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czstki-elementarne

Młody biolog, przesiadujący w nieskończoność nad swoją pracą, i jego przyrodni brat, pogrążający się w kryzysie psychicznym nałogowy konsument pornografii, uosabiają zdaniem autora dwa skrajne sposoby życia we współczesnej cywilizacji. Życie obu bohaterów i ich matki toczy się w świecie pozbawionym szczęścia i jakichkolwiek innych uczuć. Kiedy obsesje seksualne przywodzą jMłody biolog, przesiadujący w nieskończoność nad swoją pracą, i jego przyrodni brat, pogrążający się w kryzysie psychicznym nałogowy konsument pornografii, uosabiają zdaniem autora dwa skrajne sposoby życia we współczesnej cywilizacji. Życie obu bohaterów i ich matki toczy się w świecie pozbawionym szczęścia i jakichkolwiek innych uczuć. Kiedy obsesje seksualne przywodzą jednego z braci na skraj obłędu, drugi pracuje nad genetycznym modelem nieśmiertelnej i bezpłciowej istoty ludzkiej. Książka łącząca elementy powieści obyczajowej, eseju i science fiction wywołała we Francji istną burzę, a nieprzyznanie jej autorowi nagrody Goncourtów porównywano z odrzuceniem przez jury Podróży do kresu nocy Céline’a....

Title : Cząstki elementarne
Author :
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ISBN : 8389291371
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 363 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Cząstki elementarne Reviews

  • Helen Ροζουλί Εωσφόρος Vernus Portitor Arcanus Ταμετούρο Αμούν Arnum
    2019-02-03 05:56

    (Η κριτική περιέχει ενύπνια ψιχία αποκαλύψεων πλοκής). Ο κλονισμός των κλωνοποιημένων •Θα μπορούσαμε να πούμε ότι συνολικά 12 σωματίδια αποτελούν τους βασικούς δομικούς λίθους του σύμπαντος, από τη γέννησή του μέχρι σήμερα. Όχι ακριβώς! Η σύγχρονη θεωρία που περιγράφει τον μικρόκοσμο, η κβαντομηχανική,  προβλέπει (και έχει αποδειχθεί πειραματικά) την ύπαρξη του αντισωματίδιου: σε κάθε σωματίδιο αντιστοιχεί άλλο ένα, με ίδια μάζα και αντίθετο ηλεκτρικό φορτίο. Ετσι ο συνολικός αριθμός των σωματιδίων διπλασιάζεται•Ο θηλυκός "νέος Ωραίος Κόσμος" είναι το όραμα του Ουελμπέκ ως μια θαυμαστή και τρομακτική ουτοπία. Οι φυσικές μεταλλάξεις που αλλάζουν τον κόσμο μέσα στη διάρκεια της ιστορίας φτάνουν στο τρίτο μεταλλαγμένο κοινωνιολογικό πρότυπο. Εδώ επικρατεί ο ατομικισμός και η υλιστική μίζερη κυριαρχία. Πρέπει να εξαλειφθούν απαραιτήτως για να εξελιχθεί η ανθρώπινη οντότητα προς την ευδαιμονία και την τελειότητα. Μοναδικό όπλο η επιστημονική κορύφωση της γενετικής. Θα πρέπει να αποφασιστεί συνειδητά απο το ανθρώπινο γένος να αλλάξει ριζικά και μη αναστρέψιμα τα ατομικά συμφέροντα και το γνωστό και "φυσικό" τρόπο αναπαραγωγής. Έτσι, αυτοβούλως όλοι οι άνθρωποι θα είναι αδέλφια... βιολογικά,πανομοιότυπα αδέλφια και συναισθηματικά..μόνο η αγάπη θα επικρατεί ανάμεσα τους. Όλοι ίδιοι. Όλοι μεταλλαγμένα τέλειοι. Όλοι ένα γένος. Όλοι πραγματικά ενοχοποιημένοι και τέλεια κλονισμένοι ομοζυγωτικοί κλώνοι. Η επιστημονική εξέλιξη φτάνει στη θεοποίηση με εφιαλτική κατάληξη. Πανοραμικά κατεδαφίζεται ο δυτικός πολιτισμός. Εξαλείφεται η θρησκευτική ηθική και τα κοινωνικά πρότυπα. Η ανδρική υπόσταση δέχεται τορπίλες ηδονικού εξευτελισμού. Καταγγέλονται σαρκαστικά και καυστικά οι κοινωνίες των φιλελεύθερων οικονομιών και της αχαλίνωτης σεξουαλικής απελευθέρωσης ως καταστροφικές για τον δυτικό κόσμο του 20ου αιώνα. Σύμφωνα με τον μάλλον τρομαγμένο και μοναχικά ευαίσθητο συγγραφέα αυτός ο κόσμος οφείλει να αντικατασταθεί απο τις μελλοντικές οντότητες αφού οι παρελθοντικοί άνθρωποι που επέφεραν τον εκμαυλισμό των πάντων πρέπει να αντικατασταθούν απο τη μοριακή βιολογία της εθελούσιας αυτοκαταστροφικής κάθαρσης. Ως τώρα,επικράτησε η σοσιαλιστική κοινωνία των ρατσιστών,των αντιοικολόγων,των λίγων που απολαμβάνουν τα πολλά και των πολλών που αρκούνται στα λίγα. Παραφυάδες της γενιάς του '68 οι μειονότητες έχουν έντονη ερωτική ζωή και αχαλίνωτες ηθικά και σωματικά ηδονές και απολαύσεις. Έχουν εξουσία και απολαμβάνουν τα αγαθά ως κληρονομικό χάρισμα. Αντίθετα η πλειοψηφία ξεσπάει στην πορνογραφία, τη στέρηση, την αυτοϊκανοποίηση και την υλική ανέχεια. Βασικό χαρακτηριστικό είναι κατανομή της ηδονής. Απο τη μια,η κουλτούρα της σεξουαλικής απελευθέρωσης με προϊόντα χίπικης φιλοσοφίας και φεμινισμού οδηγεί σε κάμπινγκ- παραθεριστικά θέρετρα και "εναλλακτικές"διακοπές όπου επικρατεί το ιδεώδες "γ@@@@ε εαυτούς και αλλήλους" χωρίς αύριο. Και απο την άλλη η ασεξουαλικότητα,ο αυνανισμός και πορνογραφία ηθών και μέσων επιβίωσης. Εδώ βασιλεύει η αυτοϊκανοποίηση και όποιος αντέξει...Και οι δυο παραπάνω κατηγορίες κοινωνικής μορφής είναι κατά συνέπεια δυστυχισμένες. Απομόνωση. Έλλειψη επικοινωνίας. Μοναξιά. Μιζέρια. Γερασμένα ψυχικά κορμιά. Ατομικισμός. Ματαιοδοξία. Υλιστική εξάρτηση. Έλλειψη ελπίδας. Γηρατειά. Θάνατος. Τα αδιέξοδα του σύγχρονου ανθρώπου θα τα λύσει το όραμα του θηλυκού ωραίου κόσμου μέσω των "στοιχειωδών σωματιδίων" και τη νέα εξελιγμένη γενετική. Το "άτομο" γίνεται θεός και αυτό το βιβλίο πέρα απο τον κυνισμό και την εφιαλτικά ρεαλιστική ωμότητα, είναι σύμφωνα με τον Ουελμπέκ αφιερωμένο στον Άνθρωπο. Καλή ανάγνωση!Πολλούς ασπασμούς!

