Download A perfect vacuum by Stanisław Lem PDF

By Stanisław Lem

It is a first-class, very humorous ebook. somebody acquainted with Lem's brief tales and works like "Imaginary Engines" will recognize what to anticipate. unfortunately, the lower than blurb utilized by the writer is nearly meaningless.

This is the Kandel translation. I doubt if he up to date the interpretation for the reissue of the e-book by means of Northwestern college Press. They most likely simply received the rights in order that they may perhaps rock that important and japanese eu literature.

This is a suite of excellent but imaginary stories of nonexistent books. With insidious wit, the writer beguiles us with a parade of pleasant, disarmingly known innovations. "Lem is Harpo Marx and Franz Kafka and Isaac Asimov rolled up into one and down the white rabbit's hole" (Detroit News). A Helen and Kurt Wolff Book

(there is a request for this Lem name, however it is an noticeable test, no longer "retail"...however, if the individual that placed the bounty on it reveals it applicable, enable me know!)

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Translated via Tamara Glenny

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Example text

In the second half of it, Robinson no longer speaks to Wendy Mae directly: the last act of communication is a letter, at night, in the cave, written by her in the ashes of the fireplace, by feel, a letter to Robinson, who will read it at the crack of dawn—but he trembles in advance, able to guess its message in the darkness when he passes his fingers over the cold cinders.. . ” she wrote, and he, not dar­ ing to reply, fled with his tail between his legs. To do what? To organize a Miss Chambered Nautilus Pageant, to belabor the palm trees with a cudgel, reviling them in the most opprobrious terms, to shout out, on the promenade of the beach, his pro­ gram for harnessing the island to the tails of the whales!

The whole action takes thirty-six minutes, the time required to transport the condemned man from his cell to the place of execution. The story ends with the image of the noose, whose black loop, seen against the sky, falls upon the neck of the calmly standing Maesch. This Maesch is of course Gilgamesh, the semidivine hero of the Babylonian epos, and the one who sends him to the gallows—his old buddy N. Kiddy— is Gilgamesh’s closest friend, Enkidu, created by the gods in or­ der to bring about the hero’s downfall.

Gig” is of course now seen to be “ Gog” (Gog and Magog). From Shema derives the name “ Simeon” (Hebrew Shimeon), and immediately we think of Simeon Stylites; but if the Saint sits atop the pillar, the halter hangs down from it; therefore Maesch, dangling beneath, will become a stylite a rebours. This is a further step in the antisymmetry. Enumer­ ating in this fashion, in his exegesis, 2,912 expressions from the Old Sumerian, Babylonian, Chaldean, Greek, Church Sla­ vonic, Hottentot, Bantu, South Kurile, Sephardic, the dialect of the Apaches (the Apaches, as everyone knows, commonly exclaim “ Igh” or “ Ugh” ), along with their Sanskrit roots and references to underworld argot, Hannahan stresses that this is no haphazard rummage, but a precise semantic wind rose, a multidimensional compass card and map of the work, its car­ tography—for the object is the plotting of all those ties and links which the novel will realize polyphonically.

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