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Auslöschung: Ein Zerfall

4.33  ·  Rating Details ·  1,196 Ratings  ·  80 Reviews
Auslöschung ist der letzte von Thomas Bernhard publizierte Roman. Die ersten Überlegungen zu diesem von ihm selbst als »opus magnum« bezeichneten Werk reichen jedoch bis in die Mitte der siebziger Jahre zurück. Niedergeschrieben wird der Bericht des Franz-Josef Murau über die Auslöschung seiner Eltern und seines Bruders zu Beginn der achtziger Jahre.

Zwanzig Jahre später gi
Paperback, 572 pages
Published December 31st 2008 by Suhrkamp (first published 1986)
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Paul Bryant
Mar 10, 2009 Paul Bryant rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novels
Thomas Bernhard : the dentist’s drill of modern literature. When you are having such an entirely miserable, entirely lonely, entirely teeth-grinding time reading a novel, when groans and hisses and yelps issue involuntarily from you as you turn the page, you know you are in the presence of a master and that this is great literature. It was just the same with Beckett (Molloy), and yes, pretty much the same with Hubert Selby (The Room) and Saramago (Blindness). In all of these great works what we ...more
M. Sarki
Jun 03, 2011 M. Sarki rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 5-star-wonders

There is nobody I have ever read who speaks to me more clearly and like-minded than Thomas Bernhard does. From the very first sentence Bernhard had me hooked on the book. I could have just said the first paragraph but there is only one in the entire book so that would have been a little bit too much tongue-in-cheek. But don’t let that stop you from reading this Extinction. A flowing single paragraph is a Bernhard trademark. At least he has proper sentences
Ο Μπερνχαρντ έχει χιουμορ και η υφαινόμενη υπερβολή στα βιβλία του, που επιτυγχάνεται με τις συνεχείς επαναλήψεις λέξεων, φράσεων και γερών δόσεων σαρκασμου, κάνει τα κείμενά του κωμικά, κάτι που συνοψίζει πολύ ευστοχα ο άλλος μεγάλος λογοτέχνης, ο W.G Sebald: "While the reader may not feel inclined to break into laughter on the basis of the material presented to him, it rings out all the louder behind the scenes of the work."
(Σχεδόν γονυπετής): Οποιος βρει τον Αποτυχημένο (ή την Αυτοβιογραφία,
Oct 25, 2013 AC rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
His final novel, Extinction, is, put simply, Bernhard's masterpiece..., a masterpiece among any number of masterpieces. An astonishing output.

(After starting with Concrete - which astonished me) I read Bernhard's novels chronologically, and would recommend anyone who wants to delve into his works, to read, in the following order:

The Lime Works
The Loser -- about Glenn Gould -- and

I found Woodcutters, Old Masters, and even Wittgenstein's Nephew to be somewhat inferior.

Nov 09, 2013 Jessica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bad-guys
This book is 326 pages of rabid, unrelenting misanthropy that is all ONE PARAGRAPH, from the perspective of a hateful, very rich Austrian expatriate who despises his family, Austria, and everything else.

It is totally impossible for me to explain why I loved reading this, but it had an intoxicating, addictive quality and I really could not put it down. However, I wouldn't in good conscience recommend it to my worst enemy.

Looking forward to reading something else by Bernhard (suggestions, Dieter?)
The funny thing about Bernhard's style is that because you have no stopping points, no denouements, you consequently just sort of pop in and out of Bernhard-land. And what a land it is! Hey, do you know what sucks? Everything! Do you know what sucks more? Everything IN AUSTRIA! Especially your Mom! She's a child-destroying, anti-intellectual, priest-fucking Nazi HO BAG! This kind of whinging is a more grown-up, more cultivated Holden Caulfield mentality, but fuck it, I worshipped at the altar of ...more
Feb 19, 2012 Lee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Like Correction, this one is twice as long as the average Bernhard book and therefore it does twice the damage as the average 150-page Bernhard book, damage mitigated by the introduction of self-conscious acknowledgment about the narrator's abominable pronouncements, also direct attack on Austria's Nazi past, also two sympathetic idealized characters to counterbalance all the imbeciles and insincere simulators. As always, there's nothing as good, no approach as viral, nothing as unbearable to re ...more
Oct 22, 2016 Dajana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ovo je delo koje bi svako trebalo da pročita nekad, posebno kad vam se učini da ste besni na svaki koren u sebi i svaku kategoriju pripadnosti porodici, ljudima, prijateljima, odnosima, institucijama, državi, zemlji, konvencijama pristojnosti i međuljudskih odnosa, jer "Brisanje: raspad" je upravo to - jedno veliko brisanje identiteta u sumanutom naletu pripovedačevog besa, ali ubrzo ćete shvatiti da jednostavna mržnja nikad nije jednostavna, i da bes prema malograđanstvu neminovno onog koji ga ...more
Apr 24, 2017 Michael rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was my introduction to Bernhard, and what a powerful introduction it was. I became obsessed with his obsessive, discursive writing style, the way his sentences loop back on themselves to describe something several different ways. You have to give yourself to it and stop expecting the usual plot or character mechanics of most conventional fiction, but once you do, it's an exhilarating ride.
Feb 24, 2011 DRM rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
After reading this, I have the sneaking suspicion that Thomas Bernhard doesn't really like Austria.
Jan 28, 2017 Auguste rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Bernhard can be expressly difficult, and way too bitter for some readers' taste, but his swansong novel, despite its bleakness, is SO funny. It's like reading music, really - leitmotifs, long stretches of prose as gorgeous as the best of melodies, plus a heady mixture of sarcasm and self-sarcasm that cuts so deep it takes a while for the startled blood to ooze.

