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Intermit ncias da Morte Death with Interruptions Death at Intervals, Jos Saramago 1922 2010 Death with Interruptions published in Britain as Death at Intervals , is a novel written by Jos Saramago First released in 2005 in its original Portuguese, the novel was translated into English by Margaret Jull Costa in 2008 The novel centers around death as both a phenomenon, and as an anthropomorphized character A key focus of the book is how society relates to death in both of these forms, Intermit ncias da Morte Death with Interruptions Death at Intervals, Jos Saramago 1922 2010 Death with Interruptions published in Britain as Death at Intervals , is a novel written by Jos Saramago First released in 2005 in its original Portuguese, the novel was translated into English by Margaret Jull Costa in 2008 The novel centers around death as both a phenomenon, and as an anthropomorphized character A key focus of the book is how society relates to death in both of these forms, and likewise, how death relates to the people she is meant to kill 2011 1389 250 9789641910961 20 1389 216 9789643743239 Out of the half dozen Saramago novels I have read, this is actually my favorite It may have been due in part that I devoured most of it while seated upon the sun soaked banks of a river this past July, but this short little work really struck me It is so unique and imaginative and this book was just a really fun read Despite it s focus of death and all, it isn t quite as heavy as most of his novels and will make you laugh at the dark abyss of death as most of this novel is actually darkly hum Out of the half dozen Saramago novels I have read, this is actually my favorite It may have been due in part that I devoured most of it while seated upon the sun soaked banks of a river this past July, but this short little work really struck me It is so unique and imaginative and this book was just a really fun read Despite it s focus of death and all, it isn t quite as heavy as most of his novels and will make you laugh at the dark abyss of death as most of this novel is actually darkly humorous There is no traditional plot for the first two thirds of the novel as Saramago displays his story with a broad shot that encompasses all facets of his deathless phenomenon The first part of the novel isor less Saramago s imagination exploring all sides of his idea Saramago takes something most people would view as a great joy to live forever and puts it on an ugly display as a terrifying curse Namely, just because you live forever doesn t mean you don t suffer bodily harm He tells of people with their guts spilled out somehow living on and other horrific conditions to a similar effect He goes on to explain how this also practically ruins the economy and brings about the maphia who choose this with a ph to separate themselves from the regular mafia who createundying corpses if you don t bow to their wishes Wow What a disaster of a world is made in the first 100 pages.In the second section of the novel, Saramago zooms in and shows this event on a small scale his major focus is on death herself and how she relates to the world Saramago s death character was fascinating and different than any traditional image of death speaking of tradition death, there is a funny bit where the government takes all the traditional images of death and uses technology to see what these skull images would look like with a human face and he actually manages to make death a likeable, empathizable character I won t go into the plot and spoil what happens in case you have not yet read this, but I never thought I d read a book about Death as a main character and describe it as cute and like it for that Saramago once again does the impossible and all I can say is that after the last page you can t help but say aww As a note of caution, Saramago has a unique style that tends to turn people away and this slightly bothers me It is NOT difficult to read, give it a few pages and I promise you will grasp it It flows surprisingly well Also, Saramago has a very distinct voice that I can t get enough of He speaks directly to you as a reader and he talks at his characters in a very fatherly, loving fashion that lets you see how proud he is of his own creations He has a very good way of telling a story, often justifying his reasons for why he chose to tell it the way he does in a funny, unique manner I would highly recommend this to any Saramago fan, and to anyone new to this Nobel laureate s works although I think Blindness might be a better starting point 4 5 Jos Saramago s imagination appeals to me I cherished Death with Interruptions from the first page It s was not only the author s incredible creativity or his masterful writing but also the fact that here he deals with something so close to all human beingsdeathWho, after all, at some point in life, hasn t asked why do we have to dieThe dream of immortality has fascinated humanity foreverThe following day, no one diedSo simply Saramago begins in an undisclosed small E Jos Saramago s imagination appeals to me I cherished Death with Interruptions from the first page It s was not only the author s incredible creativity or his masterful writing but also the fact that here he deals with something so close to all human beingsdeathWho, after all, at some point in life, hasn t asked why do we have to dieThe