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10 von 10 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen WHITE MAN'S BURDEN
"Disgrace," Coetzee's prize-winning offering to the literary world, is a disturbing book - which is a very mild way of saying that it jolts you out of your complacencies, sends a chill down your spine and keeps coming back to haunt you even when you put it away. It places scenes before you that you'd rather turn your eyes away from. And it unwraps matters...
Veröffentlicht am 17. Juni 2000 von manju jaidka

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3.0 von 5 Sternen The most thought provoking of novels
Excited at the prospect of reading a serious, contemporary novel, I leapt into the first pages of "Disgrace". Making an episode of "Eastenders" look like a comic masterpiece, this novel is a dark, miserable and distressing piece of soul-destroying fiction.
Although I found lead character David Lurie's behaviour at the trial a little unlikely,...
Veröffentlicht am 24. Juli 2000 von moosifier


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5.0 von 5 Sternen WHITE MAN'S BURDEN, 17. Juni 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Disgrace (Gebundene Ausgabe)
"Disgrace," Coetzee's prize-winning offering to the literary world, is a disturbing book - which is a very mild way of saying that it jolts you out of your complacencies, sends a chill down your spine and keeps coming back to haunt you even when you put it away. It places scenes before you that you'd rather turn your eyes away from. And it unwraps matters that would generally be swept under the carpet in polite society. The pattern of shame and disgrace suffered by david Lurie is repeated with Lurie's daughter as the sufferer. It is almost as though she were paying back for the sins of her father. She bears it all in silence, refusing to complain, taking it as the price that she, being white, must pay for living in a black country. Personal relationships thus get meshed with local and national politics and with racial history. It is no longer the story of individuals but of two races split by a colour divide.
"Disgrace" is heavy with symbolism, drawing constant parallels between the human and the bestial (Bev Shaw and her dog clinic), making the reader wonder which of the two species is more humane. It is a novel that focuses attention on the sorrows of being human in a world that is essentially inhuman, a world that is unable to understand and reach out to individuals caught up in an existential web of loneliness and pride.
As he narrates the story of the main protagonist, the writer, John Coetzee, interweaves it with the story of a nation coming into its own, throwing off age-old shackles of the apartheid curse. This, in different hands, would probably be an optimistic theme, welcoming the dawn of a new era. But Coetzee is aware of the Savage God that takes birth, replacing one chaos with another. Disgrace, which begins as the story of a professor of English driven by Eros, ultimately turns out to be the tale of the white man in South Africa. What happens when the reigning majority is reduced to a minority, a hounded, unwanted minority? What price does it have to pay then for the sins of the past?
To put it differently, what happens to the master when he is overthrown? What is the retribution? How do the erstwhile slaves take revenge? The history of the country thus becomes metaphorically entwined with that of individual characters. Racial hatred is laid bare and the harsh, ugly realities of post-apartheid South Africa, horrifying and frightening, are foregrounded.
So the novel is about the aftermath of decolonization as much as it is about the aftermath of Desire. In electing an anti-hero as the main protagonist, Coetzee draws our attention to what human beings really are. Like Lurie, they go wrong and fall from their pedestals - simply because they are human, fallible, flawed creatures: "...how are the mighty fallen!" says a character in Disgrace. But, through sacrifice, love and compassion there is the hope of redemption, at least partial. This is the underlying Christian theme, the saving grace that lifts ordinary mortals to a higher plane, enabling them to have intimations of immortality in a world that is undeniably mortal.
Narrated in a bare minimalist style, spare and precise almost to a fault, the narrative does not falter or linger over superfluous words or emotions. There is no moralizing, no sentimentality or gimmickry. The author believes in understatement: his symbols are loaded, the power of suggestion is strong and unignorable. Indeed, Coetzee knows how to hold his readers' attention, how to write an award winning book, how to produce a masterpiece. We love it, even if the masterpiece is one that niggles at our conscience and makes us uncomfortable!
