today, it is everywhere, therefore nowhere. While death is transformed into statistics, I re-read A man by Philip Roth. From childhood to old age, the author of the Pastoral american tells the story of a man without quality through the malfunctioning body. Who is he ? It is each of us in the common experience of confrontation with disease and death. It has neither a name nor first name. It is one among many others. His memories have a taste of salt : the young body plunged into the Atlantic ocean. The sun, the waves, the freedom.
Philip Roth wrote A man to the back of the funeral of his friend Saul Bellow (1915-2005). Passage upheaval, where the man of the news by phone to his old friends, all badly-in-point. Death is what connects us and what separates us. A man is the first volume of the cycle Nemesis. A short novel and thought on the fragility and vulnerability of human. It all starts with a funeral. Of death, of life, it is said : "But finally, the most heartbreaking, it is what is common. "
first, childhood, and youth. He was born in 1933 in Newark, New Jersey. He has a brother protector, and a happy, six years his elder. The father is a jeweler and watchmaker. He works seventy hours per week, at the age of 32 years. The father will take his retirement at the age of 73. The two boys are sons loved and loving. Then, the mid-point of the life. He works in an advertising agency. He becomes creative director. He married three times. He has two sons from his first marriage with Cecilia and a daughter from his second union with Phoebe. He does not get along with his two sons, Lonny and Randy ; he loves his daughter, Nancy.
His last young wife is present at the hospital during an operation to seven hours of open heart. He was then fifty-year-old. About his wife of 30 years, the cardiologist in charge of the quintuple coronary artery bypass grafting diagnosis : "It is an absence, not a presence. "Finally, old age. After his third divorce, he takes his pension at age 65. He leaves Manhattan to a retirement community. It is located a handful of kilometers from the seaside resort where he spent his family holidays on the coast of New Jersey. He devotes himself to his passion : painting.
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We are born to live, we who die yet.
In his old days, he endures what Philip Roth called the human expectation who has nothing to wait for. Among the pensioners of Starfish Village, he feels more alone than ever. "Unlike him, many of them were capable of sustaining an entire conversation on the chapter of their grandchildren and, more importantly, to find in the existence of these grandchildren of reasons to exist themselves. "The bodies of young women running on the pier is a renewed interest in him. He looks at them again, they will look at you more. Because the materiality of the body with and failed is the subject of A man. In the Face of the lifeless body of the mother, it provides : "The death is death, that's all. "
He is aware of the biggest trap to avoid in the face of illness and old age : the souring of the character. There falls. He gets away from his older brother, whose goodness was always forced his admiration, because it does not support most of the in good health then it accumulates operations. It will be over a year without being hospitalized.
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An ordinary man. A life of successes and failures. He suffered, he did suffer. He has a loving relationship with his daughter Nancy, and he has led a distinguished career in advertising ; he allowed the woman of his life, Phoebe, and he has not exploited his talent as a painter. In this novel, dry and hot, consisting of ash extinct, human aging is dizzy in front of the banality of things : "We are born to live, we who die yet. "Extraordinary dialogue of man and the gravedigger in a cemetery. In the end, there is so little to intellectualize. This life is singular and the common, the man did not draw any moral. He will give his daughter adored a single board, because he did not see a lot of others to deliver : to hold good.
A man, Philip Roth, translated by Josée Kamoun, Folio, 180 pages, € 7.50