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I have lived in Ivan and die in Malina.Happy with Ivan I never knew her when she was living in Ivan Maybe if I were standing across the street I d watch her spinning out of control Her Hungarian boyfriend who sends avalanches of stone cold epithets Don t ask if I love you, don t say I, don t make believe important, be fun, be happy, be the first time I saw you Strangers, for the last time A dead telephone in her apartment is visited by the spirits of everyone who isn t Ivan I saw her w I have lived in Ivan and die in Malina.Happy with Ivan I never knew her when she was living in Ivan Maybe if I were standing across the street I d watch her spinning out of control Her Hungarian boyfriend who sends avalanches of stone cold epithets Don t ask if I love you, don t say I, don t make believe important, be fun, be happy, be the first time I saw you Strangers, for the last time A dead telephone in her apartment is visited by the spirits of everyone who isn t Ivan I saw her with his two kids, their tugging arms and spinning happy The rarest tummy butterfly bright and eye blinking crushed I only saw her living in the never landing When she has to make up everything about zoo animals has anyone else noticed the phenomenon of men reading aloud from placards Any botanical garden, zoo, museum or anything They read as if the woman it s always a woman is supposed to think this is their combustible wisdom and not the same damn placard right in front of their same faces If Ivan is out of their range she can be what they want If the her of him and the her of they and the her of others collide pop goes the butterflies wings Please let them have ice cream, I promised them ice cream Dancing and spinning that is dizzy and on strings If she is happy it happened before she thought about it She thinks about it before it can happen, lives in here lies Ivan isimportant in his absence And it was perfect this way This how he doesn t belong to her if she sends him off to be him without her I never wanted her to love Ivan I begged her inside of me to just forget about him When he tells her who she is This isn t you, you re happy, you don t write like this The unreal love pulled my butterflies wings off and shoved them under a microscope I didn t want to hold my breath when she waits for that phone to ring and I did.She lives with Malina It was perfect this deliberate I m not living it because I m pedestaling to the burning synthetic world stuffs I don t know how Bachmann managed to weave this web of psychological life of stepping outside of yourself and then when you are actually living it There s a big fat spider of wish fulfillment to eat you alive because you couldn t stop thinking If it was on purpose she feels safe to tether to Malina as she strangles herself to wait for Ivan Malina tells her Don t forget that not one of your enemies has ever seen you, and you have never seen one of them I had this feeling that she performs that mime of sewing your lips shut and throwing the needle into the biggest haystack The haystack of needles of the universe You can t see the threads that sew everyone together because the haystack is too big for that She and Malina talk about the war, what people got up and could pretend never happened If people did a spontaneous dance of everyone knew the moves on the day you didn t want to wake up It never happened It happened They talk about what peace is to war The interlude between war Crocodile tears evaporate in reptilian flesh Tears in Austria for Bangladesh, for Syria Her father murdered her, she murders them in her eyelids prison gate shut cha chung and her sister loses a name Malina asks and she doesn t know She s a survivor of real life and a prisoner of its memory It is so muchto run from than if she can be rescued if only Ivan or Malina will hold her down I had the feeling they were talking about everyone, or who could be anyone, Austria, the world They don t talk about Malina I think Bachmann was a genius in how Malina s silences and the not asking about him is spoken concurrently She slips out of time into a fantasy of a princess and murder and riding When she flies she is only spinning I think Bachmann was a genius to do the way people name everything They talk and talk and make important and they talk about what they talk about when they talk about everything And what you think you are living is that foot in your over analyzing mental lands I m one of those intense mental life that overlaps real life like if you wore a sweat shirt with a skeleton on it for Halloween It gave me chills to see it this way in a book that felt so real and so not real it s experimental as fancy foot work goes Not the that looks easy dancing but you know they practiced that dance in their bedroom alone every night and dreamed someone would see it and at the same time it was a vigil for never, ever being understood Malina is a strange book I don t have a handle on it because it slips out of time I ve been thinking about what to write in a review for ages It is if you lived past what you didn t think would ever end and then you don t know how to leave of world war II Austria and it is relationships are hell, man and it is a telling Malina says this I can t get over this Once