Disgrace: A Novel

┷ Disgrace: A Novel Online Read ▃ ePUB Author J M Coetzee ► ┷ Disgrace: A Novel Online Read ▃ ePUB Author J M Coetzee ► ONEFOR A MAN of his age, fifty two, divorced, he has, to his mind,solved the problem of sex rather well On Thursday afternoons hedrives to Green Point Punctually at two p.m he presses the buzzerat the entrance to Windsor Mansions, speaks his name, and enters.Waiting for him at the door of No II3 is Soraya He goes straightthrough to the bedroom, which is pleasant smelling and softly lit,and undresses Soraya emerges from the bathroom, drops her robe,slides into bed beside him Have you missed me she asks I missyou all the time, he replies He strokes her honey brown body,unmarked by the sun he stretches her out, kisses her breasts theymake love.Soraya is tall and slim, with long black hair and dark, liquid eyes.Technically he is old enough to be her father but then,technically, one can be a father at twelve He has been on herbooks for over a year he finds her entirely satisfactory In thedesert of the week Thursday has become an oasis of luxe et velupt.In bed Soraya is not effusive Her temperament is in fact ratherquiet, quiet and docile In her general opinions she is surprisinglymoralistic She is offended by tourists who bare their breasts udders , she calls them on public beaches she thinks vagabondsshould be rounded up and put to work sweeping the streets How she reconciles her opinions with her line of business he does not ask Because he takes pleasure in her, because his pleasure isunfailing, an affection has grown up in him for her To somedegree, he believes, this affection is reciprocated Affection maynot be love, but it is at least its cousin Given their unpromisingbeginnings, they have been lucky, the two of them he to havefound her, she to have found him.His sentiments are, he is aware, complacent, even uxorious.Nevertheless he does not cease to hold to them.For a ninety minute session he pays her R4oo, of which halfgoes to Discreet Escorts It seems a pity that Discreet Escortsshould get so much But they own No II3 and other flats inWindsor Mansions in a sense they own Soraya too, this part ofher, this function.He has toyed with the idea of asking her to see him in her owntime He would like to spend an evening with her, perhaps even awhole night But not the morning after He knows too muchabout himself to subject her to a morning after, when he will becold, surly, impatient to be alone.That is his temperament His temperament is not going to change,he is too old for that His temperament is fixed, set The skull, followed by the temperament the two hardest parts of the body.Follow your temperament It is not a philosophy, he would notdignity it with that name It is a rule, like the Rule of St Benedict.He is in good health, his mind is clear By profession he is, orhas been, a scholar, and scholarship still engages, intermittently, thecore of him He lives within his income, within his temperament,within his emotional means Is he happy By most measurements,yes, he believes he is However, he has not forgotten the lastchorus of Oedipus Call no man happy until he is dead.In the field of sex his temperament, though intense, has neverbeen passionate Were he to choose a totem, it would be the snake.Intercourse between Soraya and himself must be, he imagines, rather like the copulation of snakes lengthy, absorbed, but ratherabstract, rather dry, even at its hottest.Is Soraya s totem the snake too No doubt with other men shebecomes another woman lu donna mobile Yet at the level oftemperament her affinity with him can surely not be feigned.Though by occupation she is a loose woman he trusts her,within limits During their sessions he speaks to her with a certainfreedom, even on occasion unburdens himself She knows the factsof his life She has heard the stories of his two marriages, knowsabout his daughter and his daughter s ups and downs She knowsmany of his opinions.Of her life outside Windsor Mansions Soraya reveals nothing.Soraya is not her real name, that he is sure of There are signs shehas borne a child, or children It may be that she is not aprofessional at all She may work for the agency only one or twoafternoons a week, and for the rest live a respectable life in thesuburbs, in Rylands or Athlone That would be unusual for aMuslim, but all things are possible these days.About his own job he says little, not wanting to bore her Heearns his living at the Cape Technical University, formerly CapeTown University College Once a professor of modern languages,he has been, since Classics and Modern Languages were closeddown as part of the great rationalization, adjunct professor ofcommunications Like all rationalized personnel, he is allowed tooffer one special field course a year, irrespective of enrolment,because that is good for morale This year he is offering a course inthe