The Dead Father PDF ¸ The Dead eBook ô

The Dead Father ☁ The Dead Father PDF / Epub ✎ Author Donald Barthelme – The Dead Father is a gargantuan half dead half alive part mechanical wise vain powerful being who still has hopes for himself even while he is being dragged by means of a cable toward a mysterious goa The Dead Father is a gargantuan half dead half alive part mechanical wise vain powerful being who still has hopes for himself even while he The Dead eBook ô is being dragged by means of a cable toward a mysterious goal In this extraordinary novel marked by the imaginative use of language that influenced a generation of fiction writers Donald Barthelme offered a glimpse into his fictional universe As Donald Antrim writes in his introduction Reading The Dead Father one has the sense that its author enjoys an almost complete artistic freedom a permission to reshape misrepresent or even ignore the world as we find it Laughing along with its author we escape anxiety and feel alive.

10 thoughts on “The Dead Father

  1. Vit Babenco Vit Babenco says:

    Time passes and humankind keeps hauling a corpse of dead traditions customs beliefs misconceptions and rituals along the trail of historyYou are killing me We? Not we Not in any sense we Processes are killing you not we Inexorable processes Even if some dogmas and tenets are discarded in the process of the constant progress they don't let us go and we keep carrying this burden of the past on our backs

  2. Brian Brian says:

    A live wire of PoMo bliss The Dead Father reads very much like the source for so many books in the genre that have come after I understand Marcus' The Age of Wire and String much better and now want to re read itHaving just finished the memoir Double Down written by Don Barthelme's younger brothers I was able to clearly divine the influence of the troubled relationship Don had with his father in this work The Dead Father is a monstrous hilarious ribald construct of a thing and the characters of the novel orbit the titular protagonist with occasional collision producing sparks and carnageThe author died of cancer before his own father perished As in all things fatherson the inverse is not an eual euation I wonder if his father read this work before Don's death? After? Ever?

  3. Joselito Honestly and Brilliantly Joselito Honestly and Brilliantly says:

    Imagine an alien from a remote little planet in a galaxy so far far away It is a literary genius and a Nobel Prize for Literature winner in his planet He hurls into space aboard a spaceship and lands in England where people speak and write English A few days after hearing and reading English the alien says in his own language of course I can also write a great novel in EnglishThis book could be the novel such an alien could have writtenI have never read anything like it beforeIt tells a story In English But in an out of this world EnglishIf you're a literature professor you can assign this book to your students as their reading assignment Then you ask them to retell the story in this book and I am sure the third world war will start right there in your classroomYou wouldn't know what I mean unless you read this book yourself Or perhaps until I give you an exampleThe scene as I understood it two lovers Thomas and Julie conversing Thomas starts criticizing Julie Julie criticizes back says Thomas is too self absorbed Then she betrays her jealousy about another pretty girl Thomas knew Emma Says she had seen him eyeing Emma Thomas defends himself by saying Emma is goodlooking and anyway he and Julie are not married That nothing lasts forever Julie angry nevertheless takes off her clothes Thomas is aroused accepts Julie's invitation to make love but nonetheless says it doesn't change the way he thinks Julie says he is a fool but a lucky one because despite everything she loves him Then they make love missionary style with Julie's legs up in the air held by Thomas With him in the throes of ecstasy Julie asks Thomas if Emma is as good in bed as her Thomas gives a non committal answer Julie then flicks his balls with her finger and Thomas cries in pain Julie sneers and tells Thomas not to worry because the pain won't last foreverNice But how did the alien tell this story? HereThere are some times when you are not too bright said ThomasTimes when I am not too what?Bright said Thomas there are some times when you are not too brightWell fuck you she saidWell fuck YOU Thomas said there are some times when I forget and tell the truthSloppy sloppy she said Self pity monstrously unattractiveOh well damn well yes I'm sorry But I am taking action am I not? I could as well have sat at home worn the cap and bells and bought lottery tickets hoping for the twist of fate that would change my lifeMe she said Me meThere is thatYou and I she said reaching into her knapsack for a bit of bhang Have a chew?Not now thanksYou and I she said the two of usThomas began counting on his fingersYes he saidAnd Emma she said I've seen you looking at herI look at everything Thomas said Everything that is in front of me Emma is in front of me Therefore I look at EmmaAnd she at you Julie said I've seen some gazesShe's not bad looking Thomas saidBut we you and I care for each other Julie said It is a factA temporary fact said ThomasTemporaryExpectoration of bhang juice emphaticMy God I'm simply telling the truth said ThomasViper she saidI know no better soul he said and the body is also attractiveMeasuring are you? A measuring manJulie cramming hemp into her mouthYou forget the decay of time Thomas said I never forget itI don't like itWho likes it?I put out of mind that which is injurious to mind You revel in itThe two of us she said damn it can't you get this simple idea into your head? The two of us against the isTemporarily said ThomasOh you are a viperA student of decay is allJulie began to unbutton her shirtYes that's a way said Thomas Fifteen minutes or in the best case thirty fiveCome crawl behind a bush with meWith all my heart said Thomas but I cannot abandon what I know One doesn't find an absolute every dayYou are an apprentice fool she said not even a full fool nevertheless I will give you a little taste because I like you You are a lucky dogThomas spoke a long paragraph to the effect that this was trueJulie pulling at Thomas's sleeveThomas and Julie underneath the bush Thomas holding Julie's feet in his handsWash feet he saidYes now that you mentioned it she saidI will wash them for you if you wishNot necessary I know the drillWashcloth he said That's the little blue suare oneRightRough texturedI've seen itUsually dampI rememberI could just put some bags on them I suppose heavy canvas bags with locks like the Mail Department usesOh misery meThe backs of the knees are on the other hand positively lustrousNot too bad are they?Nine lines and a freckle all immaculate Nothing to be desired The height ofCould an Emma do as well?I don't know said Thomas I'll have to think about itJulie made a circle of thumb and forefinger and popped him smartly on the ballAnguish of ThomasIt will pass she said dearly beloved it is only temporaryHave you read anything like this before?

