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A Vida em Surdina
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A Vida em Surdina

3.71 of 5 stars 3.71  ·  rating details  ·  2,476 ratings  ·  411 reviews
Quando decide pedir a reforma antecipada, o professor universitário Desmond Bates nunca pensou vir a sentir saudades da azáfama das aulas. A verdade é que a monotonia do dia-a-dia não o satisfaz. Para tal contribui também o facto de a carreira da sua mulher, Winifred, ir de vento em popa, reduzindo o papel de Desmond ao de mero acompanhante e dono de casa. Mas o que o abor ...more
Paperback, Large Print, 335 pages
Published May 2009 by Edições Asa (Grupo Leya) (first published 2008)
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David Lodge is not a flashy writer, but he is an extremely good one. Superficially, his predilection for working the same, relatively narrow, ground (he is a master of the academic novel) might seem constricting. But each of his novels delivers fresh insights, with his signature blend of intelligence, wit, and genuine affection for his characters.

"Deaf Sentence" is no exception. Although it's not as hilariously funny as some of his earlier books, it is - like all of his work - compulsively read
Jul 01, 2013 Jan-Maat added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Readers of novels
Recommended to Jan-Maat by: My Mum
Death sentence, deaf sentence. Rutirement, retirement. That is this novel in four words. A serious comedy with knowingly laboured puns.

Since the narrator is a retired professor of linguistics who is going deaf this must be a post-campus novel. The narrator's professional knowledge allows him to understand why he can't distinguish any more between the sound of different consonants. Its not quite Beethoven, as the narrator admits but the situation still has its own poignancy.

In addition to this th
Nuno Chaves
“A Vida em Surdina”, foi o primeiro livro que li no âmbito do projecto Roda dos Livros, que basicamente consiste em fazer circular os nossos livros pelos membros do grupo e depois comparar opiniões e tentar descobrir o que de semelhante ou nem por isso descobrimos em determinada obra, chegando por vezes a reparar em pormenores que passaram despercebidos a quem o leu anteriormente. Uma espécie de leitura conjunta mas em separado, sem prazos, obrigações ou correrias, apenas ao sabor do prazer da l ...more
‘Deafness is comic, blindness is tragic,’

The first thing I noticed about Deaf Sentence is that its first sentence draws out for 24 (Kindle) lines. That’s a heck of a lot of lines. And that’s was a heck of a lot of fun. David Lodge sure likes to play with word-order, puns and linguistic stuff and I giggle at the sight of things like that. What can I say? I’m fascinated by languages and their quirks. When I’m reading a book, I’m constantly checking the dictionary for new words or etymologies of wo
What a lovely and beautifully written novel about a hard-of-hearing linguist trying to navigate through the noises and silences of his life. These noises and silences are at turns confounding & illuminating, disturbing & comforting, and tragic & comic. Lodge takes his time telling this story and some people may not like the pace of the book, which can meander seemingly aimless at times. The beauty, nuance, and insight in this story lay in these perambulations, though. All in all, a l ...more
Lodge's portrayal of hearing loss is amazingly specific and illustrates both the farcical and painful sides of this disability. And the father-son relationship points to how maddening aging parents can be to children who aren't in such fine shape either. The novel takes a surprisingly poignant, moving turn as it approaches its end. The best novel David Lodge has written in the years (in my opinion).
David Lodge está considerado como uno de los mejores escritores de humor inglés de nuestro tiempo. Es imposible e inevitable no echar alguna carcajada con sus libros. Su tema favorito son las novelas de campus, es decir, aquellos que tienen como protagonista la vida universitaria y los líos en los que se menten los profesores, tanto con sus alumnos como con sus familias.