dream of immortality has fascinated humanity foreverThe following day, no one diedSo simply Saramago begins in an undisclosed small European country, without any logic or harbinger, people suddenly stopped dyingHaving lived, until those days of confusion, in what they had imagined to be the best of all possible and probable worlds, they were discovering, with delight, that the best, the absolute best, was happening right now, right there, at the door of their house, a unique and marvelous life without the daily fear of parca s creaking scissors, immortality in the land that gave us our being, safe from any metaphysical awkwardnesses and free to everyone, with no sealed orders to open at the hour of our death, announcing at that crossroads where dear companions in this vale of tears known as earth were forced to part and set off for their different destinations in the next world, you to paradise, you to purgatory, you down to hellA dream come through, correct But nothing is for free on this earth of ours, and very soon the exultation starts to die down As the days goes by what we discover in Saramago s fascinating story is ultimately thousands of people suspended on the edge of dying Slowly the country finds itself disoriented for what to do, immersed in a new confusion People lose jobs nojobs for undertakers or gravediggers, and so many others that depended on it Religion has lost its reason and its greatest reward, resurrection And philosophers are left speechless facing the fact of asociety torn between the hope of living forever and the fear of never dying How everything seems to have turned upside down life is now the inconvenienceIf we don t start dying again, we have no futureApart from any judgment on Saramago s religious feelings that probably dwell underneath his novel or any religion discussion, his unique narration is so superbly delivered that it conquers the reader And he is always amazing usDue to some strange optical phenomenon, real or virtual, death seems much smaller now as if her bones had shrunk, or perhaps she was always like that, and it s our eyes, wide with fear, that make her look like a giant Poor death It makes us feel like going over and putting a hand on her hard shoulder and whispering a few words of sympathy in her ear, or, rather, in the place where her ear once was, underneath the parietalSaramago simply captivates the reader Read it if you enjoy something that will leave you with muchthan with what you started before opening one of his books As his literature Nobel Prize attests, he knows how to write He is brilliant, and you won t forget him after the first taste. The dream of immortality has always fascinated humanity The dream of eternal life has founded religions that changed the shape of the world What if it were true The following day, no one died So begins Jos Saramago s Death with Interruptions In an unnamed small European country without any explanations people have stopped dying an eternal dream come true, right What else can we want now, once the threat of unavoidable demise has been removed seemingly forever, once the unstoppable Grim R The dream of immortality has always fascinated humanity The dream of eternal life has founded religions that changed the shape of the world What if it were true The following day, no one died So begins Jos Saramago s Death with Interruptions In an unnamed small European country without any explanations people have stopped dying an eternal dream come true, right What else can we want now, once the threat of unavoidable demise has been removed seemingly forever, once the unstoppable Grim Reaper seems to have retired Having lived, until those days of confusion, in what they had imagined to be the best of all possible and probable worlds, they were discovering, with delight, that the best, the absolute best, was happening right now, right there, at the door of their house, a unique and marvelous life without the daily fear of parca s creaking scissors, immortality in the land that gave us our being, safe from any metaphysical awkwardnesses and free to everyone, with no sealed orders to open at the hour of our death, announcing at that crossroads where dear companions in this vale of tears known as earth were forced to part and set off for their different destinations in the next world, you to paradise, you to purgatory, you down to hell Well, once the celebrations died down, it quickly becomes obvious that this paradise on earth comes at a price Immortality is not eternal youth, and ultimately what we have is hundreds and thousands of people suspended on the edge of dying, in the in between state, neither dead nor alive, caught on the borderline One must admit that the prospects are not just gloomy, they re terrible, catastrophic,dangerous by far than anything even the wildest imagination could dream up And slowly it sinks in that before long it s not only the undertakers and gravediggers who are out of jobs not only religion that becomes obsolete as its greatest reward resurrection is no longer a big dealseriously, Saramago s distaste for religion is very prominently underscored and explained in this booknot only the philosophical schools left pointless and speechless it s generations and generations inthis society torn between the hope of living forever and the fear of never dyingwho will have to dedicate themselves to caring for the millions