The Master of Petersburg

The Master of Petersburg In the fall of Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky lately a resident of Germany is summoned back to St Petersburg by the sudden death of his stepson Pavel Half crazed with grief stricken by epilep

  • Title: The Master of Petersburg
  • Author: J.M. Coetzee
  • ISBN: 9780140238105
  • Page: 103
  • Format: Paperback
  • In the fall of 1869 Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky, lately a resident of Germany, is summoned back to St Petersburg by the sudden death of his stepson, Pavel Half crazed with grief, stricken by epileptic seizures, and erotically obsessed with his stepson s landlady, Dostoevsky is nevertheless intent on unraveling the enigma of Pavel s life Was the boy a suicide or a murIn the fall of 1869 Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky, lately a resident of Germany, is summoned back to St Petersburg by the sudden death of his stepson, Pavel Half crazed with grief, stricken by epileptic seizures, and erotically obsessed with his stepson s landlady, Dostoevsky is nevertheless intent on unraveling the enigma of Pavel s life Was the boy a suicide or a murder victim Did he love his stepfather or despise him Was he a disciple of the revolutionary Nechaev, who even now is somewhere in St Petersburg pursuing a dream of apocalyptic violence As he follows his stepson s ghost and becomes enmeshed in the same demonic conspiracies that claimed the boy Dostoevsky emerges as a figure of unfathomable contradictions naive and calculating, compassionate and cruel, pious and unspeakably perverse.

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      Published :2019-01-02T06:42:41+00:00

    1 thought on “The Master of Petersburg”

    1. Imaginary MemoirsThe first person narrator of "The Master of Petersburg" is Coetzee's imagining of Fyodor Dostoyevsky as he might have been in October, 1869, immediately before he started writing his third novel, "Demons".The Master is living in Dresden, when he is summoned back to St. Petersburg after the sudden death of his stepson, Pavel Isaev, on 12 October.He soon begins to inhabit Pavel's lodgings, haunts and psyche in an attempt to comprehend their shared life and fate and to solve the my [...]

    2. Strokes of a Paintbrush [Coetzee's Narrative Strokes]J.M. Coetzee's descriptive tool appears to be like a paintbrush---or so it seems.The deeply-rooted-thought-penetrating narrative is elegant in its indulgence, poetic in its expression, vivid in its portrayal, as it attempts to give form to a whirlpool of thoughts that glide restlessly inside the unstable mind of a genius. The wordings themselves become an efficient descriptive tool like that of a paintbrush, maneuvered by the painter's dextero [...]

    3. Disappointingly often, I find that people tend to confuse the views of fictional characters created by an author with the views of the author him or herself. I think that's the heart of my problem with this novel, "The Master of Petersburg". It's not that this is a bad book, either. Coetzee is a marvelous writer, and at times managed to truly enrapture me in the plot and in his characters. So I suppose I am objecting to this work on principle. Coetzee understands what makes a compelling read: co [...]

    4. There’s not really a lot of room for silliness in this review, not that Coetzee tends to lend himself to anything other than seriousness in general. Noted nepotistic asshole Martin Amis famously said that Coetzee’s entire corpus was "predicated on transmitting absolutely no pleasure." Sorry, Marty, but there is a distinct difference between you and JM: he can actually fucking write, and you have been reduced to a sound bite (and a footnote to literature that is already in the process of bein [...]

    5. In questo romanzo, Dostoevskij fa ritorno a San Pietroburgo da Dresda, dove è fuggito dai creditori. Il suo precipitoso e clandestino ritorno è dovuto alla morte misteriosa del figliastro Pavel, e molto ruota intorno a quel figlio amato anche se non generato da lui, un figlio forse non conosciuto quanto credeva, e ormai perduto.Dostoesvskij aveva davvero un figliastro di nome Pavel, ma questi non morì; gli sopravvisse, anzi. Il figlio di Coetzee però morì, e io mi domando quanto di questo l [...]

    6. Con una narrativa dinámica y convincente, Coetzee nos sumerge, ya a partir de la primeras páginas en la vida desesperada de un Dostoievski autoexiliado en Petersburgo qué busca obsesionadamente las razones de la muerte de su hijastro Pavel. Realmente un libro que disfruté mucho y en donde Coetzee nos muestra cómo pudo influir la psiquis de Dostoievski para la creación de sus personajes. Muy recomendable.

    7. Fascinating read. His syntax reveals a clarity and credibility so elevated in its integrity that one lives the POV of the narrator in this case the existential, genius novelist Dostoevsky. It is a daunting bit of narrative ambition, bordering on hubris, to assume the POV of Dostoevsky and yet Coetzee is compelling, skilled and possibly even on the brink of masterful in this rendition. He writes a great deal about the relationship between fathers and sons -- very Turgenev. What does it mean to su [...]

