapter.
The same year, Robbe-Grillet re-released the text, removing the questions and adding a prologue and an epilogue to frame the story. In many ways, Djinn resembles a detective fiction novel; yet at the same time, it is difficult to class as such.
It tells the story of Simon Lecoeur, a thirty-year-old man, who allies himself with an American woman named Jean Djinn to act as a counteragent to technology. The plot of Djinn is surrounded by a frame story , a technique that Robbe-Grillet also employed in his novel Dans le Labyrinthe The police search the home of the narrator, supposed to be Simon Lecoeur, and find the manuscript lying on the desk. The manuscript is named Le Rendez-vous The Appointment , which differs from the name of the novel. While the title Djinn seems to allude to a Genie or mystical spirit, it instead refers to the lead woman of the novel, Jean.
The English pronunciation of Jean might be written more like djinn in French. The name also takes on a certain ambiguity in the work. The Prologue opens with what we assume to be a police report. Simon Lecoeur has been reported missing for several days, so the authorities break into his apartment where they find a manuscript lying on the table. The contents of the manuscript are revealed in the following chapters. The narrator, responding to a newspaper ad, goes to a deserted industrial park to meet his potential boss, Jean. The narrator assumes that Jean is a man and sees him at the end of a building dressed in a coat, hat, and dark glasses.
There, a young student tells him that he is going to be late and suggests a short-cut. He leaves and takes the short cut, which leads him through the Rue Vercingetorix III, a street name that cannot possibly exist. There, he sees a boy run into the street and fall down as if dead. The narrator decides to help, and he carries the boy into the nearest building. The narrator meets the boy's sister, Marie, who tells him that her brother Jean "dies" frequently.
The narrator takes this to mean that the boy is subject to some kind of seizure. The narrator asks about the boy and the girl's parents, and the girl shows the narrator a photograph of a Russian sailor who died at sea and whom she claims is their father. In it, he reads that the train station destination was in reality meant to be nothing more than a wild goose chase. When the narrator is unable to come up with a story that meets her specifications, she proceeds to tell her own tale. Is there some deviant logic unfolding more powerful than that provided by reason?
Throughout Crash! I have used the car not only as a sexual image, but as a total metaphor for man's life in today's society. As such the novel has a political role quite apart from its sexual content, but I would still like to think that Crash! In a sense, pornography is the most political form of fiction, dealing with how we use and exploit each other, in the most urgent and ruthless way. Needless to say, the ultimate role of Crash!
Interview Robert Louit: What's your position today with respect to science fiction? JG Ballard: When I began writing, towards the end of the fifties, science fiction was the only branch of literature which permitted speculative writing making evaluations of human reaction to the various upheavals, scientific, technological, political, which were happening them. I turned naturally towards the genre. I'm tempted to say that half of my work preceding The Atrocity Exhibition was science fiction; the other half belongs to fantasy or to allegory pure and simple -- for example, my short story "The Drowned Giant".
I wouldn't want a reader tackling Crash! Louit: You once defined science fiction as "the literature of technological optimism, born in America in the twenties". It seems to me that your work takes the exact opposite course to the one implied by this. Perhaps the subject matter remains to a certain extent technological, but you are less occupied in speculating on the future than on the present, whose strangeness and fascination you unveil. The result is not always optimistic. Ballard: Exactly. I don't see much I could add to that description. For some years I have been trying to show the present from an unusual angle.
Ballard: In effect.
The determining factor for me was the assassination of John Kennedy in it is, among other things, the subject of The Atrocity Exhibition. I wrote a lot about the Kennedys at that time because they seemed to me a kind of twentieth century House of the Atreides. Their history illustrates particularly well the way in which, little by little, the fictional elements of everyday reality have ended up by completely masking the so-called "real" elements. For some years we have been living in the middle of what is in fact an enormous novel. More and more our lives are affected by advertising, by politics conceived and carried out as an exercise in publicity, by mass commerce, and so on.
We live in a media-landscape. Elements of fiction mingle with our lives and transform them, right down to tiny details. When you get an airticket from London to Paris you are buying not only a travel voucher, but also and above all a trademark, an image -- of a certain airline, its style, its hostesses, its decor, whether or not it has a bar, or a film show, during the flight the fictitious elements are interwoven with the reality of the trip.
It's the same in politics: presidential elections in the U. As to private life, it too is obedient to the influence of images projected by newspapers, television, advertising posters, etc. These can be sensed in the way people decorate their homes, the way they dress, in the whole apparatus of their relation to others. To speak of this new world I was led, in The Atrocity Exhibition , to fragment contemporary reality so that I could reassemble its elements paragraph by paragraph and show its springs. This method allowed me to examine simultaneously the different strata that make up our own experience of the actual world: the level of public events such as war, the conquest of space or the story of Kennedy; the level of everyday life, of people who get into the car every morning, work at the office, convalesce in a hospital etc.
In The Atrocity Exhibition then, I tried to blend these three levels just as we constantly do in life, every day. The conventions of the ordinary "realistic" novel don't allow this approach. Linear narrative is like a railway running from one point to another from which one cannot deviate; it prevents simultaneous perceptions.
The Man Sitting in the Corridor
Now, my aim is to show that these three levels, public, private and fantastic, cut backwards and forwards across one another: that points of intersection exist between them. In spite of the linear aspect of its narrative, Crash! Louit: So the construction of your latest books exactly reflects our way of seeing the world every day. Ballard: Yes. It's a little as if I were leading the reader to a deserted laboratory, and that I put a collection of specimens and all the necessary equipment at his disposal.
It's his job then to relate these elements together and create reactions from them. I believe that contemporary fiction has to direct itself more and more in this direction. The novelist must stop looking at things retrospectively, returning to past events which he lays out meticulously as if he were preparing a parcel which he will afterwards deliver to the reader, telling him: "It was like that". The essence of the traditional novel is in the formula "that's what happened". I believe that today it's necessary to write in a more speculative way, to write a kind of "investigation novel" which corresponds to the formula "this is what's happening" or "this is going to happen".
In an enterprise of this kind, the author doesn't know in advance what he's going to produce. He loses his omniscience. Louit: For the classical novel, which is an object enclosed and complete within the spirit of its author, you substitute an open narrative in which the act of reading itself becomes part of the creative process, or rather the process of investigation.
Ballard: That's it. In Crash! I'm content to give the reader a spectrum of possibilities, but it's up to him to choose between them. In the classical novel, we can discover the moral, political and philosophical position of the author in every event described. It's the reader's reactions that assure the functioning of the book: in the course of the story, everyone has to reach a limiting position beyond which he is not able to accept what is proposed to him.
I don't say that I expect the world to end in a sort of automotive apocalypse fed on sex and violence; I offer this vision as one extreme hypothesis because it seems to me inscribed in the present. Louit: In Crash! Ballard: I wouldn't want to give the impression of being excessively schematic, but I in convinced that when an event takes place on one of the three levels of reality we spoke about earlier, it necessarily affects the other two in a more or less perceptible way.
So, when I evoke the suicide of Marilyn Monroe in The Atrocity Exhibition , it's because it doesn't appear to me as simply the death of a woman, but as a kind of space-time disaster, a catastrophe which created a rupture in our perception of time and space, as if we saw the abrupt subsidence of an immovable object before our very eyes.
In effect, Marilyn Monroe, the Kennedys, the astronauts, are part of our mental landscape with as much right as the streets and houses that we frequent. Louit: I feel bound to repeat the celebrated epigram of Dali, made from the same perspective: "The soul is a condition of landscape".