  • Manny
    2019-02-03 03:46

    You can interpret this book in several different ways. A lot of people view it as a depressing, hate-filled rant, filled with a really startling amount of unpleasant sex. I'm not saying that that's necessarily incorrect. In fact, my immediate association was with the fictitious books that Moreland invents in one of the Anthony Powell novels: "Seated One Day at my Organ", by the author of "One Hundred Disagreeable Sexual Experiences". But I think there are more interesting ways of reading Les Particules, which show that it's not as pointless as it first appears.So, after considering it a while, I'd say that this is basically a book about sexual frustration. Bruno, the main character, has an extremely active libido, but is unfortunately not at all attractive; he's fat, ugly and lacks charm. He spends his days in a constant agony of unfulfilled desire. I recently read Hamsun's Hunger; the poor guy in Hamsun is broke and hungry, and no matter what he tries to think about he always comes back to money and food within a few minutes. Hamsun's very brave about showing how degrading this is for him. Bruno's plight is similar. He's not getting any sex, and that's all HE can think about. And in fact it's not unreasonable to argue that Houellebecq is being brave too in describing just how humiliating that is for him. The author could put it in general terms, or he could indirectly suggest it, but a detailed description of how Bruno masturbates over his algebra notes while watching girls on the train drives it home far more effectively:Il prenait l'autorail de Crécy-la-Chapelle. Chaque fois que c'était possible (et c'était presque toujours possible), il s'installait en face d'une jeune fille seule. La plupart avaient les jambes croisées, une chemisier transparent, ou autre chose. Il ne s'installait vraiment en face, plûtot en diagonale, mais souvent sur la même banquette, à moins de deux mètres. Il bandait déjà en apercevant les longs cheveux, blonds ou bruns; en choisissant une place, en circulant entre les rangées, la douleur s'avivait dans son slip. Au moment de s'asseoir, il avait déjà sortit un mouchoir de sa poche. Il suffisait d'ouvrir un classeur, de le poser sur ses cuisses; en quelques coups c'était fait. Parfois, quand la fille décroissait les jambes au moment où il sortait sa bite, il n'avait même pas besoin de se toucher; il se libérait d'un jet en apercevant la petite culotte. La mouchoir était une sécurité, en général il éjaculait sur les pages du classeur: sur les équations de second degré, sur les schémas d'insectes, sur la production de charbon de l'URSS. La fille poursuivait la lecture de son magazine.But why does Bruno feel this terrible, and what does it say about our society? Houellebecq has some interesting observations about how free-market economics have entered into people's personal lives; having also read Naomi Klein's The Shock Doctrine in the near past, this resonated rather well. In the economic sphere, Klein argues persuasively that the logical long-term result is a world where Dick Cheney and his immediate circle of friends own almost everything, and a good 40% of the world owns nothing. In the sexual sphere, the corresponding long-term result is a world where no one really wants to fuck anybody except Scarlett Johansson or Megan Fox (depending on whether they prefer blondes or brunettes), and will not even consider fucking anyone who isn't young and thin. Bruno exemplifies this horrible state of being; thwarted sexual desire has turned his life into a living hell, and Houellebecq is psychologically credible in showing how it progressively destroys him, making him hate everyone and everything. One interesting angle is that the book contrasts the materialistic world-view that has him in its jaws against the traditional Christian world-view. It's probably not an accident that, when Bruno does in the end meet a woman who truly loves him, she's called Christiane. Here's another example of how the graphic descriptions of sex are not as gratuitous as they first appear. Bruno has just spent a very happy week with Christiane, but must leave:Bruno avait déjà plié sa tente et rangé ses affaires dans la voiture; il passa sa dernière nuit dans la caravane. Au matin, il essaya de pénétrer Christiane, mais cette fois il echoua, il se sentit ému et nerveux. "Joue sur moi" dit-elle. Elle étala le sperme sur son visage et sur ses seins. "Viens me voir" dit-elle encore une fois au moment où il passait la porte. Il promit de venir.In a Brigade Mondaine novel, this would just be pornographic. Here, it comes across as a rather moving scene. I felt very sorry for poor Christiane; it was already clear that things couldn't possibly work out well.The part of the novel I found least engaging was the thread that followed Michel, Bruno's half-brother. Instead of experiencing life as one long torment of desire, Michel hardly feels desire at all. He becomes a biophysicist, and eventually finds a way to create an immortal race of asexual beings, which duly replace humanity. I wasn't very convinced by any of this, partly because Houellebecq seems to be unaware that biologists have spent a lot of time wondering about why it is that sexual reproduction is a good idea. It's an interesting story, and deserves to be treated with more respect. I don't think, however, that we need to discuss whether Michel's idea makes scientific sense; I don't believe Houellbecq is seriously saying that we should find a way to evolve away from sex, any more than Brecht in The Tutor is seriously suggesting autocastration as a solution. He's just saying that the pain that sex and love cause people is such that you're willing to consider an extreme solution in order to escape from it. Unfortunately, Houellebecq has loaded up with scientific buzzwords, but doesn't seem to have any deep understanding, and I found the quantum mechanics much more irritating than the pornography. For example, I suppose that all the references to the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen gedankenexperiment are intended to suggest that Bruno and Michel are inextricably bound together, quantum-entangled in fact; their mother is the source, Bruno and Michel are the two electrons. But if you insist on a quantum-mechanical metaphor, a particle/anti-particle pair seems both more obvious and easier to understand; invoking EPR is basically just too fucking clever. Which is a reasonable criticism of the whole book in fact._______________________________________I discovered yesterday evening that Les Particules is listed in 1001 Books To Read Before You Die. Well... I suppose I agree. Though I'm also warning you that it could significantly advance the date of your demise.

  • Greg
    2019-02-08 05:56

    "It's a curious idea to reproduce when you don't even like life." It's rare to come across a book filled with so pure of hate. At first I thought maybe it's was just some good old fashioned misogyny, with maybe a little bit of nationalism and Arab hating thrown in, but then something curious happened, the whole of society got thrown into the hate-fest that is this book. Hippies? Hate them a lot. Italians? Yep, really hate them, we don't say why we just do. Nature? Fuck it!! Sex? Love it but hate it. French Intellectuals? Oh really fuck those guys, especially Deleuze, but make it clear we don't like any of those guys from the 60's. 1968? Hahahaha, fucking assholes. Children? Masterbation fodder, or else just more fucking people. Growing old? Really hate it. People lying to themselves that they aren't old? Hate them so much too. Hate hate hate hate hate. It might not sound possible but this book might possibly hate everything, the author / narrator doesn't even seem to place himself in any kind of position where it seems like he would be saying 'oh look at all of these poor shits!! If only there were more people like me in the world, a race of me's!! And I'll call them super-men!!!" Nope, there is nothing Nietzschean here, rather it's all sort of the most pessimistic Kant imaginable. One were the ethics are based on total shit as an imperative. But through all of this hate and the depressing feelings of the total waste of life we all are, and the simple fact that no one is going to be happy, it will elude us and the desire for happiness will only make us miserable; this book ends up being an interesting, and enjoyable read.