one has survived something then survival itself interferes with understanding, and you don t even know which lives came before and which is your life of today, you even mix up your own lives.I had this feeling all of the time that she wanted them to tell her who she was Malina is the web beneath the dizzy spin of Ivan I know that his face falls from her reach when she s not I don t believe he let her burn to death I know what the essay in the book says about his sudden apathy I don t think that was it She had to know who she was for herself Forget about Ivan I want to forget about Ivan even though she made him important so she can stay hungry I think she slips into the wall because she murdered herself Beauty is no longer flowing from me, it could have flowed from me, it came in waves to me from Ivan, Ivan who is beautiful, I have known one single beautiful human being, nonetheless I have seen beauty, in the final analysis even I became beautiful one single time, through Ivan No alarm, no sirens No one comes to help Not the ambulance and not the police It is a very old wall, a very strong wall, from which no one can fall, which no one can break open, from which nothing can ever be heard again.Malina haunts me This killing yourself When did it stop the death wish to stream into the drowning so you can suspend in freeze, over your face no direction Only the other side of the invisible corners black dream [[ Free Epub ]] ↡ Malina ☝ Bachmann tells the story of lives painfully intertwined the unnamed narrator, haunted by nightmarish memories of her father, lives with the androgynous Malina, an initially remote and dispassionate man who ultimately becomes an ominous influence Plunging toward its riveting finale, Malina brutally lays bare the struggle for love and the limits of discourse between women and men The name alone suffices to be in the world Malina is one of those novels that feels completely natural to me, arising almost like an organism, without pretense or premeditated designs Its easy playful voice keeps me reading despite the somber themes that run underneath It is a particularly difficult novel for me to describe, as it tackles many serious topics war, post war, time, history, personal relationships, men and women yet when you pull back, its main thrust is elusive What is this The name alone suffices to be in the world Malina is one of those novels that feels completely natural to me, arising almost like an organism, without pretense or premeditated designs Its easy playful voice keeps me reading despite the somber themes that run underneath It is a particularly difficult novel for me to describe, as it tackles many serious topics war, post war, time, history, personal relationships, men and women yet when you pull back, its main thrust is elusive What is this book about Who even is Malina I have no answers and in a way the answers don t really matter Yes, I read the afterword with some pretty convincing angles And some of it has validity.What matters to me is that it is enjoyable at every juncture And it feels so right just in my bones, like I buy everything it says Just the whole damn thing seems so necessary and true, like a lived thing It seems less a novel anda byproduct of someone s having been alive.Once one has survived something then survival itself interferes with understanding p146 After reading a succession of novels in the last year inspired by the brilliant Thomas Bernhard, it is fascinating to read one where the influence runs in the opposite direction Austrian writer Ingeborg Bachmann was a mentor of sorts to Bernhard and the basis for the poet Maria in his final novel Extinction Malina, published two years before her death aged 47 in 1973 was her only novel, although intended to be the first of a trilogy called Todesarten Ways of Dying The translation here is b After reading a succession of novels in the last year inspired by the brilliant Thomas Bernhard, it is fascinating to read one where the influence runs in the opposite direction Austrian writer Ingeborg Bachmann was a mentor of sorts to Bernhard and the basis for the poet Maria in his final novel Extinction Malina, published two years before her death aged 47 in 1973 was her only novel, although intended to be the first of a trilogy called Todesarten Ways of Dying The translation here is by Philip Boehm, revisited in this new 2019 edition interestingly one editorial decision in the revised edition was to cut out the footnotes and some glosses, on the grounds that the interest reader now has access to the internet Malina is a wonderfully powerful work intense, experimental, with a narrative that is both fragmentary yet compulsive one that is difficult to absorb on a single reading, a novel that would repay much study and yet would still have its enigmas At one point even the narrator admits Something is dawning on me, I m beginning to see some logic, but I don t understand anything in particular For example is the eponymous Malina, with whom she apparently lives platonically , yet who seems to not even acknowledge the existence of her lover Ivan, a real person or a figment of her imagination, a male alter ego we re as different as nights and day or rather is she his female alter ego merely the dispensable product of his rib and perhaps