Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age

Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age Rake drunkard aesthete gossip raconteur extraordinaire the narrator of Bohumil Hrabal s rambling rambunctious masterpiece Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age is all these and Speaking to a gr

Rake, drunkard, aesthete, gossip, raconteur extraordinaire the narrator of Bohumil Hrabal s rambling, rambunctious masterpiece Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age is all these and Speaking to a group of sunbathing women who remind him of lovers past, this elderly rou tells the story of his life or at least unburdens himself of a lifetime s worth of stories ThuRake, drunkard, aesthete, gossip, raconteur extraordinaire the narrator of Bohumil Hrabal s rambling, rambunctious masterpiece Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age is all these and Speaking to a group of sunbathing women who remind him of lovers past, this elderly rou tells the story of his life or at least unburdens himself of a lifetime s worth of stories Thus we learn of amatory conquests and humiliations , of scandals both private and public, of military adventures and domestic feuds, of what things were like in the days of the monarchy and how they ve changed since As the book tumbles restlessly forward, and the comic tone takes on darker shadings, we realize we are listening to a man talking as much out of desperation as from exuberance.Hrabal, one of the great Czech writers of the twentieth century, as well as an inveterate haunter of Prague s pubs and football stadiums, developed a unique method which he termed palavering, whereby characters gab and soliloquize with abandon Part drunken boast, part soul rending confession, part metaphysical poem on the nature of love and time, this astonishing novel which unfolds in a single monumental sentence shows why he has earned the admiration of such writers as Milan Kundera, John Banville, and Louise Erdrich.

  • ☆ Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age ✓ Bohumil Hrabal
    437 Bohumil Hrabal
Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age

  1. Born in Brno idenice, Moravia, he lived briefly in Poln , but was raised in the Nymburk brewery as the manager s stepson Hrabal received a Law degree from Prague s Charles University, and lived in the city from the late 1940s on.He worked as a manual laborer alongside Vladim r Boudn k in the Kladno ironworks in the 1950s, an experience which inspired the hyper realist texts he was writing at the time His best known novels were Closely Watched Trains 1965 and I Served the King of England In 1965 he bought a cottage in Kersko, which he used to visit till the end of his life, and where he kept cats ko enky He was a great storyteller his popular pub was At the Golden Tiger U zlat ho tygra on Husova Street in Prague, where he met the Czech President V clav Havel, the American President Bill Clinton and the then US ambassador to the UN Madeleine Albright on January 11th, 1994.Several of his works were not published in Czechoslovakia due to the objections of the authorities, including The Little Town Where Time Stood Still M ste ko, kde se zastavil as and I Served the King of England Obsluhoval jsem anglick ho kr le.He died when he fell from a fifth floor hospital where he was apparently trying to feed pigeons It was noted that Hrabal lived on the fifth floor of his apartment building and that suicides by leaping from a fifth floor window were mentioned in several of his books.He was buried in a family grave in the cemetery in Hradi tko In the same grave his mother Mary ka , step father Francin , uncle Pepin , wife Pipsi and brother Sl vek were buried.He wrote with an expressive, highly visual style, often using long sentences in fact his work Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age 1964 Tane n hodiny pro star a pokro il is made up of just one sentence Many of Hrabal s characters are portrayed as wise fools simpletons with occasional or inadvertent profound thoughts who are also given to coarse humour, lewdness, and a determination to survive and enjoy oneself despite harsh circumstances Political quandaries and their concomitant moral ambiguities are also a recurrent theme.Along with Jaroslav Ha ek, Karel apek and Milan Kundera who were also imaginative and amusing satirists he is considered one of the greatest Czech writers of the 20th century His works have been translated into 27 languages.

788 Reply to “Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age”

  1. This little novella can, at once, be discarded as a long, never ending chapter on corporeal pursuits from the life book of a mindless rambler, a libidinous exhorter, a senile raconteur And for some part, one might be right in doing so If disaster has struck you due to your prolonged exposure to the skin junk processed and reprocessed on electronic and print media, you might not be cajoled to hold back even for a second from trashing this, their way.But despite my reservations, I sat next to this [...]

