Friday, May 04, 2007

Austrian Literature Blogs

While browsing yesterday I came across this wonderful collection of blogs about the turn of century Austrian culture and literature. Check the links on the right sidebar. There are lots of links to different blog posts on Musil, Schnitzler, Hofmmansthal and others.

I found this post on Man Without Qualities a little amusing. She calls it "superfluous", says she was "extremely bored" with it and that the hero Ulrich was "basically the same throughout the novel." "He began by not knowing what he wanted to do and ended the same way." hmmm, that doesn't sound too good, does it? It is quite true actually. I was desperately hoping for some solution of this problem of not knowing what to do too, some way of escaping from this "hovering life" as Musil calls it, but it seems there is no solution. I didn't quite finish the book, a few hundred pages were still left (I did read eleven hundred of them though) but the sexual-mystical stuff was getting a little too vague for me. I had to return the book back to the library anyway because I had kept it for so long. Will pick it up again sometime. It is also a little disappointing that not much of secondary literature about Musil is available in English. In my own rather smallish neighbourhood library there are shelves and shelves of books on Thomas Mann but not a single one on Musil.

There are also a few posts on the Stanley Kubrick film Eyes Wide Shut. I saw it again a few months back after reading the Arthur Schnitzler story Traumnovelle ("Dream Story") on which it is based and found it even worse than what I had remembered it to be. It is embarrassingly bad. The incomplete post should be somewhere in the drafts, will try to post it soon. The Schnitzler story itself is weaker than his other more famous works like Fraulein Else and Lieutenant Gustl which are both small masterpieces.


Jonathan Versen said...


bhaya said...

Everytime after losing myself in stream of mundane affairs of life for days, when I visit this blog, I painfully become aware of what I am losing while performing these insigficant tasks to better my subsistence in monetary terms.

Please keep this place alive. It reminds me that I am not keeping pace in this journey of consciousness.

Alok said...

bhaya: thank you, what a nice comment on the blog's second birthday :)