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The Possessed: Adventures with Russian Books and the People Who Read Them von [Batuman, Elif]
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The Possessed: Adventures with Russian Books and the People Who Read Them Kindle Edition

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Länge: 305 Seiten Word Wise: Aktiviert Verbesserter Schriftsatz: Aktiviert
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Produktbeschreibungen

Pressestimmen

Praise for "The Possessed" “In her comic, poignant, beguiling book, Batuman succeeds marvelously in illuminating her version of love.” ―Reese Kwon, "Virginia"" Quarterly Review "“At every step along the way, Batuman’s observations are wonderfully vivid.” ―Julia Keller, "Chicago"" Tribune "“Odd and oddly profound . . . Among the charms of Ms. Batuman’s prose is her fond, funny way of describing the people around her . . . Perhaps Ms. Batuman’s best quality as a writer though―beyond her calm, lapidary prose―is the winsome and infectious delight she feels in the presence of literary genius and beauty. She’s the kind of reader who sends you back to your bookshelves with a sublime buzz in your head. You want to feel what she’s feeling.” ―Dwight Garner, "The New York Times Book Review "“It’s not surprising that some people never get over these books, and Batuman, for

Pressestimmen

Praise for "The Possessed"
“In her comic, poignant, beguiling book, Batuman succeeds marvelously in illuminating her version of love.” —Reese Kwon, "Virginia"" Quarterly Review
"“At every step along the way, Batuman’s observations are wonderfully vivid.” —Julia Keller, "Chicago"" Tribune
"“Odd and oddly profound . . . Among the charms of Ms. Batuman’s prose is her fond, funny way of describing the people around her . . . Perhaps Ms. Batuman’s best quality as a writer though—beyond her calm, lapidary prose—is the winsome and infectious delight she feels in the presence of literary genius and beauty. She’s the kind of reader who sends you back to your bookshelves with a sublime buzz in your head. You want to feel what she’s feeling.” —Dwight Garner, "The New York Times Book Review
"“It’s not surprising that some people never get over these books, and Batuman, for


Produktinformation

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 656 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 305 Seiten
  • Verlag: Granta Books (7. April 2011)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ASIN: B007RB6VEO
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Aktiviert
  • Screenreader: Unterstützt
  • Verbesserter Schriftsatz: Aktiviert
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen 1 Kundenrezension
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #407.729 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop)
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Format: Taschenbuch
I first met Elif Batuman's work when I read one of her reports in the New Yorker. 'Hm', I thought, 'she is a very talented writer, her writing is full of dazzling metaphors, spiced with humour and shrewd in a way that makes you stop and think'. So I bought her book and have just finished reading it. I was amazed. Gradually I became aware of the depth of her learning, not only on Russian literature but also on Turkish, Uzbek (a hundred words for crying - have you counted them, Elif?) on literary criticism, on hospitality, airlines, melons and humanity in general. The prose dips from Marxian zaniness (Groucho, not Karl of course) to deeply-felt responses to the descriptions of tragedy in Russian literature. What's it like reading Anna K in Russian, Elif? Did you respond to her death in a different way when you read the book in the original? What more can you wish for from a book than that it makes you think? Elif Batuman's book 'The possessed' does just that. Makes you think.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 3.8 von 5 Sternen 104 Rezensionen
6 von 6 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen An interesting voice and perspective 18. Mai 2011
Von Susan Meagher - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Verifizierter Kauf
I bought this book partially because of the cover. The cartoon is a HUGE clue that the book is going to be a different view of Russian lit. Batuman loves Russian literature for some of the same reasons I do. An outsider would say it makes no sense that's where our interests lie, but that's what's great about literature. You never know when a type or genre or style will appeal to you.

Some of the reviews here complain about the book being quirky or not serious enough. But if you think a serious work of Russian scholarship will have a cartoon cover--you've got your head up your butt!

The book is fun and offbeat and more of a memoir of a woman who's compelled to follow an odd academic path that anything else. It's for people who have a sense of humor as well as of the absurd.
3 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Read Deeply 7. April 2011
Von Keith W. Harvey - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
The impetus for writing springs from reading. Reading and writing are part of the same process. Robert D. Richardson in "First We Read Then We Write quotes Emerson":"There is then the creative reading as well as creative writing.Emerson's method of archaeology devolves from first choosing the word and then constructing the sentence. In choosing the word, 'a writer needs to get in as close as possible to the thing itself.' Emerson insisted that 'words do not exist as things themselves, but stand for things which are finally more real than words.'(Richardson 49) This belief, of course, is a form of idealism; an idealism that flows from Plato through the German Idealists to Emerson.In idealism ideas alone are real; man thinks the world; man is the center and nature is a form of dream or spirit of man. Emerson wrote: 'the Universe is the externalization of the soul.' When the poet writes he/she creates soul which gives birth to Nature.But first there is the reading and Emerson was a voracious reader, consuming anything and everything that fell within his reach. As Richardson notes he checked more books out of the library than he could read in the allotted time and we have a record of his charges to Boston Athenaeum, the Harvard College Library, and the Boston Society Library. From these records he read hundreds of books and of those books he re-read a favorite few over and over again.

