Die Blendung

Die Blendung❮KINDLE❯ ➜ Die Blendung ❤ Author Elias Canetti – Oaklandjobs.co.uk Auto da Fé is the story of Peter Kien a distinguished reclusive sinologist living in Germany between the wars With masterly precision Canetti reveals Kien's character displaying the flawed personal r Auto da Fé is the story of Peter Kien a distinguished reclusive sinologist living in Germany between the wars With masterly precision Canetti reveals Kien's character displaying the flawed personal relationships which ultimately lead to his destructionManipulated by his illiterate and grasping housekeeper Therese who has tricked him into marriage and Benedikt Pfaff a brutish concierge Kien is forced out of his apartment which houses his great library and one true passion and into the underworld of the city In this purgatory he is guided by a chess playing dwarf of evil propensities until he is eventually restored to his home But on his return he is visited by his brother an eminent psychiatrist who by an error of diagnosis precipitates the final crisisAuto da Fé was first published in Germany in as Die Blendung The Blinding or Bedazzlement and later in Britain in where the publisher noted Canetti as a 'writer of strongly individual genius which may prove influential' an observation borne out when the author was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in Auto da Fé still towers as one of the greatest novels of the twentieth century and Canetti's incisive vision of an insular man battling agianst the outside world is as fresh and rewarding today as when first it appeared in print. Read More for Mental HealthThe literal translation of the German title of Auto da Fe is The Blinding or perhaps idiomatically The Deception The uestion this latter raises is Who is deceiving whom? The unrelenting comic irony suggests that everyone is deceiving not only everyone else but also themselves All the characters are mad to some degree and Kafkaesue to the extent that they emerge out of a somewhat hostile vaguely Eastern European world in which they are striving to survive but about which they have little understanding Each pursues his chosen 'ism' idealism materialism hedonism aspirationalism with relentless determination and in determined secrecy since none are comprehensible to the othersPeter Kien the central figure is a pseudo academic recluse whose self identity is defined as the precise opposite of his bother George Brother George is a celebrated gynaecologist turned psychiatrist who therefore thinks he knows everything there is to know about women Peter knows absolutely nothing about other people much less women He knows only books particularly books written in the Chinese language which he has never heard spoken and most particularly books written by Confucius with whom he has freuent intimate conversations and intellectual arguments Without advice or consultation Peter marries his housekeeper What could possibly go wrong?Mutual connubial disappointment of course ensues She wants sex and furniture; he wants silence and books He feigns blindness; she an affair He mounts an insurrection rousing his army of books to fever pitch against the woman and the furniture except understandably enough for the pacifist Buddhist tomes and the French volumes which decline to fight over a mere woman The English participate grudgingly since the impetus for war had come from the racially inferior Chinese Before overt hostilities can begin Peter this Napoleon de la bibliotheue betrayed by a treacherous library ladder has crashed to the carpeted floor bleary and bleedingPeter his brother George his wife the porter of his apartment block the dwarf who is out to cheat him even the salesman with whom the wife seeks an affair all 'live in their heads' The realities they perceive or rather define are patently delusional in that for each to achieve their desired state the world would have to be different than it is It would have to conform with Confucian aphorisms or the advice of a demented mother or the speculations of economic and business pundits Each character has his own ideological touchstone which he values above all else including actual personal well beingAll actual experience is rationalised through the fateful filters adopted by each Peter articulates the general philosophy Esse percipe to be is to be perceived What I do not perceive does not exist Having established this premise one's strategy becomes clear Peter simply removes his wife from his perception by not seeing her Blindness is a weapon against time and spaceThe dominating principle of the universe is blindnessIt permits the truncation of time when time in unendurable Having become blind to his wife he then discovers that he cannot become deaf to her thus suggesting a strategic flaw which he cannot comprehendOne class of books Peter finds objectionable novelsNovels are so many wedges which the novelist an actor with his pen inserts into the closed personality of the reader The better he calculates the size of the wedge and the strength of the resistance so much completely dies he crack open the personality of his victim Novels should be prohibited by the StateThis is Canetti's skeleton key Writing during the ascendancy of fascist and communist totalitarianism in the 1930's fiction is the only effective tool for overcoming the insanity of ideological logics The insanity is in our heads not in the world Peter dislikes novels because he knows how they work and he is implicitly a believer in totalitarian cultureThe tone of Auto da Fe is somewhat dismal despite its comedic flow because the human condition Canetti describes is somewhat dismal Our devotion to ideology is a chronic