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Life Is Elsewhere | [Milan Kundera, Aaron Asher (Translator)]

Life Is Elsewhere

The author initially intended to call this novel The Lyrical Age. The lyrical age, according to Kundera, is youth, and this novel, above all, is an epic of adolescence; an ironic epic that tenderly erodes sacrosanct values: childhood, motherhood, revolution, and even poetry. Jaromil is in fact a poet. His mother made him a poet and accompanies him (figuratively) to his love bed and (literally) to his deathbed. A ridiculous and touching character, horrifying and totally innocent ("innocence with its bloody smile!"), Jaromil is at the same time a true poet. He's no creep, he's Rimbaud.
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Publisher's Summary

The author initially intended to call this novel The Lyrical Age. The lyrical age, according to Kundera, is youth, and this novel, above all, is an epic of adolescence; an ironic epic that tenderly erodes sacrosanct values: childhood, motherhood, revolution, and even poetry. Jaromil is in fact a poet. His mother made him a poet and accompanies him (figuratively) to his love bed and (literally) to his deathbed. A ridiculous and touching character, horrifying and totally innocent ("innocence with its bloody smile!"), Jaromil is at the same time a true poet. He's no creep, he's Rimbaud - Rimbaud entrapped by the communist revolution, entrapped in a somber farce.

©1973 Text copyright 1973 by Milan Kundera; French translation copyright 1973 by Editions Gallimard; French translation revised by Milan Kundera copyright 1985, 1987 by Editions Gallimard; New English translation from the French copyright 2000 by Aaron Asher. (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers Ltd.

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