I found myself thinking of Emerson and Richardson as I read Ms Batuman's book of essays about her adventures in reading, writing, and studying--first at Harvard and then at Stanford University. What becomes obvious is that she is passionately committed to language and reading and that her writing interests arise from her reading. She seems to be one of those persons whose reading becomes as important as everyday experience and colors and dominates the quotidian.As Cyril Connolly wrote: "Words are alive and literature becomes an escape, not from, but into living." My sense of Ms Batuman is that she has purposed to focus her attention on a deep reading of books and life rather follow what she calls a path of mimetic desire. She explicitly states her theme at the end of her introduction: "instead of moving to New York, living in a garret, self-publishing your poetry, writing book reviews, and having love affairs. . . .what if instead you went to Balzac's house, read every word he ever wrote, dug up every last thing you could about him--and then started writing? That is the idea behind this book."

And a very good idea it is, too. As she leads us through her studies of Russian literature, we discover increasingly interesting connections that prove that real life is indeed stranger than fiction. Two examples illustrate her project's purpose: in her chapter entitled "Babel in California," she recounts a find in her reading and researching of Babel's documents of a reference to a captured American pilot named Frank Mosher. Frank Mosher was an alias used by Captain Merian Caldwell Cooper, the creator and producer of the film King Kong. In the 20s he fought on the side of the White Russians and Poles against the Bolsheviks. With this information she finds a wealth of information that informs the making of the movie and its politics. In her final chapter, entitled "The Possessed," she uses her reading of Dostoevsky's Demons to explain one of the central ideas of the book: that desire for the other is the impetus behind our need to be the other. She uses this psychological phenomena to explain certain writers' choice to not only write but the manner and method in which they write. "Don Quixote, it turns out, doesn't really want any of his ostensible objects; what he wants is to become one with his mediator: Amadis of Gaul." (264) She continues by quoting René Girard, author of Deceit, Desire, and the Novel, who believes "mimetic desire is the fundamental content of the Western novel." And who also concludes that this mimetic desire in fiction leads to conflict and ultimately transcendence. As Girard concludes: "The hero sees himself in the rival he loathes; he renounces the 'differences' suggested by hatred."

Girard's thesis controls and supports the thesis of the book, which explains the conclusion. She writes:"If I could start over today, I would choose literature again. If the answers exist in the world or in the universe, I still think that's where we're going to find it."

If you like literature and traveling, this book is for you. However, there is much more to this collection: there is an almost metaphysical examination of writing, reading and their impetus. There is also the beginning of a trend; a whiff of the zeitgeist, signaling a change in the wind. In the world replete with escapist fiction and film, I feel a turning--a shift toward more serious subjects and a call for closer reading. As Coleridge once explained, there are four types of readers: the hourglass, the sponge,the jelly-bag,and the Golconda. Ms Batuman is obviously the latter; a Golconda is the reader par excellence--a person who, like a "high-grader," the person who goes through a mine and pockets only the richest lumps of ore.
4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Kindred! 18. Mai 2011
Von Kristin - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Verifizierter Kauf
I have had an inexplicable obsession with Russian literature and history since I first picked up Nicholas and Alexandra in the ninth grade. In recent years, the obsession has spiraled beyond control and into the realms of Anna Karenina-toting, Dead Souls-praising, Fathers and Sons-quoting beyond the bounds accepted in this particular subsection of society. This book was like a salve to the pain of my obsession with Russian books. I seriously loved it, read it straight through in two days, and recommended it to everyone I know who ever wanted to read War and Peace.

Very witty, snarky, enjoyable, great book.
5 von 6 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen The Possessed: Or how I learned to stop worrying and Read Russian Lit 29. Juli 2010
Von Sam - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
To be honest, I got this book on a whim. Having just gotten a Kindle as a present, and heading off to the former soviet union yet again after being there for 2 years ( I was only back in the US for about 6 weeks) I decided that instead of all the historical Non-fiction i read about this part of the world, why not read a book about the books I felt I could never read. After all, these books scared me. Have you seen their size? They make good anti-mugging tools, and the stories are grand on a scale the size of the country. How is one supposed to follow all the plots, and the dreams, and the dreams within the plots within the dreams within the balls?? Even though I have studied, lived and worked in this part of the world, I couldn't get into the literature.
That is, until I read this book. This book starts by explaining a love story of sorts that isnt even a "real Russian story", but to me thats what this book is, a great love story. Her adventures lead her all over the Russian landscape, both in books and in real life. They cause her to ask questions which are intrinsic to being Slavic it seems, "When you love someone, what is it that you actually love?" and "who actually killed a man many are 100% sure died because of a stroke". And listening to her talk with so much care in her heart for these books, which have scared me ever since I tried to read War and Peace in its original Russian and French double type, I began to see that my fear was wrongly placed. It was really in the rash move of a student who knew only little Russian to try and take on the Russian Epic.
Since picking up this book I have bought, or found, 25 russian books for my kindle or in properback (in english except for one) which I will be reading as I sit in the Post-Soviet world again, in my own version of a Summer in Samarkand.
To those who say its too expensive for a kindle I beg to differ. Her ability to get me interested in writers (who you can get almost all, if not all, of their books for Free from the kindle), to get me into the lives and discussions about the books, to basically show me the literary criticism field, all without me realizing what I was doing, is more than worth it. I hope she gets most of it, but even if she doesn't, I will be buying this book again.
1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen and ceaselessly funny book about academia 15. November 2015
Von RJ - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
A well written, bright, and ceaselessly funny book about academia, language, culture, and things about Uzbekistan you never knew you wanted to know.
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