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Preview — Les amantes by Elfriede Jelinek. Les amantes by Elfriede Jelinek ,. Martin Chalmers Translator. Le plus simple : le mariage. Get A Copy. Paperback , pages. Published July 1st by Seuil first published More Details Original Title. Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Les amantes , please sign up. Lists with This Book.
Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Start your review of Les amantes. I had promised myself never to touch a Jelinek again after suffering through three of her novels for a Nobel Laureate reading project.
And then I signed up for a class, and she was part of the repertoire, and I reluctantly ordered the copy, knowing I was in for some pain and brutality.
For a Jelinek novel, this one actually contains less sadism than expected, but the everyday humiliation of women is almost more painful to follow, as it is more common and recognisable than her more outlandish sto I had promised myself never to touch a Jelinek again after suffering through three of her novels for a Nobel Laureate reading project. For a Jelinek novel, this one actually contains less sadism than expected, but the everyday humiliation of women is almost more painful to follow, as it is more common and recognisable than her more outlandish storylines.
As long as there are still women in the world who identify mainly as accessories of men, as objects to be treated and mistreated at the whim of almost gorilla-like males, as carriers of offspring conceived without pleasure and brought up to perpetuate the pattern of submission and dominance, Jelinek can't be discarded as unimportant.
Her writing style is sharp, acid, brutal, and honest in a hateful way. She is not showing off and glorifying the sexual predators and their victims in the monotonous and boring manner of Bret Easton Ellis, but pointing to the lopsided reality within our society, - thus making a political statement with her literary pain and meaninglessness. She has her place in world literature.
I am not going to dispute that. But I hope I won't need to read more of her ever again, for whatever reason, for she makes my stomach turn. View all 13 comments. May 17, Stephen Durrant rated it really liked it. Can a book get more unrelentingly negative than this? Well, yes, maybe something by Thomas Bernhard, Elfriede Jelinek's fellow Austrian sorry about the word "fellow" Elfriede.
Gosh, on page , Jelinek herself says, in jest of course, "One must not describe only negative and ugly things. Jelinek, at least in this tome. In fact, when these characteristics become so extreme they become almost funny--and in some ways this is a very funny book.
Okay, so why fou Can a book get more unrelentingly negative than this? Okay, so why four stars? Well, in my opinion, this most controversial of all modern Nobel prize winners has a powerful and unforgettable style. For example, there is not a capital letter in the book, which is, I think, Jelinek's way of saying that the world she describes is so petty and stupid that it should not be honored with caps! Moreover, and with apologies to all members of my pitiful gender, Jelinek has much to say about men, women, and such delightful institutions as marriage that is, dare I say it, all too true.
In fact, I recommend this book to all women raised in my own gender-conservative tradition, if only as a useful antidote to the romanticism that enslaves and destroys so many of them half of them, to be sure, enslaved and destroyed with a smile on their face and great joy in their heart.
So, my conclusion is that there is real genius here. View 2 comments. She avoids capitalisation entirely including proper nouns. Each sentence is given a paragraph break, regardless of length.
Sentences are, for the most part, short. Complementing compounding? Class and gender are effectively explored and critiqued through the narrative.
Nov 03, M. Though compared to Thomas Bernhard I must insist that Elfriede Jelinek is nowhere close to the stature and level of his writing. She is very good and cynical, true, and she writes honestly, but at least in Women as Lovers she has not reached his level of the sentence and rhetoric given within her own misanthropy. I am not sure she has any reverence at all for a human, being they male or female. Her picture of life as an Austrian bodes ill for any it seems. But I will continue to read her work an Though compared to Thomas Bernhard I must insist that Elfriede Jelinek is nowhere close to the stature and level of his writing.
But I will continue to read her work and see if my opinion might alter. I found her work to be engaging and oftentimes quite funny. She has great one-liners but there is something missing in her prose and I am not sure at this time what exactly that is. Perhaps after more time has elapsed I will get a better handle on this artist, but for now, I will leave it that she is simply only better than most.
View all 3 comments. I learned about Elfriede Jelinek because of the film adaptation of her novel The Piano Teacher and because Xiu Xiu used the title of this book "Women As Lovers" as the title of their most recent album and drew a fair number of quotes from it for lyrics as well. The first thing that most people will tell you about Jelinek is that she's a controversial author, and for once, it's not because of bad behavior or personal quirks not primarily, anyway, though she does suffer from agoraphobia and w I learned about Elfriede Jelinek because of the film adaptation of her novel The Piano Teacher and because Xiu Xiu used the title of this book "Women As Lovers" as the title of their most recent album and drew a fair number of quotes from it for lyrics as well.
The first thing that most people will tell you about Jelinek is that she's a controversial author, and for once, it's not because of bad behavior or personal quirks not primarily, anyway, though she does suffer from agoraphobia and was a prominent member of the Austrian Communist Party until but because of her prose and the themes that she chooses to feature in her writing.
Jelinek is well known as a feminist and a socialist and makes these commitments an integral part of her fiction. Not only does she explore the way that class and patriarchy affect social relations and individual's psyches in her narratives, but she embraces a radical prose style that seems to be calibrated to incisively cut through platitudes and social mores to expose the raw domination that underlies social identity.
I imagine this is where many readers run into problems Jelinek received a Nobel Prize for literature, but not without major fallout in the literary establishment. She frequently uses repetition and a starkly sardonic tone.
Her MO all but rules out sustained instances of expressive or descriptive language; her style reads as very episodic. And of course there are the myriad episodes of violence, particularly of a sexual nature.
But if it sounds like I'm not very enthusiastic about Jelinek's writing, then I'm giving off the wrong impression. I wouldn't necessarily call it fun to read, but I have found her novels to be very rewarding, particularly Women As Lovers. The name of the novel calls to mind D. Lawrence, and a lot about this story reminds me of a turn-of-the-century British novel in its exploration of social and sexual themes.
The opening sentences describe a factory in an Austrian village in terms that pare its existence down to the relation between it and the people that labor in it. There are two main protagonists, both women. One, Brigitte, moves ruthlessly through life, with no concern for her own dignity and holding no illusions about love, interested only in financial security. She sees her own sexuality only as a means of achieving this and pursues a socially mobile, boorish middle-class lout.
The other woman, Paula has no sense for securing her material well being, and falls in love with a man with few prospects and little regard for her. The story proceeds much as you can guess it will, without much suspense, but the narrator's commentary keeps you involved in the unfolding events.
In telling this kind of story, it seems like there is a fine line between, on the one hand, being reductive and confirming that reality conforms to the broad demands of theory, or on the other hand, telling one of those dramatic tales that seems to touch reality at no point, and ultimately seems to have little relevance to life as we live it. I would encourage interested readers to give this novel a try because Jelinek has a really unique style and a definite gift for unusual and provocative descriptions.
In fact, pretty much everything about her writing is provocative, and ultimately rewarding. I was also impressed to learn that Jelinek has written a German translation of Gravity's Rainbow , which is no small feat, and the libretto for an opera based on Lynch's Lost Highway. Aug 07, Allison Floyd rated it really liked it Recommends it for: Other foul-natured little beasts. Shelves: drink-the-bleach-drink-the-bleach. Reading Jelinek is intoxicatingly corrosive, like drinking the bleach and discovering that it tastes like your favorite microbrew.
Elfriede Jelinek's "Die Liebhaberinnen" on the (re)-production line
Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book.
I carry on with my second german lit month book and another big hitter of German lit. When Elfriede jelinek won the Nobel prize her writing was described as difficult and hard. The example of Paula is from the country. Until now country life has held her in check — just like her sisters erika and renate, who are married.
Women as Lovers
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