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The Street of Crocodiles (Classic, 20th-Century, Penguin) (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 1. März 1992

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  • Taschenbuch: 160 Seiten
  • Verlag: Penguin Classics; Auflage: Reissue (1. März 1992)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0140186255
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140186253
  • Vom Hersteller empfohlenes Alter: Ab 18 Jahren
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 13 x 1,1 x 19,6 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 109.577 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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In July my father went to take the waters and left me, with my mother and elder brother, a prey to the blinding white heat of the summer days. Lesen Sie die erste Seite
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3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Ein Kunde am 18. Juni 1998
Format: Taschenbuch
I became acquainted with Bruno Schulz by way of a literary critic who mentioned John Updike's admiration of the Polish writer's gift for metaphors. Now Updike is no slouch himself at composing breath taking metaphors. The admiration of an American master for Schulz piqued my curiosity. I found and read Sanatorium under the Sign of the Hourglass which led to my acquiring The Street of Crocodiles from Amazon Books.
Aristotle considered metaphor making the paramount skill for a writer to cultivate. My collection of Schulz's works -- 26 short stories -- exhibits an approach to style comparable to Kafka. Of the two, however, I think Schulz the more optimistic. Also, Kafka is not nearly so fond of metaphors as Schulz. Such a line by Schulz as 'she unloaded sides of meat with their keyboard of ribs swollen with energy and strength' indicates a mind with a knack for seeing similarity in differences, the hallmark of a metaphorist. If this sip of Bruno Schulz appeals to a reader, a vat more awaits his palate in this book.
There are writers who create fiction largely unrelated to their lives. Barbara Cortland wrote romances set in previous centuries. Louis D'amour set his stories in the old west. Agatha Christy was a queen of murder mysteries though she never got even a traffic ticket. Bruno Schulz is not in this category. He belongs to those writers who write close to home. Kafka and Joyce are likewise members of this illustrious and fascinating group. They spin the dross of their lives into golden prose. I can not be so audacious as to declare their domain the best in the literature's empire, but in my opinion a visit to them is well worth taking.
The engaging introduction to The Street of Crocodiles provides a reader with the salient facts of this little known artist.
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Amazon.com: 25 Rezensionen
106 von 112 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Remarkable 9. Januar 2004
Von Alyssa A. Lappen - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
I hadn't heard of Bruno Schulz until, in the mid 1990s, I saw Simon McBurney's Theatre de Complicite play based on this novel.

The book's characters are unbelievably haunting, despite its complete lack of dialogue. No wonder Polish writer Bruno Schulz is best known for this novel, though it is little more than 120 pages. It is easily one of the most poetic and riveting novels of the 20th century. It was also Schulz' first. It was published in 1934 as "Cinnamon Shops."

Schulz was an artist before he was a writer. And in this novel, he paints with his words. (He had come to writing in thanks partly to the encouragement of the poet Deborah Vogel.)

The novel opens with a scene from his family home. In July, when his father had gone "to take the waters," Schulz was left with his mother and elder brother, "prey to the blinding white heat of the summer days." Together, they dipped into a large volume of "holidays, its pages blazing with sunshine and scented with the sweet melting pulp of golden pears." On luminous mornings, his mother Adela returned from the market "like Pomona emerging from the flames of day." Everything that follows is a sensory feast.

Schulz' images are sometimes surreal and the events of the book, bizarre and often amazing. His father, for example, being enamored of birds, virtually becomes one. He moves into the attic where birds of prey visit.

The first edition was illustrated by several of Schulz' masterful drawings and etchings, made in his earlier artistic mode, all of them reproduced elsewhere. One entitled "The Table" illustrated a scene at the family house which the book elegantly retells.

Born on July 12, 1892, Schulz was the third and youngest child of a merchant who lived and worked in Drohobycz his whole life. This novel, like all his artistic and written works, reflects his close connection to his family and place. It is filled with his uncles, aunts and cousins, though one can never tell precisely where the reality stops and the fantasy begins. The lines are seamless, as in an exquisite pastel.

