Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Beware of Pity” as Want to Read:
Beware of Pity
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Beware of Pity

4.19 of 5 stars 4.19  ·  rating details  ·  3,155 ratings  ·  306 reviews
In 1913 a young second lieutenant discovers the terrible dangers of pity. He had no idea the girl was lame when he asked her to dance - his compensatory afternoon calls relieve his guilt but give her a dangerous glimmer of hope. Stefan Zweig's only novel is a devastatingly unindulgent realization of the torment of the betrayal of both honor and love, realized against the b ...more
Paperback
Published March 1st 2002 by Pushkin Press (first published 1939)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Steve Sckenda

"Only a moment ago you felt free, you belonged to yourself and were in debt to no one, and now suddenly you find yourself pursued, hemmed in, prey and object of the unwelcome desires of another. Shaken to the depths of your soul."

A soldier becomes entangled in the world of an heiress, whom the translator describes as "crippled." The Austro-Hungarian soldier has no physical desire for this woman nor does he want her money (not wishing to be seen as a "sponge" or a "kept man" to his army comrades)
...more
David
Disclaimer: Despite whatever I say in the following review, and no matter how much I mock Beware of Pity, I did actually enjoy it. To a limited extent.

Stefan Zweig is an enormous drama queen. Every emotion in his novel Beware of Pity is hyperbolic, neon-lit, hammy. His narrator doesn't feel anything as prosaic as mere mere joy. No way. He's more apt to be 'blithe as a twittering bird.' People aren't only surprised; their faces turn white as a specter, their legs threaten to give way, and their w
...more
Cheryl Kennedy
New York Times book review of Stefan Zweig's BEWARE OF PITY:

"Admired by readers as diverse as Freud, Einstein, Toscanini, Thomas Mann, and Herman Goring.

Zweig makes keen observations of our motives for pity. It goes something like this...pity leads to obligation, obligation leads to resentment, and resentment leads to revenge.


Highest Recommendation!
Dolors
May 14, 2014 Dolors rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those not afraid of being found out
Pity. It had never dawned upon me what a double-edged feeling pity is. Neither had I dwelled for long on the ramifying consequences of actions triggered by that feeling. Compassion, generosity and benignity are considered virtues promoted by years of religious heritage and have therefore been imprinted on mankind’s consciousness from the beginning of times, but the mental processes and the tapestry of neuronal connections that generate good deeds are as inscrutable as the mosaic of celestial bod ...more
Tony
May 18, 2014 Tony rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Tony by: Janet
My friend and I both pity the homeless, but I prefer to do it from a distance. My friend isn't like that. He likes to put money in cup. Through the years, his insistence on an actual physical exchange has grown exponentially. It was one thing to raise the gift from $1 to $2 to $5 and then $10. But then even that changed. We drifted apart and then slowly saw each other again. Walking back to our jobs after lunch after renewing our friendship we passed a homeless man that we had passed many times ...more
Edward
Foreword
Author's Note
Introduction


--Beware of Pity

Translator's Afterword
Chuck LoPresti
Beware of Pity is not going to please anybody that isn't willing to tolerate some anachronistic histrionics in the process of telling a pretty engaging story. The plot is fairly simple: an officer can't stand to offend so he allows himself to be manipulated by a family in need of a love-object/hero to save their invalid daughter. That alone would hardly merit 4 stars but Zweig is a great story teller and what is most important here is the psychological insights of a friend of Freud. Stepping ins ...more
Hani
http://www.abjjad.com/review/1990328332

