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Le Joueur d'échecs

4.26  ·  Rating Details ·  25,452 Ratings  ·  1,484 Reviews
Lors d'une croisière rejoignant l'Argentine, le champion du monde d'échecs, Mirko Csentovic, rencontre un homme capable de le battre, le Dr B. Curieux de connaître les raisons d'une telle maîtrise de son art, le joueur va pousser son adversaire à raconter son instruction. Il s'avère alors que c'est en détention, lorsqu'il était aux mains de la Gestapo, que le docteur a fai ...more
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Published March 3rd 2010 by Thélème (first published 1941)
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Glenn Russell
Sep 29, 2016 Glenn Russell rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I detect strong parallels between reading a novel and the game of chess: there is the author sitting on one side, playing white, the reader on the other side, playing black; instead of the chess board and chess pieces there is the novel; the author’s opening chapter is the chess player’s opening, the middle of the novel is, of course, the middle game, and the closing chapter is the end game. If both author and reader expand their literary horizons and deepen their appreciation of life’s mysterie
Dec 16, 2015 Alejandro rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Alejandro by: Florencia
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An interesting short story that it's one of the most famous works by the writer Stefan Zweig that even sadly was published after his suicide.

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When a story is presented in another language, some elements are lost in the translation, and I think that while Chess Story is a pretty good title, its original title was "The Royal Game" that I think it gives to the story an air of refinement, class and elegance.

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Besides my interest to try this author, I was intrigued ab
Feb 20, 2013 s.penkevich rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to s.penkevich by: The review titled 'If suicidal, don't read this'
The more one limits oneself, the closer one is to the infinite; these people, as unworldly as they seem, burrow like termites into their own particular material to construct, in miniature, a strange and utterly individual image of the world.

Chess, the ‘Royal Game’, ‘regally eschews the tyranny of chance and awards its palms of victory only to the intellect, or rather to a certain type of intellectual gift.’ Stefan Zweig plunges the reader into this cold, calculating world through a simple prem

This book is about the workings of the mind.

But before I go into that, let me start by saying that to me the name of Stefan Zweig evokes a feeling of nostalgia. Of course, this is foremost due to the title of his famous memoirs, and because we know that he belonged to a world that was disappearing. And probably because he realized this he decided to depart from it.

But for me it creates an additional longing. It makes me yearn for a world in which I did not yet exist, a world that followed Zweig’
Mar 28, 2016 Afshar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Afshar by: Shayan
بعضی وقت ها تک تک خط های کتابی را درک می کنیم ولی دریغ از فهمیدن خط اصلی کتاب
یعنی آن چیزی که نویسنده را واداشته تا چنین کتابی را بنویسد
چیزی که می خواهد به ما بگوید
نمی توانستم باور کنم که کسی بتواند تمام وجود و روح و روانش را در دایره ی این بازی محدود کند


اینجاست که باید بری سراغ نویسنده و اوضاع اجتماعی و دنیایی که او در آن زندگی کرده است
مخصوصا چنین کتابی که روز بعد از اتمام آن، استیفن تسوایگ و لوته(همسرش) محلول کشنده ورونال را سر کشیدند


کتاب شطرنج را در کشوی میزکارش پیدا کردند و سال بعد در استکهل

If you want to experience the wonders of a powerful novella without compromising much on time front but at the same instant ready for a deep emotional involvement which would accelerate your heartbeat, if not at a fatal but abnormal rate then Chess Story is for you. A gripping work of fiction with unique characters and an impeccable narration that would not only make the fascination about the game of chess come alive but also convey the dynamics of human mind during the most testing times which
Helen Stavraki
Jan 16, 2017 Helen Stavraki rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"άλλο δε ζητώ παρα να μου δοθει ετούτη η χάρη, να μιλησω απλά..."

Παρά την μικρή του έκταση είναι ένα πολύ γεμάτο και διεισδυτικό βιβλιο. Μας ταξιδευει μέχρι τα όρια της ανθρώπινης αντοχής όταν καποιο άτομο έχει εγκλειστεί στο τίποτα του εαυτου του και έχει αγγίξει τη φρίκη της κοινωνικής απομόνωσης.

