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Leah Remini. James Cameron W. The Time of My Life. Patrick Swayze. What other items do customers buy after viewing this item? Wendy Leigh. See all free Kindle reading apps. Don't have a Kindle? No customer reviews. Share your thoughts with other customers. Write a customer review. Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon. Jakob Fabian is a graduate in German studies, and earns his living as an adman in a cigarette factory called a "propagandist" in the book.
He lives for rent in a single furnished room—money is available but scarce. For certain reasons Fabian loses his job and has to join the vast ranks of the unemployed. Fabian's best and only friend is Stephan Labude, who, after five years, finally submitted his habilitation dissertation about Lessing. Fabian and Labude are doing pub tours, crack jokes, visit music halls. In an artist's studio Fabian meets a young woman, Cornelia Battenberg, and gets to know and finally love her.
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Der Autor weist wiederholt auf die anatomische Verschiedenheit der Geschlechter hin. Er deutet wiederholt jenen Vorgang an, den man, temperamentloserweise, Beischlaf nennt. Der Autor erwidert hierauf: Ich bin ein Moralist! The author repeatedly points out the anatomical difference between the sexes.
He lets completely naked ladies and other women walk around in different chapters. He insinuates, repeatedly, the process spiritlessly called coitus. He does not even hesitate to mention abnormal varieties of sexual life. He refrains from anything that could cause the censors to remark: This man is a dirty pig. To this the author replies: I am a moralist! Dieses Buch nun hat keine Handlung. Es wird nichts wiedergefunden. Now this book has no plot. Except for one, an employment endowed with two hundred and seventy marks a month, nothing gets lost. No wallet, no pearl necklace, no memory, or whatever else gets lost in the beginning of stories and is found again, to the general satisfaction, in the last chapter.
Nothing is found.
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The author considers the novel by no means an amorphous genre, and yet he has not used, here and this time, the bricks for building. One might almost suspect that this was done on purpose. I see more of an imminent danger of a civil war and the related total dissolution of civilization. Also the Berlin of the Weimar period, which is alternatively referred to in the book as a madhouse, Sodom and Gomorrah, den of iniquity, or men's brothel reminds me of the decadent Rome shortly before its demise.
Stylistically, this book is a farce, a caricature. You see the figures often only in a distorting mirror. The dialogs tend to be witty and humorous, but of the dry, sometimes salacious variety. So is the prose. This kind of expression I have never seen elsewhere. You can tell the author has also been a gifted poet. Die Lehrer waren fort. Der Stundenplan war verschwunden. The teachers were gone. The timetable was lost. The old continent will not achieve the goal of the class. Es wird dadurch nicht leichter. It won't become easier through that.
There are some—not many—scenes of considerable brutality in this book, and I don't like to talk about those here. In addition this book in the damned eighteenth chapter contains a scene which brings me to tears. A tremendously unnecessary injustice!
Fabian: Die Geschichte eines Moralisten
And for the character who caused it I feel an almost physically manifested hatred. I mention this only because I usually do not suffer particularly with the characters of a novel. I am more like a cautious observer, much like Fabian himself in his own way. But chapter eighteen and then later chapter twenty bring me down, they really do. In the end I would like to touch on the ending. I admit it took my a little while to get used to it.
Now I think, however, it is perhaps—no definitely—the best ending of a book that I have ever read. Well done! View all 17 comments. My booty on a recent trip to Berlin was more yarn than print, but this was one of the books that made it into my bag for the trip home.
I bought it from St George's English bookshop and if you would like more detail about the wonderful bookshops in Berlin, I wrote something about them here. It has a quote on the back from The Times Literary Supplement Damned for its improper subject matter, Going to the Dogs showed the crumbling Berlin of Christopher Isherwood's stories with something of Isherwood My booty on a recent trip to Berlin was more yarn than print, but this was one of the books that made it into my bag for the trip home.