  • Joshua Nomen-Mutatio
    2019-02-20 07:00

    Wow. What an incredible book. The Epilogue makes a huge difference in how one might view it on the whole. It certainly did for me. I was getting so depressed by the end that I almost chucked it aside around the 90% mark because I felt a panic attack coming on. But I took a deep breath and I switched up my reading soundtrack and I pushed on and am very glad that I did. The Epilogue really clarifies so much that precedes it. Leading up to that point it is basically 100% bleak, and I mean truly, truly bleak--though extremely interesting and entertaining every step of the way. There's a fair amount of gross sexual stuff along the way as well, but it's always presented in a detached, rather ungleeful way, and as such it has a point beyond mere shock and/or titillation that fully justifies its presence. To say this book is just about sexual frustration is to hugely miss the point. This is a BIG PICTURE book but carried out through a tightly crafted narrative mainly surrounding two brothers birthed from a massively disfunctional genetic pool with one shared parent: a terminally miserable, often nauseatingly sexually deviant literature professor named Bruno and a largely emotionless but harmless microbiologist in deep almost inhuman isolation named Michel. The book covers so many subjects that I'm sort of dumbfounded and slow to begin relaying them all. Existential, cultural, scientific, philosophical, historical, etc. Consciousness, genetics, sex, death, physics, religion, cruelty, love, parenthood, childhood, adulthood, happiness, suffering, etc. Despite the often searing and pitiless slings and arrows thrown at humanity, I think it is also a book that is deeply sympathetic to the desperate flailing, the absurd flaws, and the open wounds of humanity, self-inflicted and otherwise. Its final sentence is a straight up dedication to humankind, despite its many detailed failures and sufferings and defects, and despite the claim that a new and improved species must take its place. I was holding a solid four star rating of this in my head until the final leg of the journey, around Section Three and the Epilogue. So if any readers who take my opinions as any sort of guide end up having trouble with it along the way, I implore them to press on.

  • sarah
    2019-01-27 00:44

    Okay, I decided I would take a go at actually justifying my rating for this book, rather than just make half-hearted apologies at my preference for a so-absurdly misogynistic and, let's be frank, pornographic novel. First of all, I like Houellebecq's unrelenting pessimism. It's far beyond nihlism - so more destructive and negative, so more emphatic in its rejection of bougeoise norms, of religion, culture, capitalism. This book (as well as the other Houellebecq I read, Platform) captures the bleak purposeless of modern life better than almost anything I can think of. As a recent college grad who for the first time in her life finds herself waking at 7:30 am each morning so she can go plug herself in to the grinding mechanics of capitalism; someone whose weekends consist of the churn of drunk-hungover-drunk-hungover, who struggles to find meaning in music, beauty, sex, religion, whatever -- I can relate to this. The emotionally unavailable scientist. The absolutely pathetic, lonely, sex-addicted failure. The petty, worthless little bureaucrat in Platform. I'm not, you know, depressed or anything, but I can share at least in some part their view of the world as bleak, lonely, and irredeemable except through very brief moments of relieved pain via drinking and sex.Secondly, the book is darkly funny. Not amateurish darkly funny, because, I mean, this book is dark. The things in it that are funny are the things that have to do with the inevitability of death, the pointlessness of life, the drive for sex that is unsatisfied in pathetic, heartbreakingly inadequate losers -- are you cracking up yet? If not, you might not get it. The humor is subtle, and when I first read this book (in the original French), I missed a lot of the humor. But the humor is there - the question is whether or not the reader is capable of appreciating it. One of those laugh-if-you-don't-want-to-cry things.Thirdly -- okay, yes, the book is misogynistic, maybe kind of racist, certainly anti-religion -- but at least Houellebecq is fair. His hatred with modern society is pretty blindly applied. The men in this book aren't exactly great upstanding characters, either, you know? So, there you go : like I said, don't go telling the feminist sisterhood or my mom that I enjoyed this book. But if you're looking for some dark, high-brow pornography, and you have a strong stomach, this might be a good choice for you.

  • Fabian
    2019-01-25 06:46

    Extraordinary, outstanding, absolutely not-to-be-missed*!* "The Elementary Particles" holds you captive like only the best of 'em can. Think-- a long, cold autumn afternoon sipping coffee and reading "Never Let Me Go." Think-- Dan Brown# poolside. All of these experiences that could conceivably last one blissful, insatiable sitting (the novels that are not considered novellas, that is)-- this is one of 'em. The artistry is like a painting, the reading is like some immersive exercise that blends sex with study of molecular biology in new and intelligent ways. The two brothers are separated entities who belong to the same sphere of humanity. It is elegant & very very smart. Mr. Houellebecq, sir: I am your devoted FAN (I drag my gory knees on the ground, en route to the basilica of French Modern Lit.-- a palace of gleaming rubies that reaches toward the bright summer sky)!!!# This type of novel, this quality of work, inspires me to even mention Dan Brown. I mean, yeah... Dan Brown. I make reference to him with a smile--a vibrant optimism afforded only by the likes of wizards like Houellebecq!

  • Jessica
    2019-02-21 05:54

    Years ago, I went out on a few dates with a French guy. He was rich and good looking (though, of course, way too short), and he seemed pretty smart but I never could bring myself to kiss him. He had this typically Gallic extreme snottiness that I found amusing, even endearing, but even as I enjoyed this I suspected that his disdain for everything non-French might indicate something a bit too dark for me. At a certain point I decided that he wasn't a regular charming misanthrope: I discerned that he hated Muslims, black people, and homosexuals even more than he hated everyone else, and so I didn't go out with him again.That French guy was a big fan of Michel Houllebecq.At the time, I wondered for a moment why I find generalized misanthropy acceptable -- even kind of charming -- but felt more specifically targeted hatreds were completely repellant. I mean of course I understand why I think that, but how rational is it? Why is hating fewer people not okay, while hating everyone is fine?Again, of course I understand why that's the case, but it is a little funny... Anyway, this train of thought doesn't have much to do with this book, except that maybe it does relate to the French and the way that they think about people. But I don't know much about them as a culture, and therefore won't generalize here.I was so into the first half of The Elementary Particles that it made me feel terrible in that amazing hedonistic I-hate-myself-for-loving-you way that top-shelf Martin Amis brings on. This book has a lot in common with St. Aubyn's The Patrick Melrose Novels (which I never got around to reviewing properly) both in that it's about the extraordinarily fucked-up children of wealthy Europeans, and that it degenerates somewhat into overly expository and transparently philosophical fake monologues later on in the book. In other words, I was obsessively entranced by the first half, and the second half was just okay.My favorite thing about The Elementary Particles was the way that it would constantly pull back from the story of its characters to tie their experiences to generalized historical and biological trends. This is what fiction is, and how it works, and I love seeing it spelled out like that. This book is about two half brothers with a terrible mom, and tries to describe and comment on massive transformations in human life and experience. For the most part, I think it did do a pretty good job, though I'm not sure I agree with its arguments and conclusions.Again, I really loved the first half of this book, though I didn't think the second half was as good. I'd be embarrassed to recommend it to most people, based on its graphic sexual content and bleak view of human relations, though if I were honest I'd admit I think he's got a lot right.I think, based on this book, that Houllebecq wrestles with a lot of the questions most significant to the time we're upon. He does this wrestling in a way that might not be palatable to all, and while I find this compelling I haven't yet decided if I'll go out with him again.

  • Lorenzo Berardi
    2019-02-18 07:41

    This book brought me to laughter. And this is not a compliment, but actually quite the opposite.Every character here is monodimensional and unrealistic, while the story itself is ridicolous. Blame me if you like, but after the tenth masturbation scene filled up with philosophical rubbish and Andre Gide quotes I've felt a big nausea coming up. And this malaise stayed with me till the end of the novel. There are many novelists who have their own obsession for sex and some of them are consistently good such as Philip Roth and Ian McEwan; Michel Houellebecq, in my humble opinion, is not.PS: Review corrected and re-edited in September 2014.

  • Hadrian
    2019-02-15 08:37

    I wish I was able to write a more detailed reaction to this novel, but I feel nothing. Not in the sense of 'poetic existential despair' nothing, but total non-commitment.These cynical rants against humanity are really all the same, aren't they? Occasionally you find one with at least some stylistic flair and originality, like Céline's, but here I see failed edgy attempts to shock with bad sex, loneliness, and a touch of misogyny. So fucking what? I'd go read Reddit comments if I wanted to read that. I do not. That's all.