En 'La vida en sordina' (en el original 'Deaf Sentence', jugando ya con las palabras), Desmond Bates, catedrático en lingüístic
Iain Snelling
Really enjoyed this book. Professor Desmond Bates, a retired linguist, has to cope with his elderley father's decline, an unbalanced PhD student, and an increasing detachment from his wife whose career as a design retailer is taking off just as his finishes, all in the context of his deafness which makes social contact increasingly difficut. Written mainly as a journal, the book is beautifully observed, self-effacingly funny but with deep pathos. Several issues ar resolved by the end, but you do ...more
Not as funny as his best academic novels (Small World, Changing Places, etc), though still containing a number of laugh out loud moments, Lodge here writes movingly about deafness, retirement, aging, and death. His prose is elegant and powers of observation often acute, though I didn't find the visit to Auschwitz/Birkenau particularly strong.
You just can't go wrong with David Lodge -- he is such an articulate and amusing writer. His main character is a retired linguistics professor whose rather curmudgeonly observations on modern society are hilarious, along with his descriptions of age-related hearing loss and coping with an even more aged father. One sub-plot involves a manipulative young grad student who wants to seduce him. Then there are his relationships with his ambitious wife, plus assorted children and step-children. There ...more
I planned to have this book as a bedtime read, but it was hopeless in that capacity, I kept sitting up in bed and hooting with laughter – not a good recipe for pre-sleep soothing. Once I had taken the book downstairs and could enjoy it in daylight though, there was no stopping me. What a fantastic book! It has several strong themes.

• It discusses what it is like to be going deaf, knowing that the end result is going to be absolute deafness. It does this with humour, sadness and insight. I learnt
Sara Kaddouri
well , i finished this book exactly at 4h30 AM and it is the kind of book that catches you to finish it, i've ever read a book more real than this one, for me it wasn't funny it was very real maybe talking about real life is that funny cauz the situations that we are confronting daily, most of them, are funny for the others, ohh yes life is funny or to be specific it is ridiculous.
i felt the pain of Desmond,he was in my mind ,i lived his live while reading the book, deafness isn't comic, what he
What happened to David Lodge? I used to love his witty sense of humor and ability to capture the world of academia, but this novel is just awful. It's as if he took all of his notes and diaries, collected various story possibilities and topics he had found interesting, and threw them together with a few old ideas for characters and plots to make one jumbled mess of a story. I think it was supposed to be funny, but it wasn't. I think it was supposed to be profound, but it really wasn't. Don't was ...more
Lots of detail about linguistics. Good insider's view. Great on academics, as usual. Straight up on aging and death. Some great puns.
Sometimes bitingly funny, sometimes sharply and unexpectedly touching, this remarkable book works on every level.
Florence (Lefty) MacIntosh
Feb 14, 2013 Florence (Lefty) MacIntosh marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Florence (Lefty) by: Ian
Shelves: wit, lit-brits
Writing style compared to Alan Bennett
Rob Tapper
Consistently good read while there was a good plot to follow, then petered out in the end.
Great walk through aspects of linguistics, and a particularly the understanding of "deafness" (and opportunities for the entrepreneurial of us).
Not overdrawn in any of the sensational traditions, though being a "novel" I was disappointed that the intrigue in the sex aspect was not taken further. This compensated somewhat by an insight into the mind of a "disturbed woman" and the intrigues of intricate yet c
Cărți și călătorii
Deși păstrează pe alocuri umorul cu care ne-a obișnuit autorul său, acesta este mai degrabă un roman grav.

Evident autobiografic, cel puțin în ceea ce privește deficiența de auz și relația cu tatăl său, așa cum mărturisește însuși scriitorul britanic, Deaf Sentence tratează subiecte cum ar fi pierderea auzului și toate dificultățile personale, profesionale și sociale care derivă din aceasta, statutul profesorilor universitari odată ajunși la pensie (cu precădere în Marea Britanie, dar posibil să
A very different David Lodge - unlike quite a few of his earlier books I have read, this one gradually shifts from humorous and comical to solemn. While you do get quite a few good laughs, there are some scenes that leave you profoundly moved (coping with disability, taking care of an elderly parent).
Lance Greenfield
The story seems to have been built around personal anecdotes of the author combined with the antics of characters that he has conjured up in his imagination. There is nothing wrong with that, and I would say that this approach is fairly common amongst good story-tellers.

The book is very amusing. It relates some of the problems that the hard of hearing can encounter, and the consequential misunderstandings that can ensue, and the deliberate escapes that somebody who is known to be deaf can engine
David Lodge has several classics in the genre of academic fiction, which makes it difficult to read anything new without drawing comparisons or expecting similiarities to those works. This novel starts out much as one might expect from Lodge: the protaganist, a retired linguistics professor, is coming to terms with his deafness in ways that are witty and even hilarious. But the novel takes a strange turn with the entrance of the young female graduate student who acts strangely, to say the least, ...more
Confesso que nunca tinha lido nenhum livro deste autor (julgo mesmo que nem sequer tinha ainda ouvido o seu nome), por isso, e depois de ler algumas opiniões positivas, foi com algum alguma expectativa que iniciei esta leitura.

