Deaf ​Sentence 2 csillagozás

David Lodge: Deaf Sentence David Lodge: Deaf Sentence David Lodge: Deaf Sentence David Lodge: Deaf Sentence

Being deaf is less an affliction than a sentence…

Retired Professor of Linguistics Desmond Bates is going deaf. Not suddenly, but gradually and – for him and everyone nearby – confusingly. It's a bother for his wife, Winifred, who has an enviably successful new career and is too busy to be endlessly repeating herself. Roles are reversed when he visits his hearing-impaired father, who won't seek help and resents his son's intrusions. And, finally, there's Alex. Alex is a student Desmond agrees to help after a typical misunderstanding. But her increasingly bizarre and disconcerting requests cannot – unfortunately – be blamed on defective hearing. So much for growing old gracefully…

Eredeti megjelenés éve: 2008

Penguin, New York, 2009
304 oldal · ISBN: 9781101140567
Penguin, London, 2009
310 oldal · puhatáblás · ISBN: 9780141035703

Enciklopédia 8

Várólistára tette 2

Kívánságlistára tette 2

Kiemelt értékelések

David Lodge: Deaf Sentence

Tologatom már egy ideje, negyedszer került bele a várólista-csökkentésembe, most egy fülgyulladás apropójából végre sorra kerítettem. Az alternatív listán volt, a könnyed, olvasmányos, humoros könyveket rakom oda, arra az esetre, ha netán időben megszorulnék.

No igen. Olvasmányosnak olvasmányos éppen, humor is van benne, de hogy könnyed? Annyi könyv létezik a gyerekkorról, amely mindenki számára meghatározó, de az öregség, a halál, az mintha már keményebb falat lenne. Tabu. Rossz érzés belegondolni, és talán még rosszabb vele szembesülni, hogy fokozatosan mindent elveszítünk: a munkaképességünket, a szexet, az egészségünket, az érzékeinket is szép lassan, s mindennek a végén nincs happy end, csak a feloldozás, a halál. És még utána is: mindaz, ami a miénk volt, amit tárgyaink közül fontosnak gondoltunk, amit éveken át kincsként gyűjtögettünk szétszóródik, jobb esetben egy része a családunké lesz, kicsit rosszabb esetben másoké, de a nagy része bizony megy a lecsóba. Kész-passz. Olyan átmeneti minden és mindenki.

Pedig az öregség olyasmi, amit mindannyian el nem kerülhetünk, hacsak nem halunk meg fiatalon. Jó lenne rá valahogy felkészülni. Hogy humorral és kiváltképp méltósággal viseljük, de ha az nem megy, akkor ismét csak legalább humorral. Mint David Lodge.

Zseniális, Lodge mindig zseniális. Csak ez most a témából adódóan nem tud olyan felhőtlen lenni, mint a többi. Még csak az kéne.

Penguin, London, 2009
310 oldal · puhatáblás · ISBN: 9780141035703
David Lodge: Deaf Sentence

Igen olvasmányos, magas intellektuális színvonalú, de nagyon szórakoztató „university literature” az egyetemi oktatók világáról – ez Lodge többi művére is igaz.

De ez ráadásul hihetetlenül mulatságosan festi le a nagyothallásból, félreértésből fakadó groteszk jeleneteket. Idősebb olvasó – hozzám hasonlóan – sokszor magára ismerhet eltűnődve azon, milyen röhejes lehet ő maga is.

Népszerű idézetek


That’s no problem with the children, who are beautiful and charming, and at that interesting age when they begin to acquire language with astonishing rapidity, and sometimes make expressive mistakes, if I could only hear them. Today when I complimented Lena on her pretty dress, and she replied that her Mummy had bought it at Marks & Spencer, everybody laughed except me. When I looked puzzled, Fred explained that she had said, ‘Mummy bought it at Marks and Spensive.’ Then I laughed on my own.

83. oldal, 5. fejezet (Penguin, 2009)

7 hozzászólás

A footnote to the above: it occurred to me that negative particles might have been omitted from the analysis of collocations of happy, so I did a check on the small corpus I have on CD here at home, and sure enough, entirely happy is frequently preceded by not or some other negative word like never. But perfectly is usually unqualified. In fact the distribution is almost exactly equal: not entirely happy occurs about as often as perfectly happy, and entirely happy is as rare as not perfectly happy. I wonder why? Corpus linguistics is always throwing up interesting little puzzles like that.