  • Scott
    2019-01-24 03:58

    Imagine a stylish French man, grumpily smoking a lung-shreddingly strong cigarette and repeating in his thick accent variations on the phrase ‘Life, she is shit’.That is this novel, and author Michel Houellebecq is a dishevelled version of that Frenchman.If you’ve read Whatever, or The possibility of an Island, or indeed any of Houellebecq’s work you know what a cheerless sourpuss he can be. His characters, inevitably middle aged Frenchmen, usually live lives of despair and ennui, (often mysogynistically) trying and failing to find joy in sex, money, success, etc., and it is so in The Elementary Particles.There isn’t much happiness to be found here. There are no Coelho moments of saccharine transcendence or reflection, no patronising rom-com redemptions. This steely grimness is to my reader’s eye part of what makes this novel the great work that it is. Houellebecq’s varied and fascinating observations on the awfulness of everything come together in The Elementary Particles to make for a brutally powerful novel that genuinely blew me away, leaving me filled with new questions about the nature of our society and human relationships within it.A sourpuss Houellebecq might be, but he is a damn talented sourpuss, and I rate this novel as one of the greatest of the late 20th Century, a book that I think will hold its own as a great work of its time and be read in future decades, much as we still read The Outsider, or The Catcher in the Rye.This is a novel of ideas. Big ideas.The aimlessness of modern middle class life. The constant hungering for youth that our teen-obsessed society conjures within us. The commodification of family, love and relationships that our post-sexual revolution, consumption oriented world has led to - The Elementary Particles takes aim at the ills of our society, and it's loaded for bear.I could write about the characters - two brothers, one trying to feel something through a desperate pursuit of sex, the other a coldly sexless intellectual. I could talk about the grimness of their lives as they strive to find meaning and their disappointments pile up into mountains whose shadows suck the sun from their days. But I won’t, as in this story it is our society as whole that is the main character, a character who is screamed at, railed against and found to be the antithesis of so many things that make human beings happy.If you can handle some pretty graphic sex combined with a story of nihilism, ennui and some hard examination of the consumerist wasteland that is modern Western society, then strap in for a damn fine novel. Read this book. You’ll either love it dearly, or hate it passionately, and probably have excellent reasons for your opinion either way.

  • Amrit Chima
    2019-01-25 05:54

    Gratuitous sex. For those who have read this book, it’s not a surprising initial comment. The sex in The Elementary Particles is graphic, drawn-out, and explicit. Yet the novel has such an intellectual draw that even at its most seemingly uncalled for, I believe Houellebecq had a purpose for it. Through the suffering of two brothers—Bruno whose libido is painfully (and often shamefully) intense, and Michel who has virtually no interest in sex—Houellebecq depicts mankind’s struggle with materialism and individualism. Our bodies, driven by animalistic desires that translate into religious or spiritual disgrace, only cause suffering. Thus through sex we humiliate and are humiliated. Moments of beauty and insight do exist, but they are rare and fleeting, and as a result, sad.This viewpoint is only strengthened (and by degrees, humanity’s suffering as well) by means of the cultural ideologies that have sprung from the US and spread globally. Materialism specifically—the chasm of need instilled within people who then feel inferior because of genes, the natural process of aging, economic position, etc.—has doomed us to depression, hate, and murder. For society to function, for competition to continue, people have to want more and more, until desire fills their lives and finally devours them. No longer evolving, indeed humanity is devolving as a result: ...materialism was antithetical to humanism and would eventually destroy it. And through our increasing needs and desires, we come to view ourselves as separate from each other, dislodged and unconnected spiritually, heightening our anguish.Many reviewers claim that this work is highly misogynistic, however, Houellebecq clearly laments humanity’s treatment of women. He juxtaposes the ridiculous, base, violent, and selfish nature of man’s sexual urges and tendencies with the softness and exquisiteness of a woman’s touch, both physical and emotional. Bruno only reaches some measure of happiness in life by means of a woman who shows him how to accept and respect his body and sexual needs without judgment, by introducing him to communities in which the sex act is honored. Without her he cannot sustain the joy of his being. Houellebecq also compares a man’s inability to love with a woman’s boundless and unselfish devotion. Michel, emotionally dead, is nonetheless able to recognize that love does in fact exist by means of a pure woman who loves him unconditionally. It is only through the women in the novel that sex, love, and spirituality are seen as one. To enjoy the act of sex, to love through it, is a purity men cannot seem to achieve on their own.What on earth were men for, Michel wondered as he watched sunlight play across the curtains. In earlier times, when bears were more common, perhaps masculinity served a particular and irreplaceable function, but for centuries now men clearly served no useful purpose. For the most part they assuaged their boredom playing tennis, which was a lesser evil; but from time to time they felt the need to change history—which basically meant inciting revolutions or wars. Aside from the senseless suffering they caused, revolutions and wars destroyed the best of the past, forcing societies to rebuild from scratch. Without regular and continuous progress, human evolution took random, irregular and violent turns for which men—with the predilection for risk and danger, their repulsive egotism, their irresponsibility and their violent tendencies—were directly to blame. A world of women would be immeasurably superior, tracing a slower but unwavering progression, with no U-turns and no chaotic insecurity, toward a general happiness.Unable to recognize our own divinity and perfection (an idea explored through notions of metaphysics), Houellebecq also states that man, as a species, is not equipped to cope with death. Mired in materialism and individualism, we view death only as an end, never a beginning, always a loss. Grief pulls us downward into that ever-widening chasm of need until we disappear. Sometimes we can feel the universe vibrate in nature—the water, trees, and sky. In these moments, nature is infinitely beautiful and graceful. But that iota of awareness plunges us into greater depression when it is lost. Buddhism teaches us that nothing is permanent, that the material world is always changing. The more we hold to our youth, to a strict sense of individualism, to life itself and the objects we accumulate, the more painful our existence.Terrified of the idea of space, human beings curl up; they feel cold, they feel afraid. At best, they move in space and greet one another sadly. And yet this space is within them, it is nothing but their mental creation. In this space of which they are so afraid, human beings learn how to live and to die; in their mental space, separation, distance and suffering are born.There is an aching, quiet beauty to Houellebecq’s narrative that makes it difficult for me to disagree with him. And though he does introduce a sort of twisted and intelligent hope by the end, it is not reassuring. Still, he is asking us to face truths about ourselves, about our history as a species that are critical to examine, but that we so often would rather overlook.

  • StevenGodin
    2019-02-16 06:42

    Daringly original and yes, ludicrously filthy!, but for anyone that thinks this is just three hundred and eighty pages of Masturbating, blow-jobs and debauchery your missing the point, as there are far more serious things going on here than spanking the monkey! and alike. Michel Houellebecq has written a work of great intelligence and maturity that is nihilistic in nature and immensely sad but was always compulsive reading. Concerning French half-brothers Michel and Bruno where the only thing they have in common is the same mother and melancholia, for libertine Bruno is a sexually frustrated middle age individual who although ashamed of his body can't keep his hands of himself weather that be in public or private, while life for Michel has been a success to a point, a molecular biologist who is a clever idealist but has about as much sex drive as a castrated monk, with flashbacks from childhood to the teen years and then grown men we follow not only the two through a demoralising life filled with a strong sense of failure but also for relationships, culture and the destruction of contemporary society. And it's here that Houellebecq drives his message home with a deep and meaningful account of the passage of change and ultimate pressures of finding a place to exist in modern times. Many will pass him off as a nihilist, racist, pervert and for the mistreatment of women, who has written a lewd and funny work for cheap thrills with the sole aim to offend, I am not having that one bit!. Very moving and more importantly really gets you thinking.