David Lodge faz-nos entrar na mente de Desmond Bates, um ex-professor universitário com problemas sérios de surdez, que está a braços com a sua recente entrada na reforma e consequente monotonia, ao mesmo tempo que lida com a sua bem sucedida esposa, com o seu pai idoso e
David Lodge remains the preeminent representative of the satirical wing of the "campus novel" (along with Malcolm Bradbury, Howard Jacobson and Kingsley Amis, who in a sense laid down the template with Lucky Jim but got out early). Though the genre term sounds a bit limiting, Lodge has derived a large body of hilariously funny, sociologically insightful writing out of a quite contained set of materials.

It seems mostly no one troubles to write compellingly about the pains and indignities of aging
I really enjoyed reading this book, and pretty much read it in one sitting. It was comical, well written, and educational. This book had me chuckling every so often that even my dog looked up with questioning eyes. The plot was ridiculous in itself - the panties left in his jacket, the invitation for punishment. Besides the comical aspect - there were more deeper issues if one dug deep enough. The death vs deaf dichotomy, the whole idea that deafness is comical, while blindness is tragic. I beli ...more
This was my first taste of David Lodge and I hope it won't be my last. Ultimately, aside from some places where I felt it was draggy or over the top, this book was smart, funny and thought provoking (if a tad too depressing).
The title alone, Deaf Sentence, is laced with entendres - primarily, the idea of a Death Sentence being given in form of 'premature' deafness if there is such a thing, in that one is essentially dying a slow and intevitable death or descent into utter isolation. In addition,
I'm reading this to see how accurately the author describes life from a hearing-impaired person's perspective. So far, very much on the money.

Good story...touches of the sinister, sometimes painfully accurate in the mundane details but snaps back with something unexpected. Made me laugh a little, cry a little and nod my head a lot.

I also disagreed with the protagonist on certain things: the irritation of wearing a hearing-aid - so much that he would occasionally remove it, which caus
David Lodge’s latest novel feels like two separate stories forced to cohabitate. Like most of Lodge’s fictitious marriages, the combination is kind of awkward. The first story involves retired linguistics professor Desmond Bates struggling with his premature hearing loss and with his stubborn, ill father. The second, which is much more wacky and sex-charged and in certain ways more typical of Lodge, finds Desmond becoming involved (though not quite involved) with an unstable female graduate stud ...more
Apr 02, 2010 Agathafrye rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: deafies, academics, linguists
Shelves: literary
This was my first David Lodge book, but it won't be my last. I really enjoyed his wry, slightly academic writing style. Deaf Sentence tells the story of a retired linguistics professor with encroaching hearing loss. Desmond struggles with his role as a retired academic- he has ceased to care about his research in retirement, and his younger second wife is experiencing a successful new career as a high-end home decorator which adds to his feelings of uselessness. Desmond has an elderly musician f ...more
No wonder the author dedicated this novel to translators all over the world - more than once I wondered how the heck can you translate this or that into another language without losing completely the meaning, especially when it's not about semantics but linguistics.
And this dilemma begins with the title: death and deaf are paronyms only in English (I think) so the pun is meaningless in another language, and if you try to change it with another (as the not-so-bad "La vie en sourdine" in French, f
Linda Ostrom
This is the first book I have read by this author and would like to read more from him. The story takes place over a very few months leading up to Christmas and the first part of the new year. Desmond is married for the second time after losing his first wife to cancer. He took an early retirement from his University professorship due to his hearing loss. He is also dealing with his elderly father who lives in London, about six hours from his home up north. Desmond was an only child so has the m ...more
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Professor David Lodge is a graduate and Honorary Fellow of University College London. He is Emeritus Professor of English Literature at the University of Birmingham, where he taught from 1960 until 1987, when he retired to write full-time.

He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, was Chairman of the Judges for the Booker Prize for Fiction in 1989, and is the author of numerous works of li
More about David Lodge...
Changing Places Small World Nice Work Therapy Thinks . . .

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