Με κεντρικό θέμα την σκακιστική δεξιότητα που μπορεί να θριαμβεύει σχεδόν το ίδιο σε ένα φτωχό,άξεστο και αμόρφωτο άτομο όσο και σε έναν άλλο πνευματικά καλλιεργημένο,κοινωνικά καταξιωμένο αλλά και δ
...nothing on earth exerts such pressure on the human soul as a void. (19)


Black. White. Which is it? Which one is our nature? We can be good, we can be cruel. We praise ourselves saying being human entails being good. We have daily proofs that is not necessary the case. If we are meant to be good and we are not, our mind have lost the battle against a deviation. Or against our true nature.
Now that is a depressing thought.

I had this book on my to-read shelf for months. And I wasn't going to re
The chessplayer and the non-chessplayer will read this classic novella in different ways. The non-chessplayer sees it as a tragedy where the noble but unworldly Dr. B is defeated by the oafish but practical Czentovic. Chess is used to symbolize the pure world of the mind, where Dr. B should triumph due to his superior intellectual powers, but discovers that his opponent's ruthlessness and greed are stronger. Czentovic cannot win fairly, but is perfectly happy to cheat.

The chessplayer would like
May 04, 2014 Dolors rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those containing Black and White
Recommended to Dolors by: Garima
Shelves: read-in-2014
A chessboard with sixty-four squares hidden in the folds of a checkered pattern bedspread represents much more than a mere pastime in Zweig’s short novella.
The dichotomy of black and white pieces of divided consciousness locked inside a man struggling to keep sanity over mental torture.
Chess moves, chess problems, imaginary games played in frenzied compulsion, both ruin and salvation of someone who has been deprived of the warmth of humanity, become the only means of creating meaning out of th
Aug 10, 2016 Agnieszka rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I always considered chess the most boring game in the world . Two people sitting opposite each other, and between them chessboard with these funny figures that players move after few minutes cogitation . It seemed as exciting as snail racing .

Apparently I was wrong . Chess Story centres around two extraordinary men , being opposites in every term , personality , background , approaching to life . A chance meeting on an ocean liner gives them possibility to chess duel . It’s a great psychologi
Kostas Papadatos
Αυτό το βιβλίο το λάτρεψα. Ο Τσβάιχ μέσα σε 120 σελίδες κατάφερε να δημιουργήσει ένα πραγματικό αριστούργημα. Ένα έργο το οποίο γράφτηκε κατά τη διάρκεια του Β’ Παγκοσμίου πολέμου, με θέμα, την αλαζονεία της ανθρώπινης φύσης, την μονομανία και την ψυχική φθορά, στον αγώνα του ανθρώπου για επιβίωση. Όλα αυτά με φόντο το ασπρόμαυρο σκηνικό μιας σκακιέρας.
Ανήκει στην λίστα με τα αγαπημένα μου πλέον.

Υ.Γ. Δε μπορώ θα το πω. Το ξύλινο ανθρωπάκι στο εξώφυλλο, πιάνει αυτό που νομίζω;
Aug 28, 2016 Nikoleta rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
Την Σκακιστική νουβέλα την είχα παρεξηγήσει. Έχω διαβάσει τόσα σχόλια που περιγράφουν το θέμα της με τόσο στομφώδεις, πομπώδεις σχολιασμούς, με τόσες αναλύσεις για φιλοσοφικές προεκτάσεις, που με είχαν τρομοκρατήσει. Φανταζόμουν ότι είναι ένα πολύ βαρύ ανάγνωσμα, δύσκολο και βαρετό. Καμία σχέση, πιο έξω δεν θα μπορούσα να πέσω. Αφού έχει χιλιοαναλυθεί η θέση αυτού του βιβλίου στην παγκόσμια λογοτεχνία, εγώ θα μιλήσω καταρχήν, για την αφήγηση. Είναι σε απλή και άμεση γλώσσα, κυλάει γρήγορα και πρ ...more
Jun 07, 2016 Cody rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nyrb
A dark but enjoyable story about the human spirit’s restlessness, the dangers of obsession and the easy allure of arrogance. On a macro scale, “Chess Story” also attacks Nazi socialism and the futility of trying to take away liberty. At least, that’s what I got out of it. It’s such a short read, and the writing is so straight forward, that maybe I’m just grasping at straws trying to take something out of this. The author submitted this novella just days before his suicide, so I’m sure he wanted ...more
Yet how difficult, how impossible it is to imagine the life of an intellectually active person who reduces the world to a shuttle between black and white, who seeks fulfillment in a mere to-and-fro, forward-and-back of thirty-two pieces, someone for whom a new opening that allows the knight to be advanced instead of the pawn is in itself a great accomplished and a meager little piece of immortality in a corner of a chess book— someone, someone with a brain in his head, who, without going mad, c
Apr 06, 2014 Jason rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: for-kindle, reviewed, 2014
If I didn’t have some weird neurotic rule against short stories and novellas qualifying for space on my “thrill me chill me fulfill me” shelf, this book would have totally gotten five stars from me. It really is that good.