    8. «Pago y vendo: ésa es mi vida. Vendo mi vida, vendo la vida de los que me rodean, los vendo a todos. Soy un Yakóvlev que comercia con las vidas de todos.»El ritmo, la perspectiva, los diálogos, un personaje atormentado y el desnudo discurrir del subconsciente La mímica es perfecta, es como estar leyendo a Dostoyevski.Biografías de Fiódor Mijaílovich las hay por montones, estudios sobre sus obras y su influencia ni se diga, referencias a sus personajes y libros dentro de otros libros ni [...]

    9. stunning 'what-if' fiction imagines Dostoevsky returning to Petersburg from exile in Dresden on the death of his stepson, Pavel, and getting entangled with his landlady, her daughter and the revolutionary cadre Pavel got involved with. Thought provoking in its debates about revolution and death and its legacy, plus whip sharp in its descriptions of the city and its poverty, it also delves deep into writing/art. Electric.

    10. This is the story of Dostoevsky who tries to understand the subtle death of Pavel, his step-son. Another magnificent book written by one the masters of the contemporary fiction.

    11. Publicado en lecturaylocura/el-maestro-El maestro de Petersburgo de J. M. Coetzee. La escritura como sacrificioIntenta lanzar un encantamiento, pero ¿sobre quién? ¿Sobre un espíritu o sobre sí mismo? Piensa en Orfeo cuando camina hacia agrás, paso a paso, susurrando el nombre de la mujer muerta, para engatusarla y obligarla a salir de las entrañas del infierno; piensa en la esposa envuelta en el sudario, con los ojos ciegos, muertos, que lo sigue con las manos extendidas ante sí, inertes [...]

    12. This is a well plotted literary thriller. Lots of dramatic situations unfolding simultaneously: a murder mystery (of course), an extra-marital affair (of course), the death of a child (of course), a disease (of course), and child molestation (can't leave that out). I really had higher hopes for J.M. Coetzee though. He had been recommended to my by people whom I respect and he won the Nobel Prize and everything etc Unfortunately I found, despite its considerable strengths--eg it was engaging. In [...]

    13. In the introduction to Summer in Baden-Baden, Susan Sontag mentions The Master of Petersburg in relation to Tsypkin’s work. Being on a Dostoevsky-themed streak, and wanting to read everything written about the man anyway, I immediately ordered Coetzee’s work. I finished Tspykin’s exceptional novel only a week or so before starting Coetzee’s, so it was still fresh and alive in my mind when I began reading The Master of Petersburg. Perhaps it was the beauty of Tsypkin - so vivid to me stil [...]

    14. I loved reading this book. It is not only about Dostoevsky, but is also written in Dostoevsky's style. It's dark and fast. It's about death, punishment and inner battle.The character Dostoevsky has some of the attributes of his own characters Svidrigailov, Stavroghin, Raskolnikov, with the distinction of a man fighting with his age and not having his nobility and superiority of the "master" as we expected. He looses his strength and ability to see things clearly and the only way to show his viri [...]

    15. this may be coetzee's most ambitious and richly layered novel, seemingly his most personal (his son dead at twenty-three from his own falling accident). while the book triumphs on many levels, not the least of which being the emotional candor he would had to have mustered throughout the writing of it, this is hardly his most powerful work. much of the intense, unabashed rawness of his other (earlier & later) stories is spared here, replaced instead with a contemplative perspective, perhaps n [...]

    16. This book, it seems to me, is more about Coetzee than Dostoyevsky. As a psychological study of Dostoyesky, I was very disappointed. But luckily I did not approach it with those expectations -- I approached it like I approach every Coetzee book: here is one miserable son of a bitch who can sometimes tell good stories but oftentimes gets caught up in ideas or psycho-sexual theorizing. He is, it seems to me, the grandson (literarily speaking) of Dostoyevskian style -- an inner psychologically torme [...]

    17. Very feverish novel about, and completely in the line of the Russian writer Dostoevsky. Coetzee evokes a secret visit of the 49-year-old Dostoyevsky to Saint-Petersburg, after the death of his stepson Pavel. It is not clear to me what Coetzee had in view with this book: a tribute to the genius of Dostoyevsky (and at the same time, a portrait of his despair)? An attempt to dig even deeper into the human soul than the Russian grand master had already done? An exploration of the manipulation techni [...]

    18. I recommend this for anyone who's read, at the very least, Crime & Punishment and Demons. I'm not sure how much sense it would make without that background. It's a wonderful piece of art, perfectly structured and paced, and reflects impressively on its themes - generational conflict, what it means to be an author, contemplation vs action - but is depressing in a way I'm not sure I can get behind. Don't get me wrong. I love depressing books. But this one maybe it's just that Coetzee's more re [...]

