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Thread: Peter Handke

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    Austria Peter Handke

    Peter Handke (born 6 December 1942, in Griffen, Austria) is an avant-garde Austrian novelist and playwright.

    Ever the enfant terrible, Peter Handke exemplifies the complexity of writing as an Austrian in the post WW2 period, and his work has continually provoked controversy and outrage on a variety of fronts.
    While studying, he established himself as writer, linking up with the Grazer Gruppe (the Graz Authors' Assembly), an association of young writers. The group published the literary digest manuskripte. Both Elfriede Jelinek and Barbara Frischmuth were among its members.
    Handke abandoned his studies in 1965, when the German Suhrkamp Verlag accepted his novel Die Hornissen (The Hornets) for publication.

    He gained popular attention after a spectacular appearance at a meeting of avant garde artists belonging to the Gruppe 47 in Princeton, New Jersey, U.S., where he presented his play Publikumsbeschimpfung (Offending the Audience).

    When Elfriede Jelinek was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2004, she stated that she considered Peter Handke a more worthy recipient than herself and that she had been awarded the prize merely because she is female.

    In 1996 his travelogue Eine winterliche Reise zu den Fl?ssen Donau, Save, Morawa und Drina oder Gerechtigkeit f?r Serbien (A Journey to the Rivers: Justice for Serbia) created considerable controversy, as Handke portrayed Serbia among the victims of the Balkan War. In the same essay, Handke also frontally attacked Western media for misrepresenting the causes and consequences of the war. This controversy still rages.

    In 2006 Handke was nominated for the Heinrich Heine Prize, but the prize money of ?50,000 is subject to approval by the city council of D?sseldorf. Members of the council's major parties stated they would vote against awarding the prize to Handke, resulting in the prize being withdrawn.

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    In light of the topic of Peter Handke threatening to overwhelm the Nobel Discussion board I suggest it be moved here.
    The maker of kitsch does not create inferior art, he is not an incompetent or a bungler, he cannot be evaluated by aesthetic standards; rather, he is ethically depraved, a criminal willing radical evil. - Hermann Broch

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    On the Nobel forum Formerly Appelhead said:

    Funny enough to quote stuff from articles that one has not read oneself, right? Here is the unabridged version of the mentioned article (in German unfortunately) just to show how silly this is:

    http://archiv.tagesspiegel.de/drucke...06/2571718.asp

    Some excerpts? Here we go:

    [...] Dabei hatte der Dichter Handke gewaltigen Erfolg, dem es gelang, viele Serben davon zu überzeugen, dass ihre Landsleute keine Verbrecher seien, sondern Opfer einer wohlüberlegten Weltverschwörung. Dieser Dichter steht heute allerdings wegen falscher Darstellung vor dem Gericht der europäischen Öffentlichkeit. Weil sich herausgestellt hat, dass den Heine-Preis für Völkerverständigung ein Lügner bekommen würde. [...]
    Der große Bauernfänger Milosevic hatte sich selbst im Netz des Todes verfangen, als er sich weigerte, Medikamente einzunehmen, in der Meinung, so eine Behandlung in Russland erzwingen zu können. [...]
    Jemandes Werk aus ideologisch-politischen Gründen zu zensieren, es vom Spielplan zu nehmen, jemandem einen Preis wegzunehmen, ist für mich ein unzulässiger Akt. Selbst wenn es Peter Handke ist, ein Mann mit völlig falschen Anschauungen von der aktuellen Politik, außerdem ein großer Dichter seiner Sprache, besonders in früheren Jahren. Der Preis, den sie ihm jetzt zu verleihen versuchen, verkompliziert das Problem aber. Es ist, als amnestiere man damit das ganze Grauen der Gewaltherrschaft in Serbien in den letzten Jahrzehnten. Dieser große Manipulator mit seiner Sicht auf den Krieg ist selbst manipuliert, weil er zu einem Gewicht auf der Waage von Interessen wird, die sehr wenig mit der Sache der Literatur zu tun haben.
    Wenn jemand Gerechtigkeit für Handke fordert, muss er zuerst Gerechtigkeit für Serbien fordern, um es vor falschen Anwälten zu schützen. Denn wie er dieses Land vertritt, ist beleidigend. [...]