Last week I saw The Grand Budapest Hotel and even though I was majorly disappointed, there was a blurb at the end about how the movie was based on the writings of Stefan Zweig, whom I had heard of but didn’t know a great deal about. Then someone (I forget who) told me that Wes
Megan Baxter
May 19, 2014 Megan Baxter rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The emotional wallop of this book is far out of proportion to its size. At 84 pages, I read it in less than an hour. But that hour was filled with pain and hurt and hope and human persistence and human degradation and it hurt to read.

Note: The rest of this review has been withdrawn due to the recent changes in Goodreads policy and enforcement. You can read why I came to this decision here.

In the meantime, you can read the entire review at Smorgasbook
Chess Story or the Royal Game is Stephan Zweig's autobiographical short story detailing how he used chess as a way to escape boredom while imprisoned by the Nazis. A mere 84 pages in length, Chess Story is the last book Zweig wrote before he and his wife committed suicide. In its pages, he details his relationship with the royal game of chess.

We first meet grand champion Czentovic when he is orphaned at age 14 and living in a parsonage. A reclusive teen, he uses chess to get ahead and eventuall
Richard Derus
Rating: 3.5* of five

The Publisher Says: Chess Story, also known as The Royal Game, is the Austrian master Stefan Zweig's final achievement, completed in Brazilian exile and sent off to his American publisher only days before his suicide in 1942. It is the only story in which Zweig looks at Nazism, and he does so with characteristic emphasis on the psychological.

Travelers by ship from New York to Buenos Aires find that on board with them is the world champion of chess, an arrogant and unfriendly
"Wanting to play chess against yourself is a paradox, like jumping over your own shadow."

But what fun is life if words like manic, insanity, paradox and contradiction are not put to test once in a while? Even at the cost of years of discipline and rationality?

Stefen Zweig surely put his own constructs up the wall when he created this ingenious piece of art. Yes, it was pure art; outrightly splendid form of art that overwhelms the realms of conventional thinking and forces the mind to stretch its
Jan 16, 2017 Xanthi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Μικρό βιβλίο σε έκταση, μεγάλο σε αναγνωστική απόλαυση.
Χαρά(Chara)_ MimL
_Chess story/A royal game_

Sweet mother of Jesus, what a masterpiece. There is no way i can possibly describe how masterfully this book is given to us. It's about chess and the human ability to survive and endure pretty much anything, it's about greatness and it's about madness. Stefan Zweig achieved in a grand way to write this story about a battle between a highly spiritual, a highly intelligent, troubled human and a disarmingly, completely uneducated and only logical thinking person. This book
May 14, 2016 tyranus rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
* Yapıt, gerilim dozu yüksek bir dramdır aslında. Hikayenin kahramanı olan Dr.B., naziler tarafından günlerce tecride terkedilir. Hiçbir fiziki ve sözlü şiddete maruz kalmaz; ne filistin askısına çekilir, ne kafası içi su dolu kovaya batırılır, ne de bedenine elektrik verilir. Bunların yerine daha etkili bir yöntem geliştirmişlerdir; psikoloijk işkence. Mahkum, sorgulamalar bitene kadar aylarca boş bir odada yaşamaya zorlanır. "Ne var ki bunda" demeyin. Dikkatinizi dağıtacak en ufak bir cisim, ...more
Apr 25, 2014 Teresa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Barring time constraints (which I don't have at the moment), I would've written this review before now. Something is holding me back, most likely the brilliant reviews my GR friends have already written about this brilliant novella, which by its end brought to my mind a perfect example of the form, Bartleby, the Scrivener.