  • Chris_P
    2019-02-08 01:55

    The way Houellebecq combines science and sociology is amazingly intelligent and deliciously dizzying. Asexuality and sex addiction, the two offsprings of the sexual liberation of the 60s, are envisioned by the French author in a marriage whose fruit seems to be extremely... Nietzschean. I must admit I got completely carried away, while the trick he pullled in the epilogue had me looking for my mind cause yeah, I suddenly felt it missing.Amazing stuff.

  • Jeffrey Keeten
    2019-02-12 02:46

    This is the second Houellebecq novel that I have read. Usually when I talk about why I like novels it usually has to do with the great characters that I identified with or the amazing plot or the entertaining action. Houellebecq provides none of these things. In fact, while I was reading this book, my daughter asked me what the book was about and I went uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. His characters are unhappy and disfunctional. Houellebecq's books create controversy to the point that he has ended up in court defending himself and his motivations. He explores the sexual lives of his characters sometimes in great detail. He writes passages that could be construed as racist. Houellebecq does make me uncomfortable at times, but I believe good literature is supposed to make us flinch. His characters are analytical about their lives to the point that even moments of joy are destroyed before the character can even experience the happiness. I generally lose patience with books about epically unhappy people.So why do I like reading Houellebecq novels? Houellebecq is intellectual and smart and I like his analysis of what motivates people. Love is merely a chemical reaction. To think I'm being manipulated by chemical reactions instead of something larger, nebulous, mythical, and romantic does take some of the sparkle off the apple. It is interesting though from time to time to step back and look at what motivates me without an emotional element attached. I do make better decisions when I take enough time to let the impulsive first rush of thoughts subside and look at the issue with a certain amount of dispassionate distance. All that aside I certainly never want to look at everything from such an intellectual perspective that all the juice is sucked out of my life. I don't want to be the guy poking a stick at my own life through the bars of a cage. I think that is really why I like reading Houellebecq's books because he reminds me actually of how much I like my life, and even though I can make improvements mostly with more informed decisions; I don't want to spend the bulk of my life over examining my life to the point that I quit living my life. That in my opinion is a form of intellectual suicide.

  • MJ Nicholls
    2019-02-15 07:41

    The longueur of French academic life. The pain of being 40 and unfuckable. Something about quantum physics. It's all here in this eggheady gloom festival.

  • Rhonda
    2019-01-29 06:58

    This book is a stunning surprise to me as I was properly prepared to dislike it before I picked it up. Although I was determined to finish the book, I was not prepared for what a wonderful book this is. This book is a consummate sociological description and commentary of the second half of the twentieth century's social revolution in western culture. The psychology isn't too bad either.Because it is a work of fiction, I interpret it as a grand sociological critique, with some fictional leeway, of course. It is, nevertheless, a remarkably keen and bitter excoriation of how western civilization managed to turn itself on its ear and embrace its own self-destruction. Further, Houellebecq gives an heuristic account of where Western civilization goes in the fictional future. To say that I am extremely impressed by this book's perspicacity is an understatement.This is not a quick read nor is it a pleasure book for the casual reader, perhaps looking for social commentary with which quickly to agree. There are many topics which are integral to the argument of this book. Hence when Houellebecq mentions Aldous and Julian Huxley, Plato, Nietzsche, Kant, the Bhagavad-Gita and the Tao Te Ching, these are not casual comments; if you don’t know what or who these are, especially in relation to the time periods being discussed, it’s important that you stop and find out. Nevertheless, the writing is quite beautiful in many places, even though it tends to jump to other characters at different time periods without warning. However, when you relax and allow Houellebecq to drive the boat, you begin to see the genius in his methods. One must read very carefully to understand the depth of the message being delivered, demonstrated by the short passage below: In contemporary Western society, death is like white noise to a man in good health; it fills his mind when his dreams and plans fade. With age, the noise becomes increasingly insistent, like a dull roar with the occasional screech. In another age the sound meant waiting for the kingdom of God; it is now an anticipation of death. Such is life. Houellebecq intersperses his sociological accounts and observations throughout the book. It is very easy to overlook them if one is just trying to get to the end. The reader must often stop reading and learn the lesson he is trying to convey before continuing.As another example, below, the modern world takes on a very dark shadow throughout the book, but nowhere like when he first describes abortion issues. A relatively innocent girl has had sex with a lothario during what she believes is a period of freedom of expression and finds herself pregnant. By the time she returned to her hotel, Annabelle was distraught. She would have the abortion the following day and stay overnight at the hotel before going home; that was what she had decided. Every night for three weeks she had slept in David’s tent. The first time it had been painful, but afterward she enjoyed it. She had never thought that sexual pleasure could be that overpowering. But she felt no particular affection for the guy; she knew he would quickly find someone else, was probably with someone now. At a dinner party that same evening, Laurent [abortion doctor:] talked enthusiastically about Annabelle’s case.This was precisely what they had been fighting for, he remarked, to ensure that a seventeen year old girl…”and a pretty girl, too,” he almost added… did not have her life destroyed by a holiday romance. One can only surmise that the inability to be struck by this portrayal indicates that one is too deeply inured in our present societal cancer to understand the significance of our social engineering experiments and what they have reaped. Yet this is hardly a case of a single issue, but of an avalanche of issues out of control. He observes: As a teenager, Michel believed that suffering conferred dignity on a person. Now he had to admit that he had been wrong. What conferred dignity on people was television. Although one might argue with his conclusions, the writer makes a stunning case, albeit depending upon several fictional characters. Still one must understand the social implications of the age somewhat well before discarding the arguments: A subtle but definitive change had occurred in Western Society during 1974 and 1975, Bruno thought to himself…During those years when he was desperately trying to fit in, Western society had tipped toward something dark and dangerous. In the summer of 1976, it was already apparent that all of it would end badly. Physical violence, the most perfect manifestation of individuation, was about to reappear. The writing is stunning in its ability to not only portray great beauty and ugliness, often at the same time, but also evoke deep thought and self examination, however uncomfortable. While I learned a tremendous amount about male sexual behavior I really didn’t want to know, I was also forced to examine female behavior in certain guises of modernity. Some of it is easy to recognize, even when unpleasant, but there are other issues which require us to hang our heads at the plausibility that this is even human behavior. This I find one of H’s great conclusions is given in the following quote: Over the years, he had developed a cynical hard-bitten typically masculine view of life. The universe was a battle zone, teeming and bestial, the whole thing enclosed within a hard, fixed landscape…clearly perceptible, but inaccessible: the landscape of the moral law. It was written, however, that love contains and perfects this law. Christiane looked at him tenderly, attentively; her eyes were a little tired. Of course there are some incredibly funny passages which sometimes go over one’s head. In this book, it helps to be somewhat well grounded in biology as one of the main characters, Michel (sic,) is a molecular biologist. In the scene below, Michel attends his half brother, Bruno’s wedding. He is much taken by pastor’s words during the ceremony concerning the marriage of two to become one flesh. Later Michel went up to the priest as he was packing away the tools of the trade. “I was very interested in what you were saying earlier…” The man of God smiled urbanely, then Michel began to talk about the Aspect experiments and the EPR paradox: how two particles, once united, are forever and inseparable whole, “which seems pretty much in keeping with what you were saying about one flesh.” The priest’s smile froze slightly. “What I’m trying to say, “Michel went on enthusiastically, “is that from an ontological point of view, the pair can be assigned a single vector in Hilbert space. Do you see what I mean?”“Of course, of course…” murmured the servant of Christ, looking around. “Excuse me,” he said abruptly and turned to the father of the bride. One doesn’t have to understand the paradox of Hilbert space to find this hilarious, but it does help. H is constantly throwing in little zingers throughout the book. While he begins the book talking about his main character, Michel and then adding his half brother Bruno (the perverted guy) as well as related and associated characters, the real key to this book is about biology. In fact, the title doesn’t even make sense until one has made a deep commitment to walk the path and wade through the ugliness and intellectual difficulties which prevail. Nevertheless, one cannot help but laugh at how the whole story develops and finally ends. While this isn’t for the faint of heart, this book does ask the reasonable question about the decisions we have made as a society. Perhaps it even suggests what we should do as a solution.