a figment of his There are many excellent reviews on the internet and from the ever excellent Joseph Schreiber and Goodreads, so I will content myself with some of my favourite passages The narrator on reading It has less to do with the books, above all it has to do with the reading, with black on white, with the letters, syllables, lines, the signs, the setting down, this inhuman fixing, this insanity, which flows from people and is frozen into expression Believe me, expression is insanity, it arises out of our insanity It also has to do with turning pages, with hunting from one page to the other, with flight, with complicity in an absurd, solidified effusion, with a vile overflow of verse, with insuring life in a single sentence, and, in turn, with the sentences seeking insurance in life Reading is a vice which can replace all other vices or temporarily take their place inintensely helping people live, it is a debauchery, a consuming addiction No, I don t take any drugs, I take books.Speed is important, not only concentration, can you please tell me who can keep chewing on a simple or even a complex sentence without feeling disgust, either with the eyes or the mouth, just keep on grinding away, over and over, a sentence which only consists of subject and predicate must be consumed rapidly, a sentence with many appositions must for that very reason be taken at tremendous speed, with the eyeballs performing an imperceptible slalom.I couldn t list the books which have impressed me the most or explain why they made such an impression, in which places and for how long What sticks, then, you will ask, but that s not the point there are only a few sentences, a few expressions that wake up inside my brain again and again, begging to be heard over the years And the narrator s take I would say Bernhardian take but actually his takes are Bachmannian on Vienna and its decline post the end of the Austro Hungarian empire sentences that one fears may mirror the fate of London and the UK post Brexit I get along well with this city and its diminished and disappearing surroundings which have retired from history Uneasy alarm of Herr M hlbauer Unruffled, I proceed You might also say that, as an example to the world, an empire, along with its practices and tactics embellished with ideas, was expelled from history I am very happy to live here, because from this place on the planet, where nothingis happening, a confrontation with the world is all thefrightening, here one is neither self righteous nor self satisfied, as this is not some protected island, but a haven of decay, wherever you go there is decay, decay everywhere, right before our eyes, and not just the decay of yesterday s empire, but of today s as well Highly recommended although far from an easy read 4.5 stars my only reason for 4 not 5 is that I don t feel I did the novel justice, rather than vice versa It s disgusting to put all this misery on the market, just adding to what s already there, these books are all absolutely loathsome What kind of obsession is this anyway, all this gloom, everything s always sad and these books make it even worse in folio editions Malina is an incredibly complex tragedy on the nature of insanity and to read it, especially in the beginning, is quite a labour A woman believes that she is a writer and all her men are fruits of her sick consciousness or personage It s disgusting to put all this misery on the market, just adding to what s already there, these books are all absolutely loathsome What kind of obsession is this anyway, all this gloom, everything s always sad and these books make it even worse in folio editions Malina is an incredibly complex tragedy on the nature of insanity and to read it, especially in the beginning, is quite a labour A woman believes that she is a writer and all her men are fruits of her sick consciousness or personages of her unwritten book or alter egos of her cracked mind And fragment after fragment her consciousness keeps deterioratingandbut the end shatters everything once again so all that has been happening comes up in absolutely different light and changes the meaning of reality Malina is an anagram of animal and it isn t accidental but symbolic to the entire surrealistic and existential substance of the book Malina is a unique and utterly fabulous novel having many layers of narration and elucidation Dense, fraught and at times stunningly beautiful prose A narrator in love with her own performance and, at times, too melodramatic for complete empathy A fascinating attempt to combine the world of the personal with the political and the conflicts of gender I only wish she had been able to finish her planned cycle of novels I cannot say that I enjoyed it, and doubt I will re read it, but would not hesitate to recommend it. Why Malina Has no Message for FeministsThe English translation of Malina ends with an academic essay, intended to explain the book s cultural and historical references, and also to help readers who may be confused by the book s experimental form and content The first purpose is reasonable for North American readers the second is ridiculous The book is hermetic, desperately unhappy, remorseless, disconsolate, dissociative, and ambiguously realistic, mythic, and allegorical Those should