I don't know how to play chess, so I'm sure I missed some analogies, especially political ones with the references to the royal game. But, for me, not only the physical but the
Nabila Tabassum Chowdhury
কিছু কিছু বইয়ের রিভিউ দিতে পাপ বোধ হয়। কিনতু মাঝে মাঝে আবার পাপ করতেও ইচছা করে।

এই বইটার রিভিউ দিতে কেন পাপবোধ হচছে? বিপিএল নামক একটি পরকাশনা সংসথার সাথে কাজ করেছিলাম অলপ কিছুদিন। পরথম দুটি গলপগরনথ সমপাদনার পর আমার উপর দায়িতব এসে পরে পুরো একটি অনুবাদ পরকলপের। আমি অনুবাদের নিয়মিত পাঠক নই। খুব কম অনুবাদ পড়ি। নিজের পয়সা খরচ করে কিনি আরও কম। যা পড়ি তার মাঝে বেশিরভাগই পছনদ হয় না। এর মাঝে পুরো পরকলপ, কী জবালা! তাও আবার কমপকষে পাঁচ খানা বই এই মেলায় থাকতে হবে। আগরহী টরানসলেটর পুল পেলাম। সবাই নবীন। কারো
selis şen
Jul 16, 2016 selis şen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
en kısa zamanda tekrar okumak istiyorum. sonra tekrar ve tekrar ve tekrar...
Jun 09, 2014 Jareed rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jareed by: Kalliope
I never won a single chess match against my father. He was kind like that, subtly teaching a victory unearned is a success undeserved. No truer words could have been said nor as easily forgotten, for after all those years, whether by natural imprint of innumerable defeats that leaves a sad ennui on the human soul or by my inherent lackadaisical treatment of this royal game of chess, with its defined sixty-four squares faithfully clinging to white and black, black and white, bored me, until now. ...more
Nov 19, 2016 Sophia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Πόσο μου άρεσε! Πόσο το απόλαυσα! Πόσο καλογραμμένο! Μπορώ να παραδεχτώ πως ήμουν λίγο προκατειλημμένη όταν το ξεκίνησα ( δεν ξεχνώ τι πέρασα με τον Έσσε ) αλλά με αποζημίωσε 100%. Ειδικά η αφήγηση του Δρ.Μπ... η παράνοια του και η εξιστόρηση της, ήθελα κι άλλο!
Jan 08, 2017 Thomas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-books, read-in-2017

Βαριέμαι το σκάκι και βιβλία που έχουν να κάνουν με ναζί τείνω να τα αποφεύγω (με εξαίρεση τον Philip Kerr), οπότε φοβόμουν πως η Σκακιστική νουβέλα θα με έκανε να βαρεθώ. Φυσικά, όποιος την έχει διαβάσει ξέρει ότι πρόκειται για μια καταπληκτική ιστορία, οπότε εννοείται πως με καθήλωσε με ενδιαφέρον μέχρι να την τελειώσω. Η Σκακιστική νουβέλα δεν έχει δράση, αλλά είναι πλούσια σε περιεχόμενο και νόημα, παρά τις λιγοστές σελίδες της. Δε θα αναλύσω την πλοκή, όπως πολλοί (κακώς κατ εμέ
Jul 07, 2012 Lee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A flowing, engaging, gripping, hefty, accessible, masterful novella. Effortless/seamless old-timey Austrian structure: a narrator tells a story that includes someone's third-person account about one major character and a longish first-person account by another major character. The two chess players are well drawn and absolutely differentiated: one's a stoic idiot-savant peasant, the other's an anxious intellectual from a highly regarded Viennese family. Really worth spending the hour or so it ta ...more
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Around the Year i...: Chess Story, by Stefan Zweig 1 14 Feb 22, 2016 07:25PM  
NYRB Classics: Chess Story, by Stefan Zweig 1 27 Oct 19, 2013 11:09AM  
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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 about Stefan Zweig...

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“Besides, isn't it confoundedly easy to think you're a great man if you aren't burdened with the slightest idea that Rembrandt, Beethoven, Dante or Napoleon ever lived?” 73 likes
“In chess, as a purely intellectual game, where randomness is excluded, - for someone to play against himself is absurd ...
It is as paradoxical, as attempting to jump over his own shadow.”
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