Manju Jaidka
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4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen "Graceful," in its way., 24. Juli 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Disgrace (Gebundene Ausgabe)
This book already has many excellent plot summaries and analyses of symbols on these pages, and certainly does not need additional ones from me. However, one aspect that I have not seen mentioned anywhere here is the importance of the title in giving additional significance to the book's various levels of meaning. It is here, I think, that the full measure of Coetzee's overriding vision of "dis-grace," or absence of grace, is most easily seen.
In its most superficial, obvious dictionary meaning of grace, the main characters' lives lack "beauty and charm," as they try to deal with the fates they've been dealt in the aftermath of apartheid (Lucy on her farm, Lourie in his changed college faculty position), their fates as the result of individual actions by other characters (Lourie and Melanie, Lucy and Pollux, et.al.), and their fates as the result of their own actions. The characters are also unsure, often, of what constitutes "right" or "proper" actions and often unable to make themselves do what they believe to be right. Their definitions of rightness itself have been called into question, and Coetzee's view of them and their fates is dark and uncompromising.
The characters lack "thoughtfulness" to others and show little "mercy" or "clemency" as they go about their lives. They often act spontaneously and selfishly. Lourie's behavior towards the dogs is more merciful than his behavior toward his fellow humans, and Coetzee may be offering this as a ray of hope for the future--one has to start somewhere to deal with the changing issues of power vs. compassion. Whites collectively abused power and Lourie individually abused the power of his faculty position; they cannot expect compassion from the people whose lives they affected, now that they are no longer in power.
Now that apartheid is officially over and a new black society is growing and, at times, exacting tribute for past abuses, one can say that the "grace" period has expired, something all too obvious to Lucy in her efforts to farm her land. Her decision to raise a child in this environment brings another sense of resolution, and possibly another a ray of hope. Unfortunately, one cannot help but wonder whether the grace of God will shine equally on all the characters, making them equally strong and pure of heart. One wonders how much an "eye for an eye..." will be the preferred judgment, both politically and in the personal lives of the characters.
Coetzee's prose is unadorned, plain, lacking in "grace notes" which give life and brilliance to music but which sometimes mask the message when applied to prose. It is probably not coincidental that Lourie's planned Byronic opera changes in the end from a broad, orchestral accompaniment to that of the honest and uncompromising plink-plink of a banjo. Somehow it seems not only appropriate but a "graceful" denouement to this complex book.
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5 von 5 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Südafrika kennenlernen, 28. September 2005
Von 
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Disgrace (Roman) (Taschenbuch)
Noch nie habe ich, selber Südafrikaner/Namibier, eine derartig dichte Darstellung des Dilemmas des weißen "Mannes" in der post Apartheid Era gelesen. Die Konfrontation mit Machtlosigkeit ist fast unerträglich, meiner Meinung nach aber korrekt, richtig, unerbittlich erfasst und jenseits hemingwayscher Konzentration konsequent. Herausfordernder als Malan "My traitor heart", eine Begegnung mit dem Untergang. Das Thema erfasst tiefste Schattenaspekte der Seele, schleudert Emotionen hoch, deren Bewältigung in Afrika - auch angesichts der Bewunderung vieler Schwarzafrikaner beispielsweise für Mugabe - vorrangig, existentiell ist.
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3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen The most thought provoking of novels, 24. Juli 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Disgrace (Gebundene Ausgabe)
Excited at the prospect of reading a serious, contemporary novel, I leapt into the first pages of "Disgrace". Making an episode of "Eastenders" look like a comic masterpiece, this novel is a dark, miserable and distressing piece of soul-destroying fiction.
Although I found lead character David Lurie's behaviour at the trial a little unlikely, the themes studied briefly around generation relationships, prostitutes and teacher-student confidence were at the very least thought provoking and at most mind blowing. The differences between the attitudes of the men and the women at the trial, for example, are massive and yet Coetzee sums them up in one small sentence that generates extensive thought from the reader.
