Fiction Gao Xingjian One Man's Bible

ISBN 13: 9780066211329

One Man's Bible

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9780066211329: One Man's Bible

One Man's Bible is the second novel by Nobel Prize-winning author Gao Xingjian to appear in English. Following on the heels of his highly praised Soul Mountain, this later work is as candid as the first, and written with the same grace and beauty.

In a Hong Kong hotel room in 1996, Gao Xingjian's lover, Marguerite, stirs up his memories of childhood and early adult life under the shadow of Mao Zedong and the Cultural Revolution. Gao has been living in self-imposed exile in France and has traveled to this Western-influenced Chinese city-state, so close to his homeland, for the staging of one of his plays.

What follows is a fictionalized account of Gao Xingjian's life under the Communist regime. Whether in "beehive" offices in Beijing or in isolated rural towns, daily life is riddled with paranoia and fear, as revolutionaries, counterrevolutionaries, reactionaries, counterreactionaries, and government propaganda turn citizens against one another. It is a place where a single sentence spoken ten years earlier can make one an enemy of the state. Gao evokes the spiritual torture of political and intellectual repression in graphic detail, including the heartbreaking betrayals he suffers in his relationships with women and men alike.

One Man's Bible is a profound meditation on the essence of writing, on exile, on the effects of political oppression on the human spirit, and on how the human spirit can triumph.

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Review:

In the same circling, ruminative vein as his Nobel Prize-winning debut novel Soul Mountain, Chinese expatriate Gao Xingjian's fictionalized memoir of his youth, One Man's Bible, is an attempt to capture the Kafkaesque anxieties of the Cultural Revolution. As a budding writer, and the son of a white-collar worker, the unnamed narrator soon realizes that, no matter what useful friends he makes at school, he is vulnerable to investigation by the restless, politically unstable Red Guard: "Enemies had to be found; without enemies, how could the political authorities sustain their dictatorship?" Punishment for real or imagined "mistakes" of thought and behavior would have been death, imprisonment, or banishment to a labor farm. The only answer, he came to believe, was to blend in with the masses and to construct a mask of bland agreement with whoever appeared to be in charge at the time.

The bulk of Xingjian's absorbing narrative takes place in this bleak world of exposure, hysteria, and reprisals, and from an appropriately distant third-person point of view. But the act of recollection is spurred by a four-day-long affair with a near-stranger in the mid-1990s. The narrator, long exiled from China, has been brought to Hong Kong to help stage one of his plays. Here he runs into a German-Jewish woman, Margarethe, whom he knew slightly from his final years in China. For Margarethe, survival hinges on memory. It is she who persuades the narrator to let his painful, rigorously suppressed memories begin to thaw, and if not to drop his mask, at least to remember that he is wearing one. --Regina Marler

About the Author:

Gao Xingjian (whose name is pronounced gow shing-jen) is the first Chinese recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature. Born in 1940 in Jiangxi province in eastern China, he has lived in France since 1987. Gao Xingjian is an artistic innovator, in both the visual arts and literature. He is that rare multitalented artist who excels as novelist, playwright, essayist, director, and painter. In addition to Soul Mountain and One Man's Bible, a book of his plays, The Other Shore, and a volume of his paintings, Return to Painting, have been published in the United States.

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Xingjian, Gao
Editorial: Harper 2002-09-03 (2002)
ISBN 10: 0066211328 ISBN 13: 9780066211329
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Descripción Harper 2002-09-03, 2002. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. 0066211328 BRAND NEW. A portion of your purchase of this book will be donated to non-profit organizations. Over 1,000,000 satisfied customers since 1997! We ship daily M-F. Choose expedited shipping (if available) for much faster delivery. Delivery confirmation on all US orders. Nº de ref. de la librería Z0066211328ZN

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Descripción U.S.A.: Harper, 2002. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Estado de la sobrecubierta: New. 1st Edition. book by author of "Soul Mountain"; the Wall Street Journal calls it a book that has a rare "introspective power.". Nº de ref. de la librería 1244

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Descripción Estado de conservación: New. Ships From Canada. Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. With dust jacket. 450 p. Audience: General/trade. Book Description: One Man's Bible is the second novel by Nobel Prize-winning author Gao Xingjian to appear in English. Following on the heels of his highly praised Soul Mountain, this later work is as candid as the first, and written with the same grace and beauty. In a Hong Kong hotel room in 1996, Gao Xingjian's lover, Marguerite, stirs up his memories of childhood and early adult life under the shadow of Mao Zedong and the Cultural Revolution. Gao has been living in self-imposed exile in France and has traveled to this Western-influenced Chinese city-state, so close to his homeland, for the staging of one of his plays. What follows is a fictionalized account of Gao Xingjian's life under the Communist regime. Whether in "'"beehive"'" offices in Beijing or in isolated rural towns, daily life is riddled with paranoia and fear, as revolutionaries, counterrevolutionaries, reactionaries, Nº de ref. de la librería 9055151809

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Descripción Harpercollins, New York, 2002. Hard Cover. Estado de conservación: New. Estado de la sobrecubierta: New. First American Edition; First Printing. New book, unmarked in glossy DJ. ; 450 pages. Nº de ref. de la librería 23080

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Gao, Xingjian
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