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The Finkler Question (Man Booker Prize) –…
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The Finkler Question (Man Booker Prize) (vuoden 2010 painos)

– tekijä: Howard Jacobson

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioMaininnat
2,3761304,728 (3.02)336
'He should have seen it coming. His life had been one mishap after another. So he should have been prepared for this one'. Julian Treslove, a professionally unspectacular and disappointed BBC worker, and Sam Finkler, a popular Jewish philosopher, writer and television personality, are old school friends. Despite a prickly relationship and very different lives, they've never quite lost touch with each other - or with their former teacher, Libor Sevick, a Czechoslovakian always more concerned with the wider world than with exam results. Now, both Libor and Finkler are recently widowed, and with Treslove, his chequered and unsuccessful record with women rendering him an honorary third widower, they dine at Libor's grand, central London apartment. It's a sweetly painful evening of reminiscence in which all three remove themselves to a time before they had loved and lost; a time before they had fathered children, before the devastation of separations, before they had prized anything greatly enough to fear the loss of it. Better, perhaps, to go through life without knowing happiness at all because that way you had less to mourn? Treslove finds he has tears enough for the unbearable sadness of both his friends' losses. And it's that very evening, at exactly 11:30pm, as Treslove hesitates a moment outside the window of the oldest violin dealer in the country as he walks home, that he is attacked. After this, his whole sense of who and what he is will slowly and ineluctably change. "The Finkler Question" is a scorching story of exclusion and belonging, justice and love, ageing, wisdom and humanity. Funny, furious, unflinching, this extraordinary novel shows one of our finest writers at his brilliant best.… (lisätietoja)
Jäsen:suesbooks
Teoksen nimi:The Finkler Question (Man Booker Prize)
Kirjailijat:Howard Jacobson
Info:Bloomsbury USA (2010), Paperback, 320 pages
Kokoelmat:Oma kirjasto
Arvio (tähdet):***
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The Finkler Question (tekijä: Howard Jacobson)

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englanti (126)  hollanti (2)  heprea (1)  katalaani (1)  ranska (1)  Kaikki kielet (131)
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 131) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
I'm reading all the winners of the Booker Prize since its inception. Follow me at www.methodtohermadness.com

Let me clear this up right away: “Finkler,” in this novel, is a character’s code word for Jew. Julian Treslove has two Jewish friends, and falls in love with a Jewish woman. In fact, after being mugged by a woman who says something that he hears as “You Jew,” he begins to think he is Jewish.

The Jewish characters help explore the two sides of the Zionist debate, and it is clear which side Jacobson wants us to be on. Sam Finkler is a pop culture philosopher who joins the Ashamed Jews, who protest the Isreali takeover of Palestine and particularly Gaza. Finkler is an empty, clownish figure, whose wife cheats on him with his friend Julian. Finkler’s wife tells her husband to get off his high horse: now that Isrealis have their own country, “they are now just ordinary bastards, half right, half wrong, like the rest of us.”

The other Jewish characters, Julian’s friend Libor and lover Hephzibah (aka Juno), are more interested in simply being Jewish and celebrating the positive. Hep is working on opening an Anglo-Jewish culture museum, which she insists is NOT another Holocaust museum. I liked Hep more than any of the male characters, by the way.

However, the fact that the author uses Finkler’s name in the title to stand in for Jewish, and not one of the other two characters’ names, seems to indicate that the world sees Jewishness in the negative way represented by Finkler. It’s an interesting story of friendship and love and I learned a lot about anti-Zionism, though I still don’t feel well informed enough to take sides.
( )
  stephkaye | Dec 14, 2020 |
Got to page 72. Not my cup of tea. ( )
  GeoffSC | Jul 25, 2020 |
Parts were great, parts were really annoying.

Great: some insights into issues of Jewish identity.

Really annoying: main character, a whiny non-Jewish schlimazel who decides that he's actually Jewish after an odd incident that I won't bother describing; some of the supposedly comic elements which just irritated me.

I can understand, I suppose, why it won the Man Booker Prize, because some reviewers could tell themselves it said something deep about the modern Jewish condition. It's worth reading for people with an interest in that subject, but I can't say that I "really liked" it. ( )
  Robert_Musil | Dec 15, 2019 |
I was intrigued by this book, but not at all sure what to expect when I picked it up. There are many negative reviews on this site lambasting The Finkler Question for being not funny, for overusing stereotypes, for being another Jewish novel about Jews. Contrary to expectations I found the book delightful, sad, funny, and truthful. Despite being a gentile, I found myself identifying with the "Finklers" as a person who is of a certain cultural group who can find much at fault with many others of the same culture yet belongs with them. ( )
  carliwi | Sep 23, 2019 |
Interesting description he has for the BBC, (Auntie is not it...) and his reasons are more so: counter conformism, etc, yet I did not feel motivated, perhaps due to the tone of the book, to keep reading. Maybe my sympathy for the protagonist fell after a few pages of his dour attitude, though I am not generaly one for light and fluffly nor for happy face work either. I don't know. ( )
  FourFreedoms | May 17, 2019 |
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 131) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
Fans of Howard Jacobson might be alarmed to discover that the main character in his latest novel is a Gentile. As it turns out, though, they needn’t worry. Julian Treslove may not be Jewish, but in most other respects he’s a typical Jacobson protagonist: a middle-aged man much given to tears, self-interrogation, a sense of imminent doom, falling heavily in love and regarding his male friends as his male rivals. Above all, he’s obsessed with Jews and Jewishness.
 