  • Grayem82
    2019-02-10 07:42

    Oh God. I'm about half way through this book, which I picked up on a whim after finishing the excellent Blindness by Jose Saramago. I needed something else to read until I got a copy of Dave Eggers' What is the What, and this had got a lot of raves.So far, I'm as close to tossing this book away unfinished as I have ever been. I almost always finish books, but this is just a chore.As offensive as parts of it are (yes, yes, I'm supposed to be offended, and I can see the ambiguity about whether the misogyny and racism expressed is the narrator's or the protagonist's - all very dull and adolescent, like a stand-up being ironically racist and sexist), it's mostly just DULL. The endless, repetitive style, which is completely unengaging and flat; the unemotional dialogue; the cynicism and satirisation of a culture which, as far as I know, doesn't exist any more, and if it does, exists only amongst a tiny few in wealthy upper-middle class society. How often do I have to sit through another pointless passage about tightening vaginas etc?I would hesitate to say this book is pornographic, but like porn, it quickly becomes dull, mechanical, unemotional and slightly nausea-inducing.

  • Jim Elkins
    2019-01-23 02:02

    When the Middle Class Aspires to Cold NihilismWell, it seems there is hardly any point in contributing an other review, when so many people think "The Elementary Particles" ("Atomised" in the UK) is a "powerful," "unflinching" book. But it brought Houellebecq into the public eye and set the stage for his later books, so it's worth reconsidering.I think it's weak: weaker than all of the models he attempts to emulate.If you want genuine existential disorientation, read Sartre. If you want intransigent, pithecoid hatred of the human condition, read Celine. If you want a book that actually doesn't flinch in regarding death, try "Everyman."If you want a protracted imaginative ventroliquism of motionless despair (like Michel's in this book), read "The Unnameable."If you want raw, repetitive, compulsive, unsatisfying sexual excess, read de Sade. (Or Cathy Acker.)If you want the thrill of a science-fiction ending in which humans are regarded as wonderful but primitive things of a happily discarded past, watch "Star Trek." Houellebecq's book is is a pastiche of those authors, along with pinches of Sollers, Camus, and Artaud, and many sidelong (and nervous) glances at Nietzsche and Schopenhauer, whom he can't quite bring himself to openly emulate, presumably because then he couldn't continue to be interested in middle-class values. The philosophizing asides are replete with clichés, and the supposedly astonishing scientific passages are cobbled from popular magazines. If you find this novel shocking, you might consider just how immersed in the "endless middle classes" you really are: this kind of café existentialism is a trope of the middle class. It's not difficult to imagine Houellebecq's ideal reader: for such a person, this book is invigorating challenging, rude, honest, and brutal. It's ambitious because he isn't just "shooting rabbits," as the delightful blurb on the back of the UK edition puts it. He's after "big game." And that means the book is larded with observations about the decades from the 1940s to the present, their movies, lifestyles, music, politics, sex, and economics. The ideal reader would find these to be both nostalgic and informative, like interruptions from a public television documentary. They are intended to give the book scope, make it more like Hugo, Buddenbrooks, or "Giant" than an ordinary family story. Mailer, Amis, and many others have tried the same strategy. But if you're not convinced by the intrusion of a voice from television documentaries, if you're not shocked by stories about snuff films, boys molesting other boys, or characters endlessly jerking off (I wonder how many orgasms there are in the book: one per page?), if you're not surprised that people are at root damaged, selfish, sexually-driven cowards, then this book won't be illuminating or expressive. Houellebecq could write a strong novel, if he would allow himself to write the excoriating racist screeds that he attributes to one of his two principal characters. (I think he has written that kind of prose -- in fact I bet that the excerpts in this book are from his own early manuscripts.) A "strong novel" in this sense is not "Submission," which again hedges its positions and toys with extreme views that it can't quite bring itself to openly embrace.

  • João Carlos
    2019-02-18 01:02

    Em 2015 li dois romances do escritor francês Michel Houellebecq (n. 1956): a ”Extensão do Domínio da Luta” (1994) (4*) o seu primeiro romance e ”Submissão” (2015) (4*) o seu último romance. Em ambas as obras – apesar de temáticas díspares – a narrativa e a escrita criativa, suscitaram múltiplas leituras e variadas interpretações, revelando Michel Houellebecq como um dos mais originais e controversos escritores da actualidade. Em ”As Partículas Elementares” (1998), o seu segundo romance, Michel Houellebecq subdivide-o em três partes: O Reino Perdido, Os Momentos Estranhos e Ilimitado Emocional. Dois meio-irmãos, Michel Djerzinski, é um biólogo reputado, um sério candidato a receber o Prémio Nobel, que decide tirar um ano sabático; Bruno, é vítima da crise dos quarenta e pretende alterar a sua vida; ambos, pouco ou nada têm em comum, apesar de os seus destinos estarem intimamente interligados pelas compulsivas mudanças sociais e morais que estão a ocorrer em França. A mãe dos dois meio-irmãos Janine é uma vagabunda libertária, exclusivamente preocupada no seu bem-estar físico e emocional que entrega os seus filhos a diferentes avós, e que parte para a Califórnia para viver numa comunidade hippie.Numa narrativa ostensivamente provocatória, congregando inúmeras teorias científicas, discorrendo sobre a ascensão da ciência e o declínio do cristianismo, e muito mais,…, num período em que a revolução sexual avança, os resultados acabam por destruir as relações familiares, com Michel Houellebecq a confrontar o leitor de uma forma cruel, onde as descrições de sexo são implacáveis e impiedosas, no sentido, em que quase nunca existe amor ou paixão, o sexo apenas pelo sexo, de uma forma sem sentido, humilhante e violenta para as mulheres, por vezes, também para os homens. ”As Partículas Elementares” é um romance profundamente niilista e misógino, repleto de sequências de sexo explícito, que desperta paixões fortes e intensos debates, a que não é alheia a personalidade de Michel Houellebecq, um intelectual francês, escritor polémico, deliberadamente provocador e irreverente, truculento e tumultuoso. Apesar de entender o enquadramento e o contexto narrativo de ”As Partículas Elementares” tive sempre dificuldade em “partilhar” a solidão e a tristeza dos dois meio-irmãos, Michel e Bruno, os seus comportamentos e a depravação sexual associada, excessivamente repulsiva, com longos períodos de leitura profundamente repugnante, porque não vislumbrei nenhum tipo de enquadramento entre as diferentes temáticas abordadas e a “história” que se vai desdobrando sem nenhum critério definido.

