Sunday, December 19, 2010

Thomas Bernhard's "My Prizes: An Accounting"

What one considers to be the greatest writer in the German language and here he is pooping on all the major (and not minor) prizes in Austria he had won. The total distain, and moments of clear thinking, with a touching tribute of sorts to an old professor of his - is quite entertaining. 
The beauty (if one can call it that) is his clear vision of a silly world getting sillier. Cynical on a hysterical level, he is also a writer where you can feel the weather and the moment of his narrative. His detail observation on clothing he chose for particular award presentations is humorous, especially with his Aunt being his companion on his many adventures to the stage to receive one award or another. 
And it is fascinating how he sees the awards system as just another crazy wrench in the system. The book is a small and compact version of one man's hell. But for the reader (and I suspect Bernhard) a great adventure in the nutty world of prize giving.
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