247. oldal, 17. fejezet (Penguin, 2009)


Then Sylvia Cooper, wife of the former Head of History, engaged me in one of those conversations in which your interlocutor says something that sounds like a quotation from a Dadaist poem, or one of Chomsky’s impossible sentences, and you say ‘What?’ or ‘I beg your pardon?’ and they repeat their words, which make a banal sense the second time round.
‘The pastime of the dance went to pot,’ Sylvia Cooper seemed to say, ‘so we spent most of the time in our shit, the cows’ in-laws finding they stuttered.’
‘What?’ I said.
‘I said, the last time we went to France it was so hot we spent most of the time in our gîte, cowering indoors behind the shutters.’
‘Oh, hot, was it?’ I said. ‘That must have been the summer of 2003.’
‘Yes, we seared our arses on bits of plate, but soiled my cubism, I’m afraid.’
‘I’m sorry?’
‘We were near Carcasonne. A pretty place, but spoiled by tourism, I’m afraid.’
‘Ah, yes, it’s the same everywhere these days,’ I said sagely.
‘But I do mend sherry. Crap and sargasso pained there, you know. There’s a lovely little mum of modern tart.’
‘Sherry?’ I said hesitantly.
‘Céret, it’s a little town in the foothills of the Pyrenees,’ said Mrs Cooper with a certain impatience.‘Braque and Picasso painted there. I recommend it.’
‘Oh yes, I’ve been there,’ I said hastily. ‘It has a rather nice art gallery.’
‘The mum of modern tart.’
‘Quite so,’ I said. I looked at my glass. ‘I seem to need a refill. Can I get you one?’

114-115. oldal, 9. fejezet (Penguin, 2009)

Kapcsolódó szócikkek: Noam Chomsky
7 hozzászólás

The episode threw me into a what-is-the-world-coming-to mood, a state I am increasingly prone to these days, prompted by phenomena like Big Brother, four-letter words in the Guardian, vibrating penis rings on sale in Boots, binge-drinkers puking in the city centre on Saturday nights, and chemotherapy for cats and dogs. Somehow it is easier to focus one’s anger and despair on these comparatively trivial offences to reason and decency than on the larger threats to civilisation like Islamic terrorism, Israel/Palestine, Iraq, AIDS, the energy crisis and global warming, which seem to be beyond anyone’s ability to control. I don’t think I have ever felt so pessimistic about the future of the human race, even at the height of the Cold War, as I do now, because there are so many possible ways civilisation could come to a catastrophic end, and quite soon. Not in my lifetime probably, but conceivably in the lifetime of Anne’s unborn child.

112-113. oldal, 9. fejezet (Penguin, 2009)


‘History repeats itself once as tragedy and the second time as farce, but Christmas repeats itself as surfeit,’ I remarked, looking round the drawing room at people in various attitudes of torpor, inebriation, indigestion and boredom, clutching new books they would never read, gadgets they would never use, and items of clothing they would never wear.

190. oldal, 13. fejezet (Penguin, 2009)

Kapcsolódó szócikkek: ajándék · karácsony

    When you can’t hear what people are saying you have two options: you can either keep quiet and nod and murmur and smile, pretending that you are hearing what your interlocutor is saying, throwing in the odd word of agreement, but always in danger of getting the wrong end of the stick, with potentially embarrassing consequences; or alternatively, you can seize the initiative, ignore the normal rules of conversational turn-taking, and talk non-stop on a subject of your own choosing without letting the other person get a word in edge-ways, so that the problem of hearing and understanding what they are saying doesn’t arise. The latter course is the one he has followed for the past hour or so.
    It was necessary to find topics on which he could expatiate at length and without having to pause for thought. The method he used was to draw on certain ideas he had long nourished without ever having an opportunity to air them, or which he had thought of only after the opportunity had passed, products of l’esprit de l’escalier, and then to introduce as soon as possible into any conversational encounter whichever of these topics seemed most appropriate.

196-197. oldal, 14. fejezet (Penguin, 2009)


Blustery showers discourage going out, though temperatures are unusually high for the first week in January, in further confirmation of global warming. And Saddam Hussein has been hanged in a fashion that makes one of the worst tyrants of all time look dignified, courageous and abused. No, I am not happy.

245. oldal, 17. fejezet (Penguin, 2009)


One exhibit was a blank sheet of A4 taken from a copier whose operator had omitted to insert a document to be copied. It was entitled Oh, and was on sale for £150 (£100 unframed). According to the catalogue, the artist, by introducing or accepting ‘mistakes’ in the reprographic process, was interrogating the accepted opposition between ‘original’ and ‘reproduced’ works of art, and the necessity of accuracy, uniformity and repeatability in the application of technology to artistic creation, thus carrying forward to a new level the debate initiated by Walter Benjamin in his essay ‘The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction’. Nothing could illustrate better my thesis that much contemporary art is supported by an immense scaffolding of discourse without which it would simply collapse and be indistinguishable from rubbish.

122-123. oldal, 9. fejezet (Penguin, 2009)


When you’re deaf, as well as not being able to hear what other people are saying, you don’t realise how loudly you are speaking yourself.

123. oldal, 9. fejezet (Penguin, 2009)


Could there be a Deaf Instinct, analogous to Freud’s Death Instinct? An unconscious longing for torpor, silence and solitude underlying and contradicting the normal human desire for companionship and intercourse? Am I half in love with easeful deaf?

126. oldal, 9. fejezet (Penguin, 2009)

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