Romantic poets For the rest he teaches Communications I0I, Communication Skills and Communications 20I, AdvancedCommunication Skills.Although he devotes hours of each day to his new discipline, hefinds its first premise, as enunciated in the Communications I0Ihandbook, preposterous Human society has created language in order that we may communicate our thoughts, feelings andintentions to each other His own opinion, which he does not air,is that the origins of speech lie in song, and the origins of song inthe need to fill out with sound the overlarge and rather emptyhuman soul.In the course of a career stretching back a quarter of a centuryhe has published three books, none of which has caused a stir oreven a ripple the first on opera Boito and the Faust Legend TheGenesis of Mefistofele , the second on vision as eros The Vision ofRichard of St Victor , the third on Wordsworth and history Wordsworth and the Burden of the Post.In the past few years he has been playing with the idea of a workon Byron At first he had thought it would be another book,another critical opus But all his sallies at writing it have boggeddown in tedium The truth is, he is tired of criticism, tired of prosemeasured by the yard What he wants to write is music Byron inItaly, a meditation on love between the sexes in the form of achamber opera.Through his mind, while he faces his Communications classes, fit phrases, tunes, fragments of song from the unwritten work Hehas never been much of a teacher in this transformed and, to hismind, emasculated institution of learning he is out of place than ever But then, so are other of his colleagues from the olddays, burdened with upbringings inappropriate to the tasks they areset to perform clerks in a post religious age.Because he has no respect for the material he teaches, he makesno impression on his students They look through him when hespeaks, forget his name Their indifference galls him than hewill admit Nevertheless he fulfils to the letter his obligationstoward them, their parents, and the state Month after month hesets, collects, reads, and annotates their assignments, correctinglapses in punctuation, spelling and usage, interrogating weak arguments, appending to each paper a brief, considered critique.He continues to teach because it provides him with a livelihood also because it teaches him humility, brings it home to him whohe is in the world The irony does not escape him that the onewho comes to teach learns the keenest of lessons, while those whocome to learn learn nothing It is a feature of his profession onwhich he does not remark to Soraya He doubts there is an ironyto match it in hers.In the kitchen of the flat in Green Point there are a kettle, plasticcups, a jar of instant coffee, a bowl with sachets of sugar Therefrigerator holds a supply of bottled water In the bathroom thereis soap and a pile of towels, in the cupboard clean bed linen Sorayakeeps her makeup in an overnight bag A place of assignation,nothing , functional, clean, well regulated.The first time Soraya received him she wore vermilion lipstickand heavy eyeshadow Not liking the stickiness of the makeup, heasked her to wipe it off She obeyed, and has never worn it since.A ready learner, compliant, pliant.He likes giving her presents At New Year he gave her anenamelled bracelet, at Eid a little malachite heron that caught hiseye in a curio shop He enjoys her pleasure, which is quiteunaffected.It surprises him that ninety minutes a week of a woman scompany are enough to make him happy, who used to think heneeded a wife, a home, a marriage His needs turn out to be quitelight, after all, light and fleeting, like those of a butterfly Noemotion, or none but the deepest, the most unguessed at aground bass of contentedness, like the hum of traffic that lulls thecitydweller to sleep, or like the silence of the night to countryfolk.He thinks of Emma Bovary, coming home sated, glazen eyed,from an afternoon of reckless fucking So this is bliss , says Emma, marvelling at herself in the mirror So this is the bliss the poets speakof Well, if poor ghostly Emma were ever to find her way to CapeTown, he would bring her along one Thursday afternoon to showher what bliss can be a moderate bliss, a moderated bliss.Then one Saturday morning everything changes He is in the cityon business he is walking down St George s Street when his eyesfall on a slim figure ahead of him in the crowd It is Soraya,unmistakably, flanked by two children, two boys They arecarrying parcels they have been shopping.He hesitates, then follows at a distance They disappear intoCaptain Dorego s Fish Inn The boys have Soraya s lustrous hairand dark eyes They can only be her sons.He walks on, turns back, passes Captain Dorego s a second time.The three are seated at a table in the window For an instant,through the glass, Soraya s eyes meet his.He has always been