al Why Malina Has no Message for FeministsThe English translation of Malina ends with an academic essay, intended to explain the book s cultural and historical references, and also to help readers who may be confused by the book s experimental form and content The first purpose is reasonable for North American readers the second is ridiculous The book is hermetic, desperately unhappy, remorseless, disconsolate, dissociative, and ambiguously realistic, mythic, and allegorical Those should all be signs that a brief explanation won t be helpful This is how Anderson summarizes the book s reception To those familiar with her poetry, Malina seems the continuation in narrative of the problems and images informing the lyrical work of the 1950s To a new generation of feminist readers who had little patience with what they saw as her hermetic, aestheticist poetry Malina and the other unfinished novels of the Death Styles cycle have come to stand for a radically other Bachmann, the critic of patriarchal capitalist society where women are systematically denied a voice and language of their own To historians familiar with the art and philosophy of Hapsburg Vienna, the novel represents a masterly synthesis of a distinctly Austrian tradition, one that reached it apogee at the turn of the century in the work of Freud, Musil, Roth, Schoenberg, Wittgenstein, Hofmannsthal and Kraus Finally, to contemporary German writers as diverse as Christa Wolf, Thomas Bernhard and Peter Handke ot stands as an inspirational example for their own work pp 239 40 Note that only one of these three, the one attributed to feminist readers, is an interpretation of the text itself Many of the reviews onand Goodreads are similarly concerned with gender roles The translation seems to be read as a memoir, autobiography, or trauma narrative A good exception to this is Life Or Thearer , a review by Jennifer Krasinski in Bookforum, Sept Oct Nov 2019, p 31 One reviewer on Goodreads puts it this way The generation Bachmann describes has made female victimhood an art form It grated on my nerves because I have been fighting my whole life both against the male attitude of condescension and property and the female passive voice of pleasurable suffering Look at me, I am killed by male dominance Don t I look pretty in all my indignation Lisa on Goodreads, 2018 But Bachmann was much stranger than the pugilist advocate of women s rights imagined by online reviewers Readings like these are misguided because they project later desires for empowerment onto a text that is determinedly closed to meliorist narratives The novel continues to be taken as a prelude to some feminism, but Malina does not imply any such future or hope It isn t about disempowerment, gender roles, or the lasting impact of child abuse in adult life Sarah Porter onThose are things the novel can only be about when it is read for use value by a 21st century audience accustomed to trauma narratives and self help books Malina itself does not want to be saved its narrator knows that the air we all breathe is poison Chapter 2 is full of scenes of violence, incest, rape, and murder, mostly centered on a father figure, but as Peter Filkins wrote in the New York Times, the narrator realizes that the menace of her dreams is not my father It s my murderer The distinction is important For though Bachmann is clearly concerned with patriarchal power and the ravages of family violence inflicted upon women, she also sees such issues as inextricably bound up with the violence done to both genders in the flawed, if not fatal, workings of society and history, as well as the violence we do to and by words because we find it impossible to give full expression to such outrage Language itself, for Bachmann, is a form of violence, a disease, an expression of insanity The first quotation is Filkins s the second is Bachmann s Nor will it do to say that the two men in the narrator s life, Ivan and Malina, are absent or manipulative Ivan, one of the two male characters, cannot love anyone but his children, even though the unnamed narrator declares her love for him but it is not at all clear that their miscommunication is a picture of conventional gender roles and the third character, Malina, is too strange, and too nearly allegorical, to be counted as an independent character at all Anderson thinks Malina is part of the narrator, and that he s modeled on the Jungian anima There is some support for this in an interview with Bachmann The narrator herself does sometimes fit the model of trauma narratives she is in continuous crisis she cries, she shakes, she smokes, drinks, takes painkillers, can t sleep or write And yet she doesn t communicate any better than the male characters This isn t feminist advocacy this is a world in which people try as best they can to remain minimally human.In Bachmann s mind, the poisons of language are personal in a way they aren t for Paul Celan There is an extended allegory of language and writing on pp 156 61, where the narrator tells the story of Otto Kranetizer, a postal worker accused of hoarding unopened letters in his apartment in every profession i.e., including writing there must be at least one man who lives in deep doubt and comes into a conflict Mail delivery the profession of a writer in