Title: PARTY IN THE BLITZ: THE ENGLISH YEARS - Rare...
Publisher: New York City, NY: New Directions, 2005
Book Condition: Fine
Dust Jacket Condition: Fine
Edition: 1st Edition.
1st Printing. 250 pages. Published in 2005. The author's fourth memoir, published posthumously. Review Copy. Review Materials laid-in. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions. Published in a small and limited first print run as a hardcover original only. The First Edition is now scarce. Presents Elias Canetti's "Party In The Blitz" in a felicitous English translation. "Found" memoirs of his (very) difficult years in Great Britain, brilliantly translated by Michael Hofmann. Bitter and therefore thoroughly riveting, Elias Canetti, a lifelong misanthrope and misogynist (there are subtle nuances between the two hatreds, especially in a writer as great as Canetti), resented being exiled to a country where no one knew him as the superlative equal of Hermann Broch and Robert Musil let alone as the "sui generis" writer who saw himself as modern German literature's incomparable savior-figure. He was not about to let his resentments go unpunished and undocumented, and wrote this memoir in his last years (after he finally won the Nobel Prize and became world-famous) : "He waited half a century to confront these memories, perhaps because 'in order to be truthful, I should have to track down every needless humiliation I was offered in England, and relive it as the torture it was'. Dissects that torture with unrestrained acerbity, recounting the ordeal of being in a new country where not a soul knew his writing. But not one to be ignored, 'the godmonster of Hempstead' (as John Bayley dubbed Canetti) soon knew everyone, and everyone knew him. Enoch Powell, Bertrand Russell, Iris Murdoch, Empson, Wittgenstein, Kokoschka, Kathleen Raine, Henry Moore, Ralph Vaughan Williams: Canetti knew them all, and he mercilessly rakes some of them over the coals. He detested T. S. Eliot and came to bitterly despise Iris Murdoch, with whom he had an affair: Every word of his devastating portrait of her quivers with rage" (Publisher's blurb). Despite what he may have thought, his hatred of Eliot was not surprising at all, just more proof of how universally despised Eliot was, by nearly every great British writer, thinker, and artist. His hatred of Dame Iris (who worshipped him and dedicated her novel, "The Enchanter", to him) is yet more heartbreaking proof of Canetti's incurable misogyny. And yet: "His exacting presence honors literature" (George Steiner). "When you write down your life, every page should contain something no one has ever heard about" (Elias Canetti). An absolute "must-have" title for Elias Canetti collectors. This is a Review Copy. It comes with a pristine copy of the Review Materials. This title is a late-modern classic. As far as we know, this is the only Review Copy of the First American Edition/First Printing available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a pristine beauty. A scarce copy thus. Winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1981. One of the greatest writers of the 20th century. A fine copy. (SEE ALSO OTHER ELIAS CANETTI TITLES IN OUR CATALOG) ISBN 0811216365. Bookseller Inventory # 17727
Synopsis: A stunning and unexpected new volume of Elias Canetti's autobiography. A surprise gift to celebrate the Nobel Laureate's 100th birthday.
Nobel Prize winner Elias Canetti, at 85, beset by the desire to come to terms with his years of exile in Britain, wrote Party in the Blitz. He waited half a century to confront these memories, perhaps because "in order to be truthful, I should have to track down every needless humiliation I was offered in England, and relive it as the torture it was." Party in the Blitz dissects that torture with unrestrained acerbity, recounting the ordeal of being in a new country where not a soul knew his writing. But not one to be ignored, "the godmonster of Hempstead" (as John Bayley dubbed Canetti) soon knew everyone and everyone knew him. Enoch Powell, Bertrand Russell, Iris Murdoch, Empson, Wittgenstein, Kokoshka, Kathleen Raine, Henry Moore, Ralph Vaughn Williams: Canetti knew them all, and in Party in the Blitz he mercilessly rakes some of them over the coals. He detested T.S. Eliot and came to bitterly despise Iris Murdoch, with whom he had an affair: Every word of his devastating portrait of her quivers with rage. "He must have been a frequent party-goer," as Jeremy Adler remarks in his excellent afterword, "to judge by the well-informed distaste with which he recalls them." Gorgeously translated by Michael Hofmann, Party in the Blitz lives up to Canetti's injunction that "when you write down your life, every page should contain something no one has ever heard about."
About the Author: Elias Canetti (1905-1994), Bulgarian-born author of the novel Auto-da-Fé, the sociological study Crowds and Power, and three previously published memoir volumes ( The Tongue Set Free, The Torch in my Ear, and The Play of the Eyes), won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1981.
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