It can be scary, such genius; and a burden. But we're lucky (blessed, really) that writers like Bernhard bore it so bravely and generous
Daniel Leverquin
Roman je svojevrsni obračun Bernharda sa celim svojim bićem, svojom državom, nacijom, ali mora se priznati sa mnogim lošim stvarima koji ti nazovi entiteti nose u sebi u ovom slučaju. Tautologija koja služi da opiše sopstveni paroksizam, preovladava knjigom, a taj opis dodatno pojačava time što je pisan u prvom licu.

Pisac secira sebe, svoju porodicu, državu, a na ostatku tog leša je kontroverzna priča, koja u nekim trenucima dobija tragikomičan karakter. Kritička žaoka romana je usmerena na malo
Stephen Durrant
Jun 17, 2012 Stephen Durrant rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
No one else writes quite like Thomas Bernhard, certainly one of the most distinctive stylists of the second half of the twentieth-century. His novels typically are constructed of rants addressed by a first-person narrator to a silent listener. These rants are always exaggerated, as Franz-Josef Murau, the narrator of "Extinction" realizes: "Without the art of exaggeration, I told him, we'd be condemned to an awfully tedious life, a life not worth living. And I've developed this art to an incredib ...more
This seems to be Bernhard's creative apogee, in what is already a relentlessly iconoclastic and unique body of work.
Although Bernhard's most imposing novel in terms of sheer proportion, a few brief sentences could easily describe the physical action within it---the action, as it were, of a "living dead" people--both those complicit and those scarred by Austria's shameful past.
Extinction brings together and seamlessly blends practically all Bernhardian motifs and preoccupations and manages to f
Aaron Arnold
Aug 07, 2013 Aaron Arnold rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, read-in-2013
"We all succumb to megalomania, I told Gambetti, in order to avoid having to pay the price for our constant ineffectuality."

One of the most difficult things to learn about appreciating fiction is that when an author (or director, playwright, etc.) shows you something, it doesn't necessarily mean that they're advocating or endorsing it. You would think that this would be obvious, but I catch myself all the time wanting to write something off, only to think about it for a while and deciding that s
Jul 28, 2016 Sean added it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016

Goodreads certainly does not need another review of a Thomas Bernhard novel. However, having now completed my reading of his novels, I will shamelessly debase myself by dribbling out a few meager comments. This book was not what I expected, though going into it my expectations were admittedly vague. I figured it would present itself as Bernhard’s masterwork. Perhaps it is that, and I am unable to see it. My current disinterest in fiction smears any perspective beyond recognition. There are a few
Sep 19, 2015 Joseph rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The artist in conflict with society. National Socialism, Catholicisim, bad taste and hypocrisy are all condemned by the narrator in the form of accusations and diatribe. He tells us these things are so, and we believe him, not because he is telling us something arcane, but because he is recounting a state of political and historical reality. Bernhard doesn't compose a story with any specific narrative episodes that give insight into the effects of National Socialism in present day Austria. He co ...more
Possibly my favourite Bernhard novel, the whole book takes place over a few days but the narrator covers a much longer expanse of time.
The narrator is the black sheep of the family, an intellectual who feels more at home in cities, likes to read philosophy and prefers the company of gardeners and lives in exile in Rome.
After the tragic deaths of his parents and brother he has to return to Wolfsegg, whilst waiting for the funeral we get an insight into the narrator's relationship with the rest
Bernhard still at the top of his game at the end of his life. But this one went for a bit too long, I think his books should hover around the 100-page mark. The humor is a little different in this one too, and his hatred towards Austria is more pronounced here than the other 2 I read of his. When I read him, I always wonder how much his narrator's voice is an exaggeration of himself and how much is just made up.

