Corey Pung's Reviews > Life is Elsewhere

Life is Elsewhere by Milan Kundera
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Jan 04, 12

Life is Elsewhere is Kundera’s brazen send-up of the world of poetry, particularly the world of poets who involve themselves with politics. It follows in the tradition of the nineteenth century novel where your given the main character’s life from birth onwards, although it does cut out portions, a la A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. The main character is Jaromil, a man who has a painfully awkward childhood (complete with a few hysterically funny scenes) who grows up to believe he’s destined to be a poet. This isn’t the sort of vaunted or glorified view of artistry that you get with Somerset Maugham; Jaromil does on occasion make himself out to be a martyr for his artistry, but what’s so scathingly delightful about this novel is how the author exposes the foolishness of this posturing. As the novel progresses, Jaromil becomes more and more of a pretentious and foppish artist while imagining himself to be a literary hero. Things take a dark turn when he involves himself and his writing in the political turmoil of his era.

To read my full review, please go to:

If you like books about the weird world of artists, you might like
The Madness of Art: Short Stories
3 likes · likeflag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read Life is Elsewhere.
sign in »

No comments have been added yet.