  • Milica Chotra
    2019-01-24 04:02

    The universe is merely a chance arrangement of elementary particles. A transitory image in the midst of chaos. Which will end with the inevitable: the human race will disappear. Other races will appear, and disappear in turn. The heavens are cold and empty, traversed by the faint light of half-dead stars. Which, also, will disappear. Everything disappears. And human actions are just as random and senseless as the movements of elementary particles. Good, evil, morality, fine sentiments? Pure “Victorian fictions”. There is only egotism. Cold, undiluted and dazzling, writes Houellebecq in his essay on H. P. Lovecraft, in which we find many elements of "The Elementary Particles".This novel reflects author's cultural pessimism, his contempt for the atomized, egotistic, decadent Western civilization, its liberal democracy and capitalism. It is a bitter mixture of loneliness and misanthropy, desire, frustration and disappointment; philosophy, social critique and speculative science, and pornography, loveless and pleasureless. Ours is a culture obsessed with youth and beauty and, while their bodies are irreversibly decaying, Houellebecq's aging characters are struggling to find a reason to live on in such a world, but still hoping that maybe they'll touch something that resembles love, when, devoid of other emotions, they feel only compassion for those who suffer the same fate. While some readers might be put off by ca. 100 pages describing Bruno's miserable sex life, I found this bad, sad porn an appropriate expression of the loneliness and emptiness of human existence depicted here, but it is also a search for consolation and warmth, that they feel they deserve, just like everyone else.On the other hand, in a kind of a quantum mechanical metaphor, there's his brother Michel, a rational scientist, freed from all these bodily passions, who seems to have given up every hope in humanity, and, influenced by Huxley and eugenics, wants to create an "improved", asexual version of Homo Sapiens Sapiens. This sci-fi element might be the weakest part of the novel, and while Michel's story is not as compelling as his brother's, it's an interesting juxtaposition - they even seem like two faces of the same person, and having in mind Houellebecq's biography (e.g. his mother and two different DOBs that he shares with his characters), it might be the author himself.Conclusion: Read this book, it's not (just) a porn.[Read this review on my blog]

  • Lee
    2019-01-25 05:32

    Damn! I've had this for years, only read it recently, wished I'd read it long ago. Totally brilliant. Purposefully vicious and perverted to make philosophical points about the unhappy state of humanity. Juxtaposition of many sagging labias and licked cocks (which sadly might turn idiots off) with mucho genetics-related philosophizing (which sadly might turn idiots off). A book about the achievement of utopia, sort of like Huxley's BNW and Island, which the book deals with. Another uber-pessimistic/vile book born of idealism/hope, as with Thomas Bernhard. An entirely compassionate work of art, in its way, in that it's about ending human suffering and moving beyond desire and death. The succession of science over religion. Big themes. High art. Mostly exposition with suggestions of scenes, few conventionally dramatized via dialogue. Consistently gnarly/rad sentences make it flowing and imaginable and wholly enjoyable. Whole paragraphs (eg, about humanity's historically unprecedented concern with aging and the preferability of suicide to loss of physical function) I read outloud to a friend. At a bar, had another friend read a hilarious destruction of Brazil's allure when someone nearby ranted about Brazil's awesomeness. Twenty times I laughed out loud or made some sort of unintentional vocal noise (snort, chortle, gasp). An exciting book that makes me wanna write while I read everything this dude's done and does forevermore hereafter.

  • Macoco G.M.
    2019-02-02 07:47

    Suelo leer solo libros clásicos, pero en esta ocasión he apostado por este autor contemporáneo del que llevaba bastante tiempo escuchando hablar.Para mí ha sido una sorpresa descubrir a Michel HouellebecqDicen que es el "enfant terrible" de la actual literatura francesa. Dicen que es la única estrella literaria desde Sartre. No sé si es para tanto (no creo), pero el libro es muy original. Algo desestructurado, pero me gusta que sea así. Narra la historia de dos hermanos, un científico racional y casi ataráxico, y un hombre de letras obsesionado por el sexo. Cuenta sus vidas y hace un repaso de las corrientes ideológicas desde 1950 hasta nuestros días, haciendo una crítica feroz al movimiento hippie y otros movimientos "libertarios", ya que los narra desde la perspectiva de los hijos de esos padres que quisieron sentir la libertad sexual y espiritual a costa de todo y de todos, pasando por encima de unos hijos que quedaron desamparados.Sirviéndose de dos personalidades antagónicas, Houellebecq va cruzando sus historias con extraños incisos muy científicos, que llaman la atención porque para mí, son innecesarios, aunque dan ese punto de originalidad. Puede que terminen encajando con un final, que aunque no sorprende porque lo deja entrever en el inicio, sí que hace que el libro termine siendo algo muy diferente a lo que parecía ser, aspecto quizás positivo, pero al que se le podía haber sacado más partido.Lectura muy recomendable. Eso sí, hay que ir con la mente abierta. Hay mucho sexo explícito (vaya, es lo de menos), y (esto sí que puede ofender a [email protected]), críticas muy directas a ciertos pensamientos "políticamente correctos" que el autor devora sin piedad.Leeré más de este autor.Y si queréis leerme a mí, os dejo mi novela de fantasía psicológica: La sombra de la existencia :-)

  • Kaloyana
    2019-01-27 05:00

    Ммм, да... почти 400 страници за почти два дни. Не можах да я оставя!Първо да кажа, че тук има толкова много секс, извращения, страст, задоволяване на плътски щения и нагони, толкова подробно и прецизно описани сцени, че по едно време стигам до един цитат от Пруст и вместо "простотата", аз чета "простатата" :) И си викам, какво стана тука, бре? И Пруст ли? :)Но дотук с веселбата.Страхотно се изкефих на тази книга. Мишел Уелбек прави дисекция с думи. И то много успешно. Реже до кокал, без упойка и от раз. Брутално написана книга, без да е скрито нищо - откровена, рязка, чак боли или поне ти става къде гадно, къде неудобно, къде просто тъжно, но не можеш да четеш безразличен. И в другите му книги е засегната темата за остаряването и какво се случва в съзнанието на човек, как се променя в мислите си. Тъжно и вярно. Има и за сексуалността, самотата, смъртта, загубата и все така безпощадно написано. И за да е съвсем зле, е обяснено с чиста наука. С две думи - няма мърдане!Уелбек е доста силен автор, голям циник, страшно черноглед (реалист) и най-неприятното е, че е много, много убедителен. Обаче е французин до мозъка на костите си - всичко, от радостта и успеха, до страданието, провала и тъгата, са някак си описани хем рязко, хем с тънък финес и елегантност. На моменти чак ми идеше да му се обадя и да му се развикам: "Как ги правиш така нещата бе, мамка ти чужбинска!"Искам още Уелбек!

  • Rositsa Zlatilova
    2019-02-15 00:49

    The Elementary Particles wasn’t an easy read – it required long breaks in between and an even longer walk after I finished it. The book put me in all possible moods – I cried and laughed and felt sad, then was ignorant and rude and then bearable again.It tells the story about the last people on the planet who were so disconnected and dysfunctional that they saliently agreed to disappear or at least didn't bother to live as individuals any longer. Those people accumulated so much grief and emptiness that even their extinction wasn’t painful or raised any regrettable feelings. Empty creatures evaporate quietly; nobody misses them.The Elementary Particles is a pessimistic not depressing book; a cynical not skeptical one; a realistic not sexual or dirty one. It simply looks at you and asks you: “Your sickness, your brokenness – are they a burden or a relief so you have a good excuse to leave?”P.S. A friend gave me The Elementary Particles as a present and I somehow find this symbolic – it opposes all the hatred, unhappiness and suffering described in the book. It shows that still there’s hope; that there are people around us who care and feel and love, and that in the end The Elementary Particles isn’t a book about how sick we are, but how sick we can become if we don’t care to change. Or at least try to.