  2. The delicate swirls of bubbles that dash to greet the robust rim of the glass, the bashful flour that audaciously rises to an aromatic marvel and the musical notes of the hammer as it drums the quiescent nails into colourful leather, only if they had words attached to their expeditions could we have then known the chronicles of a far fetched yeast and a wooden caricature of an yet unborn shoe Aren t we lucky to be humans, to be able to knit words into our experiences Isn t life beautiful even wi [...]

  3. At work I sit down in a chair and people come to me, sometimes drunk or maybe just schizophrenic, or both, and they talk to me or at me while I putz around the desk and drawers and hunt for pens, Can you give me 3 dollars for the bus and a promise to pay me back on the first of the month, I always cave, it s amazing how you can train your eyes on someone without actually listening, maybe hearing but not listening, and then from the hum comes a lightning bolt thought that makes you stop and wonde [...]

  4. This novella is in fact a single sentence, which gives it a breathless feel It is the recollections of a man in his 70s told to a group of young women who are sunbathing It is a telling of stories, most of them bawdy They are about the narrator s profession shoemaking , his time in the army, but most of all his love life There are lots of references to the European Renaissance, but if you are expecting references to Da Vinci or Michelangelo you d be out of luck it s a euphemism for sex Hrabal ha [...]

  5. Mother of God, isn t life breathtakingly beautiful.Joel bought me this book several years ago It appeared so disjointed that I never truly considered it Today the world was revealed as damp and overcast reconciling myself to those conditions, Manchester United lost to City 6 1 and I slumped, to be polite Reaching out, I heartily stumbled upstairs to scan our shelves and returned with Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age, coincidentally just as my wife was browsing reviews of such on this wick [...]

  6. Good natured, a little randy, very much free associative, a waltz of clauses strung together, periodless, though the idea that it s one sentence is a farce, unless one sentence is defined as tons of natural end of thought stopping transition spots deep breaths marked by commas instead of periods, which, as in Saramago s stuff, particularly Blindness, effectively keeps eyes on pages, propels readers ahead, this sense of ceaselessly continuing created by a comma instead of a full stop, you see, I [...]

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  8. Publicado en lecturaylocura clases de b Clases de baile para mayores de Bohumil Hrabal Un insolente y divertido libertinoBohumil Hrabal 1914 1997 es un escritor checo cuya obra se caracteriza por una visi n sat rica de la realidad y la importancia que confiere a sus aspectos absurdos Considerado uno de los m s grandes autores del siglo XX en su lengua por su facilidad narrativa y el uso alternativo del humor y la tragedia en un mismo plano N rdica nos trae ahora una de sus obras emblem ticas, Cl [...]

  9. I m always fascinated by experiments that just don t work, and here s one yes, this novella is one unfinished sentence, supposedly But Hrabal is too good a writer not to compose units of meeting within that sentence, so really it s a bunch of sentences with commas instead of full stops That s not much of a criticism, because it s very well written and or very well translated Otherwise, there s not much to say It s short, it s heartbreaking, it s hilarious, and, as other reviewers have noted, you [...]

  10. Another gem from Hrabal In one long sentence, Hrabal describes all the lunacy of the Austro Hungarian Empire s last days, the narrator fondness of beauties, the hilarious descriptions of the army, the life in the breweries

  11. I always thought that Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age stood as Hrabal s most popular work owing to it being written in a single, superfluous sentence, a sentence that doesn t have a period mark even when the novel ends that the work when separated from the technique, would fail to stand on its own.Last night, I picked out Dancing Lessons from my TBR pile, only to be proven wrong The technique is far from superfluous using a single stream of consciousness Hrabal playfully meanders with wi [...]