It is Coetzee's very abrupt and sparse writing style that is the revelation of the book. The strong racial issue of South Africa is hardly ever touched upon, but the reader is made completely aware of its existence with hardly a word uttered. Lucy's attack at the farm is never described, but you know exactly what has happened. Or, more precisely, you know exactly what David knows which means you are thinking the exact thoughts of a father traumatized by his daughter's trauma. Brilliant.
So what is wrong with "Disgrace"? Although mine are rather small concerns, I fear they held back the book significantly. David's unusual behaviour, from start to finish, always left me frowning. I think David's fall from grace, engineered rather unlikely by himself, is simply too big. Surely an intelligent man would never have so little foresight to create his situation. Surely such a serial philanderer would never get a conscience as fast as David Lurie does. Surely a woman such as Lucy would never react to her situation as she does.
I found myself thinking more and more about what each situation symbolized rather than what was actually happening. Finding only tenuous links in my own mind left me feeling unsure of the whole plot and story. The worst culprit of this confusing symbolism is that which comes with the ending. I really do not know what Coetzee is trying to say in the last chapter or so. At least, what I have come up with seems weak.
It is for me a disappointing end to a fantastic book. From the start the reader knows that they are reading genius. Throughout the reader is swept along on a bed of human tragedy. But finally the reader is defeated by just too much being left unsaid by Coetzee.
I certainly recommend this book to anyone and I wish I could give it a really good score, but the author simply lost me too much.
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3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Brilliant exercise in melancholy, 31. Juli 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Disgrace (Gebundene Ausgabe)
I doubt I have ever come across a more melancholic book than this one. A man who doesn't have the spirit of his age, Voltaire once observed, gets all the unhappiness of his age. University lecturer David Lurie is an alien in the New South Africa, but as a teacher of poetry by dead male Europeans he would be an alien at any streamlined politically correct university in the Western world. He is in a state of personal crisis, too, as he does not get women's love for free anymore but finds he has to pay for it.
The beginning of the story in middle class Cape Town is not unconventional, but as Lurie leaves the city to stay with his daughter on her farm, the story gradually moves to heights of desolation. Lurie and his daughter are attacked and she is raped by their black neighbours - but she feels one has to accept this as part of the new order of things, and it doesn't keep her from working together with the men who raped her. Lurie finds this unacceptable and shows some bravery in confronting the attackers, but nobody understands him anymore.
Coetzee's language is simple and clear, without any pretentions. Its stark beauty suits the inner landscapes of despair which he depicts. The book ends on a note of profound resignation. Kafka once asked why people whose life is horrible don't change it. "It's because they can't do it; everything that is possible, happens after all; only that is possible which happens."
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13 von 15 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Ein spannendes, unterhaltendes und kritisches Buch., 23. April 2001
Von Ein Kunde
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Disgrace (Taschenbuch)
David Lurie ist Professor für romantische Literatur an der Universität von Kapstadt mit einer Vorliebe für schnelle Eroberungen. Seine jüngste Eroberung ist die schwarze Studentin Melanie, die eine seiner Vorlesungen besucht. Nachdem diese ihn wegen sexueller Belästigung anklagt, wird ihm nahe gelegt, zu künfigen. Lurie flieht zu seiner Tochter Lucy, die auf einem Bauernhof lebt. Einige Tage nach seiner Ankunft werden Vater und Tochter von drei Schwarzen überfallen und Lucy mehrfach vergewaltigt. Mit diesem Ereignis hat sich ein Abgrund zwischen den beiden geöffnet, der nicht mehr zu überbrücken ist. Lurie will, daß seine Tochter in die sichere Stadt umzieht, Lucy will auf dem Hof bleiben und sich mit den neuen Umständen arrangieren. Dieser Meinung bleibt sie auch, als einer der Vergewaltiger sich als Neffe des Verwalters ihres Hofes und sie selbst sich als schwanger herausstellt. Das Buch erzählt aber nicht nur die Geschichte von Lurie und seiner Tochter. Vielmehr handelt es sich um eine allegorische Schilderung des Schicksals Südafrikas. Schwarze gegen Weisse, die ehemals Unterdrückten mausern sich zu Unterdrückern. Alte Werte verlieren ihre Gültigkeit und wer sich früher sicher fühlte, verliert den Boden unter den Füssen. "Disgrace" ist ein spannendes Buch, dass sich zum einen als 'normale' Geschichte und zum anderen als komplexes Gesamtkunstwerk lesen lässt.
