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McKay's Magazine (1952) : Critique du Bateau de Thésée par Edsel B. Grimshaw

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McKay's Magazine (1952) : Critique du Bateau de Thésée par Edsel B. Grimshaw

Message par Farlen le Ven 28 Fév - 15:38

McKay's Magazine (Fév. 1950)
Critique du Bateau de Thésée par Edsel B. Grimshaw



(Cliquez sur les images pour agrandir)
Source : Doug Dorst : https://twitter.com/dougdorst : Page 1 & Page 2 (19 déc. 2013)
Source : Jen Heyward (tumblr) : http://jenheyward.tumblr.com/post/77754362408 (24 fév. 2012)

Transcription du texte :
Article:
 
THE CIPHER’S PROGRESS: V.M. STRAKA’S

Ship of Theseus

Review by Edsel B. Grimshaw

  For decades it has been de rigueur to pair any mention of the late writer V. M. Straka with an epithet such as “mysterious,” “enigmatic,” “reclusive,” or “secretive.” I shall not abide by this rule, as I suspect the author’s obsessively guarded anonymity to have been a Barnumesque bit of humbuggery, calculated to inflate sales and to divert attention from the inconsistency of his work in both aesthetic and quality.

  It is fitting that the protagonist of Ship of Theseus, Straka’s posthumous nineteenth novel, is “S.” a man whose full name is withheld from readers and whose personality is no more in evidence than that of his creator. The book coaxes readers along a rudderless plod through noxious smoke and warped mirror, replete with inconsistent metaphor and queer, atonal event. Featured players in the cast of this absurd production include an evanescent Muse who flutters above the pages and alights at random intervals; a bearded behemoth who speaks in the dialect of that fantastical region known as Mish-mashia; a monkey shanghaied into the story but given little work to do; a magic boat; a magic burgoo; a bibliophilic crone; and a sinister puppeteer ostensibly fingering the strings of the narrative throughout. There was a time when the publication of a new Straka novel would be greeted with delight, outrage, even fear. Ship of Theseus confirms that that time has long since sailed.

  Straka’s best work was animated by the writer’s potent – if often irresponsible – political convictions and his proficiency with the muck-rake. Even if one’s nose was oft-twinged by the red fortor of Bolshevism gassing out from his words, one could respect his skill at intertwining it with compelling narratives. In his final years, though, his books took a turn toward the banal and self-absorbed. Consider, if you will, The Winged Shoes of Emydio Alves, a famous and ham-handed attempt at romance, and the book that followed, the bloated and incoherent Coriolis, which was either a disastrous literary experiment or a monument to muddle-brained narcism. In abandoning his greatest talent, Straka accelerated his desultory slide into old age and irrelevance, which finds its fullest expression in the book at hand.

  All of this might be forgivable if Ship of Theseus succeeded in delivering a modicum of entertainment to this reader (who’s full name I will conceal and represent simply as “I.”) Instead, it is a picaresque-macabre held together not by any particular theme or concern but by the obvious reuse of settings, events, and details deployed in earlier Straka books. It is a work of laziness and egotism by a writer who had resorted to cannibalizing his own work, a vulgar ouroboros of a novel, filled to bursting with apathy, anomie, and omphaloskepsis.

  Events that involve our man “S.” take place, of course, but even those that might engage a reader are executed with ponderousness, prevention, digressiveness, and superciliousness, in every way contemptuous of the reader’s desire. One particularly infuriating example comes when a bomb detonates in the midst of a labor riot. A truly engaged writer would have sent his protagonist running into the fray. Straka, however, gave us a “hero” who is knocked insensate, left to daydream pointlessly with adolescent dejection about unrelated matters while the carnage and strife that ostensibly rage around him do so offstage, unseen and unheard. The writerly offenses compound, chapter after chapter, undeniably with malice aforethought: a whiplash-inducing break in style two-thirds of the way through; laws of physics (and ontology) rearranged at the writer’s whim; plot contrivances that will outrage even the least-discriminating readers. As for the ending of Ship of Theseus, I shall appropriate a cliche from the text itself: the less said, the better.

  If only Straka had heeded such wise counsel. Instead, he took 450 pages to declare to the world that he had nothing more of interest to say. Further, he had the audacity to expect that people would pay for the privilege of listening to him do so. One is left to shake one’s head and ask: who did V. M. Straka think he was?
et des publicités :
Pub:
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(Source)

• Commentaire de Jen accompagnant les images :
Jen a écrit:McKay’s folded in 1952. No surprise, if this is what passed for literary criticism in its pages.
(« McKay a fait faillite en 1952. Pas étonnant, si cela passait pour de la critique littéraire dans ses pages. »)
• Il est fait mention de 450 p dans l'article, alors que l'édition américaine du Bateau de Thésée en compte 456. Peut-être que l'exemplaire lu par le critique avait certaines pages manquantes.
• Eric fait mention de cet article p 110 :
p 110, Eric a écrit:EDSEL GRIMSHAW DÉTESTAIT TOUT
PARTICULIÈREMENT CETTE SCÈNE. IL Y
VOYAIT UN DÉSIR DE SE DÉTOURNER DE
L'ACTION, « MÉPRISANT ENVERS LE
LECTEUR ».
C'est effectivement l'expression employée par Grimshaw dans l'article en anglais :
Edsel Grimshaw a écrit:Events that involve our man “S.” take place, of course, but even those that might engage a reader are executed with ponderousness, prevention, digressiveness, and superciliousness, in every way contemptuous of the reader’s desire. One particularly infuriating example comes when a bomb detonates in the midst of a labor riot.
• Une intéressante analyse du mot Omphaloskepsis utilisé dans l'article (en anglais).