كم مرة قرأتُ كتابا وانتابني ذلك الإحساس أو الشعور الخفي, الجميل, بالإمتنان لمؤلفه لأنه فتح لي بابا من الفكر أو المشاعر أو التجارب أو أو... لم يسبق لي وأن دلفته من قبل؟ مرات ومرات.
كم مرة قرأتُ كتابا وانتابني شعور أشد عمقا من الشعور والإحساس السابق, لا لأنه سمح لي بالدخول إلى عوالم لم أدخلها من قبل, بل لأنه دلف إلى عوالمي أنا الشخصية؛ فرأى مني ورأيتُ منه ما تشابهت معه -أو تماثلت- رؤانا أو مشاعرنا أو أفكارنا أو تجاربنا أو أو أو... فكان بهذا التماثل أو ذاك التش
...more
Celeste
"Coração Impaciente", o último romance de Stefan Zweig (SZ), é a história trágica do amor de uma jovem de dezassete anos, rica e aleijada, por um jovem oficial que a repele; neste livro o autor ressuscita novamente a amada Áustria da época anterior a 1914.

SZ suicidou-se no Brasil em 1942 e , quando o leio, tento encontrar indícios para tão trágico final. Nunca os encontrei é certo, mas não deixa de ser curioso que a carta de suicídio contenha a palavra impaciente:

Antes de deixar a vida por vonta
...more
Amal Gamal
هي ثاني عمل أقرأه للكاتب:
Stefan Zweig
بعد رواية الخوف " Angst".
والذي دفعني لقراءة الثانية "الخوف" هي أنها كانت مُقررًا دراسيًا لي في العام الماضي في الجامعة ولا أكتمكم سرًا أن ما نقرأه عندما يكون فرضًا كمقرر دراسي يفقدنا الكثير من المتعه ربما كان السبب في هذا طريقة تدريسه وربما ضيقًا بكل ما يتعلق بالدراسة وواجباتها.
ولم تكن قراءتي لهذه الرواية " حذار من الشفقه" لرغبتي في قراءة المزيد لهذا الكاتب وانما جاءت معرفتي بالرواية في الأصل من قبيل المُصادفه فقد كنت أقرأ رواية "فديتك يا ليلى" لـ يوسف السباع
...more
Oscar
Leer a Zweig siempre me produce una sensación catártica. Su manera de escribir es tan cristalina, y su descripción de los sentimientos más profundos tan delicada y acertada, que quedas fascinado sin remedio; tu alma queda totalmente impregnada de todas las vivencias de los personajes. Y uno no puede dejar de pensar en cómo pueden conocerse tan bien los sentimientos y, por qué no, también los pensamientos de las personas.

Por pura casualidad, el escritor de esta historia se encuentra en Viena con
...more
Jan
"Beware of Pity" is a great psychological portrait of an officer in the Austrian army, right before the outbreak of the great war. At the outset, young Anton Hofmiller commits a terrible social gaffe by asking the crippled daughter of a local noble to dance, and it is in saving face that he embarks on a journey of pity, honor, and obligation, plunging ever deeper into her life and her family's.

Stefan Zweig paints an excellent portrait of a young man torn by conflicting feelings, constantly turni
...more
Marwah  A
نصحني بها شخص وحذرني بأن من يقرأها ستتحرك بداخله الشفقه بشكل لم يعتاده
عدت لاعدل الريفيو لانه اكتمل اثرها الان في نفسي و احسست بأني كتبت كلمات قليلة في حقها

نظره سريعه للرواية:
تتكلم عن فتاة مقعدة يشفق عليها شخص في الجيش على ما اذكر ويبدأ يزورها باستمرار للترويح عنها
وتبدأ هي تقع في حبه لكنها احست بشفقته وعاطفته تجاهها كان هذا الشئ يضايقها لكنها تجاهلته
هي كانت تحبه لدافع الحب وهو احبها بدافع الشفقة وتقدم لخطبتها ايضا بناءا على ذلك




وللرواية احداث اخرى مأساوية



هذه نبذه عن الروايه ولكن اريد ان اضيف اشي
...more
Paul Blakemore
This is one of the best books I've ever read. It does everything that really great books should do. It takes the idea of pity and really explores it as a human emotion. It left me feeling as if I might be a bit wiser about how to be a decent human being. On top of that, it is readable and I found it a bit of a page-turner due to the brilliant characters.

