Wednesday, May 2, 2007

being dead


This is one of Jim Crace's best known novels and focuses on the lives, or better, the deaths of a middle aged biologists couple celebrating their anniversary. The description is quite extreme, an the narrator does not save any ideas or perceptions when enumerating the infinte steps of the decomposing bodies. The couple's daughter is a character that will give some twists (and turns), and Crace manages to surpass morbidity creating something peculiar: a mixture of decay as well as inspiration: beauty through a biological dissection. Reminds me of Foucault's The Birth of the clinic. The idea of death as segmentaion and endless stages... Reminds also to Horacio Quiroga's 'Hombre Muerto'

7 comments:

Nico said...

Forgot to tell that Joyce CArol Oates just published an article in the New Yorker on Jim Crace's new book. Apparently it isn't as challenging as the one posted!

Paola said...

yep. Foucault!!
"was it not enough simply to observe the dead as one observes the living and to apply to corpses the diacritical principle of medical observation?"

Nico said...

Yes Pao, you're right! Foucault's my idol. We should back to him permanently. Sometimes we spend so much time delving in other arenas, that we forget what illuminated us from the beginning!

Chris said...

I don't care for Foucault ... Grace, however, cuts to the very nerve centre of being

Nico said...

You're right! STill, it depresses me when people don't take notice of one's proteges!

Chris said...

Although, if truth be told, I did flirt with Foucault in a previous lifetime. We never consummated the relationship and I've since moved on to a less interpretivist ontology...

Nico said...

Chris, thanks for your feedback. Less interpretive? Are you sure? Or more wicked? Still, nice that you left Foucault for other wolves!