a man of the city, at home amid a flux ofbodies where eros stalks and glances flash like arrows But thisglance between himself and Soraya he regrets at once.At their rendezvous the next Thursday neither mentions theincident Nonetheless, the memory hangs uneasily over them Hehas no wish to upset what must be, for Soraya, a precarious doublelife He is all for double lives, triple lives, lives lived incompartments Indeed, he feels, if anything, greater tenderness forher Your secret is safe with me, he would like to say.But neither he nor she can put aside what has happened Thetwo little boys become presences between them, playing quiet asshadows in a corner of the room where their mother and thestrange man couple In Soraya s arms he becomes, fleetingly, theirfather foster father, step father, shadow father Leaving her bedafterwards, he feels their eyes flicker over him covertly, curiously.His thoughts turn, despite himself to the other father, the real one Does he have any inkling of what his wife is up to, or has heelected the bliss of ignorance He himself has no son His childhood was spent in a family ofwomen As mother, aunts, sisters fell away, they were replaced indue course by mistresses, wives, a daughter The company ofwomen made of him a lover of women and, to an extent, awomanizer With his height, his good bones, his olive skin, hisFlowing hair, he could always count on a degree of magnetism Ifhe looked at a woman in a certain way, with a certain intent, shewould return his look, he could rely on that That was how helived for years, for decades, that was the backbone of his life.Then one day it all ended Without warning his powers fled.Glances that would once have responded to his slid over, past, throughhim Overnight he became a ghost If he wanted a woman he had tolearn to pursue her often, in one way or another, to buy her.He existed in an anxious hurry of promiscuity He had affairswith the wives of colleagues he picked up tourists in bars on the waterfront or at the Club Italia he slept with whores.His introduction to Soraya took place in a dim little sitting room off the front office of Discreet Escorts, with Venetian blindsover the windows, pot plants in the corners, stale smoke hangingin the air She was on their books under Exotic The photographshowed her with a red passion flower in her hair and the faintestof lines at the corners of her eyes The entry said Afternoons only.That was what decided him the promise of shuttered rooms, coolsheets, stolen hours.From the beginning it was satisfactory, just what he wanted Abull s eye In a year he has not needed to go back to the agency.Then the accident in St George s Street, and the strangeness thathas followed Though Soraya still keeps her appointments, he feelsa growing coolness as she transforms herself into just anotherwoman and him into just another client.He has a shrewd idea of how prostitutes speak among them selves about the men who frequent them, the older men inparticular They tell stories, they laugh, but they shudder too, asone shudders at a cockroach in a washbasin in the middle of thenight Soon, daintily, maliciously, he will be shuddered over It isa fate he cannot escape On the fourth Thursday after the incident, as he is leaving theapartment, Soraya makes the announcement he has been steelinghimself against My mother is ill I m going to take a break to lookafter her I won t be here next week Will I see you the week after I m not sure It depends on how she gets on You had betterphone first I don t have a number Phone the agency They ll know He waits a few days, then telephones the agency Soraya Sorayahas left us, says the man No, we cannot put you in touch with her,that would be against house rules Would you like an introductionto another of our hostesses Lots of exotics to choose from Malaysian, Thai, Chinese, you name it He spends an evening with another Soraya Soraya hasbecome, it seems, a popular nom de commerce in a hotel room inLong Street This one is no than eighteen, unpractised, to hismind coarse So what do you do she says as she slips off herclothes Export import, he says You don t say, she says There is a new secretary in his department He takes her tolunch at a restaurant a discreet distance from the campus andlistens while, over shrimp salad, she complains about her sons school Drug pedlars hang around the playing fields, she says, andthe police do nothing For the past three years she and herhusband have had their name on a list at the New Zealandconsulate, to emigrate You people had it easier I mean, whatever the rights and wrongs of the situation, at least you knewwhere you were You people he says What people I mean your generation Now people just pick and choosewhich laws they want to obey It s anarchy How can you bring upchildren when there s anarchy all around Her name is Dawn The second time he takes her out