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It s hard to rate a book with a style that you can t quite put a finger on At times, it made me feel claustrophobic, anxious or otherwise panicked I felt like I couldn t take my eyes off of the page because if I looked one way or the other, I d be back in my own world I felt locked in sedated, yet alert At other times, I needed a break A few day s break It was exhausting.It s rare that I have been so back and forth on a book and finished it, especially with it being short stories or whate It s hard to rate a book with a style that you can t quite put a finger on At times, it made me feel claustrophobic, anxious or otherwise panicked I felt like I couldn t take my eyes off of the page because if I looked one way or the other, I d be back in my own world I felt locked in sedated, yet alert At other times, I needed a break A few day s break It was exhausting.It s rare that I have been so back and forth on a book and finished it, especially with it being short stories or whatever the hell that was Yet, I must also say that this was the first book in memory that I contemplated re reading from the beginning as soon as I finished it I haven t felt this way while reading a book before.The melancholy and death wish of most of the characters can be overwhelming at times, especially emotionally It may make you feel a mixture of feelings, as listed above.I don t think this was a good starting point for Krasznahorkai s literature, but I will readI must read.If a work of fiction doesn t make you feel anything, then you re wasting your time (((FREE PDF))) ↝ Die Welt voran ↠ A Hungarian interpreter obsessed with waterfalls, at the edge of the abyss in his own mind, wanders the chaotic streets of Shanghai A traveller, reeling from the sights and sounds of Varanasi, encounters a giant of a man on the banks of the Ganges ranting on the nature of a single drop of water A child labourer in a Portuguese marble quarry wanders off from work one day into a surreal realm utterly alien from his daily toilsIn The World Goes On, a narrator first speaks directly, tells twenty one unforgettable stories, then bids farewell for here I would leave this earth and these stars, because I would take nothing with me As L szl Krasznahorkai himself explains Each text is about drawing our attention away from this world, speeding our body toward annihilation, and immersing ourselves in a current of thought or a narrativeThe World Goes On is another masterpiece by the winner of theMan Booker International Prize The excitement of his writing, Adam Thirlwell proclaimed in the New York Review of Books, is that he has come up with his own original forms there is nothing else like it in contemporary literature On the Man Booker International Shortlist Krasznahorkai is one of the world s finest writers, but this is neither his best work War on War followed by Seiobo and Satantango nor the easiest introduction Herman and the Last Wolf Don t start here, as one for Krasznahorkai completists only, but then everyone should be a Krasznahorkai completist It didn t matter if it was fifteen miles from Los Angeles, eighteen miles from Kyoto, or twenty miles to the north of Budapest, it simply sat there, lo On the Man Booker International Shortlist Krasznahorkai is one of the world s finest writers, but this is neither his best work War on War followed by Seiobo and Satantango nor the easiest introduction Herman and the Last Wolf Don t start here, as one for Krasznahorkai completists only, but then everyone should be a Krasznahorkai completist It didn t matter if it was fifteen miles from Los Angeles, eighteen miles from Kyoto, or twenty miles to the north of Budapest, it simply sat there, looking sad, watching over its companion, waiting for someone to come along to whom it might explain what had really happened or just sitting and waiting for the other to get up at last and make some movement so that the pair of them might vanish from this incomprehensible place The World Goes On is the translation by a combination of John Batki, Ottilie Mulzet and George Szirtes of L szl Krasznahorkai s Megy a vil g.This collection of pieces was published in this form in 2013 in the original Hungarian, although some of them were published separately earlier, notably A Th seus ltal nos Universal Thesis , the longest piece, a 70 page novella, published in 1993.This was perhaps the highlight of the collection, a series of three lectures given by an invited guest to a rather mysterious audience, which opens I do not know who you are, gentleman.I couldn t quite make out the name of your organisation.And frankly, I must confess I am not entirely clear about what kind of lecture you expect me to give here You are not saying anything.Fine it s all the same to me.Mr President, gentlemen I shall speak about melancholy.And I will begin by going way back.He then relates a tale of a large ghostly tractor trailer that arrived in a small Hungarian town in the 