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The Art of the Novel

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3.93 of 5 stars 3.93  ·  rating details  ·  3,015 ratings  ·  141 reviews
Kundera brilliantly examines the work of such important and diverse figures as Rabelais, Cervantes, Sterne, Diderot, Flaubert, Tolstoy, and Musil. He is especially penetrating on Hermann Broch, and his exploration of the world of Kafka's novels vividly reveals the comic terror of Kafka's bureaucratized universe.

Kundera's discussion of his own work includes his views on the
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Paperback, 176 pages
Published April 1st 2003 by Harper Perennial Modern Classics (first published 1986)
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Emily Rapp
Kundera is able to talk about the structure of his novel in a way that is both profound and accessible to writers of any ilk. I especially like his attitudes (negative!) toward the mass-production of "market books" which he compares to another form of celebrity culture encroaching on the literary world. His comparisons of novelistic "movements" to those in music are especially profound. The best thing about this book: Kundera's idea that novels are in fact an inquiry into a facet of human existe ...more
Glenn Russell
“NOVEL. The great prose form in which an author thoroughly explores, by means of experimental selves (characters), some great themes of existence.” So writes Milan Kundera (translated from the French by Linda Asher) in Sixty-three Words, which is Part 6 of the 7 parts that form ‘The Art of the Novel’. Here is one more definition from the author’s Part 6 personal dictionary: “LETTERS. They are getting smaller and smaller in books these days. I imagine the death of literature; Bit by bit, without ...more
Jim Coughenour
I first read this book in the early 90s. Recently I was in a spirited conversation about Boccaccio's Decameron. One friend said that the stories were "enjoyable, but ultimately empty." Now my friend is a smart guy, but his remark struck me as remarkably stupid. It just proved that he didn't "get it." The Decameron is full of laughter – you can almost argue that it is constructed for laughter, and laughter in the history of the novel is a value of its own. Mocking wit, a refusal of piety and plat ...more
Eman Alshareef
لست فقط سعيدة بقراءة هذا الكتاب وانما فخورة أيضا .. فخورة جداً

هل بقراءتي لهذا الكتاب امتلكت مقومات الفن الروائي ؟؟ بالطبع لا .. بالعكس، ان كان لدي طموح قديم بكتابة رواية أو اي انتاج ادبي فتخليت عن هذا الطموح بسعادة ..

لكي نكتب رواية يجب أن نؤمن بهدفها و وظيفتها .. وليس فقط مجرد تسجيل صوت واسم لنا في العالم الأدبي .. لأن وظيفة الرواية حسب ميلان كونديرا هي محاربة نسيان الكائن (جوهر الانسان) و اكتشاف ما يمكن للرواية وحدها دون سواها أن تكتشفه، هو ذا ما يؤلف مبرر وجود الرواية، إن الرواية التي لا تكت
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أحمد الغزي

كما كنت متوقعاً ؛ لازمتني الدهشة ورافقني الانبهار طيلة إبحاري في هذا الكتاب !
لـ كونديرا لغة خاصة به ، كلماته لا تنبع من قريحته بل من دهاليز عقله ، يدهشني فيه أن كل كلمة يكتبها كأنه يضع تحتها خطين ، أي أنها في غاية الأهمية .
وعلى الرغم من كون هذا الكتاب تقني بحت - أو هكذا يفترض على الأقل - لكن ميلان تجاوز تقنيات الرواية إلى ما هو أبعد منها بكثير ، فناقش ( تاريخ الرواية ) بتوسع ، وتعمق في أبجديات نشأتها وتحدث كثيراً عن الأفذاذ الذين مروا في تاريخها ، لذا أحسست بعد فراغي من الكتاب أن العنوان كان مضل
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Ahmad Sharabiani
دو مقدمه هست از مترجم، و یک مقدمه از نویسنده، سپس بجای چهار فصل سال به تعداد روزهای هفته هفت فصل دارد: 1) «میراث بیقدر شده ی سروانتس». 2) «گفتگو در باره هنر رمان». 3) «یادداشتهایی ملهم از خوابگردها»، 4) گفتگو در باره هنر ترکیب رمان». 5) «جایی در آن پس و پشت ها». 6) «هفتادودو کلمه». 7) رمان اروپا. ا.شربیانی
Đong Huynh
* Vài ghi chú nhỏ:

