Fatelessness the uasi autobiographical novel and reworking of Kertesz s own experiences at Auschwitz and other camps during WW2 is narrated by Gyuri an awkward and I have to say not fully likeable 14 year old Jewish boy from Budapest who suffers from the usual teenage sensations of estrangement and diffidence and is at a highly sensitive age to endure such tyranny and his response is to rationalise everything His tone is formal dispassionate his story peppered with evasions and disclaimers such as naturally and in all fairness Despite the ravity of its heavy subject the narrative is punctuated with bursts of adolescent facetiousness and is almost told as if he were still in total denial of what s oing on around him After his father is taken away he would take his own train ride into a hellish world he doesn t yet realise Gyuri arrives at Auschwitz deluded that it will be a normal work camp and marvels at the emaciated criminals Before noticing strange chimneys and a smell in the air he can t uite make out He describes his situation almost scientifically and there is a marked lack of compassion to his thinking There is even the argument he would have made a ood Nazi He sizes up fellow inmates with disgust and feels no affinity what so ever with other Hungarians and even less so with other Jews He simply does what is necessary to endure and survive In places though it felt like a holiday camp to him than one run by the Nazi regime and apart from hunger pains and the time he Blood Brothers got some wounds infected whilst at Buchenwald there was little else that made me feel the plight of his ordeal Gyuri s tragedy is his failure to fully accept the meaninglessness of Nazi brutality But then this could also be seen as his triumph By focusing perversely on the so called happiness of the camps rather than on the atrocities he is somehow victorious in winning the battle of the mind leaving him less traumatized when he finally returned home Considering this was Kertesz s debut novel it was an accomplished piece of writing However and disappointingly for me as a piece of Holocaust literature it didn t hurt and struggled to reallyet under my skin I expected to pained by the horrors haunted by the suffering kicked where it hurts have my blood chilled make me feel something at least But no hardly anything On a harrowing level compared to other books I have read on the same subject including Tadeusz Borowski s This Way for the Gas Ladies and Gentlemen it all came across as pretty tame Maybe he witnessed such horrors but chose to exclude the worst bits from his novel I would rather they would have been included As there is nothing comfortable about Holocaust experiences and yet I sat there comfortable Through the middle sections based at the camps I never truly The First Men on the Moon got the sense that right around the corner mass exterminations were being carried outThere is no denying this is a work worthy of merit but it wasn t the book I was hoping for as it never really hit me with any real significant power But at least it s another unread Nobel laureate I can now tick of the list Cynically this could be recommended as a handbook for survival should you find yourself arrested one fine morning thanks to your offensive identity or favoriting a thousand resist related tweets in a single week I don t think expert knowledge eg it s best to be toward the end of the soup line so the ladle is filled with weightier chunks of veggies and maybe some meat will really come in handy any time soon but this does have an important function now the same as it always has in that it shows how things can escalate step by step and all along the way human nature acclimates to whatever happensets used toregulates whatever horror comes next makes it so you become accustomed to seeing carts filled with body parts or even seeing three Latvian escapees caught and displayed as a lesson not to run for example and all of it somehow doesn t blot out the ability of the sun as it sets to memorably illuminate the world even when that bit of the world is Buchenwald The image of the Auschwitz crematorium chimneys at first they thought the nasty smell was coming from a nearby leather factory stretching into the distance made me say aloud on the subway something like whoa dude fuck For the first few chapters it functions like a suspense thriller in that the reader knows about the horrors up ahead than the narrator but after a while rumors start to circulate and they have a better idea about what s Mrs. Frola and Mr. Ponza, Her Son-in-Law going on not that such knowledge changes anything for them really All the minor instances of luck andoodwill that kept the narrator alive All the facial features distorted by time spent as a prisoner Lager means camp in German didn t know that and will remember it forever after and associate it with this book whenever I drink that style of beer Loved isn t the right word but I laughed out loud when he made it back to Budapest and someone asked what he felt and he said hatred and when asked who he hated he said everyone Loved the last parts where he s trying to describe what it was really like how it wasn t all horror all the time or hell as everyone wants him to say but that it was boring everyday life a