of not quite dead it s the country unprepared to care for the citizens who are no longer free to enjoy the certainty of death Life itself has quickly become the burden oh how the tables have turned If we don t start dying again, we have no future And all of this is delivered in Saramago s unique rambling narration, with margin to margin solid text uninterrupted even by dialogue marks, jumping from topic to topic, zeroing on details and mundane, running in the clustered run on sentences It s all delivered in the voice that is both dry and witty, detached yet flourishing, both mocking and serious It s not an easy style to read, especially in this book, with meandering narration only underscoring the absence of easily definable plot, the absence of characters who we can follow and love and root for It s like an introduction, a leisurely essay stretching for 64% of the book the story that somehow, despite or maybe because of all this kept the magical charm over me, grounding the most improbable of the storyline in the firm reality anchored by human folly and bureaucracy and greed and crime and incredulity.And then, almost two thirds into the story, the mood shifts, the narration abruptly changes, and the new plot emerges, folding violet letters into violet envelopes, confidently raising its head and wondering, Have you missed me I came to steal your heart And the strangest love story begins, having nudged the meandering weary satirical narration out of the way.It s death, the female noun in so many languages, whose whim led to such perturbances in the function of the state and religion and philosophy It s death, who is surprised at the audacity of a mediocre unremarkable middle aged musician who refuses to die It s death, a stranger to failure, who sets out to investigate and to set the matters right, unprepared for what is waiting for her Due to some strange optical phenomenon, real or virtual, death seems much smaller now, as if her bones had shrunk, or perhaps she was always like that, and it s our eyes, wide with fear, that make her look like a giant Poor death It makes us feel like going over and putting a hand on her hard shoulder and whispering a few words of sympathy in her ear, or, rather, in the place where her ear once was, underneath the parietal It s where Saramago s prose, his entire narration undergoes a fascinating transformation No, his style does not change We still have solid blocks of text and meandering ramblings and endless strangely punctuated sentences, but the slow shift in the mood and the feeling subtly creeps up making you look up from the book and wonder am I still reading the same story And why do I have those pesky tears glistening in the corners of my eyes And why can t I stop myself from sighing and quietly saying,Awwat the end You know why Because the guy who wrote this book has received a Nobel Prize in literature for a reason Because he is brilliant, that s why And because he decided to play around with this story, leaving us or at least me unable to resist its pull And so I stand by my 5 star rating from a year ago, and begin a desperate hunt forSaramago books For the first time in her life, death knew what it felt like to have a dog on her lap. [ DOWNLOAD KINDLE ] ⚒ Death with Interruptions ☩ Nobel Prize winner Jose Saramago s brilliant new novel poses the question what happens when the grim reaper decides there will be no death On the first day of the new year, no one dies This, of course, causes consternation among politicians, religious leaders, morticians, and doctors Among the general public, on the other hand, there is initially mass celebration Flags are hung out on balconies people dance in the streets They have achieved the great goal of humanity eternal life Then reality hits home families are left to care for the permanently dying life insurance policies become meaningless and funeral parlors are reduced to arranging burials for pet dogs, cats, hamsters, and parrots Death sits in her chilly apartment, where she lives alone with scythe and filing cabinets and contemplates her experiment What if no one ever died again What if she, death with a small d, became human and were to fall in love I love the cover of this book, the cartoon woman in black, paused on the doorstep of someone s life, her symbolic scythe held aloft A light switch features in the centre of the illustration as if she might jokingly dim the lights while she fulfills her task We almost expect to see a grin on her face and the illustrator has kindly left her features blank so that we can fill in that smirk for ourselves A perfect book cover for a satire about death I m not so keen on the title however Death At I love the cover of this book, the cartoon woman in black, paused on the doorstep of someone s life, her symbolic scythe held aloft A light switch features in the centre of the illustration as if she might jokingly dim the lights while she fulfills her task We almost expect to see a grin on her face and the illustrator has kindly left her features blank so that we can fill in that smirk for ourselves A perfect book cover for a satire about death I m not so keen on the title however Death At Intervals sounds odd to me The original title was As Intermit ncias da Morte, and when the book was translated into English, there were two versions of the title, Death at Intervals and Death with Interruptions view spoiler