It is so cleverly constructed too; a layering of narrative on narrative so that as each person tells a story or relates a rumour they all begin
...more
Meryouma Meriem
مباشرة بعد فراغي من قراءة الرواية لا أدري كيف أصف شعوري، فالعديد من الأحاسيس تتجاذبني بقسوة و الأمر الوحيد الذي أضعه في مصاف اليقين أنني بالفعل مسكونة بهذه الرواية، بأحداثها و شخوصها و أن هذه الحيرة التي تكتنفني عرض بسيط من أعراض محاولتي "اللاواعية" لتحليلها، لتبين ثغراتها و والبحث عن سبل بديلة غير تلك المسالك الشائكة التي اندفع أبطالها إليها بعيون "عقلية" عمياء، هل بالفعل هذا ما يمكن أن تؤدي إليه الشفقة؟ ذاك الشعور الإنساني النقي الذي يسبغ على صاحبه إذ يتلبسه سلوكا خليقا بكائن مقدس مثالي و منزه ...more
Anas
من أعظم الروايات التي قرأتها في حياتي!

لقد تجاوزت كل توقعاتي وأدهشتني، واندمجت معها كما لم أندمج مع رواية أخرى منذ زمن بعيد.

الرواية تتناول موضوعاً دقيقاً حساساً، وأكثر ما أعجبني فيها أسلوب الكاتب في وصف الحالات النفسية الدقيقة جداً، والعصية على تطويعها بالكتابة، لقد أجاد الكاتب الدخول في دهاليز مظلمة عميقة في النفس البشرية من الصعب جداً إدراكها فضلاً عن وصفها باللغة، لكنه نجح في ذلك باقتدار عجيب.

أعجبتني الرواية جداً، لا سيما وأني وجدت جزءً من نفسي في بطلها الجندي، فكثيراً ما أحسست أن بعض الأوصاف
...more
Nigeyb
A very powerful work and Stefan Zweig's only full length novel.

Stefan Zweig generally cut and cut his longer stories until arriving at the essence of the tale. Beware of Pity is therefore an anomaly, one that forces me to conclude he should have written more novels.

Memorable characters abound in this book that actually contains three extraordinary stories, the primary one set against the lead up to World War One. The protagonist, Lieutenant Anton Hofmiller is an idealistic Austrian army officer
...more
J.
'Beware of Pity' was published in German in 1939 under the title 'Ungeduld des Herzens' (Impatience of the Heart).Zweig's books were burnt by the Nazis along with other Jewish authors. His publishers moved to Stockholm as a result. On publication it was translated almost immediately. Zweig was quite popular around this time.

The book starts in Vienna. A writer who we can assume is Zweig meets an older Hofmiller who is a veteran and recipient of medals for bravery in the First World War. Hofmiller
...more
Mikki

Stefan Zweig is a master when it comes to weaving tales of psychological drama. Beautiful descriptive prose that allows the reader a step-by-step journey into the minds of his characters as they slowly come undone. This is the story of how a man, hand held out to another in pity, is caught in a chokehold grasp and pulled onto a roller coaster of emotional blackmail.

It's 1914. The setting is a military post in Austria just months before the first world war. A young officer wrangles an invitation
...more
Sarah Ellen Rogers
The doorman in my building (a Romanian named Moses) recommended this book to me. He told me "it is life."

After I read it, I understand what he meant. Everything in this book seems so familiar, even though it takes place in the early twentieth century, and revolves around an Austrian cavalry officer's relationship with a high society family. It fires off insight after insight into human psychology with every new revelation.

It's also beautifully written. You know how you tend to skim over sectio
...more
e luce fu
العنــوان يلخص الأمر برمته.. حذار من الشفقـة!
لدرجة إني توقعت الأحداث.. ومع ذلك جاء أسلوب ستيفن زفايج في السـرد مشوقا.. أكثر ما أحمـده عليه أنه كان كآلة زمـن عادت بي إلى طفولتي.. تلك النوعية من الأعمال الأدبية "المترجمة" التي اعتدت عليها في صباي..