Twisted Cousin Of Freedom cousin of freedom that he was living a fate imposed on him as though he had no fate hence the title and now that he was actually free he felt homesick for when he had no choices to make Note that this is about FATELESS the original translation published by Northwestern University Press not FATELESSNESS the newer translation published by Vintage I bought both and AB d them before choosing which one to read after the first paragraph it was clear that I preferred FATELESS I just tried *to read FATELESSNESS thinking I d read it again in a different translation but I couldn t make *read FATELESSNESS thinking I d read it again in a different translation but I couldn t make very far the new translation seems maybe too loyal to the original Hungarian too often it offers up awkward English phrases and switches tenses oddly The first translation may have regulated the text a bit and to me it reads better without a doubt Anyway this is the third Kert sz novel I ve read Detective Story a few years ago by the translator of FATELESSNESS and Kaddish for a Child Not Born recently by the Kertesz won the Nobel prize for literature for this book and it is really not surprising hence the five stars I would also advocate that the book be called Timeless as well for it is one of those books which has an aura of being beyond time It could have been written immediately after the end of World War II or it could have been written yesterday and there is little way of knowing at least through the text when this story was made its way onto paper because it is a single voice in the immense faceless march of European history where annonymity became the fate of so many individuals While not written as an autobiographical exercise Fateless is partly an examination of Kertesz s own experiences in both Auschwitz and Buchenwald The introductory chapters highlight how uickly and easily Gyuri accepted the plight of the local Jewish community and while it is not upbeat it is surprisingly sanguine and perhaps even optomistic in places Once Gyuri arrives at the The Need gates of Auschwitz Birkenau however it is easy to anticipate that the tone of the book will shift dramatically I did not expect much happiness from there on inThe brilliance of this book is its clarity and tone and the fact that it ascribes a voice and emotions to a series of events which are widely documented but little understood on the level of the individual The sheer scope of the atrocity freuently annhilates the notion of I and replaces it with them or allThe narrator Gyuri presents an astounding first hand account of his existance in the labour camps Gyuri rarely mentions his family or considers the likely fate of his fellow Jews beyond the walls of whichever labour camp he is interred in at the time This makes his experience all the profoundly personal showing how all his energies are focused on making sense of his own plight and ensuring that he stays alive The last chapter of the book also highlights in a startling way how those who were not subjected to time in the labour camps could neverrasp the full scope of the horror At a time when everything in their own world had carried on almost as before lightly dressed in a thin veneer of normality how could they believe that such death and suffering had found a common place just beyond the fringes of their community even in Auschwitz it seems it is possible to be bored assuming one is privileged IK was in concentration camp himself for a year at an age of around 15 and this novel is semi autobiographical Instead of usual double uotation marks the protagonist is using reported speech which seems to make the whole thing read like a confession than a novel Such things might seem as defects at first sight but as in case of The Bell Jar they just serve to show how difficult it is for a suffering soul to Nzinga give their experience a popular form May be novel as an art is still developing The author also discussed the difficulty faced in this transition in his Nobel prize accepting speech too Another thing worth noticing in the speech was that IK used the pronoun we while discussing what brought Holocausts He refused to think of it as something brought down on people by some outlandish demons that probably won t happen again And let us face it we are still very much the same people whoave power to Nazis we still love psychopaths we still vote according to whom we hate and we still need scapegoats and easily learn to hate first the things we wish to harm Somehow from his angry look and his deft sleight of hand I suddenly understood why his train of thought would make it impossible to abide Jews for otherwise he might have had the unpleasant feeling that he was cheating them What makes this book stand out is that it is not the big atrocities like ones showed in Schindler s Camp that are described in detail but rather the Whales (Blastoff! Readers) (Oceans Alive) general experience not only boredom but amid never ending hunger constantly stocking his consciousness injuries suicidal thoughts camps there were still happy moments I would like to live a little bit longer in this beautiful concentration camp Anothe. Imre Kertész ist etwas Skandalöseselungen die Entmystifizierung von Auschwitz Es ibt kein literarisches Werk das in dieser Konseue.
