Peter Handke's Absence PDF

By Peter Handke

Translation by means of Ralph Manheim

Amazon description:

The time is an unspecified modernity, where almost certainly Europe. Absence follows 4 anonymous humans -- the outdated guy, the lady, the soldier, and the gambler -- as they trip to a desolate desert past the boundaries of an unnamed city.

A very attention-grabbing Library magazine evaluation, that still turns out keen on my eventually Schopenhauerian view of library upkeep (however, its prejudice opposed to "slim volumes" is eventually undeserved).

From Library Journal
Four characters, pointed out purely because the previous guy, the lady, the Soldier, and the Gambler, shuttle to a distant barren region bordering on an unnamed urban. Seasons swap in a single day, the outdated guy disappears, and the laptop he consists of seems to be to the soldier in a dream, yet regardless of evocative prose there's little course right here, simply curious moments and a obscure unease. Handke expects his readers to swallow every one descriptive element during this interminable trip, even if it merits curiosity--or has any significance--or now not. In his final novella (at simply over a hundred pages we should always now not overrate those narrow volumes), the protagonist's stories shed a few gentle at the book's identify ( Afternoon of A author, LJ 9/1/89). Absence , unluckily, is totally real to its title.
- Peter Bricklebank, urban Coll., CUNY

and a way more neutral review:
From Publishers Weekly
German writer Handke ( Afternoon of a author ) enlarges the recurrent metaphysical preoccupations of his prolific output during this most recent tough and profitable novel. The story's 4 anonymous protagonists meander via a surreally disconnected and flattened panorama. An outdated artist, a gambler blind to himself, a callow soldier whose self-effacing "absence" is a security opposed to the realm, and a useless girl whose frantic mirror-staring fails to make her current to herself, "roam"--as the novel's epigraph from Chuang Tzusp okay places it--"in the palace of Nowhere, the place all issues are one." As they wander throughout a virtually featureless northern simple, the earlier, current and destiny develop into one and the characters' insubstantial identities cave in into each other. but if they discover legible symbols within the surrounding blankness and skim them with conviction, the panorama springs into recognizable existence and the characters notice their energy. during this easily written delusion, Handke forcefully summons readers to the popularity that the essence of human existence lies within the striving for self-expression even supposing its ideal recognition should always stay elusive.

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Additional info for Absence

Example text

He seems to have doubled back. And, indeed, the vapor trails in the sky are moving in a different direction, a cigarette butt is rolling in an­ other, a young m usic student is walking in another with her instrument case, and a toy motorcar, controlled by an invisible hand, is careering across the asphalt in still another. ” T he train in the middle of the city, two steps from the department store, also seems like a toy. There isn’t any station, the tracks it is standing on merge with a marketplace right after the last car, and this enhances the toylike impres­ sion.

T he blades are transparent and clearly show their fine ribs running all the way to the tips, and the shadow of one blade falls on the next blade’s trail of light. The longer we look at the clum p as it trembles, shakes, and sways, the more sounds converge in it, each connected to the next— the screech of the crow overhead, the train whistle on the horizon, the beating of carpets in the housing development, the rat-tat-tat of the rifle range — and in the end we get the impression that the sounds of a cosmos are being made in the center of the clum p, in its roots.

He breaks into a slow run, which doesn’t even make the falcon in its nest turn its head. Running, the gambler turns around from time to time and looks at his surroundings. Barely a moment seems to have passed and already he sees the first sign of hum an life, a slip o f paper that scouts have stuck on a bramblebush. ” He turns in a different direction and a moment later sees an­ other slip with the sam e words, this one in the vicinity of som e houses, woven into the wire mesh of a trash container.

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Absence by Peter Handke


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