the French for light switch is interrupteur hide spoiler I prefer the second version but I d have really liked a version that stuck closer to the Portuguese and used the lovely word intermittences , a word which always make me think of those heart stopping moments in life when we suddenly recall things that had previously been buried too deep to remember I ve taken that idea from Proust, of course, who had many intermittences of the heart moments so it s interesting to note that Saramago mentions Proust in relation to the final heart stopping moment of life Yes, Saramago s narrator refers not once but three times to the woman in black whom Proust reported seeing in a corner of his room just before he died, so I imagine Proust s dark figure must have been some sort of trigger for this humorous tale about a woman called death, even if it may not be the sole inspiration In fact Saramago wrote this book in 2005 at a time when his own health was poor he was eighty three and suffering from leukaemia and there was a point around then when his own death was interrupted he was pronounced dead but recovered and lived on until 2010 Two years before he died, he wrote in The Notebook, The truth is, I feel myself alive, very much alive, whenever for one reason or other I have to talk about death As we read Death with Interruptions we really appreciate the truth of that statement It s as if Saramago managed to access some memory about death that the rest of us have repressed This allows him to treat death in an audaciously irreverent way, and we are fairly certain that he has a wide grin on his face as he spins out the narrative, aiming delightful darts at his favourite targets in the process the Church is not spared, nor are politicians royalty also comes in for some satire, as do many of society s institutions It is all so smoothly done that we can only stand back and admire the perfect blend of what is said with the way it is said No one writes quite like Saramago Lethal But Not MorbidA great theological philosophical book of ideas about how human beings deal with death as a concept as well as their own individual fate Saramago knows what most of us know but don t know how to say He knows how politicians and academics and policemen and peasants talk and what they mean when they talk, which is often the opposite of what they say And his gentle irony accepts the fact that we all lie by inevitable omission every time we utter a sound So death for examp Lethal But Not MorbidA great theological philosophical book of ideas about how human beings deal with death as a concept as well as their own individual fate Saramago knows what most of us know but don t know how to say He knows how politicians and academics and policemen and peasants talk and what they mean when they talk, which is often the opposite of what they say And his gentle irony accepts the fact that we all lie by inevitable omission every time we utter a sound So death for example may be lethal but perhaps it is not morbid Perhaps it too can be embraced in life Update 2 This book is unique It needs a whole new genre to itself, fantasy philosophy perhaps Very entertaining but try as I might I am just not a fan of Saramago s style.Update 1 Getting bogged in Saramago s extreme wordiness and I could do with a bitdialogue than this constant narration There are no characters, or barely, it is all situations It isn t uninteresting but it isn t gripping or enjoyable either I hope it improves one way or the other.I like what Saramago writes Update 2 This book is unique It needs a whole new genre to itself, fantasy philosophy perhaps Very entertaining but try as I might I am just not a fan of Saramago s style.Update 1 Getting bogged in Saramago s extreme wordiness and I could do with a bitdialogue than this constant narration There are no characters, or barely, it is all situations It isn t uninteresting but it isn t gripping or enjoyable either I hope it improves one way or the other.I like what Saramago writes, but I don t like the way he writes it If his style was adopted by the average unedited SPA it wouldn t get the excuses let alone praise it does for this Nobel Prize winner So I m listening to this book At least I won t have to look at the weird and mostly absent punctuation and marathon run on sentences Hopefully a good narrator will somehow make interesting his extreme verbosity too Listening to this book I hope is going to give the nugget of genius story telling that I love Saramago for Jose Saramago s Death with Interruptions is a fascinating study of death and its implications to humanity The book can be separated into two parts, the first part is a study of conceptual death oraccurately the loss thereof, and how it would affect the lives of the mortal beings suddenly deemed immortal Then about two thirds into the book, death suddenly takes another entity, from a formerly conceptual standpoint we are gradually introduced to death personified Death is a woman, a beaut Jose Saramago s Death with Interruptions is a fascinating study of death and its implications to humanity The book can be separated into two parts, the first part is a study of conceptual death oraccurately the loss thereof, and how it would affect the lives of the mortal beings suddenly deemed immortal Then about two thirds into the book, death suddenly takes another entity, from a formerly conceptual standpoint