An interesting blog post about this book:
Paul Xylinides
Nov 01, 2014 Paul Xylinides rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Like a member of the Spanish Inquisition Thomas Bernhard relentlessly eviscerates his countrymen - Austrian society - page after page after page. The sustained inventiveness and obvious intelligence of his scorn keeps the reader going. One remains in doubt until the very end as to what is the author's ultimate aim and whether or not it has all been worthwhile. The conclusion removes every concern and raises the whole from a remarkable indictment to a complete and satisfying annihilation or "exti ...more
Feb 10, 2017 Ta rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Rozumiem wkład Bernharda w austriackie rozliczenie z nazizmem, ale z tej książki dowiadujemy się nie tylko, że wszyscy kolaborowali, ale też, że Bernhard jest wyjątkowo antypatycznym i zadufanym w sobie bucem (a dokładniej był). Tym niemniej "Wymazywanie" naturalnie warto przeczytać, bo rzeczywiście z popełnionych przez niego dzieł jest najpełniejsze, jeśli chodzi o obraz świata z którym zmagał się w swojej twórczości.
Feb 05, 2016 Bob rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Bernhard's last book is sort of an apotheosis of his favorite themes (some might say obsessions) - we have an intellectual, alienated from his family, planning a book where we wonder whether it will get written (except that in this case, it is called "Extinction"). The only really important plot events happen on the first page and the last page; the rest is, mostly, a dense 300 page rant by a person of questionable sanity, though the "meta" angle of this book includes the narrator more than once ...more
Martin Malík
Jan 10, 2015 Martin Malík rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Najhutnejší Bernhard. Ak máte chuť znenávidieť celý svet, ten čo je naokolo a aj ten, ktorý máte vo vnútri prečítajte si Vyhlazení. Jeden dlhý hejt, nekonečná špirála smerom dolu. A ešte nižšie. Kniha v ktorej je veľmi cítiť spúšť, ktorú autor sledoval zo svojho ušiaku v Mýcení
Tu však zobral na paškál všetko a všetkých. Aj seba. Seba ako súčasť toho voltairovského osamotenia, v ktorom radšej byť sám ako byť súčasťou sveta, ktorý nechce zmúdrieť. A práve preto nemôže nikto kritizovať text, ktorý
Jan 17, 2015 Jeff rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Usually, when I read multiple books by an author, I tend to be less enchanted as I move along, but Mr Bernhard keeps growing on me. The uncompromising pessimism (in concert I think with the paragraph-less style) becomes hypnotic - I get a bit grumpy when I am interrupted.

One critic said that "to agree with Bernhard is to misunderstand him"... well, the hell with that. I agree with him.
Dec 28, 2011 J.W.D. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Perhaps one of to describe myself on a dating website would be: Winter. Seneca's Letters From a Stoic in the morning, Bernhard's Extinction by night.

But then no is going to do all of that. Probably too engaged in an asinine protest or something. And O if they had known what I meant, perhaps they'd be even madder than me.
Jan 02, 2008 Christopher rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
Dostoyevsky + Kafka + Wittgenstein + Huysman (something camp and hysterical in the misanthropy).

Am I not supposed to find this deeply, outrageously funny? Humor of the blackest, sootiest sort.

May 11, 2008 Anna rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Interpretating the Bible would be easier than interpretating this book. It's hard to read. I loved words of siren's voice give up, give up, you know you want to, how good life can be when you aren’t reading Thomas Bernhard in Paul Bryant's review.
Oct 11, 2015 NobilisGughy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Dove cercherò di estinguere tutto.
Estinzione è un resoconto sulla nostra infelicità e meschinità, sulla nostra decrepitezza e mancanza di carattere, su quanto abbiamo sotto gli occhi e che, da quando viviamo, ha più o meno reso insonni le notti della nostra vita, qui mostrata così com’è, nel suo fallimento.

Estinzione è un testo che annulla ciò che in esso è tracciato, che spegne tutto, veramente ed effettivamente tutto. È una lunga, martellante digressione incorruttibile, l’esito definitivo dell
Nov 21, 2016 Jason rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It strikes me, coming out of the spell of Bernhard's final novel (another long, long paragraph; this one 327 pages), that what has always struck me as a scouring tour de force comedy of resentment, might ultimately have to be considered as tragedy. These rants, this rain of invective, this panoply of judgements brought down mercilessly upon Austria and the world at large, staged as screeds disseminated by fictional narrators (but unmistakably in a single voice, Bernhard's, repurposed for each no ...more
David Ramirer
"Der absatzloseste Roman seit Konzeption des Multiversums!" (Molosovsky): in zwei 300-seiten starken kapiteln rechnet der protagonist mit seiner familie ab, die bei einem autounfall ums leben gekommen ist. wenig "harte" handlung (vor allem im ersten kapitel bleibt der protagonist am schreibtisch sitzen und erinnert sich angesichts des ihn benachrichtigenden telegramms an seine familie) aber viel innere bewegung und auf die vollkommene auslöschung alles den protagonisten in die enge treibenden zu ...more
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Thomas Bernhard was an Austrian author, who ranges among the most distinguished German speaking writers of the second half of the 20th century.

Although internationally he's most acclaimed because of his novels, he was also a prolific playwright. His characters were oftenly working in a lifetime and never-ending major work while they deal with themes such as suicide, madness and obsession and, as B
More about Thomas Bernhard...

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“We must allow ourselves to think, we must dare to think, even though we fail. It is in the nature of things that we always fail, because we suddenly find it impossible to order our thoughts, because the process of thinking requires us to consider every thought there is, every possible thought. Fundamentally we have always failed, like all the others, whoever they were, even the greatest minds. At some point, they suddenly failed and their system collapsed, as is proved by their writings, which we admire because they venture farthest into failure. To think is to fail, I thought.” 54 likes
“We have to keep company with supposedly bad characters if we are to survive and not succumb to mental atrophy. People of good character, so called, are the ones who end up boring us to death.” 45 likes
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