Imre Kertész ´ 7 DownloadA
re unlikely to be pleased by it in and of itself but when we read a text in the postmodern sense of texts including films and art etc concerning the Holocaust if it is well done we will be pleased by it Why Because it ives us insight into human experience even of the horrific kind or it helps us to understand our world in some small way or alternately it helps us to experience what is incomprehensible about our world or it offers a critiue or diagnosis of the systems in our culture which enable things like Holocausts which may inform our future actions or behavior And of course there are other possibilities of pleasures we might derive from unpleasant subjects some certainly less honorable It isn t without an acute awareness of how it sounds that I claim that Imre Kert sz s Fatelessness didn t please me It sounds terrible doesn t it As if I asked for the monkey to dance for me and it failed to dance But don t confuse these pleasures with the baser forms Fatelessness is unsuccessful because it has nothing much to say but it manages nevertheless to say it at reat length It s little than a neutered story of a boy spending time in concentration camps There s no insight there s no emotional weight there s no humanity besides which stylistically speaking the Wilkinson translation of Kert sz is a mess The sentences are long dissected by countless clauses phrases and parenthetical asides and often pointless They accumulate detail but not purpose Perhaps this is a commentary on life an existential rammar but if so how trite Our suffering is long and meaningless At only 260 pages this book feels long and meaningless itself An efficacious art This is when I found out that you could be bored even in Auschwitz provided you were choosy We waited and we waited and as I come to think of it we waited for nothing to happen This boredom combined with this strange waiting was I think approximately what Auschwitz meant to me but of course I am only speaking for myself As he said he s only speaking for himself Here I am speaking for myself as is the case for any and all fiction and even some of the non What I speak involves my understanding not my knowledge my One Teacher in 10
general aversion tonosticism Jailer
grown to unpronounceable proportions Such as it should be with regards to the S I read Fatelessness for the first time not long after Kert sz won the Nobel Prize and without knowing much about Hungarian history or Hungarian writers I will admit I was mystified by its tone which veered back and forth between a disarming intimacy where the reader is invited to share the naive perspective of the 15 year old narrator Gyorgy on his experiences in the lagers and the ironic detachment of the narrator s adult self It was layered than a work of witness testimony such as Primo Levi s first book If This Is a Man yet less literary than Elie Wiesel s NightThe book left a bitter taste in my mouth reminding me of how I felt after reading Tadeusz Borowski s This Way for the Gas Ladies and Gentlemen or some of the essays in Jean Am ry s unsettling collection At the Mind s Limits Behind Gyorgy s naivet is uite a bit of rage not unwarranted mind you but it s directed everywhere almost at randomHave you come from Germany son Yes From the concentration camps Naturally Which one Buchenwald Yes he had heard of it he knew it was one of the pits of the Nazi hell as he put it Where did they carry you off from From Budapest How long were you there A year in total You must have seen a lot young fellow a lot of terrible things he rejoined but I said nothing Still he continued the main thing is that it s over in the past and his face brightening heestured to the houses that we happened to be rumbling past and inuired what I was feeling now back home again and seeing the city that I had left Hatred I told himNow I know and it strikes me that Kert sz is in dialogue with all the writers I ve mentioned He s picking up Levi s statement about Auschwitz Here there is no why but Kert sz doesn t leave it there Gyorgy insists on trying to see things from the point of view of his persecutors He is too weak to work which understandably irritates the uards He must smell disgusting having diarrhea The lice must eat too how can he blame them for feasting on him Naturally he had been starved and beatenAt one point Gyorgy describes Buchenwald as if he were writing a tourist brochureBuchenwald lies on the crest of one of the elevations in a region of hills and dales Its air is clear the countryside varied with woods all around and the red tiled roofs of the village houses in the valleys down below delightful to the eye The bathhouse is situated off to the left The prisoners are mostly friendly though somehow in a different way than in Auschwitz Heavily ironic to be sure but the reader understands that the fifteen year old narrator wants desperately to believe that he has come to a better place and strange as it sounds he has a favorite moment dusk when he is at peace with his surroundingsI also see Kert sz in dialogue with Sartre who in Anti Semite and Jew that the Jew is wholly by others Although wore the yellow star and persecuted on account of his supposed race Gyorgy does not feel Jewish The devout Yiddish speaking Jews in the lager consider him a oy