issue which becomes evident as democratic politics becomes visible and as recently radical The tendency appears to be to blame the 'system' to look for procedural and regulatory solutions Canetti suggests that these solutions won't get us very farReturning to the original German title 'blinding' is a synonym in mystical Kabbalism for the 'making and breaking of vessels' These vessels refer both to language and to the human beings who employ it often unwittingly to deceive themselves The mystical tenor of Auto da Fe fits well with a Kabbalist interpretation as does its denouement when we persist in our linguistic errors We may indeed be better off reading fictionPostscript the following appeared in my feed Reading is indeed both a submissive and subversive activity It is also dangerous since its effects are subtle and incalculable Nevertheless restricting reading is always a greater disaster This is the world as we know it crazy as can beIt strikes me as strange that the English and German titles for this masterpiece are so different and yet so fitting Canetti bilingual multifaceted a master of wordplay must have delighted in the ambiguity Die Blendung the German title means Deception Blindingor Delusion whereas Auto da Fé act of faith refers to the horrible crimes of religious fanatics during the InuisitionWhat happens if you believe blindly and violently in one truth and set out to spread it to others?Elias Canetti is one of those strange writers that are hard to grasp and get complex with each book I read When I first read Auto Da Fe it instantly became a favourite that I started buying in bulk to give away to moderately pleased family members and friends who did not necessarily share my love for complicated intellectually sophisticated plots and darkest sarcasmIt is an allegory of different incompatible layers of society living in close proximity to each other and thus forcing interactions upon its various representatives The novel is divided into the three parts showing the different perspectives from which Canetti looks at society and their chapter headings speak for themselves A Head Without A World A Headless World A World In The Head A purely intellectual scholar tries to withdraw from the outside world and live in peace with his erudition and library routines A Head Without A World He is invaded by almost illiterate but life experienced representatives of the world who strive to make a profit out of everything while seeking pleasure in physical activities Headless World A World In the Head represents the madness that occurs when different people clash and try to impose their world views on each other As all of them are convinced that theirs is the right way of thinking the others invariably appear to be mad This is a reciprocal feeling and the uestion for the reader is to figure out what kind of madness has befallen which character including the doctor who is supposed to cure the other characters The novel manages to be both hilarious and thought provoking much like Canetti's work in general When I read his play Die Befristeten my general response was laughter even though it dealt with the taboo of death and our relationship to it In Auto da Fé he weighs human convictions life styles and traditions against each other and offers different interpretations of the meaning of life without giving any one of them a particular advantage The sad message is that the different mindsets would all be able to coexist harmoniously if human beings could just be tolerant enough to leave each other in peace with their respective personal obsessions The brutality starts when we interfere with the intent of becoming missionaries of our specific madness or when we think we are powerful and clever enough to exploit other people's passions in order to enrich ourselves and to live better according to our own indulgencesAs always Canetti masters his dialogues opening with a stunning interview between professor Kien and a young boy in front of a book shop immediately showing the connection between the two worlds in the novel and their difficulties to understand and tolerate each other'What are you doing here my little man?''Nothing''Then why are you standing here?''Just because''Can you read?''Oh yes''How old are you?''Nine and a bit''Which would you prefer a piece of chocolate or a book?''A book''Indeed? Splendid So that's your reason for standing here?''Yes''Why didn't you say so before?''Father scolds me''Oh And who is your father?''Franz Metzger''Would you like to travel to a foreign country?''Yes To India They have tigers there''And where else?''To China They've got a huge wall there''You'd like to scramble over it wouldn't you?''It's much too thick and too high Nobody can get over it That's why they built it''What a lot you know You must have read a great deal already?''Yes I read all the time Father takes my books away I'd like to go to a Chinese school They have forty thousand letters in their alphabet You couldn't get them all into one book''That's only what you think''I've worked it out''All the same it isn't true Never mind the books in the window They're of no value I've got something much better here Wait I'll show you Do you know what kind of writing that is?''Chinese Chinese''Well you're a clever little fellow Had you seen a Chinese book before?''No I guessed it''These two characters stand for Meng Tse the philosopher Mencius He was a great man in China He lived 2250 years ago and his works are still being read Will you remember that?''Yes I must go to school now''Aha so you look into the bookshop windows on your way to school? What is your name?''Franz Metzger like my father''And where do you live?''Twenty four