  • Warwick
    2019-01-27 04:42

    Another author in that very French intellectual tradition which seems to confuse being cynical with being profound. The basic thesis is that humans are risible and worthy of our hatred, and that interpersonal relationships are a despicable delusion. Some of this is illustrated with neatly-done set pieces, other parts are more didactic. The novel shows a consistent disgust for human bodies and sexuality which I thought rather juvenile.There are some moments of wit, but in general the prose style is merely functional. I think this is supposed to be cleverly ‘scientific’ but I found it only uninteresting.

  • Paul Bryant
    2019-02-01 01:36

    A lot of this book consists of a tirade of hatred against the author's dear mama. Now finally, the 83 year old hippy herself has emerged from her retreat with all guns blazing. Hilarious article about the whole rancid argument herehttp://books.guardian.co.uk/departmen...Sample quote"If it hadn't been my son, I wouldn't read that kind of crap, I would put it down straight away, because if there's one thing I detest in the world it's pornography. That book is pure pornography, it's repugnant, it's crap. I don't understand its success at all, that just shows the decadance of France." In her own book, she speculates that he writes about sex because he doesn't get enough. "What's this moronic literature?! Houellebecq is someone who's never done anything, who's never really desired anything, who never wanted to look at others. And that arrogance of taking yourself as superior ... Stupid little bastard. Yes, Houellebecq's a stupid little bastard, whether he's my son or not."

  • مروان البلوشي
    2019-02-10 06:52

    تاريخ القراءة الأصلي : ٢٠٠٥ماذا يحدث داخل عقول ونفسيات مجتمع ودع المسيحية والعائلة التقليدية والجنس المكبوت ويعيش حرية تامة مع مشكلة التعامل مع ملايين المهاجرين من المسلمين؟

  • Leonard Gaya
    2019-02-15 00:52

    Ceci est le deuxième roman de Michel Houellebecq, paru en 1998, quatre ans après Extension du domaine de la lutte. Il causa alors un vif émoi dans les cercles littéraires français et valu à son auteur une célébrité qu’il a conservée jusqu’à ce jour. Le scandale provoqué à l’époque est sans doute attribuable aux nombreuses scènes pornographiques très détaillées qui parsèment le récit.Mais, si ces descriptions rendent la lecture assez piquante, elles prennent leur place dans une longue chronique de la vie des quatre personnages principaux, dans les dernières années du XXème siècle : Michel, chercheur en biologie moléculaire, qui semble incapable d’aimer et d’être heureux ; Bruno, son demi-frère, professeur de littérature, laid et obsédé sexuel (après avoir subi des sévices sexuels durant son enfance) ; Christiane, l’amie de Bruno, qui partage son goût des partouses ; Annabelle, l’ancienne petite amie de Michel, qui se rend compte trop tard qu’elle l’aime toujours et a raté sa vie… Ces différentes aventures sont souvent relatées après-coup, de manière passablement détachée ou désabusée, lors de conversations de fin de repas entre les différents protagonistes, et émaillées de commentaires divers, d’ordre sociologique ou philosophique (parfois pseudo-scientifique, dans le cas de Michel), sur les difficultés de l’existence humaine, la misère sexuelle ou sur la décadence de la civilisation occidentale après la “mort de Dieu”. Ces récits emboités rappelle un peu la structure des Mille et Une Nuits ; l'alternance entre scènes sexuelles et réflexions philosophiques, la Justine de Sade.L’épilogue du roman constitue une surprise, dans la mesure où l’on découvre que les vies malheureuses de ces personnages (qui finissent tous par se suicider, de manière réelle ou symbolique) sont en réalité pris dans un récit-cadre, rendant un curieux hommage à l’humanité, plusieurs décennies plus tard, alors que les hommes ont disparu de la surface de la planète. Cette ouverture sur le mode de la science-fiction annonce les développements de La Possibilité d'une île (et m’a rappelé le dispositif final de The Handmaid's Tale de Margaret Atwood). Reste que le sentiment général laissé par la lecture de ce livre est celle d’une grande tristesse et d’une nostalgie pour un monde où l’amour, le bonheur, la douceur seraient encore possibles.

  • Vasileios
    2019-02-12 03:37

    http://dreamersandco.com/2015/09/%CF%...Τα στοιχειώδη σωματίδια του Μισέλ Ουελμπέκ είναι ένα βιβλίο που ήθελα πολύ καιρό τώρα να διαβάσω. Κι ενώ περιμένουμε με ανυπομονησία την κυκλοφορία του νέου του βιβλίου Υποταγή, είπα να του δώσω την ευκαιρία που του αξίζει. Είναι ένα βιβλίο για την ευτυχία και πως αυτή ορίζεται στη σύγχρονη δυτική κοινωνία.Παρά τη σχετικά πρόσφατη κυκλοφορία του βιβλίου (πρωτοκυκλοφόρησε στη Γαλλία το 1998), είναι ένα βιβλίο που μπορεί να χαρακτηριστεί ένα σύγχρονα κλασικό μυθιστόρημα της Γαλλικής λογοτεχνίας και αδιαμφισβήτητα δεν μπορεί να αφήσει ανεπηρέαστο κανέναν αναγνώστη. Είναι από αυτά τα βιβλία που είτε θα βρει ένθερμους υποστηρικτές είτε αναγνώστες που θα απογοητεύσει.Οι πρωταγωνιστές είναι δύο ετεροθαλή αδέρφια, ο Μισέλ και ο Μπρούνο που έχουν εγκαταλειφθεί από τη χίπισσα μητέρα τους… και οι δυο τους μεγαλώνουν από τις γιαγιάδες τους… ζώντας τις επιπτώσεις της ελεύθερης σεξουαλικότητας και των κινημάτων της δεκαετίας του 60 που ενδεχομένως οδήγησαν στη διάλυση της οικογένειας όπως οριζόταν μέχρι τότε.Τα δύο αδέρφια θα γνωριστούν στην εφηβεία τους, ενώ το βιβλίο επικεντρώνεται στις εμπειρίες τους όντας πια σαραντάρηδες. Ο Μπρούνο είναι καθηγητής φιλολογίας με τεράστια εμμονή στο σεξ και τις γυναίκες· με αφορμή αυτόν, ο συγγραφέας μάς κάνει ένα εκτενές ταξίδι με πορνογραφικό αέρα σε ένα βιβλίο που μπορεί να χαρακτηριστεί και ερωτικό. Από την άλλη, ο Μισέλ είναι ένας βιολόγος που έχει απαρνηθεί οποιαδήποτε μορφής σχέση. Είναι ένας άνδρας ασεξουαλικός, απομονωμένος από την κοινωνία, σκεφτόμενος μόνο το «μεγάλο» του έργο που αποκαλύπτεται στο τέλος του βιβλίου.Αυτό που μου έκανε ιδιαίτερη εντύπωση διαβάζοντας το, είναι ότι ο συγγραφέας ήθελε να μας παρουσιάσει δύο αδέρφια πολύ διαφορετικά μεταξύ τους που όμως επηρεασμένα από κοινωνικά και οικογενειακά συμβάντα, παρουσιάζουν ένα βαθύ σημάδι στην προσωπική τους εξέλιξη και ανάπτυξη, που διαμορφώνεται τελείως διαφορετικά στον καθένα τους και με επίκεντρο την κρίση των 40.Συνέχεια στο Dreamers & Co. >> http://dreamersandco.com/2015/09/%CF%...

  • Sve
    2019-02-14 06:48

    Несъмнено изключителен роман, макар че в един момент мизантропията и цинизма ми дойдоха в повече.Харесвам автори, които успяват да съчетаят личните истории с важни исторически събития и да уловят духа на времето. Харесвам и книги, които ми дават допълнителна информация в области, които едва ли биха ме заинтересували иначе и правят връзки между наглед несвързани неща.