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Kaputt by Curzio Malaparte
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Kaputt (1944)

by Curzio Malaparte

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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7311820,084 (4.21)43
Curzio Malaparte was a disaffected supporter of Mussolini with a taste for danger and high living. Sent by an Italian paper during World War II to cover the fighting on the Eastern Front, Malaparte secretly wrote this terrifying report from the abyss, which became an international bestseller when it was published after the war. Telling of the siege of Leningrad, of glittering dinner parties with Nazi leaders, and of trains disgorging bodies in war-devastated Romania, Malaparte paints a picture of humanity at its most depraved. Kaputt is an insider's dispatch from the world of the enemy that is as hypnotically fascinating as it is disturbing.… (more)
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» See also 43 mentions

English (9)  Dutch (2)  Italian (2)  French (1)  Spanish (1)  Hebrew (1)  Norwegian (1)  German (1)  All languages (18)
Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
Somewhere in the meaty middle of Jacques Rivette's superb film Va Savoir two characters discuss the proper pronunciation of Curzio Malaparte's name. Apparently one character wasn't sufficiently stressing the Italianate swagger of such.

My wife bought me this book per my request. Kaputt is WWII war journalism from various fronts filtered through Malaparte's artistic eye. I found it startling. Herr Vollmann never formerly acknowledged a debt to this work, but it may have slipped his mind. The scenes from The Winter War provide images on par with Goya. The interview with the Ustaše may lean towards propaganda. Certainly the historical record condemns the NDH without these flourishes.

I give this my highest recommendation.
( )
  jonfaith | Feb 22, 2019 |
Fantastisch boek. Al op de eerste pagina's ervoer ik Malapartes soevereine, autonome stijl en benadering, en die ervaring is de hele tijd intact gebleven. Het boek is zo mooi geschreven dat ik bij momenten Malaparte het verwijt wou maken dat hij de oorlog esthetiseert, wat hij absoluut niet doet. De vraag of alle verhalen, bijvoorbeeld het hallucinante paardenverhaal, waargebeurd zijn is irrelevant, dit is een onnavolgbare evocatie van Europa (min of meer met uitzondering van West-Europa) tijdens de Tweede Wereldoorlog. ( )
  Frans_J_Vermeiren | Jan 11, 2019 |
Dan Hofstadter is a well-reviewed memoirist on Naples, which presumably explains why he was chosen to add the Afterword to the NYRB-Classics edition. But he is no Malaparte fan. It was disconcerting to finish a book I quite enjoyed and then read his largely negative comments. Yes, Malaparte's politics are suspect, he is a compulsive name-dropper, his blend of Proustian social observation and accounts of atrocities on the Eastern front is in questionable taste. But we are here to judge the book, not the author, and I found Kaputt a compelling read, full of unforgetable visual descriptions. I was not too certain about the quality of the translation. I thought it was normal to translate into one's first language. Early on, there is a reference to Shakespeare's Cleopatra as "the snake of the old Nile." No, just no.
1 vote booksaplenty1949 | Sep 21, 2017 |
Okumaya başlarken istekliydim ama doğrusu ön söz beni biraz yordu ve bundan dolayı sıkıntılı bir başlangıç yaptım. Ancak daha ilk sayfalarda kritik bir sorunun cevabını, kısmen de olsa, bulabileceğim bir metinle karşı karşıya olduğumu hissettim. Kafaları çok uzun zamandır kurcalayan, cevabı hep bulundu sanılıp bir süre sonra yok bu değilmiş denilen bir soru. Sadece Türk’lerin değil, Ruslar’ın, Araplar’ın, muhakkak Kürtler’in ve hatta bir çok Doğu Avrupa’lının zihnini zorlayan bir soru. Avrupa ne demektir?
Kaputt bence, kendi anlattığı hikayenin dışında ve üstünde, Avrupa’yı anlatan daha doğrusu Avrupa imgesini kavramayı sağlayan, en azından bir kenarından hissettirebilen bir kitap. Aydınlanmanın, “Renaissance” ın olduğu kadar bunlar karşısında yükselen o güçlü tepkinin de Avrupa’nın ta kendisi olduğunu bence çok ama çok güzel anlatıyor. Bu bağlamda sürekli olarak Nietzsche’den alıntı yapan sevgili dostlarıma Kaputt’u özellikle tavsiye ederim. Öte yandan çok tartıştığımız ve hatta artık bir anlamı kalmadığının çok iddialı bir şekilde söylendiğini duyduğumuz Avrupa Birliği’nin neyi ifade ettiğini sorgulayanlarada Kaputt’u tavsiye ederim. Son olarak anti semitizme gösterilen tepkileri kavramakta zorluk çekenlere, bu konuda ki hassasiyeti siyasi olarak batıcılık olarak tanımlayanlara da Kaputt’u iki kere okumlarını tavsiye derim.
( )
  Deep0blue | Apr 2, 2016 |
Reads like a journalistic Gravity's Rainbow. Dark and mad Italian war correspondence, compelling at times because (not despite) the moral repugnance of its author.

Although the opening chapter 'De cote de guarmantes' has too adjectives, and the penultimate 'Golf Handicaps' too much name-dropping, each chapter in between is full of images harrowing and beautiful enough to stick in the mind forever. ( )
1 vote sometimeunderwater | Sep 8, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (16 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Curzio Malaparteprimary authorall editionscalculated
Cate, J.P. TenTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Foligno, CesareTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Haar, Jan van dersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hofstadter, DanIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Epigraph
KAPUTT (vom hebräischen Kappâroth,
Opfer, oder französisch Capot, matsch)
zugrunde gerichtet, entzwei.

Meyer, Conversationlexicon, 1860
Dedication
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Prince Eugene of Sweden stopped in the middle of the room.
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"Kaputt é um livro triste, espantoso, aterrador e lírico. Ele nos mostra os resultados do fanatismo ideológico, do racismo, dos valores distorcidos mascarados como pureza espiritual e do ódio à vida, em seus aspectos mais viscerais e vergonhosos. É um livro essencial para a compreensão da Segunda Guerra Mundial." - Margaret Atwood Misto de reportagem e ficção, Kaputt foi escrito secretamente quando Curzio Malaparte cobria a Segunda Guerra Mundial como enviado do jornal Corriere della Sera e s e tornou um best-seller ao ser publicado. Relatando jantares e conversas do lado do inimigo, Malaparte apresenta um retrato devastador da humanidade.
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