1. M.K trong "Nghệ thuật tiểu thuyết" viết rất hay về Franz Kafka, và tôi chắc chắn phải đọc lại "Vụ Án" và đọc "Lâu Đài" thật chăm chú. Nhờ ông mà tôi phát hiện ra mình thật thiếu sót khi đọc Kafka rất hời hợt (nhưng không có cách nào tốt hơn ở lần đọc đầu tiên, vì Kafka là cả một thế giới mênh mông thăm thẳm và vô cùng khó nắm bắt). Có thể xem (một cách nào đó) những đoạn viết về Kafka của M.K là sự mẫu mực cho những ai (như tôi) muốn thâm nhập vào thế giới của Kafka.

2. Chươn
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Jonfaith
What a wonderful day it has been. Cool and sunny, the weather welcomes with only a slim wink of menace behind such. I awoke early and after watching City i went and joined some friends for smoked wheat beer and colorful conversations about public vomiting and the peasant revolts during the Reformation. Oh and there was a parade. I didn't pay much attention to that.

Returning home I watched Arsenal's triumph and enjoyed the weather and picked up this witty distillation. Zadie Smith's Changing My M
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Mashael Alamri
الرواية ككل ليست الا استجواباً طويلاً , استجواباً تأملياً ( أو تأملا استجوابياً ) هي القاعدة التي بَنَيّتُ عليها رواياتي كلها *
* ميلان كونديرا

يتساءل ميلان كونديرا في الفصول الأولى:هل الرواية غير ملائمة لروح العصر الحديث ؟
,

فنّ الرواية هو كتاب نقدي قرأت في مكان ما أن الكاتب حصل على جائزة الأدب الماركسي عن «فن الرواية» الصادر سنة 1960، ثم عاد فأصدر عام 1986 كتاباً آخر يحمل الاسم نفسه وبمقالات أخرى لأنه يريد أن يمحو الكتاب الأول لأنه حصل على جائزة تذكره بشيء يعتبره محرج في تاريخه وهو : “حماسته الم
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Mohammad Jan Taqi Bakhtyari
رمان همچون دین، حکمت و فلسفه گونه ای از معرفت بشری است. اگر بتوان هریکی ازین بخش ها را دوره های از تاریخ معرفت بشر دانست٬ رمان آخرین معرفت بشری است که علی رغم آنکه نیل به حقیقت دارد اما در مقایسه با تمام حوزه های معرفت بشری هیچ تمایلی به دست یافتن به حقیقت ندارد. زیرا که ذات این هنر به حقیقت مکشوف بی باور است و کوندرا در هنر رمان این اصل را جاویدانه ساخته است. برای همین است که من عقیده دارم رمان مذهب آخر زمان است زیرا ماهیت رمان تلاش در جهت کشف حقیقت است نه تصاحب آن
Stephen Durrant
Kundera's view of the novel is very much shaped by his own experience as an exile from Communist Czechoslovakia (beware, "Czechoslovakia" is a proper noun he never uses [p126]) . For him the novel is the surest voice confronting totalitarianism: "Totalitarian Truth excludes relativity, doubt, questioning; it can never accommodate what I would call 'the spirit of the novel.'" Kafka is the great prophet of totalitarianism, and Kundera is at his best, I believe, when he describes what he calls "the ...more
Robert W
I just finished Milan Kundera’s The Art of the Novel. There are lots of little interesting things in it, but I’ll just mention a couple that caught my attention.

The book was published in 1985, and Kundera doesn’t foresee the end of the Soviet empire. In an amusing bit about translation, he explains why good translation is so important to him. It’s because his books couldn’t be published in Czech. He was an unperson there. It’s a small country and there aren’t a lot of Czech speakers elsewhere in
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Raül De Tena
Pido disculpas por adelantado: soy un lector dedicado en casi exclusividad a la ficción narrativa. Así que, al salir de mi pluma, una reseña de un libro como El arte de la novela ha de ser parca y parcial. Sea como sea, por algún sitio habrá que comenzar (se admiten propuestas de por dónde seguir), y el ensayo de Kundera parecía un perfecto asidero al que aferrarse en el camino de entrada hacia la teoría literaria. Lo parecía y lo es. Ya desde las primeras páginas, el autor desgrana la tradición ...more
علی
I like Kundra because he doesn’t imprison me in a fastened frame of a classic narration. Reading Kundra seems as if you meet an old friend after ages in a cafe shop, and while she/he relates her / his life story, you zip your coffee, listen to the cafe music, hear some chats and laughs at nabouring tables, look at the peddlers at side walk, or a passing tramvay, … as life is flowing around, ….