he thinks of himself as a Hungarian And yet he will not deny his Jewish heritage now that he has been punished for it Another statement by Levi comes to mind They the Nazis sewed the Star of David on me and not only onto my clothesBut the underlying dialogue in Fatelessness is with Communism The Stalinist regime under which Kert sz came of age with its torturers its secret prisons and work camps its network of informers and the pervasive atmosphere of fear resembled the world into which Kert sz himself was thrust at age fifteen It revived the tastes of Auschwitz he said in an interview in Haaretz allowing him to understand as an adult what he experienced as a childI m still pondering this book and will have to say about it when I review the film version Kert sz wrote the screenplay in my monthly column for 3 uarks Daily But I ve read so many wonderful reviews by my friends here lately that I wanted to offer something in return For me all works by a Nobel Prize in Literature winner should be ems Methinks that etting this prize is the highest honor that any writer on this earth can dream about So since I have turned into a voracious reader I have been sampling a work or so of the past Nobel laureates So far I ve read Sienkiewicz 1905 Hamsum 1920 Mann 1929 Hesse 1946 Faulkner 1949 Hemingway 1954 Jimenez 1956 Camus 1957 Checkhov 1958 Pasternak 1958 Neruda 1971 Bellow 1976 Caneti 1981 Maruez 1982 Golding 1983 Gordimer 1991 Morrison 1993 Saramago 1998 Grass 1999 Naipaul 2000 Coetzee 2003 Jelinek 2004 Lessing 2007 Llosa 2010 I did not know that I ve already read at least 23 books by Nobel laureates It sure made my life richer not in monetary amount but by the wisdom their books impart to their readers After all the Prize is now awarded both for lasting literary merit and for evidence of consistent idealism on some significant level In recent years this means a kind of idealism championing human rights on a broad scale Hence the award is now arguably political according to Wiki Thus unless Murakami and Coelho write something on politics they may not have a chance for a Nobel trophy soonHere comes my 24th Nobel author Imre Kertesz Boy he sure is political Fatelessness is about his experience in the concentration camps during Hitler s reign Holocaust He was a young boy at 17 when he was asked to o to Auschwitz He lied about his age unknowingly saving his own life Children less than 18 were killed as they were deemed unfit to work In this book he narrated in present tense and this made a lot of difference compared to the early Holocaust autobiographical books that I read Anne Frank and Victor Klemperer I had that feeling of being right there in the camp seeing what the boy Gyorgy Koves 15 was witnessing The other things that made this different were 1 that Kertesz described the experience in a detached way as if he was experiencing something ordinary Something that happens in everyday life Factual No ranting No philosophical musings No tearful revelations His trip to Auschwitz was just like a trip to his work place 2 having said that Kertesz even felt happiness while in the camps as he ended the book with Yes the next time I am asked I ought to speak about that the happiness of the concentration camps Although all works at one point in time suck we sometimes also et happiness from them rightNevertheless this is a chilling read Those harrowing descriptions of Auschwitz still sent chills to my bones and I caught my hand bracing onto my mouth as if preventing myself from shouting while reading 4 stars to you Mr KerteszLooking forward to reading the other books I have in my tbr by the other Nobel laureates Kipling 1907 Tagore 1913 Lewis 1930 Galsworthy 1932 Buck 1938 Gide 1947 Eliot 1948 Pound 1949 Satre 1964 Kawabata 1968 Beckett 1969 Boll 1972 White 1973 Singer 1978 Mafouz 1987 Paz 1990 Oe 1994 Pinter 2005 Pamuk 2006 and Le Clezio 2008 How well do you know the Nobel laureates I included two writers who literary critics think should not be there Can you tell me who they are Some people say they are deserving but they were caught in the political sentiments during the time that they were supposed to win Kertesz has written a semi autobiographical novel about a fourteen year old boy who Documentations of the Reds and Fellow Travelers in Hollywood and
gets mysteriously deported from Hungary to a Jewish concentration camp The protagonist George Koves spends a mere three days in Auschwitz which he recalled as rather pleasant before being forwarded to work camps at Buchenwald and Zeitz I am not sure George Koves ever recovered from his shock at beingrabbed and he spends all of his time trying to rationalize the senseless acts he saw around him while he was incarcerated I found the book became confusing in synchronization with George himself as he was Prince Valiant and the Golden Princess (Prince Valiant Book 5)