    A quick translation of the marked parts:
    [...] Thereby the poet Handke had tremendous success, who managed to convince many Serbs believe that their countrymen were not criminals but victims of a deliberate worldwide conspiracy. Though this poet today is standing trial before the court of he European public for false representation. [...]
    Milosevic, the great charlatan himself got caught in the web of death, when he refused to take medication, in the opinion, to enforce with that a treatment in Russia. [...]
    Even if it is Peter Handke, a man with a completely erroneous views of current politics [...]
    But the price they are now trying to give him complicates the problem. It's like one gave amnesty to the full horror of tyranny in Serbia in recent decades. This great manipulator with his view on the war himself got manipulated, because he is a weight on the balance of interests that have very little to do with the cause of literature. [...]

    So think twice before you continue to make a fool of yourself with such ridiculous and factual incorrect posts... I really try not to bother anymore and ignore such posts. I won't answer on the other post above, it is too silly...

    .................................................. ....................

    ...and I typed out a long response that I ended up deleting because it's not worth the bother.

    Peter Handke wrote some good books: The Goalie's Anxiety at the Penalty Kick, Across, The Sorrow Beyond Dreams, Short Letter Long Farewell... By all means, if one has yet to form a frothing verdict on this evil man, I highly recommend them.
    The maker of kitsch does not create inferior art, he is not an incompetent or a bungler, he cannot be evaluated by aesthetic standards; rather, he is ethically depraved, a criminal willing radical evil. - Hermann Broch

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    The Goalie's Anxiety at the Penalty Kick is wonderful and really great, in my humble opinion.
    "My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful, and optimistic. And we’ll change the world."--Jack Layton

  5. #5

    Default Re: Peter Handke

    Handke will surely go down in history as one of the greatest writers of this era, no? Masterpieces over the course of a half-century like Kaspar, The Goalie's Anxiety at the Penalty Kick, Repetition, A Sorrow Beyond Dreams, On A Dark Night I Left My Silent House (not to mention more controversial recent perhaps-masterpieces like The Loss of the Image and My Year in the No-Man's-Bay). Such a powerful and intuitive vision which carries on the projects of past titans yet is so distinctly Handke's own.

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    Quote Originally Posted by adaorardor View Post
    Handke will surely go down in history as one of the greatest writers of this era, no? Masterpieces over the course of a half-century like Kaspar, The Goalie's Anxiety at the Penalty Kick, Repetition, A Sorrow Beyond Dreams, On A Dark Night I Left My Silent House (not to mention more controversial recent perhaps-masterpieces like The Loss of the Image and My Year in the No-Man's-Bay). Such a powerful and intuitive vision which carries on the projects of past titans yet is so distinctly Handke's own.
    Yes, I agree. In spite of questionable political involvement, I think he will be remembered as one of the great writers of his time.
    "My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful, and optimistic. And we’ll change the world."--Jack Layton

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    I see on today's Complete Review blog (Literary Saloon) that Handke has just been denied yet another literary prize for which he was selected. This time it was a corporate sponsor who refused to award the prize.
    the chance encounter of a sewing machine and an umbrella on the dissecting table. . .

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    Link, please, .

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    Quote Originally Posted by Liam View Post
    Link, please, .
    http://www.complete-review.com/saloo...01109c.htm#xz9

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    Spanish newspaper El País recently interviewed controversial Peter Handke. Here are some excerpts I was able to translate

    Permeability is decisive. What counts is that the writer becomes a figure of transition, by which all things pass. In fact literature does not progress but varies.
    I once said, long ago, oh, if could write like Chekhov, these stories, plays like Anton Chekhov. And then someone told me: "But if it already exists!, You don't need to. Write down what Chekhov transmits you from his world, motion, rythm, quality and the trembling.
    Once I said that a great author closes the way for his followers, but only for them finding their own way. The opposite of writers such as Thomas Bernhard, who is easy to imitate. A writer who is easy to imitate, in the end, does not deserve to be called a good writer.
    There are many interesting subjects in the conversation, but I'm too lazy to translate them all, so here´s the original link.

    http://www.elpais.com/articulo/porta...lpbabpor_3/Tes

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    Interesting.. I just started reading Short Letter, Long Farewell last night... re-released in 2009.

    I read this in the intro..