we are gradually introduced to death personified Death is a woman, a beautiful woman, who takes interest upon a lone mortal who evades her scythe.Initially I found this rather tedious With a macro narrative that detailed events of a nameless monarchial country,interested in industries than people, it offered an interesting enough chronicle anchored on the premise that death evaded all the inhabitants of a single country at the impetus of a new year With only a mild interest to sustain me, I ambled through the pages half heartedly But as it progressed death slowly gained, like it slurped away life from a gravely ailing elderly, qualities of a human being The last third of the novel flashed by me Death, I learned, is farfascinating as a person than a concept The part is dedicated to the portrayal of man s only valid reason to want the end of death love of another.As a rather imaginative story dealing with a very familiar yet unwelcome theme, it manages to paint death in a fair and, ironically, impersonal light without being emotional or needlessly sentimental It is even somewhat comical as it shows the ridiculousness of our species when we fear it one moment, but potentially long for it the moment it no longer plagues us This book is filled with wisdom about death, life, our tendencies as mortal creatures There are snippets, conversations, which surprised me with sly intelligence and wry wit To some degree maybe the parts, the consonantia, as Aquinas would have put it, are better than the integritas, or the whole Yes, the entirety of the novel does seem a bit fragmented, however its ability to penetrate an issue such as death and its spirited treatment of it deserves high praise Death is a part of life death is a quality that makes us human, death is even an economic pillar When taken away, as in this book, it poses doubts about life, questions humanity, trivializes love, destabilizes our economy, and mocks our fear of an integral aspect of our nature.What is there to fear then Perhaps it will leave an aftertaste The following day, no one died.Oh, humanity, always wishing for what we cannot have Eternal life, the eternal dream But what if it came true What if no one died Well, this is what happens in this book.The day is normal, nothing seems out of place except people are not dying any Dream come true, right Well, you always have to be careful what you wish for When people say they want to live forever, they think youth and health come as granted, but death s plans were only to give hers The following day, no one died.Oh, humanity, always wishing for what we cannot have Eternal life, the eternal dream But what if it came true What if no one died Well, this is what happens in this book.The day is normal, nothing seems out of place except people are not dying any Dream come true, right Well, you always have to be careful what you wish for When people say they want to live forever, they think youth and health come as granted, but death s plans were only to give herself a vacation from killing people, not to stop time and heal everything.So starts a conflict in which people start to freak out and realise the problem that is nodeaths As it happened in Blindness, the realism of it all is striking When people get desperate, stupid decisions come with it as well, and things get evencomplicated for them because they don t know what to do with all the bodies of people who were supposed to be corpses.But death hasplans She decides to play evenwith people, and she wants to havefun In the process, however, she starts to feel love Love towards the life humans live, and is she falling in love with someone What would that represent How hard can life get if she, the only with the power to kill when it pleases her, decides she likes humansthan her original form There are many important themes addressed in this book For example, religion is one of them Saramago s opinion is not surprising considering he was an atheist You can guess what some of his messages were He never meant to insult religious people, so don t worry about that.Character wise there s not much development, and it s not really necessary because the book iscomposed of what if s and social consequences of an initial action However, I must say, death yes, without capital d is a fantastic character She s so human Unexpectedly human, one would think We imagine that skeleton with a scythe, but she s a woman, with feelings, and all, and a scythe with whom she talks too.The writing gets a little to get used to If you ve read Blindness or any other book by Saramago, then you already know he does not use quotation marks to denote dialogue, so you have to guess when and who is talking The paragraphs are very long too, therefore, people with short attention span have to be patient if they want to read this book.Please don t be scared about this latter point, though I promise you the book is worth it, and the concept is very interesting, and keeps interesting throughout the book Plus, Saramago was an amazing writer, with a well deserved Nobel Prize and all Now I want to continue his works with reading Seeing, which is the sequel to Blindness, another fantastic book I also recommend wholeheartedly.Answer me this question now Do you want to know what the real consequences of an hypothetical eternal life are Do you want to live forever If the you say yes to the first one, then read this