    19. Just a quick one because I am at work and have classes to prepare for. This was a struggle to read. There were times when I got bored and restless, counting pages left and waiting for the impact and then in one major session I read the last 120 pages or so and I put the book down and thought it was worth 3 stars. Then at night I had the most intense dreams and I awoke with insight into myself. I think the book's deep introspective search into the ego had rubbed off on me. And like the main chara [...]

    20. Stunningly beautiful. Themes of consciousness, death, sex, the afterlife, suicide, gambling with God, questions about God's existence, the necessity of narrative, the role of narrative, the act of authorship, illness, independence within the self and from the government. The main character is Dostoevsky--I'm not sure quite how to read fictional stories based on factual people and am sure more resonances would sound if I were more familiar with D's work. Will have to read Crime and Punishment thi [...]

    21. THE MASTER OF PETERSBURG. (1994). J. M. Coetzee. ***.This novel from Coetzee, a winner of the Nobel Prize, was a difficult. Read on the simplest level, it is the story of a man who travels from Dresden to St. Petersburg to learn more about the death of his step-son, Pavel. The man and his character are based on Fyodor Dostoevsky, under an assumed name of Isaev. Dostoevsky, in real life, did not have a step-son, though he did have a son who lived long after his step-father had died. Pavel, it was [...]

    22. Scriitorul J/M Coetzee, laureat al premiului Nobel pentru literatura in anul 2003, este unul dintre cei mai interesanti scriitori contemporani. Nascut in Africa de sud la Cape Town in 8 februarie 1940, a facut studiile la Cape Town University in cea mai dificila perioada istorica a acestei tari, a lucrat cativa ani in Anglia, apoi isi ia doctoratul in SUA unde si ramane sa tina cursuri d e literatura in diverse universitati americane ca in momentul de fata sa locuiasca in Australia fiind profeso [...]

    23. J.M. Coetzee, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2003, is not everyone's cup of tea. 'The Master of Petersburg', first published in 1994, is no exception. Following the death of Dostoevsky's stepson Pavel, Coetzee manages to construct a novel with such towering themes as the father-son relationship, the quest for the truth, death, and the very art of writing itself. However, for all its complexity, most reviewers of 'The Master of Petersburg' here on have found Coetzee's portrayal of D [...]

    24. Благодарение на списание "Съвременник" осъществих челен сблъсък с Кутси, който ще боли дълго. В брой 3 за 2015 е публикуван този негов роман (в превод на Пейчо Кънев), който не е излизал на български в книжно тяло и се чудя и мая защо. Стилна, силна и завладяваща история, в която с [...]

    25. It was fun watching Coetzee imitating Dosteovsky's style. Characters fling themselves on to graves, getting dirt in their beards. Scenes are hysterical, emotional excess always leading Dosteovsky to self-flagellation. Coetzee is always planting explosive paradoxes within Dosteovsky's interior life, "There is a rush of feeling in him, contradictory, like two waves slapping against each other: an urge to protect her, an urge to lash out at her because she is alive." This sense of paradox, though, [...]

    26. Un homme se rend à Saint-Pétersbourg sur les traces de son fils. Qu'est-il arrivé à Pavel, seul dans cette ville de tous les dangers ? Quels ont été ses derniers jours ? Ce pèlerinage ne sera pas de tout repos pour ce père qui sera rattrapé par ses démons, perdu dans ses rêveries jusqu'à la lisière de la folie. Cet homme qui part sur les traces de son fils, au risque de se perdre lui-même, n'est autre que Fedor Mikhaïlovitch Dostoïevski.L'écrivain sud-africain John Michael Coetz [...]

    27. Dostoevsky, in this novel, returns to St. Petersburg from his home in Dresdan to try to pursue the spirit of his stepson, who has died in mysterious circumstances. In telling this story, Coetzee brilliantly creates the paranoid atmosphere of 19th century Russia, the same Russia reflected in Dostoevsky's novels. Coetzee also takes up the old Russian theme of fathers and sons, as Dostoevsky learns that his stepson has a perception of the past and the development of their relationship quite differe [...]

    28. The dour genius of J. M. Coetzee cannot be denied, not by me at least. He has a relentless intellect that I wish, sometimes, would relent just a little, just enough to allow a crack of a grin -- even a grim grin would do wonders for this reader's constitution. I occasionally picture Mr. Coetzee frowning at his typewriter or computer or inkwell, thinking up the heart-wrenchingest scenes; frown deepening to a scowl, making words into matters of the soul; scowl puckering into a sneer, a sneer of wi [...]

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