A collection of short stories that cover a range of philosophical concerns, including cultural imperialism, political and sexual repression, and the impact of technology on culture.
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Gail Jones currently teaches at the University of Western Australia. Her book Fetish Lives was published by George Braziller in 1998.From Publishers Weekly:
This collection of 14 intellectually engaging, intricately wrought stories won several literary prizes in Australia, where it was published by Fremantle Press in 1992. These short adventures of the self often have a visionary or mythic flavor, and are as densely layered with meaning and metaphor as dreams. A sense of dislocation or disorientation besets many of the protagonists as they find themselves unfixed in place and time, in conflict with a historical past or present. A girl from a small Russian village in "Modernity" visits Moscow in 1920 and, "like the poets," experiences the unsettling "metaphysics of fragments" when she sees her first film. In "Touching Tiananmen," a tourist longs for the China of "Orientalist cliches" in which she has believed before her visit to the famed square, where she encounters a human reminder of its recent history. The "inexperienced young traveler" of "Other Places" befriends two homosexual lovers involved in East Timor's political struggle in the '70s; she cannot image "the ways in which the individual kiss... might be installed and respected in the larger occurrences of a country's history." Characters in these tales often seek comfort, stability or revelation through words--narrative, literature, verbal recollection. But "words neat and black, and absolutely certain" can betray, as in the story "Dark Times," where a foreign scholar's infatuation with English poetry leads to his imprisonment in his own land. Jones's (Fetish Lives) tales could be read for the sheer enjoyment of her unusual, eclectic subject matter and her poetic technique. Yet the very precision of her language and her brilliantly expressive imagery encourage the reader to consider the deeper meanings of the text.
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Book Description Persea Books, 2000. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0807614556