The Finkler Question (longlisted for this year's Man Booker prize) is full of wit, warmth, intelligence, human feeling and understanding. It is also beautifully written with that sophisticated and near invisible skill of the authentic writer. Technically the characterisation is impeccable, the prose a subtle delight, the word selection everywhere perfect, the phrase-making fresh and arresting without self-consciousness. Indeed, there's so much that is first rate in the manner of Jacobson's delivery that I could write all day on his deployment of language without once mentioning what the book is about. A single line describing the hero's father will have to do: "a man who stood so straight that he created a kind of architectural silence around himself".
 
The Finkler Question is very funny, utterly original, and addresses a topic of contemporary fascination. That is to say, it is about the anguish of middle-aged men, it consists of a series of loosely arranged episodes rich in argument and incident, and it examines how Jews now interrogate their relations with Israel.

It puts in play a gentile fascinated by Jews, and his two Jewish friends, one a Zionist comfortable in London, and the other an anti-Zionist comfortable in his outrage. They engage with each other in sometimes moving, sometimes bathetic ways, making their own journeys of self-understanding while they exasperatedly strive to educate each other.

The anti-Zionist Jew is called Finkler, hence the title of the novel. The "question" of "Finkler" is today's version of the "Jewish question". At the end of the 19th century, Jews asked of themselves, and were asked, "What is the future of the Jewish people?" At the end of the 20th century, this question had been reformulated as "What is the future of the Jewish state?" In Jacobson's book, Finkler dwells among those miscellaneous Jews who answer the question in versions of condemnation of Israel, Zionism, and Judaism.
 
The Finkler Question is a terrifying and ambitious novel, full of dangerous shallows and dark, deep water. It takes in the mysteries of male friendship, the relentlessness of grief and the lure of emotional parasitism. In its insistent interrogation of Jewishness – from the exploration of the relationship between the perpetrators of violence and hatred and their victims, to the idea of the individual at once in opposition to and in love with his or her culture – it is by turns breezily open and thought-provokingly opaque, and consistently wrong-foots the reader. For Treslove, the committed shape-shifter with little really at stake, such demands unsurprisingly prove rather too much. "Would he ever get to the bottom," he wonders, "of the things Finklers did and didn't do?"
 

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Tekijän nimiRooliTekijän tyyppiKoskeeko teosta?Tila
Howard Jacobsonensisijainen tekijäkaikki painoksetcalculated
Lange, Barbara deKääntäjämuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Mann, DavidKannen suunnittelijamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Rey, Santiago delKääntäjämuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu

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He should have seen it coming. His life had been one mishap after another. So he should have been prepared for this one.
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Englanninkielinen Wikipedia (1)

'He should have seen it coming. His life had been one mishap after another. So he should have been prepared for this one'. Julian Treslove, a professionally unspectacular and disappointed BBC worker, and Sam Finkler, a popular Jewish philosopher, writer and television personality, are old school friends. Despite a prickly relationship and very different lives, they've never quite lost touch with each other - or with their former teacher, Libor Sevick, a Czechoslovakian always more concerned with the wider world than with exam results. Now, both Libor and Finkler are recently widowed, and with Treslove, his chequered and unsuccessful record with women rendering him an honorary third widower, they dine at Libor's grand, central London apartment. It's a sweetly painful evening of reminiscence in which all three remove themselves to a time before they had loved and lost; a time before they had fathered children, before the devastation of separations, before they had prized anything greatly enough to fear the loss of it. Better, perhaps, to go through life without knowing happiness at all because that way you had less to mourn? Treslove finds he has tears enough for the unbearable sadness of both his friends' losses. And it's that very evening, at exactly 11:30pm, as Treslove hesitates a moment outside the window of the oldest violin dealer in the country as he walks home, that he is attacked. After this, his whole sense of who and what he is will slowly and ineluctably change. "The Finkler Question" is a scorching story of exclusion and belonging, justice and love, ageing, wisdom and humanity. Funny, furious, unflinching, this extraordinary novel shows one of our finest writers at his brilliant best.

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