It has a quote on the back from The Times Literary Supplement Damned for its improper subject matter, Going to the Dogs showed the crumbling Berlin of Christopher Isherwood's stories with something of Isherwood's sharp intelligence, but a far more tragic sense of implication. It's a comparison I'm looking forward to making for myself, having acquired the relevant Isherwood volume, also a slim affair, at the same time.
In he is well aware that he is watching the downfall, the disintegration, the degeneration of Europe. It's horrifying to be aware, reading it now, and seeing the ways in which it compares with Europe now, that there was no hindsight on the author's. He was calling it as he saw it day by day. View all 6 comments. Mar 10, Sandra rated it it was amazing Shelves: read-in , classics , in-german , uni. I've had to read several books for the university so far, but I enjoyed this the most.
It's cleverly done and I feel that it could be applied to today's society as well, so it has a sense of timelessness to it. A child falls into the water, and Fabian goes to save the child, very heroic. And then: "Fabian I've had to read several books for the university so far, but I enjoyed this the most. And then: "Fabian ertrank. Er konnte leider nicht schwimmen. Sadly, he couldn't swim. I was just sitting there like: ".. View 1 comment. Very reminiscent of Isherwood's Berlin Stories, except this one is much bleaker and from a German.
The great thing about this book is it is not really a witness to the rise of Nazism, though it of course is, because it is so absurd, and the narrator is so cynical, while reading it is hard to trust what he Fabian is telling us. In fact one almost suspects Fabian himself doesn't believe what he sees and recounts. And who can blame him, Weimar Berlin must have been a pretty surreal place to live. And it reminds me of Alexanderplatz in that it is not totally a political novel but one interested in the actions and psychology of the characters.
And what are we to make of Fabian? Well, at heart he is a moralist, and proves it in the end. Any reading of this book as a critique of the passivity of German liberalism in the wake of Nazism, and definitely it like in Isherwood is here, is totally wrong. Does Fabian know how to fix his country or city? No he bloody well doesn't. Do you? Should he have tried harder? Perhaps, but this book was written in , before the extent of the evil to come was known and the most common "action" among leftist intellectuals like Fabian was probably to flee.
Fabian doesn't know what to do, and he sees the evil even in his best friends. I'm no Arendt expert but could the banality of evil be represented by a young girlfriend sleeping with an ugly old movie producer to get a break and make some dough? This kind of stuff is depressing. It's one thing to rail against the political powers, another to hear the awful compromising and downright immorality of your friends, colleagues, and age group.
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And Fabian sees a lot of this everywhere he goes. But though Fabian is a moralist, he is not perfect. And though he might damn those who sell their bodies for money, he isn't much better himself. And knows it. This book does feel like Grosz or Ernst or whatever Neue Sachlichkeit painter is in vogue at the moment. It really is a literary expression of the same thing. Gross but clear. Absurd but honest. Humans doing inhuman things to each other. This book is a true literary classic of the Weimar era.
I'm surprised it's not more popular. Feb 05, Lina rated it it was amazing Shelves: hilarious-protagonist , german-edition , girls-just-wanna-have-fun , protagonists-i-actually-cared-for , own-a-copy. Funny, smart, provocative. Yes, that was the entire review.
Live with it. View 2 comments. I do not find this book funny, although many people around here mention just that about it. I found it sad, and terrible, and great, and I loved Fabian, I can totally understand his view. I found it may things but not really funny. Maybe something is wrong with me, or maybe I find that te world is in crisis, my country is in crisis, life has a different value now, and this book describes a crisis which happens in a very different moment in the world, but maybe not so far from things that happen I do not find this book funny, although many people around here mention just that about it.
Maybe something is wrong with me, or maybe I find that te world is in crisis, my country is in crisis, life has a different value now, and this book describes a crisis which happens in a very different moment in the world, but maybe not so far from things that happen now. This book has many descriptions of sexuality, that to me is the least important part, but I can understand that when it was published it was a really big deal, and maybe took some value away from what it is trying to say. What I can recognise is maybe the lack of value one gives to life, when there is a crisis, call it economic, or political, call it social tension, call it what you like.