کوندرا را به این دلیل بسیار دوست دارم که مرا در چهارچوب بسته ی یک روایت زندانی نمی کند. خواندن کونرا مث
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Amal 88
فن الرواية ...


" تنطوي جميع المبدعات الكبرى " وبشكل خاص لأنها كبرى "على شئ لم يستكمل بعد "

الكتاب الجيد بالنسبة لي هو الذي أفكر فيه حتى عندما أدخل في دوامات أخرى من الكتب والأفكار والانشغالات ، في مونولوجها الأخّاذ تدور الكلمات في عقلي بتناغم مستمر دون أن تتداخل بل على العكس تبدو كنجوم بعيدة المنال ، عنيدة ، ومحيرة .

الرواية كعالم لا واقعي عبثي تقوم على حكمة اللا يقين ، على النسبية الجوهرية للأشياء الإنسانية على غياب الحكم المطلق ، وهي حكمة تتعارض مع فطرة الإنسان الذي يريد تحويلها من تساؤل إلى موق
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أحمد شاكر
إنه كونديرا يا ناس. العبقرية في أجل معانيها.
John David
This book has the property of timelessness, much like the “writing on writing” that is seen in Eric Auerbach and Kenneth Burke. However, it is in no way literary theory, nor is it, contrary to what some of the other reviewers seem to believe, “philosophical.” It is a careful explication of the author’s principles, not a grand theoretical schema. The instantiation of real human circumstances, ones deeply concerned with the problems entailed by Heidegger’s in-der-Welt-sein, is what differentiates ...more
James
Kundera is always worth reading. And this book is no exception. The emphasis on the formal aspects of fiction in ''The Art of the Novel'' is a principle for Kundera that is accompanied by an overt disavowal of any political agenda. A second principle is derived from the first, and it is the rejection of kitsch. Not simply bad or laughable art, kitsch is, in Kundera's definition from ''Sixty-three Words'' (his dictionary of the terms and categories that organize his imagination), ''the need to ga ...more
Samer
"حين يفقد الانسان اليقين بالحقيقة ورضى الاخرين الإجماعي انما يصير فرداً. والرواية هي جنة الافراد الخيالية. إنها الارض التي لا احد فيها يملك الحقيقة بل التي يحق للجميع فيها ان يفهموا.."
تأملات كونديرا عن تاريخ و مستقبل الرواية، حكمة الرواية، روح الرواية،ونسبيتها المضادة للحقيقة الشمولية.ستحملك على اعادة النظر بقيمة ما قرأتَه سابقاً، وبما ستقرأه لاحقاً. ففي "العالم الذي صارت فيه الحركات الية والذي لايعرف الناس فيه معنى ما يفعلون يبقى الجمال هو اخر انتصار ممكن للأنسان الذي لم يعد له أمل"
Jesse
This author is amazing! There is really no other way to put it.

He has inspired me to read so many other authors: Kafka, Proust, Broch, Descartes, Balzac, Flaubert, Voltaire, Mann, Musil...Lions and Tigers and Bears, OH MY!!

I would recomend this book to anyone who is interested in this author. I've only read one other book by Kundera, "Unbearable Lightness", but I wish that I had read this book first. It gives such an excellent insight to what Kundera is trying to do with his novels (however, he
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AHMED ADEL SALAMA
حسنا..هذا الرجل عبقري بحق !!!
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و كأنكم لم تعرفوا ذلك مسبقا
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لن تجد من يتحدث معك عن (أحداث لم تسمع عنها قط و عن روايات لم تقرأها) و يسليك كما يفعل هذا الرجل..

مجرد كتاب مشحون بفلسفة الكاتب المثيرة عن الحياة
Aaron
High-level literary criticism, if somewhat limited by Kudnera's regional perspectives.

Some chapters are more insightful than others, which prove long-winded, eccentric, or just plain boring.

His break down and analysis of the origin of the novel and how the novel functions as an exploratory voice of wisdom is important. Kundera's insight into what gives the novel life, and how this life is sustained by the curiosities of the novelist, are also important.