ground down by back breaking work and the hatred he faced continuously He becomes depressed and kind of crazy in the end Perhaps this book is better in Hungarian and could be better translated to English. Hritt für Schritt bis an jene Grenze hinab begleitet wo das nackte Leben zur hemmungslosenlücksüchtigen obszönen Angelegenheit wi. R thing and one that I like to see in protagonists is the kafkaesue efforts made by the fifteen year old protagonist to understand the world around him and to speculate how it come out to be such how they must have come up with all those ideas to make such a brilliant camp His position is further worsened and made absurd by his lack of significant desire to identify himself as a Jew He isn t very religious I yearned for sleep than prayers and doesn t know Hebrew this attracts disgust from some of his fellow prisoners who claim that he is no Jew At one point he retorts by calling one of them lousy Jew And yet it is because he is a Jew he is forced to suffer The whole novel is about his coming to terms with his fate In the very beginning he Arium
gives an impression as if he is an outsider like those Kafka characters who is suddenly made to accept a role he doesn t understand You too he said are now a part of the shared Jewish fate In the end he does come to terms with it and no it didn t mean to forget the whole thing as a bad incidence in his life a whole year we can never start a new life only ever carry on the old one Nor he would be pittied but still he is sure he will find happinness I already know there will be happiness For even there next to the chimneys in the intervals between the torments there was something that resembled happiness Everyone asks only about the hardships and the atrocities whereas for me perhaps it is that experience which will remain the most memorable Yes the next time I am asked I ought to speak about that the happiness of the concentration camps I m not often proud of my brother Much of the time and in most circumstances our personalities and values are very different However some time ago a friend of his tried toet him to watch one of those execution videos in which some poor sod Assigned a Mate (Interstellar Brides,
gets his head lopped off And he refused uite aggressively so he told me he wanted nothing to do with it It occurred to me then that one thing my brother and I do have in common is an aversion to violence and suffering Hold on you ll say doesn t everyone No I don t think they do Or certainly only an aversion to that which is directed at themselves I believe that many normally functioning people by which I mean people who are not dangerous criminals are drawn to violence and other people s suffering they seek them out at least at a safe distance I m sure there are complex reasons for why this is the case most of which are in my opinion based around power and sex I can imagine many of you shaking your head as you read this I accept that this is not a popular view yet to me it is undeniable one only needs to look at the popularity of certain kinds of TV programmes or films or books Take the recent torture porn craze films that amount to nothing than 90 mins of people being butchered And why do people tune into the news the horrific the bigger the tragedy Who likewise is watching all those murder documentaries Murderers Maniacs I don t think so Who is reading all those brutal crime novels The evidence is overwhelming despite how uncomfortable the reality of it makes people feel We human beings haven t changed since large crowdsathered to watch public hangings we just Wolf Packed Pussy
get our kicks in subtle ways these daysI think that this attraction to violence and suffering accounts for why many people appear to find Imre Kertesz s Fateless or Fatelessness in another translation boring or disappointing Very few people will admit it of course but in a number of the reviews I have read there is a very real sense of expectations not having been met without anyone actually trulyiving voice to what these expectations were I can tell you these people expected El Renacimiento Europeo
grand horror Fateless is a book about the holocaust it is a partially autobiographical account of a young man s experiences in some of the worst concentration camps These disappointed readers wanted perhaps sub consciously to read about the boy s suffering they wanted him to be severely psychologically and physically oppressed Yet the book lacks these things in large part and therefore it is I believe for a certain kind of reader a huge let downFor me however Fateless is one of the most extraordinary books I have ever read Indeed one of the things I like about it is how novel it is how in essence it does not conform to expectations The horror is there of course because the holocaust was absolutely undeniably horrific so to side step it completely is impossible but it is nearly always in the background is not lingered over The book is a first person narrative and the boy s voice is detached relentlessly ironic and this creates a weird form of tension because you know precisely what kind of awful things are happening around him and to him but he seems at least for the first two thirds of the book unable to see them himself The boy isn t stupid nor particularly na ve he just appears to take everything in his stride to see the common sense in the rationale behind everything For example one of the most powerful poignant and moving scenes takes place as Gyorgy and his friends arrive at Auschwitz and are seen by a doctor who divides the inmates into tworoups on the basis of who is fit for work and who isn t The reader knows what this process is really about of course we know what the outcome will be for those unable to work but Gyorgy who at this stage does not mentally joins in the selection process justifying to himself or uestioning the doctor s decisions to pass or condemn his fellow man Even when confronted by officers with whips he feels little than discomforted or wary and when he finally comes to understand what the crematoriums are for he takes this in his stride tooKertesz apparently once said that it was important to him that