It is more of a sad book, and maybe I find it sad, because in this very moment the world seems dark to me in many ways, and this book describes what happens to people when they really don't know where to go, or when everything they do really seems not to make any difference in the large scheme of things. Very recommend read.
In this case, the protagonist, Fabian, is a recent college graduate without much direction who finds himself mixed up with the teeming underbelly of Berlin society. From prostitutes to beggars to corrupt politicians, Fabian observes those around him with a degree of distance. From there, his idea of a moral life is challenged repeatedly, and he must come to terms with his own beliefs. In a bordello one evening, Fabian meets Cornelia Battenberg, a spurned woman who is pessimistic about love.
They fall into bed together that night and begin a cautious, but passionate relationship. Fabian is constantly confronted with signs of failing social norms: he watches as newspapers print blatant lies daily; is offered a job writing for a right-wing news organization; and sees how the film industry is controlled by those with money and power. Fabian is one of the only society novels of the late s, which makes it unique. It documents the rise of Nazism by describing the decline of empathy and moralism. Some were translated, but their popularity never really took off in the US. He watched as his books, including Fabian, were labeled degenerate and burned outside of libraries across the country.
He watched the country rebuild itself from the ashes. And still, he stayed. It is a fast read, and one full of symbolism. Feb 08, Leah rated it it was amazing Shelves: reviewed , german-classics. A great portrait of the city Berlin during the Weimar Republic! The book is set right before the downfall fo the Weimar Republic, with all the political tensions and the morals slowly collapsing, women who gave up on love and just use sex, men without work, just coffee houses and brothels. And right in the middle, there is Jakob Fabian, an unemployed germanist and moralist. For me, this book delivers a great and impressive portray of the desperate time after the global economic crisis from A A great portrait of the city Berlin during the Weimar Republic!
All the characters seemed kinda helpless and without perspective. While reading, I started to feel their desperation and could fully understand why extremism grew in this city. I could imagine every monument they passed and after reading had a better impression of Berlin which I last visited in and never in the 30's, of course. I also loved how women were presented in the book. While at first they seemed strong, confident and liberated, you saw that this was just a mask and in reality they were disappointed by life and men.
I especially loved the end and how it all fit together. In addition I liked the style of writing and even in sad occasions, and there are many in this book, I had to laugh because of the sarcastic tone the book is set in. If you love Berlin, I definitly recommend this book. I was really excited before reading it if it would differ from his children books. And I was not disappointed. His work is highly developed in style, sarcastic in tone and criticises the society in a way that makes you laugh at first and then think.
I have been reading German fiction in translation and this novel by the author of Emil and the Detectives appeared on one of those "If you have read this then you might be interested in Weimar Germany has fascinated me since I saw Cabaret as an impressionable teen in , so I picked up the novel eager for an insider view of the period. I didn't read the introduction until after finishing the book which turned out to be a wise decision because it contains major spoile I have been reading German fiction in translation and this novel by the author of Emil and the Detectives appeared on one of those "If you have read this then you might be interested in I didn't read the introduction until after finishing the book which turned out to be a wise decision because it contains major spoilers, though it has useful background and criticism.
Kastner shows the decadence of Weimar Berlin hurtling towards destruction. The novel is suffused with a sense that something awful is about to happen- it was published in which makes this quote the context is a dream chillingly prescient: In front of them towered a machine as vast as Cologne Cathedral. Before it were standing workmen, stripped to the waist. They were armed with shovels, and were shoveling hundreds of thousands of babies into a huge furnace where a red fire was burning.
Fabian the main character observes what is happening around him as his own life lurches from struggling, as a poorly paid, under-appreciated advertising copywriter, to hopelessness when he is cast into the rapidly swelling ranks of unemployed: German society rewards cynics and opportunists not the decent and kind.
He is a likeable character for all his faults, a good friend and dutiful son. Not a lighthearted novel but easy to read and quite funny, though overall quite a sad book. Definitely something to look for if you have any interest in this period.