they stop at his house and have sex It is a failure Bucking and clawing, sheworks herself into a froth of excitement that in the end only repelshim He lends her a comb, drives her back to the campus After that he avoids her, taking care to skirt the office where sheworks In return she gives him a hurt look, then snubs him He ought to give up, retire from the game At what age, hewonders, did Origen castrate himself Not the most graceful ofsolutions, but then ageing is not a graceful business A clearing ofthe decks, at least, so that one can turn one s mind to the properbusiness of the old preparing to die Might one approach a doctor and ask for it A simple enoughoperation, surely they do it to animals every clay, and animalssurvive well enough, if one ignores a certain residue of sadness.Severing, tying off with local anesthetic and a steady hand and amodicum of phlegm one might even do it oneself, out of atextbook A man on a chair snipping away at himself an ugly sight,but no ugly, from a certain point of view, than the same manexercising himself on the body of a woman There is still Soraya He ought to close that chapter Instead, hepays a detective agency to track her down Within days he has herreal name, her address, her telephone number He telephones atnine in the morning, when the husband and children will be out Soraya he says This is David How are you When can I seeyou again A long silence before she speaks I don t know who you are she says You are harassing me in my own house I demand you will never phone me here again, never Demand She means command Her shrillness surprises him therehas been no intimation of it before But then, what should apredator expect when he intrudes into the vixen s nest, into thehome of her cubs He puts down the telephone A shadow of envy passes over himfor the husband he has never seen Disgrace is not a hard or obscure bookit is, among other things, compulsively readablebut what it may well be is an authentically spiritual document, a lament for the soul of a disgraced century.The New YorkerA subtly brilliant commentary on the nature and balance of power in his homeland Disgrace is a mini opera without music by a writer at the top of his form.TimeMr Coetzee, in prose lean yet simmering with feeling, has indeed achieved a lasting work a novel as haunting and powerful as Albert Camuss The Stranger.The Wall Street JournalA tough, sad, stunning novel.Balti Sun Disgrace Wikipedia This article has an unclear citation style The references used may be made clearer with a different or consistent of and footnoting J M Coetzee Disgrace on FREE shipping qualifying offers In novel set in postapartheid South Africa, fiftytwoyearold college professor who by Brittainy C Cherry goodreads , ratings reviews Alex Comets Comments said When you find you, come back to me Earlier last year, I read s Free disgrace Essays Papers helpme Irony Love the Center is JM Coetzee, which tells story about fifty two years old professor, David Lurie, IMDb After having complex, disturbing, shocking controversial novel, one could not directly see how this transformed into Liam Neeson rose prominence when he starred title role Steven Spielberg Academy Award winning film, Schindler List He since other J Wikipdia uvres principales En attendant les barbares Michael K, sa vie, son temps Disgrce modifier prononciation k t si de Waiting For Barbarians M Enter your mobile number email address below we ll send link download free Kindle App Then can start reading books smartphone A Novel From Winner Nobel Prize Literature latest Schooldays Jesus, now available from Viking Late will COETZEE PREMIO NOBEL DE LITERATURA John Duke Deshonra Naci en Ciudad del Cabo hijo un abogado y una maestra Estudi escuela inglesa su External links Trouble review Oxonian Review Postmetaphysical Reflections Coetzee, Diary Bad Year iLiteratura Coetzeeho nov kniha je romnem v esejch, dopln nch vzkazy, emaily zpisky Jeho struktura zajmav u z hlediska vizulnho Revista Clarn Noticias la Argentina el mundo Informacin actualizada las horas espaol Informate ya for Waiting African born writer First published it was chosen Penguin its series Great Books John Maxwell libros biografa autor Escritor sudafricano, se licenci Matemticas Filologa Inglesa Universidad El march al Reino U G Le Clzio Jean Marie Gustave Clzio, plus connu sous signature n le avril Nice, est crivain langue franaise, comme il Coetzee Government Republic South constitutional court south africa case no cct matter farieda coetzee government republic National Library Of Africa Home National exciting programme workshops, activities resources teachers learners young people Explore wealth Disgrace: A Novel

    • Format Kindle
    • 0140296409
    • Disgrace: A Novel
    • J M Coetzee
    • Anglais
    • 05 October 2017
    • 224 pages

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