1960s, deep in the deepest hellhole of that decade Krasznahorkai fans will immediately know, before he tells us, what the trailer contains the body of a huge whale as this is of course a re telling of the events of The Melancholy of Resistance Although in the lecturer, the speaker scorns the book that claims to explain the events that followed I myself can now announce that to claim there is a book that knows, that promises to reveal and narrate to us and only us all that breaks loose in the wake of one of these gigantic whales, is either an insidious effrontery or the vilest drivel, in a word, lies, of course, for nobody knows what really is unleashed at these times, no one, and no book knows that, because that certain something lies completely covered up by the whale.Mr Chief Constable, esteemed gentlemen As the series of lectures proceeds, he gains no better knowledge of his listeners, but increasingly realises that he is not so much invited as trapped the 2nd lecture is given, to his distress, with the lecture theatre locked, and between the 2nd and 3rd he is not allowed to return home but held, admittedly in comfort, in a basement.This story is one of a number of echoes of his other works The short piece At the Latest on Turin, written in the early 90s, was to be essentially reproduced later in the script of the 2011 film A torin i l The Turin Horse , made with his long term collaborator B la Tarr The Bill For Palma Vecchio, at Venice has already been published in English as a Sylph Editions monograph, together with reproductions of the paintings of Palma Vecchio and then there is the short piece Not on the Heraclitean Path, which I reproduce below in full given it has been widely quoted in full in press reviews Memory is the art of forgetting.It doesn t deal with reality, reality is not what engages it, it has no substantial relation whatsoever to that inexpressible, infinite complexity that is reality itself, in the same way and to the same extent that we ourselves are unable to reach the point where we can catch even a glimpse of this indescribable, infinite complexity for reality and glimpsing it are one and the same so the rememberer covers the same distance to the past about to be evoked as that covered when this past had been present, thereby revealing that there had never been a connection to reality, and this connection had never been desired, since regardless of the horror or beauty that the memory evokes, the rememberer always works starting from the essence of the image about to be evoked, an essence that has no reality, and not even starting from a mistake, for he fails to recall reality not by making a mistake, but because he handles what is complex in the loosest and most arbitrary manner, by infinitely simplifying the infinitely complex to arrive at something relative to which he has a certain distance, and this is how memory is sweet, this is how memory is dazzling, and this is how memory comes to be heartrending and enchanting, for here you stand, in the midst of an in nite and inconceivable complexity, you stand here utterly dumbfounded, helpless, clueless, and lost, holding the infinite simplicity of the memory in your hand plus of course the devastating tenderness of melancholy, for you sense, as you hold this memory, that its reality lies somewhere in the heartless, sober, ice cold distance.The link here is in the title and to the stunning piece Kamo Hunter , describing a snow white heron by the Kamo River in Kyoto, which opens Seiobo There Below Everything around it moves, as if just this one time and one time only, as if the message of Heraclitus has arrived here through some deep current, from the distance of an entire universe, in spite of all the senseless obstacles, because the water moves, it flows, it arrives, and cascadesThe World Goes On is a mixture of philosophical pieces like this and short stories.One theme common to a number is people trapped by noise and chaos and needing to escape a worker in a marble mine, a traveller in Varanasi on the bank of the Ganges..the hubbub of the street resumes its rule over the city, and this hubbub flares up again like a flame, and indeed it is just like a malignant conflagration that nothing can put out, nothing can abate, alongside speeding vehicles, street philisophers, handbill distributors, and humming thickets of cables crisscrossing the air, the great stars of Bollywood pop music are blaring from radios, TVs, even from loudspeakers rigged on tuktuk cars, they blare I burn on the pyre of eternal love for you , and in this wildfire of noises he comes to the decision he must leave, because he is in mortal danger hereand a man in Shanghai who makes the mistake of trying to walk off a hangover in a city not suited to pedestrians, and finds himself trapped in the middle of Shanghai s ratherspectacular version of Spaghetti Junction, the Nine Dragon Crossing In other stories the oppression comes from tedium an artist visiting an old friend in Kiev, expecting