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2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Genial, 6. April 2007
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Disgrace (Roman) (Taschenbuch)
Coetzee ist ein virtuoser Schriftsteller und dies merkt man diesem Buch wahrlich an. Selten findet man ein Buch, dass sich durch ein solch konsequenten Schreibstil auszeichnet. Faszinierend ist es wie Coetzee dem Leser Schrecken und Horror beschreibt, ihn aber sogleich auf Distanz hält durch den Schreibstil. Verstärkt wird die Wirkung dieser Schreckensszenarien durch die Verwendung des Simple Presents, da hierdurch der Eindruck ensteht das Geschehene kehrt immer wieder und wird nie aufhören. Leider in der deutschen Übersetzung der größte Schwachpunkt dieses Werkes. Daher empfehle ich dieses Buch auf alle Fälle in Englisch zu lesen.

Disgrace ist meines Erachtens uneingeschränkt empfehlenswert und auf alle Fälle ein Buch, das einen noch lange beschäftigen wird.
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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Professor in der Midlife-Krise, 23. Mai 2013
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Rezension bezieht sich auf: Disgrace (Roman) (Taschenbuch)
Ich habe den Roman auf Englisch mit unruhiger Spannung gelesen und finde ihn gut gemacht. Vom Erscheinungsdatum ist er nicht mehr ganz neu, was aber der Lektüre keinen Abbruch tut.
Im ersten Teil geht es um den Hauptprotagonisten David Lurie,einen Professor im mittleren Alter (Anfang 50), der eine Studentin vergewaltigt und dafür seinen Universitätsjob in Südafrika quittieren muss. Dies scheint ihm nicht so viel auszumachen - er möchte, um Abstand zu gewinnen, für eine unbestimmte Zeit zu seiner erwachsenen Tochter "auf's Land" fahren, was sich als nicht ganz unproblematisch herausstellt, da ihre Lebensentwürfe auseinanderdriften (sie ist lesbisch, nicht verheiratet, kinderlos, er ist geschieden und ständig interessiert an jungen Frauen, die seine Tochter sein könnten).
Der zweite Teil befasst sich mit dem Zusammenleben von Vater und Tochter in der ländlichen Wildnis auf der Farm. Dem Vater gefällt Lucys Leben in der Einsamkeit nicht, weil er es für gefährlich hält. Diese Sorge wird an mehreren Stellen bedrohlich angesprochen, obwohl der schwarze Pächter und Nachbar Petrus ein Auge auf die Situation hat. Eines Tages wird die Farm tatsächlich von drei Männern überfallen, Tiere werden getötet und, was das Schlimmste ist, Lucy wird vergewaltigt. Das Thema wird lange tabuisiert zwischen den Beteiligten, Lucy zieht sich zurück und David geht wieder zurück nach Kapstadt. Als er erfährt, dass seine Tochter schwanger ist (man erfährt/weiß nicht, von wem der drei Täter, weil alle in Frage kommen),und das Kind behalten will, bricht für ihn eine Welt zusammen.
Das Ende ist offen, David lebt wieder auf dem Land, aber zu Lucy kann/will er nicht ziehen.