particular would seem to require a latent angest, a seismographic recording of emotional tremors which is otherwise accepted only in the higher and highest professions later described as professors of philosophy and science , as if the mail couldn t have its own crisis, no Thinking Wanting Being for it Denken Wollen Sein p 159, 253 in the original see also Surika Simon, Mail Orders The Fiction of Writing in Postmodern Culture This is as close to Kafka as anyone in postwar fiction it s an extended allegory of artistic work, as in Josephine the Singer or The Hunger Artist, and it is infused with anxiety, anger, and fear What poisons the narrator in Malina is a different from what poisons words in Celan.Readings of Malina that take their bearing from contemporary diary novels, trauma narratives, memoirs, self help books, or feminist theories, draw on a simplified and domesticated sense of the book This novel is a tremendous achievement it is deeply experimental, to the point of continuously undermining its supposedly secure three act form blithely announced at the beginning and elaborated by optimistic critics it is unsure of the relation between allegory, dream, and history and its story involving the narrator s death, while living, and her transformation into her spectral alter ego is darker than anything that a realist, political, or historical reading could use or comprehend Postscript 1 on metafictionI ll just close with two smaller points First, Malina is a forerunner of the current interest in minimally fictional novels, made popular by Ben Lerner At one point Ivan discovers notes for a manuscript the narrator intends to write called Todesarten Arts of Death or Death Styles , which is the name of the trilogy of books Bachmann contemplated Malina is the only one she finished before she burned to death in her apartment in Rome on the ways people die while living through relationships, by institutions and politics, by language itself Ivan counsels the narrator to write a happy book instead Malina is not that book, but the coincidence of the name of the book occurring in the book is parallel to Lerner s 10 04 and other novels Writing the thinnest possible veneer of fiction on an experimental, non linear narrative is one of several things Bachmann was experimenting with in the late 1960 s It would be interesting if the contemporary moment could acknowledge its belatedness.Postscript 2 on humorAnd last, I d also like to register that Malina has some very funny pages I cringe when reviewers say this sort of thing But Bachmann s humor comes from a desperate fear and hatred of people in general, a kind of acidic combination of Kafka and Bernhard Here is her suggestion for how to write back to someone who blithely wishes you a happy birthday as so many social media sites do these days DearYou wish me best wishes for my birthday Permit me to tell you how shocked I was precisely today To be sure I have no doubt as to your tact, since I had the honor of meeting you some years ago However you are alluding to a day, perhaps even a specific hour and an irrevocable moment, which must have been a most private matter for my mother, my father too, as we may assume for the sake of propriety Naturally nothing in particular was shared with me about this day, I just had to memorize a date which I have to write down on every registration form in every city, in every country, even if I m only passing through But I stopped passing through countries a long time ago p 90 4.5 5Whenever I would pick this up, a line or two of a poem kept ringing through my mind The title, no matter how hard I tried, would not come to mind Finally, I took to Google, and after a couple of searches found what I was looking for The poem is Translations by Adrienne Rich, and a couple of lines match the tone of Malina incredibly well Certain words occur enemy, oven, sorrowenough to let me knowshe s a woman of my timeobsessedwith Love, our subject we ve trained it like ivy to our wa 4.5 5Whenever I would pick this up, a line or two of a poem kept ringing through my mind The title, no matter how hard I tried, would not come to mind Finally, I took to Google, and after a couple of searches found what I was looking for The poem is Translations by Adrienne Rich, and a couple of lines match the tone of Malina incredibly well Certain words occur enemy, oven, sorrowenough to let me knowshe s a woman of my timeobsessedwith Love, our subject we ve trained it like ivy to our wallsbaked it like bread in our ovensworn it like lead on our ankleswatched it through binoculars as ifit were a helicopterbringing food to our famineor the satelliteof a hostile power Malina is, in part, a story of obsessive love The unnamed narrator longs for Ivan More than that, she longs to be consumed by him, to be nothing without him She writes Beauty is no longer flowing from me, it could have flowed from me, it came in waves to me from Ivan, Ivan who is beautiful, I have known one single beautiful human being, nonetheless I have seen beauty, in the final analysis even I become beautiful one single time, through Ivan Has obsession ever ended happily The Unknown Woman refuses to call herself by any name, because she sees herself not as an individual, but as an extension of her love She refuses to find