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The Death of the Adversary

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The Death of the Adversary Cover

ISBN13: 9780374139629
ISBN10: 0374139628
Condition: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Written while Hans Keilson was in hiding during World War II, The Death of the Adversary is the self-portrait of a young man helplessly fascinated by an unnamed “adversary” whom he watches rise to power in 1930s Germany. It is a tale of horror, not only in its evocation of Hitlers gathering menace but also in its heros desperate attempt to discover logic where none exists. A psychological fable as wry and haunting as Badenheim 1939, The Death of the Adversary is a lost classic of modern fiction.

Hans Keilson, born in Berlin in 1909, published his first novel in 1934. During World War II he joined the Dutch resistance. Later, as a psychiatist, he pioneered the treatment of war trauma in children. He lives in Bussum, near Amsterdam.

Written while Hans Keilson was in hiding during World War II, The Death of the Adversary is the self-portrait of a young man fascinated by an unnamed “adversary” whom he watches rise to power in 1930s Germany. It is a tale of horror, not only in its evocation of Hitlers gathering power but also in its heros attempt to discover logic where none exists. A psychological fable as wry and haunting as Badenheim 1939, The Death of the Adversary is a lost classic of modern fiction.

“Since Adolf Hitler, an outpouring of writing has tried to explain the violence that human beings do to one another . . . Perhaps the profoundest explanation to date comes from the pen of a Jewish writer driven from Germany in 1936 and now living in Holland. Hans Keilsons novel subtly and eloquently probes the ambivalent relation of victim with aggressor . . . Keilson traces the growth of hatred in his leading character as other writers trace love or self-knowledge.”—Time, Best Books of 1962

“A welcome reissue of a classic . . . This psychologically subtle and acute account of denial in the face of Hitlers rise to power received strong acclaim before disappearing from print. With the celebration last year of the 100th birthday of Keilson . . . the novel has lost none of its insidious power . . . The narrative recalls the existential depth of Camus and the fabulist absurdity of Kafka or Beckett.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“The power of the unsaid haunts this devastating novel . . . A profoundly affecting exploration of the inextricable nature of love and hate, friend and enemy, Keilsons work . . . is as stimulating today as it was half a century ago.”—Publishers Weekly

Synopsis:

Written while Hans Keilson was in hiding during World War II, The Death of the Adversary is the self-portrait of a young man helplessly fascinated by an unnamed “adversary” whom he watches rise to power in 1930s Germany. It is a tale of horror, not only in its evocation of Hitlers gathering menace but also in its heros desperate attempt to discover logic where none exists. A psychological fable as wry and haunting as Badenheim 1939, The Death of the Adversary is a lost classic of modern fiction.

About the Author

Born in Germany in 1909, Hans Keilson published his first novel in 1933. During World War II he joined the Dutch resistance. Later, as a psychotherapist, he pioneered the treatment of war trauma in children. He lives with his wife in Bussum, near Amsterdam, and recently celebrated his one hundredth birthday.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Deb Baker, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by Deb Baker)
A moving, fascinating read. Some parts are darkly humorous, others are tender to the point of being heartbreaking. When the novel ended, (an ending so beautiful and sad I thought about it for days), I felt the same aching emptiness I feel after a good cry. As for the scene where Keilson portrays a young German telling friends about participating in the desecration of a Jewish cemetery: I don’t think I’ve come across a more vivid, evocative, soul-searing description of the senselessness of violence in any novel. You understand as you read this passage how it might be that ordinary people are swept up in the brutality of war, and what it might feel like know that your community is the target of such blind, ugly rage.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780374139629
Author:
Keilson, Hans
Publisher:
Farrar Straus Giroux
Translator:
Jarosy, Ivo
Author:
Jarosy, Ivo
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Jewish
Subject:
Historical fiction
Subject:
Psychological fiction
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Edition Description:
Trade Paperback
Publication Date:
20100731
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
208
Dimensions:
8.31 x 5.46 x 0.575 in

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Jewish
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Sale Books

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Product details 208 pages Farrar Straus Giroux - English 9780374139629 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,

Written while Hans Keilson was in hiding during World War II, The Death of the Adversary is the self-portrait of a young man helplessly fascinated by an unnamed “adversary” whom he watches rise to power in 1930s Germany. It is a tale of horror, not only in its evocation of Hitlers gathering menace but also in its heros desperate attempt to discover logic where none exists. A psychological fable as wry and haunting as Badenheim 1939, The Death of the Adversary is a lost classic of modern fiction.

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