  4. Tom Tom says:

    To understand my rating you need to do some basic mathMost of the book I thought was a 3 star deal mainly because I found some of the sections particularly the long moments when Emma and Julie talked to each other to be borderline incomprehensible and while I'm sure Barthelme knew exactly what he was doing it was one of those situations where I was holding a book in my hands and processing words and then feeling stupid And maybe I was too dense to understand what was going on but regardless of reasons or my level of denseness point is there were about 15 20 pages in here that I didn't understand at all But that which I understood was funny and smart and interesting and well done So 3 starsBut the 30 ish page Manual for Sons inset about 34 of the way through was so awesome I give that 7 stars So 7 3 10 102 5 5 stars Totally useful and objective review

  5. Nathanimal Nathanimal says:

    Some of the conflicting thoughts that ran through my mind as I read this My Barthelme is funnyAnd smartSometimes he's also obnoxiousHis bag of tricks is clever and sophisticatedIf I'm being honest though I like a novel better than I like a bag of tricksI'm probably not very sophisticatedWas there a male writer from the 2nd half of the 20th Century whose writing about sex wasn't a total embarrassment? It's like they all went to the same school of sex for schoolboysThis Dead Father thing is a good image It means lots of things at once Broadly allegorical Like Kafka I approveAnd if the Dead Father is among other things capital L literature then what a winning example of post modernism this book isIt's very fun to laugh at the Dead Father and to be very French and deconstruct y and take the Dead Father out at the kneesAt the end of the day though I'm not sophisticated or heartless enough and I go running back and say I'm sorry Dead Father I love you I love you Capital L literature doesn't seem deserving of being taken out at the kneesSometimes I'm very confused and Barthelme doesn't try very hard to help me understand what's going on Is this the desired effect or did he just expect I'd be as smart as he is?Lighten up He's just playing Playing is very important you say so all the time It's not very playful to say what's important all the time Nathanimal SorryYes play is important but I think I've lately been lured towards other ualities like eccentricity like vulnerability like uiet Now I've just started Emmanuel Bove's My Friends which after this is like crawling into warm pajamas after coming home from a loud party

  6. David Beavers David Beavers says:

    My favorite work of Barthelme's and one of my favorite books ever I'd give it 8 out of 5 stars but Goodreads has no HTML code for this A book for anyone who has a father who had a father who had an absent father who had a father who loved too much or not enough or the right amount; a father who beat them or taught them to ride a bike or both A book perhaps not for fathers but a book for fathers who had fathers themselves and so a book for fathersThis is the story of a son his lover and how the son and daughter as well though admittedly this is about fathers and sons than fathers and daughters with a small army of laborers is dragging his father across the desert presumably towards burial The father as fathers tend to be is larger than life figuratively literally his measurement is listed at 3200 cubits and even this absurd archaic measurement speaks to the character of the Father a thing vast and yet past its prime; mythic and absurd The father as fathers are wont to do orates and the book is filled with his fabulous illuminating and hilarious speeches One of my favorites is the father listing things he has fathered in his long reign as father which include the poker chip the cash register the kazoo the cuckoo clock and the bubble pipe Occasionally the father as fathers sometimes do rampages at one point slaughtering scores of musicians woodland creatures before his son reigns him in The title of the book is a proleptic statement the father is not yet dead but all fathers die and the march of dragging him across the desert is the effort to meet the prolepsis of the titleThat the book is a metaphor of fathers and sons and the process of moving from one to another this is why it is concerned with sons than daughters I think because sons are the ones who must become fathers is somewhat implicit It is a procession to bury the father or accurately to remove him from the son's life The father rails against his removal as a figure of authority and yet is arrogant enough to believe he could never truly be removed The father as father's so often are is incalculably wise ridiculously foolish; is learned in the way a father aught to be and his confidence arrogance also make him into a fool His son is of course arrogant in the way that the young who plot their ascension are arrogant It is a beautiful book in that wayBarthelme isn't usually interested in the emotional nuances of his characters who are scarcely characters so much as they are figments of some dream being woven he treats his characters very much the way Italo Calvino does as products of our collective unconscious than as 'characters' Barthelme also writes with all the tics of the ardent post modernists from which he sprang in the 60s look no further than the 'uiz' in the middle of his book Snow White asking the reader how they like the book if the metaphors are 'working' for them and their concern is appropriately with deconstruction not romanticism Let's not bind Barthelme into that though and if any literary term raises the hackles it's 'post modernism' But despite the eerie detachment and all the absurdity this book is extraordinarily devastating and deeply affecting The last line of the book a single word which I will not spoil here was a deep heavy punch to my solar plexus It still takes the wind out of me to think ofThis novel has in its middle an inexplicable and brief treatise a kind of mini book entitled A Manual For Sons This is the heart of the matter The Dead Father is as much about sons as fathers and the absurdity that the two are so different when there can be no fathers who were not once sons The humor and insight here is trenchant and beautiful Consider this excerptThe penises of fathers are traditionally hidden from the inspection of those who are not 'clubbable' as the expression runs These penises are magical but not most of the time Occasionally a child usually a bold six year old daughter will reuest permission to see it This reuest should be granted once But only in the early morning when you are in bed and only when an early morning erection is not present Yes let her touch it lightly of course but briefly Do not permit her to linger or get to interested Be matter of fact kind and undramatic Pretend for the moment that it is as mundane as a big toe About sons you must use your own judgement It is injudicious as well as unnecessary to terrify them; you have many other ways of accomplishing thatFor all the book's absurdity and mythic humor Barthelme is clearly speaking to some very deep fears and humbling human problems I love this book The father as a figure of dailiness and the father as a mythic figure are both on display here and they are both treated with eual measures of cruelty and reverence