Ehrlich Strasse''I live there too I don't remember you''You always look the other way when anyone passes you on the stairs I've known you for ages You're Professor Kien but you haven't a school Mother says you aren't a real Professor But I think you are — you've got a library Our Marie says you wouldn't believe your eyes She's our maid When I'm grown up I'm going to have a library With all the books there are in every language A Chinese one too like yours Now I must run''Who wrote this book? Can you remember?''Meng Tse the philosopher Mencius Exactly 2250 years ago''Excellent You shall come and see my library one day Tell my housekeeper I've given you permission I can show you pictures from India and China''Oh good I'll come Of course I'll come This afternoon?''No no little man I must work this afternoon In a week at the earliest'My favourite uote“Yes this was his home Here no harm could come to him He smiled at the mere idea that any harm could come to him here He avoided looking at the divan on which he slept Every human creature needed a home not a home of the kind understood by crude knock you down patriots not a religion either a mere insipid foretaste of a heavenly home no a real home in which space work friends recreation and the scope of a man's ideas came together into an orderly whole into — so to speak — a personal cosmos The best definition of a home was a library” One of the authors who truly deserved the Nobel prize and amazed and frightened me like hardly any classicIt´s so weird disturbing and freaky while having so much subtext and criticism of human nature at the same time and that it was written in the early 1930s by a Jewish author in Vienna who had a very good sense for the grievances of the time and peoples minds makes it uniueThe main idea of an introverted academic unable to deal with the real world getting lost in both his theoretical work and ingenuity and the falsehood of human nature he can´t deal with or understand or accordingly react to is placed in a setting years before one of the worst catastrophes in historyCanetti was interested in mass psychology and the cult of personality and integrated those dark sides as metaplots in his work mixed with the conventional madness and loss of relation to reality bye each character a classic homage to the real lifeIt has an epic ending too go read it although it is really closer to work than fun because the language is not only old fashioned Duh but extremely complex tooA wiki walk can be as refreshing to the mind as a walk through nature in this completely overrated real life outside books Two in a two days This book was also removed from my books It was substituted with Auto Da Fe Cronache in Due Tempi a book in Italian See msg 6 for the probable explanation This one the Canetti one I read years ago It was a difficult depressing and extremely bizarre book Of course I loved the book because Peter Klein the 'hero' loves books beyond all else Kindred spirits almost view spoilerbar cats and chocolate bearing men hide spoiler “Almost Kien was tempted to believe in happiness that contemptible life goal of illiterates If it came of itself without being hunted for if you did not hold it fast by force and treated it with a certain condescension it was permissible to endure its presence for a few days” There could be nothing better than a book about someone or a 'hero' like Peter Kien that loves books Moreover Auto da Fé is one of Elias Canetti's masterpiece Kien knows what he wants from life to spend his lifetime supported by his father's inheritance within a library of his own creation “Books have no life; they lack feeling maybe and perhaps cannot feel pain as animals and even plants feel pain But what proof have we that inorganic objects can feel no pain? Who knows if a book may not yearn for other books its companions of many years in some way strange to us and therefore never yet perceived? Every thinking being knows those moments in which the traditional frontier set by science between the organic and the inorganic seems artificial and outdated like every frontier drawn by men Is not a secret antagonism to this division revealed in the very phrase 'dead matter' ? For the dead must once have been the living Let us admit then of a substance that it is dead have we not in so doing endowed it with an erstwhile life” There's much and if you read it you will find it can be somewhat unsettling even at times distressing or melancholic But above all it is beautiful and I loved it Elias Canetti was a superb writer He won a Noble prize in literature I also recommend his three volumes autobiography The Memoirs of Elias Canetti The Tongue Set FreeThe Torch in My EarThe Play of the EyesAn all time favorite highly recommended A choice Numberless made within the ordinary mayhem of a day A person makes choices from the beginning to the end scheme of their life Peter Kien wants to spend the passing of his time supported from the inheritance of his father's death within the library of his own creation Books instead of people Facts and theories devised by those ideas argued by the greatest Sinologist in the world himself Life is to be defined by knowledge and study While no one but his housekeeper sees or knows he builds clear borders and boundaries All four rooms in his flat are filled with his shelves He is having a tryst with his booksMuch that has been written about this book has rightfully focused on its theme of totalitarianism My reading which certainly doesn't deny this focuses on the individual the aesthetic accomplishments with hopes that it resonates with a few of youExcept for an hour walk early each morning to sneer at the bookstore windows for the trash