[ Read Online Today I Wrote Nothing: The Selected Writing of Daniil Kharms ☆ pornography PDF ] by Daniil Kharms æ HELLYEAH
if there's a boxing ring of literature, and the rivals are mr.
kharms and mr.
ernest miller hemingway, i'm pretty sure that the author of this book can just KO his rival in the first round I have absolutely no memory of how ‘Today I Wrote Nothing’ came to be on my toread list.
I added it in 2013, possibly after coming across Kharms some other early Soviet era fiction? Or a review of it? Or some Russian history? Who knows, but I trust pastme to choose books for futureme.
It has taken me this long to locate a copy because only last week I realised I could get borrowing rights for an additional academic library.
Combined with the magic of www.
org, another recent joyous discovery, I now have access to various obscure volumes I’ve been meaning to read for many years.
As the National Library of Scotland sadly does not allow borrowing, this is a wonderful development.
You will notice the digressive tone of this review.
I allow myself this latitude in tribute to Kharms, who wrote with spectacular disdain for narrative or coherence.
In the excellent introduction, his translator seeks to avoid pigeonholing Kharms’ work as absurdism or political satire.
Indeed, the translator appears exasperated by the tendency to assume everything written in 1930s Russia was implicit critique of Stalin.
As he puts it: ‘After all, it wasn’t all Stalin all the time’, despite Stalin’s best efforts to the contrary.
Kharms appears to have had greater ambitions to undermine core precepts of literary endeavour.
His coterie seem in retrospect to be precursors of the surrealists.
Delightfully, they couldn’t make a living writing for adults, as Soviet Realism was de rigueur, so wrote bizarre children’s books.
Life for an avant garde writer in Stalinist Russia was certainly no picnic and Kharms died in prison during the siege of Leningrad.
Nonetheless, a lot of his writing has survived for us to puzzle over today.
It is most certainly a puzzle.
As with other Russian fiction I’ve read, such as The Slynx, The Gray House, and The Foundation Pit, I felt a lot of meaning was going straight over my head due to lack of linguistic and cultural awareness.
Translating short pieces of intentional nonsense is obviously very challenging.
The results reminded me, if anything, of internet memes and particularly socalled tumblr shitposts.
I mean no insult to Kharms by this comparison! The surreal, deconstructed, and recursively referential nature of the humour assumes a lot of contextual knowledge from the reader.
Can you imagine trying to comprehend currently popular memes 80 years later in translated form? Kharms was not composing his snippets to be skimmed and reposted on social media, yet this sort of thing sounds eerily akin to @dril tweets:
"They say all the good babes are widebottomed.
Oh, I just love bigbosomed babes.
I like the way they smell.
” Saying this he began to grow taller and, reaching the ceiling, he fell apart into a thousand little spheres.
[‘How One Man Fell To Pieces’, page 231.
Poisoning children is cruel.
But something has to be done about them!
What’s all the fuss about flowers? It smells way better between a woman’s legs.
That’s nature for you, and that’s why noone dares find my words distasteful.
[Untitled, page 252]
I regret to say, however, that I found most of the pieces in the book baffling without being amusing.
I lacked the reference points to appreciate Kharms arbitrary humour, despite the endnotes attempting to explain where possible.
Almost all of the collected writings are very short, little notes and snippets, so I was reminded slightly of the time I read the first volume of Kafka’s diaries (over Christmas, foolishly).
Still, Kharms did make me laugh several times.
The echoes of his humour in current memes tempt me to speculate about popular humour when there is no privacy, be it under Stalinism or surveillance capitalism.
In Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible: The Surreal Heart of the New Russia, Pomerantsev observes that when all coherent political ideas have been coopted by the ruling class, the resistance fall back on surreal nonsense.
Comfort and distraction from existential anxiety and powerlessness can come from the ridiculous.
The surreal and absurd are more difficult to coopt and monetise, not that brands aren’t trying very hard to, because they deliberately evade meaning.
In other words, Kharms definitely still has something to tell us, although I can’t tell you what exactly.
The longest and most conventional piece in the book, a short story titled ‘The Old Woman’, is also by far the most terrifying.
Imagine Kafka writing about disposing of a corpse.
While Kharms clearly could write a suitably horrifying short story, it’s his very brief pieces that convey the full force of his subversive and protosurreal style.