In 1939, the Soviets occupied eastern Poland. Schulz' friends helped him to stay in Drohobycz, though he could no longer teach. But in June 1941 when the Nazis occupied eastern Poland, Schulz was forced to live with the Viennese Nazi Felix Landau, who had a taste for art. Landau boasted of keeping a Jewish artist slave alive--on one daily bowl of soup and slice of bread. Schulz survived Landau's "protection" for a year. But, as the introduction notes, the Gestapo went on a rampage on Nov. 19, 1942, killing more than 150. Karl Guenther, a rival to Landau, shot Schulz in the head. A devoted friend buried him at night in a Jewish cemetery which has since disappeared, along with Schulz' grave.

Schulz entrusted most of his writings to friends for safekeeping during the war. Most were also snuffed out, and his works lost.

The true extent of his genius will probably never be known. We are fortunate that this book emerged from Poland before Schulz' world was consumed in flames.

--- Alyssa A. Lappen
45 von 48 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Amazing. 7. Januar 2003
Von "50cent-haircut" - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
Bruno Schulz's fictional world is as strange, unique, and fascinating as any you'll ever encounter. He builds each story from a physical, natural detail or a phenomena, and imbues it with such hypnotic and poetic intensity, that what should be an ordinary world is transformed into a dream-drunk and febrile one. There is no gratuitous surrealistic maneuver, but an original world view, and this alone, would you agree, is a rare and treasurable thing in literature.
The stories all deal with the narrator (Bruno) and his family when Bruno was a child. Each story starts out with a beautiful description of the milieu, then moves into stranger grounds where psychological unease mixes with facts. Kafkaesque would be the word applicable to describe Schulz's work (as there even is a story about a man turning insect-like... in this case, the father, not the son) but as researchers surmised, there is no real evidence that Schulz was influenced by Kafka.
What makes Bruno Schulz's prose so heartbreaking is its ceaseless and painful yearning to remember the past; almost every description is a metaphor that is drenched in almost extrasensory feeling. In consequence, every object, every motion, and every emotion remembered by Schulz throbs with a realism that is hot-wired to our subconscious, to our collective and private myths.
If you like reading, you must read Schulz.
25 von 26 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Street of the Dove 25. Januar 2001
Von fmeursault@yahoo.com - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
In this diminutive collection of stories, Schulz paints a complex portrait of the landscape in his childhood in Poland. The stories evolve more from the physical landscape than that of the characters, giving an intense life to inanimate objects. A sense of hidden madness, and threads of unspoken desires and fears permeate the book. Schulz writes of his father's creeping insanity, the strange landscape of his small shop, and the forboding accompanying the end of the world with the approach of a comet. While Schulz's imagery and simile get a little repetitive, the atmosphere of living objects and mysterious confluence of life is compelling and hypnotic.
His input continued to illuminate not only the character of his uncle but also the world in which he wrote and lived. There is often a lyrical, often somewhat pastoral quality to much of Bruno Schulz's writing. The external reality so closely associated with the subjects and settings of his work are widely regarded as bleak and burnished. The world he represents in his stories is not necessarily in keeping with the images often associated with Poland during his lifetime, he was a writer influenced by the imagination...
22 von 23 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
The Street of Crocodiles 7. Januar 2005
Von Damian Kelleher - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
The Street of Crocodiles is the story of a year of Schulz' childhood, an obviously fictional year, but a time that was mundane yet fantastic, commonplace and bizarre. Through his child's eyes, events, sensations, ideas and thoughts are conveyed with brilliant, dazzling imagery, vivid, almost too-bright pictures are painted with words in a way that is both surreal, magical and ordinary.

