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Goldberg: Variations

Gabriel Josipovici

Cover Picture of Goldberg: Variations
RRP: GBP£ 12.95
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Price: GBP£ 11.65
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Paperback
ISBN: 978 1 857545 97 5
Imprint: Carcanet Fiction
Published: November 2002
216 x 137 x 15 mm
180 pages
Publisher: Carcanet Press
  • Description
  • Author
  • Reviews
  • Taking his cue from an anecdote connected with Bach's late masterpiece, the Goldberg Variations, Gabriel Josipovici imagines an English writer, a Jew, at the turn of the eighteenth century, who is invited to the house of a country gentleman in order to read him to sleep. What follows can be read as a set of disconnected stories on the most varied of topics - incest in the Orkneys, madness in Chester, a poetic competition at the court of George III, a marital quarrel, weaving past and present until it reached its bizarre climax.

    Part homage to Bach, part pure fiction and part evocation of echoes from the past - the ghosts of Holderlin, Kierkegaard and many others haunts its pages, this is a book as exciting and thought-provoking as any Josipovici has written, from his Bonnard-inspired Contre-Jour to his hilarious dialogue-novel, Now.
    Gabriel Josipovici was born in Nice in 1940 of Russo-Italian, Romano-Levantine parents. He lived in Egypt from 1945 to 1956, when he came to Britain. He read English at St Edmund Hall, Oxford, graduating with a First in 1961. From 1963 to 1998 he taught at the University of Sussex. He ... read more
    Praise for Gabriel Josipovici  'Concealed in this wry interview is an exhilarating "world tour" of music, and how it comes to be created. Music aficionados will recognise Infinity's central figure with delight; newcomers will learn all they need, and more, about an extraordinary composer, and the anguished musical era - the twentieth century - in which he lived and worked.'
    Judith Weir
     'Gabriel Josipovici is a deeply perceptive critic, always rewarding with a wide range of reference. The Singer on the Shore is a beautifully written and enjoyable book.'
    Dame Muriel Spark
     'A tour de force of straightfaced high-culture lunacy ... very funny, deeply serious, at once scathing about the sublime preposterousness of modernism and profoundly admiring of it. Infinity is that rare thing - a novel about a creative genius in whose artistry you are made to believe, and who, for all his monstrous egoism and crackpot theorising, you come to care about and finally applaud.'
    Howard Jacobson
     'A Doctor Faustus for our time. Like Thomas Mann's great novel, Infinity shows how a composer's times are reflected in the creative process of composing, and has the novel's structure itself parallel the composer's aesthetic. Books as insightful as these into the composer's world are rare indeed.'
    Jonathan Harvey
    'Josipovici is one of the UK's most distinguished and fearless writers... [Infinity] is a charming, sexy, modern and scholarly novel - an unusual mix but all the better for it.'
    Deborah Levy, Jewish Quarterly
    'Gabriel Josipovici's Infinity (Carcanet, £12.95) is a wondrous Mobius strip of a narrative that turns ideas of biography, memory and the making of art into a story that one reads with rapt attention, in one sitting.'
    Kirsty Gunn, Scotsman Books of the Year 2012
     'Gabriel Josipovici is a deeply perceptive critic, always rewarding with a wide range of reference. The Singer on the Shore is a beautifully written and enjoyable book.'
    Dame Muriel Spark
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