Billy Woods Today, I Wrote Nothing Musique Encoutez Today, I Wrote Nothing Par Billy Woods Sur Deezer Avec La Musique En Streaming Sur Deezer, Dcouvrez Plus Demillions De Titres, Crez Gratuitement Vos Propres Playlists, Explorez Des Genres Diffrents Et Partagez Vos Titres Prfrs Avec Vos Amis Today I Wrote De Christopher Klint SurMusicDcouvrez Today I Wrote De Christopher Klint SurMusic Coutez De La Musique En Streaming Sans Publicit Ou Achetez Des CDs Et MP Maintenant Sur Today I Wrote Nothing The Selected WritingsNotRetrouvez Today I Wrote Nothing The Selected Writings Of Daniil Kharms Et Des Millions De Livres En Stock SurAchetez Neuf Ou D Occasion Today I Wrote Nothing Billy WoodsMusiqueAchetez Today I Wrote Nothing Import USA Au Meilleur Prix Livraison Gratuite Voir Cond Dcouvrez Toutes Les Promotions CD Vinyles, Les Nouveauts Ainsi Que Les Titres En PrcommandeToday I Wrote About You Devotionals PoemsNotRetrouvez Today I Wrote About You Devotionals Poems For The Soul Et Des Millions De Livres En Stock SurAchetez Neuf Ou D Occasion Today I Wrote An Ill Fated Attempt To Document Today I Wrote An Ill Fated Attempt To Document My Writing Habits Primary Menu Home About Me Today I Made Just A Word Count Update Today Has Been Surprisingly Busy So I M Just Going To Write This Super Quick Post In Half An Hour I Ll Be Attending A Webinar Eek Not Super Sure How It Will Go, But Hey What Have I Got To Loose Right This One Is About Overcoming Overthinking, So I AmToday I Wrote Nothing The Selected Writings By Today I Wrote Nothing The Selected Writings Of Daniil Kharms Edited And With An Introduction By Matvei Yankelevich Translated By Matvei Yankelevich With Ilya Bernstein, Eugene Ostashevsky, And Simona Schneider Hardcover,pages Please Check It Out It D Make A Pretty Good Gift, For Yourself And For A The Today I Write The Today I Write Menu Home Contact Look At This Look At This Aishwarya Thakur Uncategorized Leave A Comment Jul , Minute IKIGAI IKIGAI The Japanese Way Of Living Longer Happier Do You Know Your Purpose In Life, Your True Ikigai Ikigai Teaches Us To Follow Our Dream, Our Passion, That Fires Our Bellies To Wake Up In The I can't do this book justice in a review right now.
All I can say is that this is fucking brilliant.
it's like monty python reinterpreting the poetry of stephen crane under stalinist rule in the 1930s.
really just madness most of the time, but the clearest, funniest, angriest, happiest madness ever.
there's not a fragment in this book that doesn't feel like it was written yesterday.
yesterday in the best mental institution ever.
Tumbling Old Women
Because of her excessive curiosity, one old woman tumbled out her window, fell and shattered to pieces.
Another old woman leaned out to look at the one who'd shattered but, out of excessive curiosity, also tumbled out her window, fell and shattered to pieces.
Then a third old woman tumbled from her window, and a fourth, and a fifth.
When the sixth old woman tumbled out of her window, I got sick of watching them and walked over to the Maltsev Market where, they say, a blind man had been given a knit shawl.
The book i've been working on a long time, my translations of Daniil Kharms (19051942), is officially out in the world as of November 1st.
Today I Wrote Nothing
The Selected Writings of Daniil Kharms
edited and with an introduction by Matvei Yankelevich
translated by Matvei Yankelevich
with Ilya Bernstein, Eugene Ostashevsky, and Simona Schneider
(hardcover, 272 pages)
Please check it out.
It'd make a pretty good gift, for yourself and for a friend.
TO KHARMS! many thanksMatvei
Directly from the publisher:
* if you think you'd like to review the book or give me a reading, you can contact the publicist:
Jack Lamplough at Overlook Press
* if you have time and inclination, i'd be very grateful for your comments on Amazon.
WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING ABOUT THIS BOOK:
"Kharms is a constant, invigorating surprisea slap in the face, or a knock on the head.
"Kharms's Nothing has the power that binds atoms.
"Yankelevich has done an heroic job.
bringing this supreme poet of everyday life into English.
"Kharms's shockstories and plays show the contents of modernism under extreme pressure.
"Echoes of Beckett, Ionesco and Kafka.
****and now for the quip****
as usual in this country, the translator is oppressed:
they don't even tell you who the translator is.
as if good old Daniil Kharms wrote in English.
another thing i've noticed on these book sites is:
not only can you NOT search for translators, but you can't even search by PUBLISHER.
that's too bad.
who do I complain to? do I bother?
what's the use?
matvei I have read a lot of Russian literature, but only recently discovered Kharms.