  7. T T says:

    I don't yet understand how he was able to make this so emotional at the end how so silly got so serious so fast without ruining the experience I don't yet understand but I will bygod I will

  8. James Murphy James Murphy says:

    I remember reading this twice in the '70s but I didn't remember much about it I remember thinking I got it pretty well Now I'm unsure if my understanding is complete Because Roland Barthes said the reader is creator of the text I wonder if we're being encouraged here to create because it's so shotgun patterned that it seems to suggest rather than to mean or define It's a novel about myth and the hero The dead father serves as all myth as well as all the cultural weight we've accumulated and lug around with us as we live our lives Barthelme probably meant it to be Oedipal and Freudian the sons wanting to kill the father representing tradition and the daughters striving to change the world and give it direction The novel's distinctive in its page after page of dialogue The fall of these short statements down the page fashions a look which creates or the reader creates both a sterile landscape through which the hero journeys and the line of cable and men pulling him through that landscape Ultimately Barthelme's text references all the touchstones of western tradition and houses them in the father where they're overthrown Actually overthrown implies confrontation Tradition is weakened by the surversive dialogue of daughters wives and sons and in the end rather than being tumbled traditional culture literature and history willingly lies down and is buried And is replaced by the postmodernism of Barthelme and others But reading it I thought mostly of Samuel Beckett

  9. Adam Mills Adam Mills says:

    The Dead Father is the story of your everyday average funeral procession for a 200 foot tall father figure who's bloodlust and libido have not been uelled by death Barthelme comically relates the influence that Greco Roman and Judao Christian traditions have had on literature and life in the occidental world The the narrative tries to free itself of these cosmologies the harder they pull them back into the foldThe protagonists and their entourage painstakingly drag the dead father to his grave Though dead this statuesue authority mad patriarch is still commenting and complaining trying to run his own funeral from his own bier It's the riddle of the sphinx writ large as his doddering old age has caused him to resort to childishly begging to vent his frustrations by killing maiming and raping Dragging this giant carcass through strange countries presents logistical problems and elicits uestions from the localsThis absurdist post modern novel is in conversation with other comic works Neo Classicism and High Modernism are lampooned partly for their role as torch bearer for the Greco Roman and Judeo Christian values embodied in the dead father Swift's Gulliver's Travels and Joyce's Finnegans Wake seem particularly present and by this move Barthelme has inserted himself into the canon he desperately wants to burry Neither the novel's humor nor its poignant message suffer for this fact however and The Dead Father is both an entertaining and important work

  10. Andrew Andrew says:

    Plotless postmodern novels if you believe the hype aren't supposed to be fun they're supposed to be think pieces that make you reconsider your epistemological premises through chilly techniues cribbed from scientific and technical writing through unconventional word choice through use of archaisms slang high culture low culture etc etc and you're supposed to come out of the whole thing not necessarily happier not necessarily entertained but awareThen why was The Dead Father one of the funniest most poignant things I've read in ages? Why did this book about a giant being dragged along make me snort with laughter? Why did I nearly cry at the end? Donald Barthelme your stories for which you are far famous are mostly notable for their sense of ennui of blague and they're good but they're the sort of things you admire from a distance Ditto Snow White The Dead Father on the other hand tugged on my heartstrings like how David Foster Wallace did even when it was smashing the English language to pieces

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