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Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Yes (1978) by Thomas Bernhard

Austian writer Thomas Bernhard
Book Review
Yes (1978)
 by Thomas Bernhard

  Austrian author Thomas Bernhard is up there in your top 5 post Word War II German-language novelist/writer discussions.  He's not Gunter Grass or Krista Wolf famous, but his deeply weird and obsessive novels continue to resonate with aficionado's of post modern literature.   Like Correction, the other Bernhard penned book I've read thus far, Yes features an obsessive protagonist and is centered around suicide.

  Bernhard's prose resembles the experimental prose of writers in other languages, the constant rephrasing of mid career Beckett and the works of French writers from the Oulipo movement like Raymond Queneau and George Perec.  His narrators have a habit of repetition and rephrasing that is annoying, on purpose, I imagine.  It seems in terms of his themes and styles that Bernhard wants to challenge the reader, that he would be fine with an unhappy reader, because unhappiness is the natural state of the universe.

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