they display and the public gobbles up he has nothing to do with the world outside his library Not only does life not run according to strict schedules and routine as is paramount in his daily research work but beyond his carefully laid borders is a mixture of individual perceptions daydreams delusions urges and instincts colliding resulting in expectations and behaviors missing each other Nothing is as it is It is but the stealth and passions of conflicting illusions fighting out their separate dramas to maintain a comfort of denial and diversion Only if one is to give up one's self and life participate in the ultra confined categories of what is proscribed as permissible will agreements be reached Most appear unconcerned that essences of their lives will not float past They seem relieved in rolling in the sualor of greed false politics subgroups morphed to back their own chosen or assigned ideologies own code of dress appearance speech Much backslapping and in jokes Beneath it all an unuestioned assignation of what is substituted for valueKien with his photographic mind cares for nothing but his immaculate schedule of study and the endless back and forth over time of communications with other known Sinologists disputing endlessly if elouently the finest points within this chosen context This process of following the strictest of regimens parsing fine blades of thought is learning The process of learning is in his life the highest from of being of value He eschews all worldly acclaim of his work Known as a legend in his field he does not respond to ongoing invitations to participate in conferences or to publish Butis it really doing or offering anything different to the world than the rest of the hooligan sub worlds? Is that our responsibility? Our worth in life? Helping the world? Butlisten what the Professor is doing is an activity of a much higher aesthetic order It will enhance him Enhance him? For what? He isn't leaving the house Who cares Who really cares about the finest distinctions made in Sinology? Does anyone care any or less that Joe every Thursday night after work gets drunk at the same bar and on signal everyone raises their mug and sings in stomach bending laughter the same song Is this just another placating diversion? These treasured volumes are no different by nature from what the Professor has sealed himself off from? But what if the seal as in any amalgamation developed the split of hairline fissure? An unnoticeable spread? Life seeping in or out?Allowing the world to be sucked into his flat Kien finds himself removed into the streets of unprinted life where he comes upon or it comes upon him greed and filth at every level It is here where that fraction of a fraction of a point is lost Unlike the great past television series The Wire where corruption of the system and soul is exploded before the viewers eyes adamantly focused on a Balti street gang the education department and the police department Canetti frolics through too many strata diffusing somewhat the power of the effect I say this with great reservation not only because it is Canetti but their seems a strident effort to shade close to vaudevillian as a style of emphasis It might have been even powerful if pared a thin slice toward the dramatic and half step from the comic These may be the words of an old fool living in a modern time and ignorant of the world of 1935 Fortunately he remains just this side of caricature which would be the death bell for this work though there remains isolated incidents which do detract There is something wry going on here A wink of the eye As with Walser he stands at a distance smiling at the blunders and misapprehensions of his fellow humanity However Canetti's smile is a bit sadder a touch of melancholy weighting it down at the corners Possibly the other side of the vaudevillian card is a helpless sadness He demands the verities of dis reality to reflect the pliabilities of our constantly constructed inner realities the plumbers tape and glue used to anchor our anxious worlds together He like myself seems to have greater faith in the world between covers of a book its abstractions that weave thought understanding into an experience sidling up closer to what may be a reality Yet there remains a sense that he is not completely certainThe story which can certainly carry itself is enlightened by Canetti's style of hovering in the omniscient third person He shifts within the minds of his characters to omniscient provisions to direct talk with the reader This is accomplished smoothly Unnoticed the sorcerer keeps the narrative atilt yet moving forward Always forward in what may initially feel like stillness Something else occurs Not a literary event but a furthering of a rare literary accomplishment which brings its unexpected presents Canetti conjures with feint brush strokes a Peter Kien In my mind as I read he is a tall thin 40 year old esconsced in his library books ongoing study and research Little description of Mister Kien's physical appearance is provided Somehow from gestures his housekeepers reactions the description of his books and shelves and certainly not least the genie like rising between words unspoken images of this man comes to life The point is that for this reader I see Peter Kein differently despite none of this mentioned in the text at different times I find it difficult to understand it as authorial intent This seems to be what may arise during the heightened whirlwind of a creative process Carving the end joints of his existence to the bare essentials he shrinks and ages for me on the page The alchemical brew of gesture few descriptive details behavior and response ladled in a slow