tooKertesz apparently once said that it was important *TO HIM THAT DID NOT PRESENT *
him that did not present holocaust as something in retrospect as something that has *Already Happened And Is Being Commented On *happened and is being commented on rather as something happening as something being revealed bit by bit to the people involved by which I mean the victims However while I think that is both an interesting approach and one the author makes The Safar Nameh , سفرنامه
good use of I don t believe that it explains why this book is special It suggests that Gyorgy would behave as expected ie wringing his hands beating his chest and wailing at the stars once he understands what is happening but he doesn t It is the boy s voice his take on events that makes Fateless something of a masterpiece for me Until I read the book I thought it impossible that anyone could bring a freshness to a subject I already knew areat deal about but Kertesz does exactly that Fateless is it is worth pointing out also strangely funny I have seen it compared to Candide by Voltaire in which a character attempts to keep a sunny positive outlook in the face of every kind of disaster and while I can see some of that in Kertesz s novel the humour is less slap stick is darker subtle and sophisticated indeed in tone it reminded me of Gulliver s Travels or Kafka it is similarly deadpan so that one isn t sure at certain moments whether one is meant to laugh or not For example when Gyorgy is moved to Buchenwald he sets off on a long description of the place which sounds eerily like a holiday brochure or the script used by an estate agent who is showing you around a property you may wish to purchase a property that isn t of the highest calibre of course It would be possible to read this description and be slightly bewildered because it is absurd yet there is no doubt in my mind that the author is playing for laughs albeit bitter laughs There are however obviously comedic moments although these too are shot through with bitterness and a kind of searing irony like when Gyorgy s father is taken away All the same I thought at least we were able to send him off to the labor camp poor man with memories of a nice day Or when the boy describes one of the concentration camps as XXX Stories (Tight Club) (Tight Club): 40 Naughty Stories (Volume 1)
golden days indeed or when he states perhaps most movingly of all I would like to live a little bit longer in this beautiful concentration camp In terms of style the novel is written in Kertesz s recognisably overly precise manner He is a fan of clauses that s for sure some of which do not make areat deal of sense to me although you could put this down to a translation issue The narrator is also as with the author s other work pedantic and partly because of this the sentences are inelegant ugly even Further Kertesz much like Dostovesky uses repeated words or phrases such as so to say and somehow which can make reading him laborious However lyrical is certainly not what the writer was Progressive Winemaking
gunning for here so none of this is intended critically One thing I would like to say before I finish is in response to the review by the usually excellent The Complete Review which called Fateless something like the autobiography before the art the art being Kertesz s later novels I don t agree with that at all In fact i think the opposite Kertesz s other novels including Fiasco and Kaddish for an Unborn Child despite many ualities to recommend them are the imitation after the art Fiasco is one part Beckett one part Kafka and one part Bernhard Kaddish is Beckett and Bernhard Fateless on the other hand is all Kertesz it is a singular vision Nobel prize winner Imre Kert sz survived stays in both the Auschwitz and Buchenwald concentration camps While he was there I have no doubt that he suffered areat deal both physically and psychologically so I was understandably I think hesitant to dislike his semi autobiographical Holocaust novel Fatelessness It seems at the very least very inconsiderate of me to criticize his book for failing to entertain me Entertainment is a strange nebulous word Are we entertained in whatever sense when we watch The Sorrow and the Pity How about when we read Elie Wiesel s Night I would argue that yes we are Admittedly this is an entertainment only dimly related to that alleged enjoyment afforded by a rerun of The King of ueens but it is a diversion that intends to please its audience Now don t only think of pleasing as Lactate for Brother...
giving an audience what it asks for but also think of it asiving an audience what it didn t even know it wanted to begin withWhen we think about the Holocaust unless we are aberrant or sadistic we. Nz ohne zu deuten ohne zu werten der Perspektive eines staunenden Kindes treu eblieben ist Wohl nie zuvor hat ein Autor seine Figur Sc. .