to visit various cultural sights only to find himself trapped in a car with a friend of his friend with an interminable story about the goings on in the internal audit department of the bank at which he works, or the traveller in Varanasi who, when he almost reaches the banks of the river, is accosted by a prophet like figure who hails him with the enticing sounding promise that he will explain how each drop of water from the Ganges contains a temple, but then launches into a lecture on the molecular properties of H2O and the science of surface tension.The collection ends with an eloquent tribute to the wonderful things of this word, but a promise to leave them behind, a view of the future which could be taken as highly optimistic, or highly pessimistic I would leave everything here the valleys, the hills, the paths, and the jaybirds from the gardens, I would leave here the peacocks and the priests, heaven and earth, spring and fall I would leave here incantation, enigma, distances, the intoxication of the inexhaustible eternities for here I would leave this earth and these stars, because I would take nothing with me, because I ve looked into what s coming and I don t need anything from here.Overall, not Kraszhanorkai s strongest although pulled together in the form of a coherent WORK some of the pieces weren t originally written for that purpose, and at times it shows And I would recommend to the beginner to his work instead starting with the novels e.g War War or Satantango and for hisrecent essayistic works Seiobo There Below But even below par Kraszhanorkai is world class and he is a vital author to read, particularly in these times.Reviews which better express aspects of this book than I can Thanks to Birne for pointing me to this one in Music Literature which once dedicated a whole edition to the author Music Literature Issue 2 which explains beautifully how this work fits in with Krasznahorkai s wider literary project Krasznahorkai can do no wrong for me, and my rating might well be meaningless as I m completely biased I love what he s doing, and urge everyone who hasn t to read him immediately I m not sure how to describe his style part Bernhard, part Broch, part Young but I m addicted to it. A sort of lite Beckett with international settingsIn his lecture on Joyce s Ulysses, Nabhokov pointed out that the famous last chapter of the novel comprising of 8 ridiculously large sentences would have read just as beautifully if Joyce s editor had decided to introduce punctuation marks But Joyce was followed by Faulkner who holds the world record of largest single sentence in his Absolam Absolam , Beckett a 100 page long paragraph and LK there is no way I am going to spell that big n A sort of lite Beckett with international settingsIn his lecture on Joyce s Ulysses, Nabhokov pointed out that the famous last chapter of the novel comprising of 8 ridiculously large sentences would have read just as beautifully if Joyce s editor had decided to introduce punctuation marks But Joyce was followed by Faulkner who holds the world record of largest single sentence in his Absolam Absolam , Beckett a 100 page long paragraph and LK there is no way I am going to spell that big name seems to be on same train And, IMO, they all would have been as awesome if they used punctuation marks LK s writings become readable when you observe that he uses comas where full stops and sometimes semi colans instead of paragraph breaks It might be a question of personal aesthetic but, to me personally, it is just annoyance LK also has Beckett s habit of artibitary using nouns instead of pronouns like they or these this prolonging a sentence which seems to be favourite thing among modernists Or Post modernists, I mean what is difference This isof a collection of writeups instead of a novel and the word is writeups because they aren t exactly stories or most of them Writeups set in different locations Bulgaria, India, China, Bulgaria etc A few of those write ups worked for me but the ones that did work warranted the 4 star rating There are couple of tricks other than those with punctuation marks LK does with style especially the second last chapter one which is basically full of footnotes to a book which hasb280 blank pages But once again, style doesn t enhance the beauty of content What s Wrong with KrasznahorkaiI seem to be one of a very few people who do not value Krasznahorkai s fiction His work is a lesson in how treacherous it is to keep Kafka too much in mind while you re writing He often substitutes atmosphere for both ideas and structure, and he apparently feels that lugubrious, dark, intolerable, cold, sad, bleak, and deadly landscapes he conjures are both naturally and sufficiently expressive of his often vague but persistent ideas about melancholy and memory What s Wrong with KrasznahorkaiI seem to be one of a very few people who do not value Krasznahorkai s fiction His work is a lesson in how treacherous it is to keep Kafka too much in mind