Golem City: The arts and literature of Prague

KeskusteluThe Chapel of the Abyss

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Golem City: The arts and literature of Prague

Tämä viestiketju on "uinuva" —viimeisin viesti on vanhempi kuin 90 päivää. Ryhmä "virkoaa", kun lähetät vastauksen.

joulukuu 1, 2017, 6:19 pm

Prague is the spiritual epicenter for Mitteleuropa, a glorious crossroads of East and West. It has been the outpost of various and sundry imperial constructions (Hapsburg, Nazi, Soviet -- and further down the rabbit hole with Roman, Byzantine, and Hun empires). It also has a rich literary history, the names reading like a Greatest Hits Compilation: Kafka, Klima, Gustav Meyrink, Havel, and others. Umberto Eco wrote about The Prague Cemetery, a satire on anti-Semitic paranoia.

I recently finished The Combinations by Louis Armand, an 888 doorstopper that takes place in Prague. The plot involves the aimless wanderings of a schlemiel named Nemec and his dealings with his dead professor. There's also digressions involving Reinhard Heydrich, the Voynich Manuscript, Emperor Rudolf II, John Dee, secret police, a sexy redheaded librarian, a dwarf, secret cabals, a crossword puzzle, and a fake antiquities scam. It belongs to the long line of encyclopedic literary behemoths like Gargantua and Pantagruel, Ulysses, Europe Central, and Infinite Jest It's not just a book, it's an experience! (It was published by Equus Press. Their other recent publications includes a translation of Bataille's oddball text Louis XXX and a stream-of-consciousness tome by Philippe Sollers)

What is it about Prague that cultivates such a grand bouquet of visionary oddballs and paranoid freaks?

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