a common reader

Wislawa Szymborska, nonrequired reading

· 17 May 2009 |  by Janantoon
· Published in: andere literatuur · English texts · over boeken
· Tagged with:

Wislawa Szymborska, nonrequired readingI read about this book on boeklog.info and I bought it. Polish literature is almost completely unknown to me, apart from the works of Ryszard Kapuscinski.
Szymborska got the Nobel Prize for Literature for her poetry in 1996. In the meantime I read a few of her poems, but this book is for me the real introduction to her world. In this volume she bundled short book reviews. Reviews about books that mostly never get a review, but are readily bought by a wide range of readers.

At first I thought I’d be writing real reviews, that is, in each case I’d describe the nature of the book at hand, place it in some larger context, then give the reader to understand that it was better than some and worse than others. But I soon realized that I couldn’t write reviews and didn’t even want to. That basically I am and wish to remain a reader, an amateur, and a fan, unburdened by the weight of ceaseless evaluation.

The sketches, as she calls them, are fresh and lively. Very often I was surprised by some detail, some way of looking. And once and a while I thought: ‘why didn’t I think of this before? why didn’t I see this?’


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