Die Orientierungslosigkeit eines doch gestandenen, intelligenten Mannes in der Midlife-Krise ist sehr anrührend, weil man auf der einen Seite mit ihm leiden kann, auf der anderen Seite aber auch kein Verständnis für sein Handeln/seine Vorurteile aufbringt, denn in die Anfangssituation mit der Studentin hat er sich willentlich selbst gebracht und Differenzen mit Lucy und den Mitarbeitern der Farm geht er auch nicht aus dem Weg.Er ist eigentlich ein Macho, der nicht viel fragt, sondern sich nimmt, was er gerade möchte, in jeder Hinsicht. Das macht ihn ein Stück weit zu einem unsympathischen Charakter.
Insgesamt ist das Buch sehr lesenswert.
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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen symbolism smothers some of the emotional impact, 3. Juli 2000
Von 
Ernest Joselovitz (Rockville, MD USA) - Alle meine Rezensionen ansehen
(REAL NAME)   
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Disgrace (Gebundene Ausgabe)
Coetzee's extraordinary skill, as shown in this book (my first of his), is in writing a book full of symbolic meanings through a precise realism. Except for one instance, there is no philosophizing beyond the limits of his limited main character. And it is about the new South Africa, from the point of view of an older Africaaner. His world seems to be turned upside down, with the dominance of whites over Blacks being overthrown and replaced by - for him - a kind of chaos of foreign-ness.
Coetzee tackles this rich material with symbolism, a complex network of contrasts and parallels, and suggestions of "applications" to that more generalized social and political milieu. So that Professor Lurie's "disgrace", his removal from his professorship because of a dalliance with one of his students is not unsimilar - we are to believe - from his daughter's being raped by three Black South AFricans. That he is a communications teacher has significance; that she is a lesbian has significance. That he helps Bev "put down" with humanity unwanted dogs whose owners are unwilling to sterilize them instead, has significance. That Lurie is middle-aged and urban, his daughter in the transitional generation and choosing a rural life, is significant. This is not to say that his novel is schematic, that is has the sort of one-for-one obvious symbolism. It is a symbolism of suggestion, of indirection. It is no more simple than the flawed main character. It is even beyond the simpler Blacks-good-Whites-bad viewpoint of a less precise and perceptive artist.
But it does make it seem, finally, intellectual. It does, finally, place a wall of the writer's making between the subject and the more direct emotions of the subject. It is, through the main character, rape without a response of active rage, being outcast without crying shame or outraged denial, a social system turned dreadfully upside down and inside out with a response of aging acceptance. So that it is, finally, not very exciting.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Can grace come from disgrace?, 12. Juni 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Disgrace (Gebundene Ausgabe)
I read this book the moment it became available in the United States, immediately upon its being chosen as the recipient of the Booker Prize. I had previously read all of Coetzee's novels except the first two. This particular novel is, in many ways, the bleakest, most uncompromising, hair-raising thing I have ever read. Coetzee does not comfort the reader, and he seems to find no consolation for the enduring and continually evolving horrors of the world in art, idealism, knowledge, or reason. In fact, most of the epiphanic moments in each of his novels seem to come from the most basic things in life: vegetables, animals, earth, sky, weather. Relationships with others are, at best, tenuous and fraught with pain, terror, guilt, remorse, and often, anger and an uncontrollable rage. Yet, at the same time, the writing is spare, lucid, and often surpassingly beautiful - at times, it is indeed overwhelmingly powerful. This book, like all of Coetzee's others, raises many more questions than it answers. And shouldn't this be the way art makes us react? Why read something that presents an "answer" or "solution" to you in a gift-wrapped (and therefore, false) format? I read to question myself and my own life and choices. Coetzee forces you to examine yourself, your beliefs, your emotions, fears, wants, "needs" and desires, your thoughts, your political sentiments, your relationships with yourself and with others (and that includes, on an equal basis, animals, of which group humans are the most consciously cruel, and at times, the most unconscious, members). His vision is comparable to Beckett's in his fiction - where comedy comes truly from pain and horror, and where one is forced to examine one's own reactions as a reader to the most minute detail and nuance. Read this book. It will enrich you as a living being. Months later, and it is still working on me, and inside of me.
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