  12. I ve been re reading a lot of Raymond Chandler in love with noir once again confirming my younger self s high estimation of his books.But after three Chandlers in a row, I needed a break So I turned to Hrabal, one of my favorite authors I know his books are as fast as Chandler and as smart So I picked up one I ve never read.This book.And it IS fast and it IS smart But it is reliant on you, the reader, loving the blabber mouthed, self important, facetious raconteur who is talking, non stop, AT yo [...]

  13. this may not be for everyone, its sort of like that old man at the country store, who starts to tell a story, and 3 hours later, he s STILL telling it, with asides, genealogies, history lessons, lies, partial lies, whole truths, and maybe even a conclusion its funny, some of the reviewers on say its like talking to a drunk person, but i assure, its just old age hahaha

  14. I think my biggest problem with this book was how strongly it was centered around Czechoslovakian geography and pop culture and as someone with very little information on the above mentioned subjects I hardly understood the numerous references that appeared at least once a page I enjoyed the little idiosyncrasies, but it just didn t do it for me.

  15. This book consists of mostly a single sentence, a long, delirious, old man s rant about his youth spent making shoes and during the war, remembering this and that in a stream of consciousness which contains death, sex, amusing bits, confusing bits, and references to things you ve never heard of if you don t share Bohumil Hrabal s nationality.It s a bit hard to get into, especially since the narrator isn t really coherent at all, but once you get used to it, it s amusing Unfortunately, since it s [...]

  16. My DH introduced me to an old Scots word smyster to idle sitting over a fire to talk or laugh to oneself, as in a daydream It was about as apropos as it comes since I was reading this at the time I kept imagining some lonesome wrinkly letting loose his torrent of memory and regret over a rapidly depleting bottle of local brew Of course this image is often peppered with his frequently assumed audience of ladies Real or imagined, rapt or captive you decide It s at times thoughtful bits glued toget [...]

  17. I wasn t too impressed with this book by Hrabal and obviously too loud a solitude is way way better in my opinion The book is about a cobbler who seems to seduce many different women and Hrabal tells tales of his exploits in a very humorous way at times but that was about it for me Again maybe parts of it were lost in translation but I couldn t engage with this short c.100 page book In many ways it reminded me of the unbearable lightness of being but without the philosophy attached Short enough [...]

  18. A boozy, bawdy, blasphemous blowhard he ll affront than one of your sensibilities , Bohumil Hrabal s old Uncle Pepin blathers on palaver is Hrabal s technical term about his salad days amidst the crumbling Austro Hungarian Empire The beloved uncle appears elsewhere in Hrabal s ouevre but this is Pepin s solo performance, a bravura performance, hysterical and sad It s interesting how young poets think of death while old fogies think of girls.

  19. Based on the bawdy ramblings of Bohumil s uncle, this one sentence ode to memory and life s charming buffooneries is like running downhill without being able to stop I honestly believe that this country, much less the world, is a better place now that this book is back in print Please, sweet lord, bring back The Little Town Where Time Stood Still for us These books go so very well together.

  20. Czech chatterbox and cathouse lothario breathlessly reminisces about his mishaps with young mistresses, music, his military service, and just about anything else he can think of in a novella that reads rather like rollerskating down a flight of stairs.

  21. The funniest thing I ve read since the final section of Evan Dara s The Easy Chainfull of bawdy one liners that play on the semantic ambiguity created by the innumerable dangling clauses in this one sentence novella it s great.

  22. Espantoso libro de una persona de edad, pero si les dije, no ten a una sola pausa, en el bar de la esquina hablaban de Trump, no era nada, ni tampoco el libro, Pero me dio dolor de cabeza leer esa cosa

  23. This fun quick read has a uniquely fluid narrative style that will keep you entertained and contented throughout and after I have caught myself quoting some of the memorable lines, and I think a few of them will thankfully remain as regulars of my internal monologue.

  24. The first Hrabal which I did not thoroughly enjoy, although it was a distinct pleasure upon receiving the book in the mail when I noticed there was a bit of soiling on the upper right hand cover and bent my head to smell the surprising scent of dill.

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