Monthly Archives: December 2019

The Idiot: A History of the Story

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In his Nobel Prize lecture Peter Handke spoke about stories from his childhood that formed him and that still accompany him as a writer. One of them appeared in his Der kurze Brief zum langen Abschied, 1972: Er fing zu … Continue reading

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Not “Schadenfreude” but “diebische Freude” — solidarity among thieves in Peter Handke’s Die Obstdiebin — The Fruit Thief

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The break between semesters opens up free time for walks and reading and the contemplation that can attend both. I find myself turning to Peter Handke’s novel Die Obstdiebin, published in 2017 but only now drawing my sustained attention, turning to … Continue reading

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Images on the Solstice: From Peter Handke’s Novel “The Fruit Thief” (Die Obstdiebin)

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Images arise deep within himself, the narrator writes, and describes them with a single sentence I’ll translate here as solstice work, on a day following a week of darkness and anxiety, on a day the sun stands still (sol-stice) and … Continue reading

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Handke’s Characters: Never Black, Never White — New York Times

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The essay today in the New York Times about Peter Handke and his work and the Nobel Prize and the controversy surrounding it is more thorough and thoughtful than most recent responses. The headline is atrocious, and it’s too bad that … Continue reading

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Attempt to Exorcize One Story By Means of Another

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Driving home last night with my son Tom after having seen Trent Harris’ disturbing film about Pol Pot’s devastation of Cambodia and a young man caught up in the genocide as a child, a man working in the aftermath to … Continue reading

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Peter Handke’s Nobel Prize Speech

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The Nobel Prize organization has posted a film that shows Handke delivering the speech yesterday (wearing a shirt he has added embroidery to). Below the film are links to translations of the speech into English and Swedish. See the film … Continue reading

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it can fool me but once

My mother, Janice Hilton Abbott, died on December 3, just four weeks before her 91st birthday. I’ve been looking at photos, reading things she wrote, remembering. Sunday morning, just four days ago, I sat next to the bed where she … Continue reading

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