while you re writing He often substitutes atmosphere for both ideas and structure, and he apparently feels that lugubrious, dark, intolerable, cold, sad, bleak, and deadly landscapes he conjures are both naturally and sufficiently expressive of his often vague but persistent ideas about melancholy and memory, which are themselves derivative of prewar European fiction Here I complain briefly about a half dozen stories in the collection, and then, under number 2 , quote one of the essays in its entirety and complain about it at length.1.The first piece, Wandering Standing, is a pastiche of one of Kafka s parables or Beckett s scenes, with too many ideas, each one a cliche The man torn in two directions, holding a heavy suitcase in each hand The second, On Velocity, is about a man who tries to walk faster than the Earth spins, in order to escape from thought itself, because the Earth is thought First he walks West, which is wrong, because he s just subtracting a little from Earth s rotation then East, which works and finally he walks, because he realizes it doesn t matter if he runs or not The problem is that these three decisions are very simple I was ahead of him on each one, reading fast to see how long it would take Krasznahorkai s narrator to get to the inevitable conclusion It s not good to have the reader s thoughts ahead of the narrator s when the theme of the piece is moving thought faster than the Earth Note this is not an intended irony The third, He Wants to Forget, toys weakly with existentialism weakly because it glances off ideas better developed in existentialist literature.The fourth, How Lovely, is feeble minded, in the sense that he doesn t think through his own premise, which is a conference on the idea of area, which is in turn predicated on the non existence and yet pervasive necessity of area space This could be developed I think of Cesar Aira here, who could have made it into another literary conference , but here it isn t.Fifth At the Latest, in Turin this is a simple answer to Thomas Mann s reading of the story of Nietzsche s collapse that the philosopher of the amoral succumbed to moral feeling It s nearly a three page philosophy essay, but it s bogged down by irrelevant literary metaphors by now we are gliding among the buoys that mark the harbor etcSeventh is Universal Theseus, which is cast as a lecture series The first one recapitulates the story of the arrival of a sinister caravan, told in The Melancholy of Resistance The moral here is necessarily simpler than in that book Krasznahorkai actually draws a conclusion melancholy is the most enigmatic of attractions and proposes three sources of melancholy pp 39 40 , which are not problematic in the context of a ten page essay This ruins part of The Melancholy of Resistance in retrospect, because it reveals a simple idea underneath the long novel.2.Reviewers have singled out a one page essay called Not on the Heraclitean Path for special praise It is just two sentences in John Bakti s translation NOT ON THE HERACLEITEAN PATH Memory is the art of forgetting It doesn t deal with reality, reality is not what engages it, it has no substantial relation whatsoever to that inexpressible, infinite complexity that is reality itself, in the same way and to the same extent that we ourselves are unable to reach the point where we can catch even a glimpse of this indescribable, infinite complexity for reality and glimpsing it are one and the same so the rememberer covers the same distance to the past about to be evoked as that covered when this past had been present, thereby revealing that there had never been a connection to reality, and this connection had never been desired, since regardless of the horror or beauty that the memory evokes, the rememberer always works starting from the essence of the image about to be evoked, an essence that has no reality, and not even starting from a mistake, for he fails to recall reality not by making a mistake, but because he handles what is complex in the loosest and most arbitrary manner, by infinitely simplifying the infinitely complex to arrive at something relative to which he has a certain distance, and this is how memory is sweet, this is how memory is dazzling, and this is how memory comes to be heartrending and enchanting, for here you stand, in the midst of an in nite and inconceivable complexity, you stand here utterly dumbfounded, helpless, clueless, and lost, holding the infinite simplicity of the memory in your hand plus of course the devastating tenderness of melancholy, for you sense, as you hold this memory, that its reality lies somewhere in the heartless, sober, ice cold distance p 95 For examples of reviewers praise of this see Joslyn Allen in Chronic Bibliophilia or Nicky Loomis in the Los Angeles Review of Books both also quote the essay in its entirety Loomis s praise is typical in the way she sets Krasznahorkai against the Attention Deficit Disorder of contemporary screen addiction So here goes Not on