The novel is split into thirteen chapters, each of which focuses on a different part of the Polish city of Drogobych, or on an aspect of Schulz' home life. 'Birds', for instance, is the story of his father's obsession with the winged creatures, beginning with the importation of rare bird's eggs from Africa, Holland, Hamburg, and ending with a vast aviary in the attic, with arranged marriages between different species of birds and, finally, with his father joining the birds, perching and squawking and flapping his wings. Or, 'The Street of Crocodiles', the false namesake of the book - which was actually titled 'Cinammon Shops' in Poland - a decadent, dirty arrangement of streets and buildings where anything and anyone is a commodity for purchase and use. However, The depravity, the immorality, the cheapness of the Street of Crocodiles is so great that they fail even at being depraved, revealed to instead be a mockery of a corrupt suburb, a sham crudity, a false crime. The other stories are similarly bizarre, by turns brilliantly insightful - The Birds chapter, while suitably odd, could also quite easily be read as a man's attempt to occupy himself upon a forced retirement, and failing because he doesn't know of any other life but work - or delightfully, guiltily weird and interesting.

As an author, Schulz had an amazing gift for painting pictures with words. In addition to each little story having a main, plot-driven theme, they all have a secondary, emotional theme. An early chapter, describing Schulz' wandering through an abandoned part of his home which opens up into a field of flowers - yes, you read that correctly - is brilliantly depicted: the golden field of stubble shouted in the sun like a tawny cloud of locusts; in the thick rain of fire the crickets screamed; seed pods exploded softly like grasshoppers. Or there is, in a later experiment of Schulz' father gone awry, this homage to animals: Animals! the object of insatiable interest, examples of the riddle of life, created, as it were, to reveal the human being to man himself, displaying his richness and complexity in a thousand kaleidoscopic possibilities, each of them brought to some curious end, to some characteristic exuberance. The narrator's useage of adjectives, verbs and nouns - or more specifically, the selection of these words - changes as the focus of the chapter changes. While awaiting a dirty train in The Street of Crocodiles, the vocabulary changes from a mild array of purely cataloguing words to 'snake', 'squat', 'coal dust' 'heaving breathing' 'strange sad seriousness'. The 'Gale' chapter, about, unsurprisingly, a fierce gale, is an elemental delight, the words ravaging us just as the weather ravages the characters. It allows Schulz quite possibly his most brilliant line: They blinked in the light, their eyes, still full of night, spilled darkness at each flutter of the eyelids.

It is interesting, when reading The Street of Crocodiles, to see just how much Schulz anticipated both the magic realism of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and the fantastic whimsy of Italo Calvino. Their style, techniques and ideas are found here, in juvenile form, intermingled with a skill that takes the breath away. Schulz' pen was unfortunately darkened much too soon, thanks to a case of petty internal politics between SS soldiers, which resulted in the Polish Jew's death, and it is our great loss.
21 von 23 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A master of figurative language 16. Dezember 2002
Von A.J. - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
To me, truly sophisticated writing lies in the writer's skill in using inventive and colorful similes and metaphors to communicate with his reader. The point of figurative language is not to veil the message but to elevate it from the mundane and create fresh new worlds of images and perspectives.
Bruno Schulz not only understood this concept but was one of its greatest practitioners. In his short but incredibly rich "The Street of Crocodiles," summer has a "senile intemperance...[a] lustful and belated spurt of vitality," rays of August heat form a "flaming broom," the moon acquires "milky reflexes, opaline shades, and the glaze of enamel," a cockroach's sudden emergence from a crevice is described as "a crazy black zigzag of lightning," and newly hatched baby birds are "lizards with frail, naked bodies of hunchbacks...[a] dragon brood." Every page of this magnificently odd little book is filled with such gems.
Not quite a novel, but more than just a collection of stories, "The Street of Crocodiles" is a set of loosely connected chapters about Schulz's boyhood in the small Polish town of Drogobych in the earliest years of the twentieth century. His use of figurative language instills his recollections with a dreamlike quality that hovers between reality and fantasy, such as in the chapter entitled "Cinnamon Shops," where the young Schulz's errand home to get money for his family waiting at the theater becomes an exotic journey into the intersection of his mind and the city. In "Nimrod," Schulz writes about the puppy he adopts and its delicate, meticulous process of learning about its environment. But the central episode would have to be "Tailors' Dummies," in which Schulz's eccentric father declaims eloquently on the relationships between God and Man, and Man and Mannequin.
Beautifully translated into English by Celina Wieniewska, this book belongs on every shelf of intelligent bizarre fiction next to the likes of Kafka, Borges, and Thomas Mann.
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