brim the reactions of others during his one foray into the guttered streets of life during his punctual one hour morning walk whitens his hair thins his bones His back is now bent fragile hands shake Later hair darkening in my mind as I read he stands shorter and broader Further on he rises again tall and lanky I know this person well It is unsettlingThis is Auto de Fe Elias Canetti yet he has invited me into this novel by dismissing the thud of a report of physical descriptions of his characters He has left it to me to join him with my own images to fill in the vacant spaces His craft the building of the text and its terms and little old me So I was wrong He did intentionally create this feat not only with Kien but most of his our characters understood its overwhelming value as engagement just not in a way I expected Then then then if this was not only my personal reactions but also to some degree orchestrated by a master the irrefutable images I had of these characters not only changed during the book but consistently their fictional images behaved in ways different even opposite from their appearance So without the use of concrete description of characters he works with the reader in steeping the blend of tea then with open palms capturing the steam lifted from the kettle's spout and creating an image of a character a character real than those existing outside the covers of this book who then functions different from their rising and changing appearances IfifI am accurate then a part of the art of this book is that we are always changing and not what we appear even or especially to ourselves This life we hold so precious is an illusion but not in the cliched way It is an illusion because illusions are necessary to create the divergences to not spend our lives blinking but to invest ourselves into whatever we need to do to create enough delusions of safety to provide room for comfort enjoyment and even the room to search about for meaningIt is a melancholic message A tough bitter one truthful as it may be There was good reason to lighten the frame by holding some scenes in an old vaudevillian theater of forgotten repute Will he find his way back to his flat his books? Each character shark swims Pivotal and pointed the streaming loops diving plunges gummed or raw toothed intersects with hungry schemes of safety Life is not about survival but the convenience of knowing that one will survive It is the culling of extinction in daily and dreaming life Diving at each character's pace into the grimed process also defeats time By each day hour second taken up by this task or worrying it there is little time for consciousness or anything else Their obsessive paranoid greed leaves them in a cage of interlocking steel prongs the sound of pecking just beyond one earI cannot end without a warning This is a book that stays with you A certain weight and mass it gestates slowly raising uestions at the most inopportune times resting within and waiting with its slow melancholic smile “A bookseller is a king and a king cannot be a bookseller”Can one carry along a huge library in one's head? The protagonist of Auto da Fé surely canAnd when the abstract intellect collides with the dull routine of reality both become shattered into nothingnessThis grand cynically modernistic novel easily comes among my top ten of favourites in literatureIf one’s consciousness is in conflict with reality what should be changed one’s consciousness or reality? “Blindness is a weapon against time and space; our being is one vast blindness save only for that little circle our mean intelligence – mean in its nature as in its scope – can illumine The dominating principle of the universe is blindness It makes possible juxtapositions which would be impossible if the objects could see each other”Let the darkness shine“Someone throws a button into your hat You've told me so yourself You see it's a button and say thank you If you don't say thank you you give the show away and your clients smell a rat So you agree to be cheated”However great can be the ideas we cherish in our heads they are effortlessly destroyed with illiteracy and vulgarity Since you are at goodreadscom you're most likely a bookworm unless you're one of the thousands of juveniles here who pretend they like to read only to get to know people they can hook up with But how bookworm of a bookworm are you? If you're at least the type who would feel sad leaving a bookstore without getting to buy a book then reading this novel would at times be just like staring at a mirror You can see you hereWinner of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1981 Elias Canetti a German wrote only one novel This one When you are destined to win the Nobel Prize in Literature but is too lazy to write than one novel what would be the appropriate basis for the plot in that one and only novel you will place your name on? Books And what would your main protagonist be? A bookworm How bookworm of a bookworm? The worst kind an extremist book loverMeet Peter Kien 40 year old tall emaciated specialist in sinology owner of a library with twenty five thousand volumes housed in four big rooms in an apartment where he lives alone He lives for in with by what other prepositions are there? his books Heaven for him is inside his study reading writing one thesis after another surrounded by his beloved books When he goes out for walks he find bookstores the only places worth visiting He has a map of his town with bookstores encircled in red When he accidentally drops a book he is in anguish like he had dropped his own infant child You soil it he considers it injured He does not like meeting and talking to people Talk to