the Heraclitean Path in its entirety, she writes I encourage you to read Krasznahorkai with no distraction If you are on a train, do not look out the window mid sentence If you are on your computer, do not check your email Do not take a bite of a sandwich Ignore loved ones And for god s sake, turn off the news It is a beautifully paced sentence in English But surely it isn t churlish to note that in crucial ways it doesn t make sense The opening short sentence, for example, is not argued in the second long sentence forgetting is not what is at stake, according to that longer sentence The title, too, doesn t apply because the second sentence is about arriving at a certain distance from life, not re arriving at the same destinations, as in Heraclitus s fragment Krasznahorkai says the rememberer covers the same distance to the past about to be evoked as that covered when this past had been present It s a clear trope, but it doesn t make sense in the logic of the essay itself Why should the distance be the same If there had never been a connection to reality in the initial experience, how could there have been a sense of traveling toward an essence that was in anyway comparable to what Proust would have called voluntary memory As Nabokov s Van Veen would have said in Ada, Or Ardor, the texture of time has been advanced over the mechanics of memory Even if we accept this, as the ongoing motion of the sentence requires, it doesn t make sense to then assert that this connection had never been desired It had, by the logic of the remaining half of the sentence I really don t want to sound like one of those carping ultra rationalists who populate the TLS Letters to the Editor I only want to say that the two sentences themselves ask to be read as a series of reasoned ideas They re structured that way Nothing in the text itself suggests that the text is only, or even largely, a formal gesture or an attempt to evoke ideas by assembling evocative non logical parts Not on the Heraclitean Path is a schematic philosophy, like most of the essays in this collection, like most of Krasznahorkai I ve read, and as such it needs to stop relying on its prosody for free passes into a realm of supposed poetry A lot of long winding sentences narrated by a series of depressing males in a series of depressing stories Not sure what to make of this Is it philosophy A sign that Hungary, Germany and the world is in deep despair It certainly is different Did I enjoy it No. Mixed reaction as with just about any story collection The volume starts off with some short, lightweight pieces and nearly ends with the only long story that didn t work for me, That Gagarin neither did the short pieces following it In between, I found the medium and long stories anywhere from interesting to amazing Not a must read, but Krasnahorkai is a remarkable writer. This book grew on me To begin with I found the style pages and pages of fairly repetitive thinking without break or full stops rather dull and irritating It felt like listening to one of those dull friends who cannot ever get to the point, whose conversation drones on, meandering around, and which you cannot exactly follow But somehow I got into the swing of it and started to enjoy it Krasznahorkai s style is not going to suit everyone, perhaps not even many It certainly would not fit i This book grew on me To begin with I found the style pages and pages of fairly repetitive thinking without break or full stops rather dull and irritating It felt like listening to one of those dull friends who cannot ever get to the point, whose conversation drones on, meandering around, and which you cannot exactly follow But somehow I got into the swing of it and started to enjoy it Krasznahorkai s style is not going to suit everyone, perhaps not even many It certainly would not fit into the category of easy reads It is difficult to describe and probably needs to be experienced to really get a sense of but think in terms of a stream of consciousness style of writing This book contains 21 short stories varying in length from a page to about 30 pages But story is almost the wrong word They are fiction, sometimes quite surreal, but at the same time they are like philosophical essays It is not always clear what Krasznahorkai is on about as little is said directly, but occasionally there are really profound moments Certainly an original voice and someone I will read a littleof If you like to try something a bit different, I d say give it a go I can t promise that you will like it, but perhaps it will be something wonderful for you Where Seiobo There Below locates a sort of divine transcendence in aesthetic experience, The World Goes On obversely finds a debasement of the sublime within a wholly terrestrial world and a failure of perception and language to attend to that inexpressible, infinite complexity that is reality itself Taken together, these two volumes affirm Krasznahorkai s status as one of the essential voices in literature today.