الضعف الإنساني الذي طالما عكر صفو الملازم "هوفماير" وشفقتـه اللامتناهية.. كانت دائما محل النقد!
"هو ليه ما يوضحش الأمور بصراحة.. وكل واحد يعرف الحقيقة.. ونرتـاح"
لكنـه في حيرتـه اللامحدودة أقرب ما يكون إلى بطل عزازيـل "هيبا" الذي تمزق الحيرة أوصال العقـل ح
...more
ندى
موجعه هذه الروايه
مؤلمه احداثها ونهايتها

تمنيت لو انهاانتهت نهايه افضل
لكنها النهايه الملاءمه لقصه الحب التعيسه تلك
التى لم تكن لتكلل بالنجاح

الشفقه
ذلك الشعور الذى دارت حوله القصه
وكيف احس به شخص تجاه فتاه كسيح
لم يكن يعنيه هذا الشعور فى شىءسوى انه ادخل السعاده على قلب الفتاه ن خلال اهتمامه واحس بانه يستطيع ان يقدم شيئا لاى خص

الا ان الفتاه احبته
اعتقدت ان اهتمامه الكبير يعنى حبه لها
ثم ادركت انه لا يتعدى شفقه
فكان ما كان

الروايه مليئه بالمشاعر البالغه التاثير
فى النفس ممن خلال العذاب الذى عاناه البطل
...more
Irina
Zweig's writing is full of psychoanalysis of his characters’ emotions, soul, and state of mind. He is always on the journey to finding out what controls his characters’ actions.

"Beware of pity” novel is about a young Austrian officer, who attends a party at the house of the Nobel aristocrat (at least who appeared to be one at first), invites the host’s daughter to dance without knowing that she is handicapped and in a wheel chair. In order to correct his mistake, he starts coming to the house wi
...more
Ahmed
كتب علي ظهر الروايه " ان الشيء الذي بين يديك هو اعظم ما انتج العقل البشري علي مر العصور "
في معرض الكتاب وكنت صغير ،، لما قريت اللي علي ظهر الروايه ضحكت باستفزاز والصراع بدأ يلعب لعبته ،، معقوله الروايه اللي حجمها يكاد يكون حجم قصه يتكتب علي ظهرها كدا ،، واشتريتها بعد حوار مع تاجر كتب تاني عشان يرجعلي كتاب من الكتب اللي اشتريتها لاني ماكانش معايا فلوس غير المواصلات ،، اخدتها وروحت عالبيت وبالليل بدأت في قرائتها وبدأت احس ان اللي كنت بتريق علي صغر حجمها بدأت تتضخم بين ايديا وكل ما اقرا تتضخم اكتر
...more
Maryam
This was quite a catchy story inspite of the annoying characters.

Quick plot summary: it describes the weakness of one person in front of the cripple girl. He (the main protagonyst) cannot say no to anything in his life, and eventually gets meddled into the trouble by making a cripple girl to fall in love with him. That wouldn't be a trouble if he wasn't a douchbag who was ashamed of a love of a cripple and who valued the opinion of his friends and family the most.

The idea of the story pleased
...more
Stela
Uitasem ca se poate scrie si asa - cam de mult nu mi-am mai aruncat privirea peste subtila proza psihologica interbelica, cu analizele si introspectiile sale, cu naratorul la persoana I care pune sub lupa si evenimentele si sentimentele, cu sutele de pagini in care nu se intimpla mare lucru, dar cu acel netagaduit farmec al melodiilor vechi, unde auzi în fundal acul pe vinil.
Pe scurt, romanul este o ilustrare a dictonului "iadul e pavat cu intentii bune" si nu degeaba titlul variantei engleze es
...more
Alex
Tour de force!!! --The intensity and richness of the psychological imagery is what novel is good for (and other media such as film or painting cannot reach) and Zweig crafted a peerless specimen in this aspect. In addition, all major characters are so moving and heroic yet they together make none other than hopeless tragedy, whereby the author presents to readers a poignant question nobody can answer. Also there are excellent suspensions and surprises. Nothing in this novel seems cliché or borro ...more
Nayef
اقتباس

