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- Publisher: FABER & FABER
- Format: Paperback | 304 pages
- Dimensions: 126mm x 192mm x 26mm | 240g
- Publication date: 21 August 2000
- Publication City/Country: London
- ISBN 10: 0571206921
- ISBN 13: 9780571206926
- Sales rank: 39,637
This collection contains stories about the sport of love - Don Juanism, ageing, male and female power and seductions undertaken for all kinds of intriguing motives. Milan Kundera is author of The Unbearable Lightness of Being and The Book of Laughter and Forgetting.
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Milan Kundera was born in Brno and has lived in France for over forty years. He is the author of the internationally acclaimed and bestselling novels The Joke (1967), Life is Elsewhere (1973), The Farewell Waltz (1976), The Book of Laughter and Forgetting (1978), The Unbearable Lightness of Being (1984), Immortality (1991), and the short-story collection Laughable Loves (1969), which were all originally written in Czech. His play, Jacques and His Master (1984), Slowness (1995), Identity (1998) and Ignorance (2002) were all originally written in French. Milan Kundera has also written extensively about the novel in four collections of essays - The Art of the Novel (1968), Testaments Betrayed (1993), The Curtain (2007) and Encounter (2009).
"An intellectual heavyweight and a pure literary virtuoso, Milan Kundera takes some of Freud's most cherished complexes and irreverently whirls them about in acts of legerdemain that capture our darkest, deepest human passions?The tales in "Laughable Loves" surprise and illuminate?Kundera's world is complex, full of mockeries and paradoxes. Life is often brutal and humiliating; it is often blasphemous, funny, irritating."-- Abe Ravitz, "Cleveland Plain Dealer""Milan Kundera offers a very special blend of sympathy and cynicism, irony and affability, that is unmatched in our literature." -- Thomas Joyce, " Chicago Sun-Times" "Light, wry, and wise."-- John Skow, "Time""Buoyantly energetic and virtuosic."-- Walter Clemons, "Newsweek"
These seven short stories by a Czech writer are artful and sometimes funny - a gallows humor based on the traditional cynicism and bureaucratism of middle-class Central Europeans, and their current view of freedom as freakishness, aphrodisia, private intrigue. Kundera's men find solace in impressing each other with seductions and humiliating women who are either young and adoring or older and concupiscent. In further variations on "the idiocy of eroticism" a demure gift starts playing the whore with her lover and the game takes over; a professor of art parries a pesky review-seeker by charging that he made advances to his mistress, whereupon the man's wife submits affidavits to the effect that such a thing would be physically impossible; a young man feigns religious conversion to surmount his girl's resistance, then is repelled by "how easily and remorselessly she was now betraying her God of No Fornication." Life, ironic but goatish, among "the old dead" and "the young dead." (Kirkus Reviews)