redemption through any source other than Ivan And it leads to her breakdown What a fascinating breakdown it is to watch Bachmann presents images in such an original, fractured way She jumps from long, breathless paragraphs to fragmented dialogue to, at one point, a musical score What s remarkable is how organic each jump and twist feels Malina doesn t feel like experimental fiction, though the the term can be used it feels like the writing of a woman obsessed with Love Its style does not prevent it from articulating longing, despair and sometimes hope, instead it guides the feelings to their natural conclusion At times it s overdrawn and melodramatic hence the.5 star missing , but Bachmann never set up an action without feeling, which is impressive considering how sterile experimental fiction can be But Malina isn t just an emotional love story, it s also a heady allegory examining postwar guilt The Austrian narrator is happy with the Hungarian, Ivan Her repeated visions of her father destroys the bond between the lovers She sees murders, rewriting of history, and most telling of all, gas chambers The narrator feels the weight of history every time her father visits her dreams Guilt begins to drive her mad In the end, Malina, the historian view spoiler removes all record of her existence and possibly lets her die hide spoiler Just as history sanitizes atrocities, giving instead hero narratives and look how far we ve come moments, our narrator finds herself lost in Malina He ocupies her madness, and motivates her to move on past every horror she sees It s a shame Malina is Bachmann s only novel I want 1 Vienna crumbling between, behind and beneath the lines.2 delicate, cruel, funny, sad, beautiful, strange, heart tugging, pushing, pulling, boxing, kissing, scratching3 Bachmann understands about the preverbal4 Fading into the wall Ingeborg Bachmann writes In the Psychological Institute in the Liebiggasse we always drank tea or coffee I knew a man there who always used shorthand to record what everyone said, and sometimes other things besides I don t know shorthand Sometimes we d give each other Rorschach tests, Szondi tests, TAT, and would diagnose each other s character and personality, we would observe our performance and behavior and examine our expressions Once he asked how many men I had slept with, and I couldn Ingeborg Bachmann writes In the Psychological Institute in the Liebiggasse we always drank tea or coffee I knew a man there who always used shorthand to record what everyone said, and sometimes other things besides I don t know shorthand Sometimes we d give each other Rorschach tests, Szondi tests, TAT, and would diagnose each other s character and personality, we would observe our performance and behavior and examine our expressions Once he asked how many men I had slept with, and I couldn t think of any except this one legged thief who had been in jail, and a lamp covered with flies in a room in Mariahilf rented by the hour, but I said at random seven He laughed surprised and said, then naturally he d like to marry me, our children would certainly be intelligent, also very pretty, and what did I think of that We went to the Prater, and I wanted to go on the Ferris wheel, because at that time I was never afraid, just happy the way I felt while gliding and later on while skiing, I could laugh for hours out of sheer happiness Of course then we didn t ever speak again Shortly afterward I had to take my oral examinations, and in the morning before the three big exams all the embers spilled out of the oven at the Philosophical Institute, I stomped on some pieces of coal or wood, I ran to get a broom and dustpan, since the janitors hadn t come yet, it was burning and smoking terribly, I didn t want a fire, I trampled the embers with my feet, the stench stayed in the institute for days, my shoes were singed, but nothing burned down I also opened all the windows Even so I managed to take my first exam at eight in the morning, I was supposed to be there with another candidate but he didn t come he had had a stroke during the night, as I found out just before going in to be examined about Leibnitz, Kant and Hume The Old Privy Councillor, who was also Rector at the the time, was wearing a dirty gown, earlier he had received some honorary order from Greece, I don t know what for, and he began asking questions, very annoyed that a candidate had missed an exam due to demise, but at least I was there and not dead yet In his anger he had forgotten what subjects had been agreed upon, and during the exam someone phoned I believe it was his sister one moment we were discussing the neo Kantians, the next moment we were with the English deists, but still quite far from Kant himself, and I didn t know very much After the phone call things improved a little, I proceeded right away to discuss what had been agreed upon, and he didn t notice I asked him an anxious question relating to the problem of time and space, admittedly a question without meaning for me at the time, but he felt quite flattered that I had asked, and then I was dismissed I ran back to our institute, it wasn t burning, and I went on to the next two exams I passed all of them But later I never did solve the problem relating to time and space It grew and grew