دائما يأتي في النهاية .. مرض يشفى أو لا يشفى , أبيض أو أسود .. كأنما الأمر بهذه البساطة !.. إن أي طبيب يحترم نفسه ينبغي ألا ينطق حتى بكلمتي "سليم" او "مريض" , لأنه لا يوجد حد فاصل تنتهي عنده الصحة ويبدأ المرض .. ولن تستطيع أن تسمع مني يوماً كلمة "غير قابل للشفاء" ولقد أخطأ "نتيشه" كل الخطأ حين قال : إن الطبيب يجب الا يحاول شفاء الذي لا يشفى , فإن العكس تماما هو الصواب , لأني أرى أن أهم واجب على الطبيب أن يسعى إلى شفاء المرض الذي جرى الناس على الاعتقاد بأنه لا يشفى .. والطبيب الذي يسلم مقد
...more
Expanding Bookshelf
Set in the months leading up to World War I and in an out-of-the-way Austrian garrison town, Beware of Pity is about Hofmiller, a young cavalry officer stationed at the town. Poor and from an undistinguished family, Hofmiller is uncomfortable among his fellow officers, most of whom are wealthy which makes him especially protective of his reputation and honor. When a friend secures him an invitation to the home of Herr von Kekesfalva, the local landowner and richest man in town, Hofmiller is thri ...more
James
This is a curious novel from the pen of Stefan Zweig who tells the story of a young Austrian cavalry officer, Anton Hofmiller, who befriends a local millionaire, Kekesfalva, and his family, but in particular the old man's crippled daughter, Edith, with terrible consequences. Stefan Zweig was a prolific biographer, short story writer, and is noted today mainly for his autobiography, The World of Yesterday.

Before the First World War, Anton Hofmiller, a young Austrian officer from a modest backgrou
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Bright Young Things: November 2014- Beware of Pity by Stefan Zweig 70 36 Jan 18, 2015 04:54AM  
NYRB Classics: Beware of Pity, by Stefan Zweig 1 10 Oct 18, 2013 03:21PM  
  • An Ermine in Czernopol
  • Irretrievable
  • Transit
  • Rock Crystal
  • The Radetzky March  (Von Trotta Family #1)
  • Soul of Wood
  • A Sorrow Beyond Dreams
  • The Fox in the Attic (The Human Predicament, #1)
  • Great Granny Webster
  • Berlin Stories
  • Mr. Fortune's Maggot; and, The Salutation
  • Skylark
  • Wish Her Safe at Home
  • The Lord Chandos Letter: And Other Writings
  • The Pumpkin Eater
  • Fabian. Die Geschichte eines Moralisten
  • Sunflower
  • The Pilgrim Hawk
25573
Stefan Zweig was one of the world's most famous writers during the 1920s and 1930s, especially in the U.S., South America and Europe. He produced novels, plays, biographies and journalist pieces. Among his most famous works are Beware of Pity, Letter from and Unknown Woman and Mary, Queen of Scotland and the Isles. He and his second wife committed suicide in 1942.

Zweig studied in Austria, France,
...more
More about Stefan Zweig...
Chess Story The World of Yesterday Amok The Post-Office Girl Vingt-quatre heures de la vie d'une femme

Share This Book

“No guilt is forgotten so long as the conscience still knows of it.” 73 likes
“There are two kinds of pity. One, the weak and sentimental kind, which is really no more than the heart's impatience to be rid as quickly as possible of the painful emotion aroused by the sight of another's unhappiness, that pity which is not compassion, but only an instinctive desire to fortify one's own soul agains the sufferings of another; and the other, the only one at counts, the unsentimental but creative kind, which knows what it is about and is determined to hold out, in patience and forbearance, to the very limit of its strength and even beyond.” 27 likes
More quotes…