Saturday, November 16, 2013

saturday bookshelf :: week three


Title: Woodcutters

Author: Thomas Bernhard

Reader: D

Thoughts: I've read about half a dozen books by this author. Translated from German. I guess I'm a secret hipster. So what is this book about. Well it's more about the author's constant critique of the bourgeois in Austria. He dissects them in such a loathsome manner one would think it as pure hatred, but I think that he is trying to inspire them to be better, truer, more substantial human beings.

In the excerpt below, Bernhard derides the Auersbergers, old friends that he now is estranged from...Yet accepts an invitation to an artistic dinner. (intellectual masochism)

"All her life she was constantly trying to escape from her origins, just as he was from his - she from the idyll of her gentle Styrian birth, he from the paternal destiny of petty local officialdom and the maternal low pressure zone inhabited by butcher's assistants - all of which was bound to appear irresistibly comic to anyone around them who had eyes to see and ears to hear."

Boring you say? Well it gets bleaker. Bernhard writes this singular thought diatribe of a novel in one paragraph(180 pages). Sheesh. He is relentless in his character attack of the Austrian people and takes no prisoners. Banned in Austria. Reads like a weird art film.

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