    "I want something to open up, which is why I wrote an article in Liberation, hoping that people will return to what it is that I actually wrote", Handke sais in 2006. "That they don't just look at what I wrote about Yugoslavia, but that they consider how I write, my view, my rhythm"
    Jayan



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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    Here's the interview made by el País, now fully translated. Enjoy.

    http://jsmyth.wordpress.com/2011/11/16/handke/

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel del Real View Post
    Once I said that a great author closes the way for his followers, but only for them finding their own way. The opposite of writers such as Thomas Bernhard, who is easy to imitate. A writer who is easy to imitate, in the end, does not deserve to be called a good writer.
    Btw, Daniel. I just read a few articles about the relationship between Handke and Bernhard. This seems to be really interesting. I mean, both are probably the two most famous male writers of Austrian post-war literature. It seems that Handke was a big admirer of Bernhard in the beginning, calling him "the most gifted of us all" for example. But then something must have happened between the two, because starting from the mid 80s Handke bas been attacking Bernhard regularly on a verbal level in the hardest way. It seems that the reasons for this have not been clarified for the public yet. Apparently there was an infamous meeting between the two in 1983. I found (German) newspaper articles were people speculate if maybe a big clash between them happened at that meeting that caused all of this. The author of the Handke biography, which just came out in Germany one or two years ago, has made the statement that he might write a book exclusively dealing with the Handke-Bernhard relationship. Looking forward to this

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    Quote Originally Posted by Rumpelstilzchen View Post
    Btw, Daniel. I just read a few articles about the relationship between Handke and Bernhard. This seems to be really interesting. I mean, both are probably the two most famous male writers of Austrian post-war literature. It seems that Handke was a big admirer of Bernhard in the beginning, calling him "the most gifted of us all" for example. But then something must have happened between the two, because starting from the mid 80s Handke bas been attacking Bernhard regularly on a verbal level in the hardest way. It seems that the reasons for this have not been clarified for the public yet. Apparently there was an infamous meeting between the two in 1983. I found (German) newspaper articles were people speculate if maybe a big clash between them happened at that meeting that caused all of this. The author of the Handke biography, which just came out in Germany one or two years ago, has made the statement that he might write a book exclusively dealing with the Handke-Bernhard relationship. Looking forward to this
    This is very interesting and it is most likely the author of Handke's biography will take it in a more formal non fiction style. It would also be interesting if another writer can take this anecdote and start filling the gaps with fiction.

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    Happy 70th. Birthday to Peter Handke.
    To sit alone in the lamplight with a book spread out before you, and hold intimate converse with men of unseen generations, such is a pleasure beyond compare.
    Yoshida Kenko

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    Quote Originally Posted by Cleanthess View Post
    Happy 70th. Birthday to Peter Handke.
    Wow, I thought he was younger

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    I've found a great article by someone who seems to have checked the facts and knows about Handke's bibliography, and it is quite illuminating in pointing that he was more like a victim of misunderstanding and a manipulative media, always eager to see (to invent) the worse in the others...
    I don't know if the members of this forum have read this article, but here it is: http://www.swans.com/library/art12/ga209.html

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    Default Re: Peter Handke

    Quote Originally Posted by Bartleby View Post
    I've found a great article by someone who seems to have checked the facts and knows about Handke's bibliography, and it is quite illuminating in pointing that he was more like a victim of misunderstanding and a manipulative media, always eager to see (to invent) the worse in the others...
    I don't know if the members of this forum have read this article, but here it is: http://www.swans.com/library/art12/ga209.html
    I’m not any kind of Handke expert. This is just my take on the controversy and this article:

    This really doesn’t explain much as a whole. At best it’s one French critics reaction to how the French handled Handke’s 2006 controversies. If there had been more international voices speaking up for him or explaining what happened I might buy it, but without anyone really speaking out to defend him from the former Yugoslavian republics it’s hard for me to buy his explanations.

    There may have been some mistranslation of his Eulogy but the more troubling aspect of all of it is that Handke spoke at the funeral to begin with. Regardless of what specifically you say in a eulogy it’s hard to give a eulogy at a dictator’s funeral without being seen as a supporter of the regime or the person in power. It’s also extremely questionable considering Milosevic asked for Handke to be present and testify at his war crimes trial.

    The 2006 controversy aside though, Handke has been saying politically questionable things since the 1980s. So it’s not like the controversy surrounding him is related solely to one bungled speech and because of the “manipulative media.” He does controversial things and makes statements that practically beg for media attention. To me it seems like he’s baiting controversy.

    Jelinek speaking out for him also doesn’t mean much in my opinion. They’re from the same country and she’s been influenced by him. She’s not exactly an unbiased voice. Also, she spoke out against a run of his play being canceled in France as a means of freedom of expression. That’s not really the same as defending him from charges levied against him of endorsing a dictatorship.

    Handke has his followers and defenders (amongst them Fosse and Knausgaard) but it’s hard for me to see him as much more than someone who’s baited controversy and backpedeled on issues enough times that he’s near permanently sullied his international reputation. By no means does this mean his writing is worthless (see Ezra Pound and Knut Hamsun) but it’s hard for me to root for him or have much interest in reading his works given his actions.

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