‘The absolute absence of weight makes the man to become lighter in the air, to fly higher, distance from the Earth, from his earthy being, that is real only in half and his movements are as free as they are insignificant’ [my own translation]
Milan Kundera loves Nietzsche. He loves his country, Czech Republic, he loves Prague. He speaks with great sadness of the communists times that swelled the ‘before’ of his country to turn it into a group of people with fear. But it also rescues the long-lasting and stubborn braveness of his fellow countrymen who didn’t get drown by the regime despite the consequences. Tomas, the protagonist of this story, was one of them. Tomas scaped to Europe but returned because he could not stand the solitude without Tereza, who went back to Prague tired of his infidelities. Others were more strategic. They migrated for good to Europe, right in the moment they could have done it, leaving the ‘Kitsch’, the communist dream, behind. In Czech Republic the citizens only ambition mundane things. Be born, grow up, fall in love, have children and die. There is no more aspiration that living in this utopia.
And the year went by. And it left us with our hair electrified from so much lockdown, economic fatality and fear of dying. And it told us, that we are not the gods we thought we were, but only balls made of ego and paper, that at the slightest wind may fall out. And before it left, it combed us, very smoothly, with a brush of eclipses, solstices and planetary marriages. And it told us all, stop crying, that nothing will end, that it all begins again. A new year, new life, new hope, will arrive. And yet here we have, a new crystal ball in our hands, waiting to see what you wish to ask, waiting perhaps that you think about Her, a little bit more than those odd time of the past.
This review has no spoilers. A literary, technological and futuristic story perfect to be the theme of a great movie!
I have always doubted to talk about books that make me fall in an spiral and land in religious arguments. This review has no intention of changing a single historic, religious or spiritual belief. This review has been made to tell those who like Jesus that this is a great story. It talks about him, and the things he said, and with whom he talked, and whom he met, and what he ate, and saw, during his life, and at the end.
It is because we are scared of writing that only the other voices are being heard. The bigots, the racists, the nationalists, the misogynists, the extreme-right and the extreme-left. They are not scared to talk, they are not scare to write. The fight for equality, in all levels, is also a fight to be taken with a pen and a paper. I know by experience that writing a book, an essay, a page, or even a post is scary to say the least. Hello fears. All of them come together to tell us the thousand ways in which we could fail. There are many risks. People might not like what we write, or how we write it. Maybe they are not interested in our subjects, or worse, we could offend a close one because of the things we write. But the voices of the moderate have to be amplified. I truly believe that people are eager to read new ideas, especially the progressive ones and the romantic ones. Those that give us hope for the future. To anyone who writes I tell you this. Keep fighting. Keep writing. Your writing is important. To us. To everyone.
Before reading this book I had heard her name. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, winner of the Commonwealth Writer’s Prize, the Orange Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction (precisely for this book). She has been an honour guest at the Hay Festival in certain occasions. She is a writer with a long and wonderful career. A feminist with a lot to say in this subject, her feminist vision already contained in two books – Dear Ijeawele: A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions and We Should All be Feminist. All the books written by this great author have had great literary success. Half of a Yellow Sun is one of my favourites.
Talking about Haruki Murakami is dangerous. Because you take the risk of categorize him and this is not possible. Murakami is a Japanese writer, author of various novels, all of them fantastically written and extremely imaginative and detailed. They have a lot of political, social and literary content. Murakami has hundreds of thousands of followers that constantly advocate for a Literature Nobel Prize. I read that when thousands of people idolized him in Japan in the nineties he hated it. Now the feeling runs through the whole world. I am not sure what he thinks about this.
I have dedicated this week to Japanese authors. Kazuo Ishiguro was born in Nagasaki. Although he was raised in England and all reviews refer to him as British, I do think it is precisely his Asiatic background what has allow him to write such beautiful pieces of literature.
I have always been attracted to currents of thinking, not necessarily to adopt them myself, but to know why is something likeable to people. This way I feel that I can get a hitch of what people is thinking and why a trend is a trend. And this is why I bought this book. Because it is a national bestseller. Because it is a television series whose protagonists are Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington. Because it is everywhere I look. I wanted to know what was it about.
Indifference causes as equal damage as racism. The bad guys are racist, the good guys are naïve and condescending. Black Lives Matter!!
Police brutality has always existed. But this movement really started with the death of George Floyd by police brutality and the consequent protests all over United States. So much cruelty against a human being shocked me. Not only because I saw black people being harassed, discriminated and murdered on the news, several times. But also because this time I made the exercise to look at my own experience, as a person with an Hispanic background, but regardless of this, as a person with privilege.