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This English-language debut by a Romanian-born West Berliner is remarkable for its stylistic purity. Muller's angry tale of an ethnic German anxious to emigrate from his stultifying Romanian village is relayed in deceptively straightforward sentences ("Katharina had sold her winter coat for ten slices of bread. Her stomach was a hedgehog. Every day Katharina picked a bunch of grass. The grass soup was warm and good") that pile up in striking patterns (later, "the second snow came. . . . The hedgehog stabbed"). Intently focused prose animates the parochial town with its corrupt power brokers, gamey folk songs and a tree reputed to have eaten its own apples, as well as the problematic relations among the central character, his embittered wife and their nubile daughter, who, like her mother before her during the war, is forced to grant sexual favors to men of privilege.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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ISBN-10:  1852421398
ISBN-13:  978-1852421397
Author:  Herta Müller
Publisher:  Serpent's Tail
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review by . May 06, 2013
A grim and ponderous depiction of Romanian life under the scary dictatorship of Nicolae Ceausescu.
The Passport is a novella consisting of only 93 pages with the primary focus being on the Banat region of Romania and the Swabians in particular, the German speaking minority residents who occupy that territory in Romania. They are a people like the Armenians, who suffer incessantly and are folks who always get the raw end of the deal, historically speaking and otherwise. The story revolves around Windisch, the village miller, his wife as well as his virginal daughter Amalie, a school teacher. …
review by . June 25, 2010
The Passport is a novella consisting of only 93 pages with the primary focus being on the Banat region of Romania and the Swabians in particular, the German speaking minority residents who occupy that territory in Romania. They are a people like the Armenians, who suffer incessantly and are folks who always get the raw end of the deal, historically speaking and otherwise. The story revolves around Windisch, the village miller, his wife as well as his virginal daughter Amalie, a school teacher. Surrounding …
review by . December 08, 2009
... hundreds of small watercolors by the German Expressionist Emil Nolde, fill a small museum of their own in Berlin, near the Gendarmes' Market in the former East sector. Nolde was himself an anti-Semite and Nazi supporter in the 1920s, but because his paintings were classed by Hitler as "decadent art', he was ordered to refrain from painting of any sort during the years of World War 2. He disobeyed, hiding his watercolors successfully until the end of the war, painting daily in his remote home …
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