Dernière édition par Farlen le Mer 5 Mar - 18:09, édité 9 fois

Farlen

Messages : 152
Date d'inscription : 19/02/2014

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Re: McKay's Magazine (1952) : Critique du Bateau de Thésée par Edsel B. Grimshaw

Message par Farlen le Mer 5 Mar - 1:48

Ajout de la transcription du texte :

Article:
   
THE CIPHER’S PROGRESS: V.M. STRAKA’S

 Ship of Theseus

Review by Edsel B. Grimshaw

   For decades it has been de rigueur to pair any mention of the late writer V. M. Straka with an epithet such as “mysterious,” “enigmatic,” “reclusive,” or “secretive.” I shall not abide by this rule, as I suspect the author’s obsessively guarded anonymity to have been a Barnumesque bit of humbuggery, calculated to inflate sales and to divert attention from the inconsistency of his work in both aesthetic and quality.

   It is fitting that the protagonist of Ship of Theseus, Straka’s posthumous nineteenth novel, is “S.” a man whose full name is withheld from readers and whose personality is no more in evidence than that of his creator. The book coaxes readers along a rudderless plod through noxious smoke and warped mirror, replete with inconsistent metaphor and queer, atonal event. Featured players in the cast of this absurd production include an evanescent Muse who flutters above the pages and alights at random intervals; a bearded behemoth who speaks in the dialect of that fantastical region known as Mish-mashia; a monkey shanghaied into the story but given little work to do; a magic boat; a magic burgoo; a bibliophilic crone; and a sinister puppeteer ostensibly fingering the strings of the narrative throughout. There was a time when the publication of a new Straka novel would be greeted with delight, outrage, even fear. Ship of Theseus confirms that that time has long since sailed.

   Straka’s best work was animated by the writer’s potent – if often irresponsible – political convictions and his proficiency with the muck-rake. Even if one’s nose was oft-twinged by the red fortor of Bolshevism gassing out from his words, one could respect his skill at intertwining it with compelling narratives. In his final years, though, his books took a turn toward the banal and self-absorbed. Consider, if you will, The Winged Shoes of Emydio Alves, a famous and ham-handed attempt at romance, and the book that followed, the bloated and incoherent Coriolis, which was either a disastrous literary experiment or a monument to muddle-brained narcism. In abandoning his greatest talent, Straka accelerated his desultory slide into old age and irrelevance, which finds its fullest expression in the book at hand.

   All of this might be forgivable if Ship of Theseus succeeded in delivering a modicum of entertainment to this reader (who’s full name I will conceal and represent simply as “I.”) Instead, it is a picaresque-macabre held together not by any particular theme or concern but by the obvious reuse of settings, events, and details deployed in earlier Straka books. It is a work of laziness and egotism by a writer who had resorted to cannibalizing his own work, a vulgar ouroboros of a novel, filled to bursting with apathy, anomie, and omphaloskepsis.

   Events that involve our man “S.” take place, of course, but even those that might engage a reader are executed with ponderousness, prevention, digressiveness, and superciliousness, in every way contemptuous of the reader’s desire. One particularly infuriating example comes when a bomb detonates in the midst of a labor riot. A truly engaged writer would have sent his protagonist running into the fray. Straka, however, gave us a “hero” who is knocked insensate, left to daydream pointlessly with adolescent dejection about unrelated matters while the carnage and strife that ostensibly rage around him do so offstage, unseen and unheard. The writerly offenses compound, chapter after chapter, undeniably with malice aforethought: a whiplash-inducing break in style two-thirds of the way through; laws of physics (and ontology) rearranged at the writer’s whim; plot contrivances that will outrage even the least-discriminating readers. As for the ending of Ship of Theseus, I shall appropriate a cliche from the text itself: the less said, the better.

   If only Straka had heeded such wise counsel. Instead, he took 450 pages to declare to the world that he had nothing more of interest to say. Further, he had the audacity to expect that people would pay for the privilege of listening to him do so. One is left to shake one’s head and ask: who did V. M. Straka think he was?

Farlen

Messages : 152
Date d'inscription : 19/02/2014

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Re: McKay's Magazine (1952) : Critique du Bateau de Thésée par Edsel B. Grimshaw

Message par Farlen le Mer 5 Mar - 2:20

Ajout :

• Il est fait mention de 450 p dans l'article, alors que l'édition américaine en compte 456. Peut-être que l'exemplaire lu par le critique avait certaines pages manquantes.

Farlen

Messages : 152
Date d'inscription : 19/02/2014

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Re: McKay's Magazine (1952) : Critique du Bateau de Thésée par Edsel B. Grimshaw

Message par Farlen le Mer 5 Mar - 2:42

Ajout :

• Transcription des pubs.

• Eric fait mention de cet article p 110 :
p 110, Eric a écrit:EDSEL GRIMSHAW DÉTESTAIT TOUT
PARTICULIÈREMENT CETTE SCÈNE. IL Y
VOYAIT UN DÉSIR DE SE DÉTOURNER DE
L'ACTION, « MÉPRISANT ENVERS LE
LECTEUR ».
C'est effectivement l'expression employée par Grimshaw dans l'article en anglais :
Edsel Grimshaw a écrit:Events that involve our man “S.” take place, of course, but even those that might engage a reader are executed with ponderousness, prevention, digressiveness, and superciliousness, in every way contemptuous of the reader’s desire. One particularly infuriating example comes when a bomb detonates in the midst of a labor riot.

Farlen

Messages : 152
Date d'inscription : 19/02/2014

Revenir en haut Aller en bas

Re: McKay's Magazine (1952) : Critique du Bateau de Thésée par Edsel B. Grimshaw

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