him and his mind flies elsewhere He can only pay attention to a conversation when the words book or books are mentioned He talks to books and the latter talks back to him Reality for him is primarily what is written in books Their counterpart outside of his books are unoriginal As he was passing by the cathedral warm uncanny sounds reached his ears He would have sung in the same key had his voice like his mood been at his command Suddenly a spot of dirt fell on him Curious and startled he looked up at the buttresses Pigeons preened themselves and cooed none was to blame for the dirt For twenty years he had not heard these sounds; every day on his morning walk he passed this spot Yet cooing was well known to him out of books 'uite so' he said softly and nodded as he always did when he found reality bearing out the printed originalThis is a novel without heroes Except for a few victims and Kien's brother who appears briefly towards the end all the characters here look sinister and mad Virtue is nothing but misinterpreted vileness Moments of levity are like the smiles and laughter of the insaneFirst published in 1935 it foreshadowed not only the American world chess champion Robert Bobby Fischer see the thread I opened in goodreadscom Prophetic 1001 Books himself off in the head but also the horrors of Nazi Germany and the HolocaustAn arresting read from start to finish which gloriously ended up in flames If you are 300 pages into this novel keep reading it gets better much better If you are thinking of starting this novel today think carefully and know that you do not have my recommendation I struggled uite a bit with this book The three star rating is a compromise between the 1 and 2 star rating I was certain I would give this book until about page 380 after which we are clearly in at least 4 star territory when I finally encountered some lyricism in Canetti's prose a likable character and something than a bunch of solipsistic maniacs bumping into one another and bickering over moneyI disagree with the comparisons in the Goodreads description to Hermann Broch and Robert Musil I think a apt comparison would be Samuel Beckett but don't get too excited yet For the first two thirds of this book Cannetti wrote about in a sparse prose style about odd and delusional characters in rather mundane domestic situations The problem is that while Beckett's sparse prose has an elemental force behind it and still manages to conjure seriously rich imagery Canetti's prose lacks this driving force and conjuring ability The terse sentences reflect the characters' scattered and shallow thoughts and fail to achieve anything than a fairly comprehensive portrait of several extremely unlikable charactersAlso the depiction of women through the guise of Peter Kein's wife and the disgust for all women and their mental faculties shared by a majority of the male characters in this novel was uite disconcerting and I'm not convinced Canetti took sufficient steps to distinguish the fictional biases of his characters from his implied own I don't know anything about the author personally but this novel has a strongly misogynistic theme supported by a wide cast of characters that is hardly rebutted by the assumption that the views are too extreme to have belonged to the authorHere's the thing though at some point the language really began to click and Canetti elevated his writing to whole other level I have the exact page and passage marked and will share below The main character Kien wants to believe his wife is now dead She is symbolized throughout the novel by her starched blue skirt In an effort to purge his reality of all thoughts of his wife Kien attempts to eradicate the very existence of the color blueThe logical argument against the existence of blue is further strengthened by the empirical with closed eyes Kien sought some image which in the general opinion would be described as blue He saw the sea A pleasing light rises from it tree tops with the wind passing over them Not in vain do poets standing upon a summit compare the woods below them to the sea They do it again and again They cannot avoid certain similes There is a deeper reason for this Poets are men of the senses They see the wood it is green In their recollection another image wakens no less vast no less green the sea so the sea is green Over it is the vault of the sky It is full of clouds they are black and heavy A storm is rising But it cannot break nowhere is the sky blue the day passes How the hours hasten Why? Who is chasing them? May not a man see the skies before nightfall see their accursed colour? It is a lie Towards evening the clouds part A sharp red breaks through Where is the blue? Everywhere is burns red red red Then night comes One successful revelation No one doubted the redAfter this passage the book really took off for me Canetti sustained the imagery he established above extended it and wrote with a previously undetected and much appreciated lyricism The final portions of this novel assure that Canetti had the powers of a supreme writing I wonder if Canetti only came upon these powers in the midst of writing this his only novel It's a shame that the ualities that Canetti's writing exhibits in the end of this book do not pervade the entire novel if they had I'm sure this piece would rise through the ranks and rival many of my favorites Ultimately however despite the pleasant taste left in my mouth by the ending I was disappointed with this book and have uite mixed feelings about recommending it to any but the most serious and patient of readers The disconnection of the world caused by the passion of knowledge Canetti's first novel written to exorcise his demons