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The Georgics by Claude Simon
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The Georgics (1981)

by Claude Simon

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One of the main points of this novel (considered one of the most important of Simon's work) by the Nobel prize winning French author is to deconstruct George Orwell's 'Homage to Catalonia'--a memoir type of work dealing with Orwell's participation in the Spanish Civil War for the Trotskyist inspired POUM. Simon was also a participant and fought with the Communists--a participation of which he seems to have repudiated not much later on. Reading Simon calls for some concentration--his tendency to write his sentences and paragraphs as long, labyrinthal constructs can be daunting forcing the inattentive reader to either go back a ways to try to pick up the thread again or to forget about it and just try to forge ahead. In this sense the part of the book about Orwell's book is one of the easier of Simon's sections to read at least if you've read Orwell's book as Simon's critique while maybe not the nicest thing one writer has ever done to another--he does at least reframe it and put it in a realistic perspective for the time and the event it describes. So it is fair at least to me. Beyond that Simon seems to dig back into his own family's history (a constant theme of his work) going back to Napoleonic times and reaching ahead of the Orwell book into the first days of the Second World War. Comparisons are often made to Faulkner--one difference being that Faulkner maps out a plot line much more coherently than Simon. Humor is also a device that Faulkner has an advantage at though Simon can be very subtly sarcastic. Having said all that I like this book better than most of Faulkner's works that I've read. Probably just a matter of personal taste--one thing I can say about Simon is he always looks at things objectively and despite those long labyrinthal sentences his manner is surprisingly blunt. ( )
1 vote lriley | Sep 4, 2006 |
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» Add other authors (10 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Simon, Claudeprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Mannerkorpi, JukkaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Die Szene ist folgende: In einem weiträumigen Zimmer sitzt eine Person vor einem Schreibtisch, ein Bein halb unter dem Sitz eingeschlagen, die Ferse angehoben, den rechten Fuss vorgestreckt und flach, so dass das Schienbein mit dem waagrechten Schenkel einen Winkel von etwa fünfundvierzig Grad bildet, beide Arme auf die Schreibtischkante gestützt, in den Händen ein Blatt Papier (einen Brief?) haltend, worauf die Augen gerichtet sind.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0714538973, Paperback)

novel, tr Beryl & Jo

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:04:45 -0400)

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