There is much to like in his work.
There is lots of irony, weird juxtaposition and strange humor.
He wants to shake you up and force you to reexamine your worldview, and in this he is largely successful.
There are shades of Kafka and Mayakovsky, and more than a little Gogol.
But after he has shaken you up, he abruptly drops you with another "that's all.
" The brevity and abruptness are, of course, part of the point, but they also left me with a feeling that in the end of the day, there was something lacking.
Hilarious, frightening, strange.
everything literature should be.
Smacks you out of your complacency concerning the signifier and what it signifies.
from The Werld:Stalin.Then I realized that since before there was somewhere to look – there had been a world around me.
And now it’s gone.
There’s only me.
And then I realized that I am the world.
But the world – is not me.
Although at the same time I am the world.
But the world’s not me.
And I’m the world.
But the world’s not me.
And I’m the world.
But the world’s not me.
And I’m the world.
And after that I didn’t think anything more.
This guy is funny.
This guy is frightening.
He’s ultraserious and slapstick hilarious.
The world portrayed in his writings is like a world reduced to a Beckett stageset – a bed, a cucumber, a clock – in an otherwise whitedout world, and with this minimalism a metaphysical cosmos of violent absurdity and eccentricity, strobelit with transcendent flashes, is created.
His intentions were in fact to write short intense works, or "Incidences" as he preferred, that isolate absurd or violent events, or events so mundane as to be meaningless, and through this isolation to create a “flash” of transcendent vision and a moment of being beyond earthly constraints.
And he knew constraints.
He was a second generation Soviet avantgardist, which marginalized him by definition, and of course he was thoroughly uncompromising and a thoroughgoing dandy and purposeful eccentric (he actually developed a verbal/physical tic that was a literally embodied example of his fractured aesthetics).
All this eventually led to his imprisonment on suspicion of antisoviet activities.
He died of starvation in prison in 1942 at the age of 37.
But though his work directly reflects his “condition” in the early Soviet Union, it by no means is dependent on that condition to give it meaning.
This is literary experimentation of the highest universal order, and once the barbed surface of its seeming pointlessness and absurdity is broke, profound (though elusive) meanings spill out along with its more immediate literary pleasures.AN INCIDENT INVOLVING PETRAKOV
So, once Petrakov wanted to go to sleep but, lying down, missed the bed.
He hit the floor so hard he lay there unable to get up.
So Petrakov mustered his remaining strength and got on his hands and knees.
But his strength abandoned him and he fell on his stomach again, and he just lies there.
Petrakov lay on the floor about five hours.
At first he just lay there, but then he fell asleep.
Sleep refreshed Petrakov’s strength.
He woke up invigorated, got up, walked around the room and cautiously lay down on the bed.
“Well,” he thought, “now I’ll get some sleep.
” But now he’s not feeling very sleepy.
So Petrakov keeps turning in his bed and can’t fall asleep.
And that’s it, more or less.
Now that the only thing anyone ever fucking mentions about Daniil Kharms is out of the way, let's talk about Daniil Kharms.
He's fun to read! The stuff here is fastpaced and short, and so stupid that it wraps back around and becomes witty; Kharms had the unique and enviable ability to embed complex concepts (the doubleedged sword that is curiosity, the damage the veneration of idols does to our society, the complexities of faith and politics) into stories about people falling over and hitting each other over the head with heavy objects and trying to keep people from realizing there are dead bodies in their apartments.
There's a certain type of stupid that I will fucking ADORE, and it's basically stupid things made by smart and talented people, like this book.
Okay, so far so good, and to make things even better there's a real meditative edge amid all the slapstick.
Characters basically pause within their overwhelming worlds, try to take breathers amid the confusion to figure out what the hell's going on, decide that's too much work, and instead plunge on ahead with falling and getting hit on the head with heavy objects and trying to keep people from realizing there are dead bodies in their apartments.
And for the first three of this book's four sections, I thought I'd stumbled into a new favorite author.
Yet for as unique and as (dare I say) profound as meditative slapstick is, it's all Kharms does, and the fourth segment, which consists of unpublished, unpolished, and potentially unfinished sketches, does rather drag, where the first three parts have a real sense of purpose to them.
Still, four stars is pretty damn good for a book that tips its hand seventy pages before it ends, and there are some real gems to be found in the final segment.
So if you're a fan of weird literature, you'd best find yourself a copy of this pronto.