However, there are limitations to this one
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Hamza Elbuhaisi
لا تبعث قراءة الكتاب على الأمل بل الإحباط بحجم ما تبيّن من روايات قرأتها من قبل عرفت الآن أنها ليست كذلك. وكله من كونديرا.
شعرت بذنب الجاهل لوفرة عناوين الروايات وأسماء الروائيين وبعض الفلاسفة التي يأتي الكتاب على ذكرها جعلتني أهلك، كيف سأصارع الوقت؟ كيف أعرف أكثر عن هوسرل؟ وأي وجود سألقاه عند هيدغر؟ وأي مغامرات ساخرة أبدعها سارفنتس سأطير معها، سأضحك!
الكائن وحكمة اللايقين والمفارقات وروح النص يكتب عنها كونديرا ليكشف أيضاً بكل خفة شكل وفن الرواية.
بلا مبالغة، الكتاب غني، وغزير بالعناوين والشخصيات.
Natheer Malkawi
كونديرا يقرأ فقط
Martinaviola
"La mia risposta è insieme ridicola e sincera: io non tengo a niente tranne che alla denigrata eredità di Cervantes."

Kundera è uno dei miei miti ormai, nonostante le arie da saputello di prima categoria, capace di mettere in mezzo Kafka (in continuazione!), Broch, Gombrowicz, Diderot e Flaubert, pur di spiegare le sue complesse teorie relative alla genesi, ma soprattutto al fine ultimo del "romanzo europeo".

In questo saggio, che raccoglie sette testi diversi, rigorosamente autorizzati e controll
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Iram Arreguin diaz
…no se publican centenares y millares de novelas con enormes tiradas y gran éxito? Sí, pero estas novelas ya no prolongan la conquista de la existencia; únicamente confirman lo que ya se ha dicho; más aún: en la confirmación de lo ya dicho (de lo que hay que decir) consisten su razón de ser, su gloria, su utilidad en la sociedad a la que pertenecen. Al no descubrir nada, no participan ya en la sucesión de sus descubrimientos a los que llamo la historia de la novela; se sitúan fuera de esta histo ...more
Elise Miller
Again, I highly recommend every single book - nonfiction and fiction - that Kundera has written. This one recommended for writers AND readers, who can find out how Kundera uses tiny details from the lives of characters to reveal the horrendous impact of political decisions in the halls of power.
Tank Green
this was great. irrespective of whether or not you would normally read literary theory, i'd still give it 5 stars and urge you to read it.

in particular, i'd recommend it to kundera fans. it gives a fascinating insight into how he writes, but is also in and of itself, a beautiful book.
Banan fahed
حتى في اعترافاته كحرَفيّ للرواية ، كونديرا مدهش
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  • On Literature
  • The Uses of Literature
  • Letters to a Young Novelist
  • Lectures on Literature
  • The Art of Fiction: Illustrated from Classic and Modern Texts
  • Mimesis: The Representation of Reality in Western Literature
  • For a New Novel: Essays on Fiction
  • Aspects of the Novel
  • The Believer Book of Writers Talking to Writers
  • The Art of Fiction: Notes on Craft for Young Writers
  • Problems of Dostoevsky's Poetics
  • How Fiction Works
  • Deceit, Desire and the Novel: Self and Other in Literary Structure
  • Inner Workings: Literary Essays 2000-2005
  • Anatomy of Criticism: Four Essays
  • Axel's Castle: A Study of the Imaginative Literature of 1870-1930
  • The Western Canon: The Books and School of the Ages
  • The Theory of the Novel
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Milan Kundera is a Czech and French writer of Czech origin who has lived in exile in France since 1975, where he became a naturalized citizen in 1981. He is best known as the author of The Unbearable Lightness of Being, The Book of Laughter and Forgetting, and The Joke.

Kundera has written in both Czech and French. He revises the French translations of all his books; these therefore are not conside
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More about Milan Kundera...
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“We are born one time only, we can never start a new life equipped with the experience we've gained from the previous one. We leave childhood without knowing what youth is, we marry without knowing what it is to be married, and even when we enter old age, we don't know what it is we're heading for: the old are innocent children innocent of thier old age. In that sense, man's world is the planet of inexperience.” 36 likes
“All novels . . . are concerned with the enigma of the self. As soon as you create an imaginary being, a character, you are automatically confronted by the question: what is the self? How can it be grasped?” 25 likes
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