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The Body

3.56  ·  Rating details ·  891 Ratings  ·  62 Reviews
"After a bit you realize there's only one invaluable commodity. Not gold or love, but time."How far are we willing to go to stay young? Hanif Kureishi -- acclaimed author of "The Buddha of Suburbia" and "Intimacy" -- explores the possibilities in this provocative story of an older man whose brain is surgically placed in a younger man's body by a network of underground doct ...more
Hardcover, 160 pages
Published February 17th 2004 by Scribner Book Company (first published 2002)
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توقعت أن أقرأ رواية مميزة بمستوى روايته "الحميمية".
لكني وجدت أن الحميمية أكثر عمقا.
قصة هذه الرواية "الجسد" تدور حول عملية سرية لنقل مخ رجل كبير السن إلى جسد شاب، الفكرة ليست جديدة رغم غرابتها، إذ سبق أن شاهدت مسلسلا مصريا قديم نسبياً، اسمه نقل مخ بطولة حسين فهمي ووائل نور. كما شاهدت فيلما أجنبيا قبل شهر يدور حول عملية نقل مخ رجل كهل إلى جسد شاب.
لعل أكثر ما كان ممتعا بالنسبة لي في الرواية هو اللحظة التي التقى فيها البطل بجسده الجديد، بزوجته العجوز التي لم تكن تعرف أن الشاب الذي ساعدها في حمل أغر
Paakhi Srivastava
Oct 30, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: opinionator-2014
The Body
A theory loving friend of mine once argued that the notion of portraits or the concept of ‘physical self’ must have developed around the same time as the invention of mirrors in the sixteenth century. This led me to wonder how people had considered their own image, face, and body; and appreciated the 'difference' from the other. Is this notion a reversal of the kind where instead of conscious awakening to the subjective sense of ‘I’, the accumulated sensations and objective bodily percep
Vanessa Largie
Jan 17, 2018 rated it liked it
Imagine if you were elderly and offered the opportunity to have your brain transplanted into a younger body for a brand new chance of life...

Would you take it?

Adam -- an elderly playwright who has achieved much success with his writing and who loves his wife, Margot and their son -- is met with this opportunity at a party.

After telling his family that he is going on a six-month sabbatical to travel. He decides to accept the offer and undergoes the procedure of having his brain transplanted into
Aug 27, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
بعض العقد الشخصية الموجودة عند بعض الادباء تنعكس على ماينتجون ..
الروايه كفكرة جيدة ان تحصل ع خبرتك الحالية بعمر السبعين و ان تحول هذه الخبره الى جسد شاب و جديد بحيث ممكن ان تستمع الى راي الاخرين بشخصك الاصلي بدون ان يعرفوا من انت من خلال نقل دماغك الحكيم بتجاربه الى جسد شاب ...
الفكرة جيدة التنفيذ لم يكن بالمستوى المطلوب او قد تكون الترجمه السيئة افضل ان اقرا النص بلغته الاصلية
تقيمي 2 و نص كلا النجمتين و النصف لجرئته الفكرة
mai ahmd
Jan 30, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: روايات

...هل فكرت يوما ماذا يؤول إليه حالك حين يصبح جسدك عبئا عليك , حين يمتد بك العمر طويلا ويكون جسدك الذي حملك طويلا وأنت في موفور صحتك شبابك عافيتك ونشاطك مجرد جثة هرمة تتعثر بها فلا تعرف الأفراح طريقها إليك ! ويصبح عليك أنت أن تبحث عن الفتات منها هنا وهناك , حين تلتفت ستجد أن هناك الكثير من الأحلام التي خلفتها ورائك , وهناك الكثير من الأماني التي سعيت لتحقيقها لكن وقفت الظروف جدارا بينك وبينها , هل يمكن أن تتدارك كل هذا وقد وصلت إلى الأحاسيس التي تشعرك إنك خارج هذا العالم !
حنيف قرشي وجد الحل متجاو
Kureishi uses sci-fi as a way to explore some of the philosophical questions that haunt all his work: What is my relationship to my body? To your body? How necessary is the pursuit of pleasure? How can we come to terms with old age? Can I reinvent myself? How much of myself do I owe my partner? In other words, Who am I? "The Body" is different from his other work in style as well as genre. The style is almost contemporary Japanese, like Haruki Murakami or Banana Yoshimoto. (It actually reminds m ...more
Jul 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Observer review of this book states: 'The effect of reading [Kureishi] is cumulative: you are impressed with a certain intensity, and indeed integrity, of vision'. It just can't be put any better. This book explores the same themes as all his others: youth, hedonism, beauty, selfishness, fatherhood, romantic love. And rather than these themes wearing thin with repetition, you find that the more you read, the deeper he goes; the more he says, the more there is to say. The Body caught me by su ...more
Aug 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: contemporary
From the greatest writers I expect to be revolutionary, unconventional, to shake me, make me think about something I have never though about.... To make me change myself, or to give me a completely new perspective of an old dilemma. To push the boundaries. To be 1000 steps ahead of me.

That's why I like Kureishi. His books have traces of that. He's playing with tricky, delicate questions.

This book is about our relationship with our body, what it means for our lives. How the way we see us, and the
Apr 11, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 100-200
What if you could have your brain transplanted into a younger body for a second chance at life?

Well, that's what this book explores. Adam is an aging playwright and teacher living in London who undergoes a pioneering medical "miracle" by having his brain transplanted into a dead, young body. He then leaves his home and family in London for six months to take a "vacation." What ensues is a hedonistic debauchery as he wanders through Europe encountering women and eventually ending up in a New Age
May 31, 2017 rated it liked it
I loved the first story in this book which was the longest one. A sci-fi, philosophical tale about our society, our relationship with our bodies and fear of aging. Sadly the other few just didn't resonate with me as much although they are well written.
By the way, I read the french version of this book and the translation feels very organic, hadn't I checked I would have thought it was originally written in this language.

I might read other works by this author as he clearly has the ability to c
Paul Eckert
Oct 20, 2010 rated it it was ok
Adam is a famous playwright who is floundering through his twilight years. His body isn’t what it used to be, and neither is his patience. He isn’t dissatisfied with his life – he has children, a wife that still loves him, and he has succeeded in making a living, and a name for himself, from his creative works.

One night at a party, a young man tells Adam he is a big admirer of his work. He offers an opportunity to be young again by undergoing an operation that would transplant his brain into a
Feb 25, 2010 rated it really liked it
This is beautiful prose with a gem of speculative fiction plot. Kureishi handles a successful man at mid-life beautifully, not going for the obvious. And he gets women so right, which I sometimes feel even the best male writers have a difficult time doing. Made me think.
"What was important? He knew what it was -- impermanence, decay, death and the way it informed the present -- but couldn't bring himself to look straight at it." (p. 177)
Malak Alkary
الفكرة جميلة، غريبة وموحية بالكثير .. الصراع بين الحياة العقلانية المسؤولة والحاجات الغريزية غير الموجهة، كان نقطة ارتكاز الرواية الأساسية، لكنّ الكاتب بالغ باهتمامه بالعنصر الايروتيكي، بشكل أصاب القارىء ( أو أصابني أنا على الأقل) بالقرف!
فأضاع جمال الفكرة في مبالغاته البلهاء.
البداية القوية للرواية لم تدم طويلاً، تهلهلت الحبكة كثيراً في الثلثين الأخيرين، أجحف الكاتب بحق الجانب النفسي والثقافي للشخصيات، فكانت روايته مجرّدة من الأحاسيس متّخذةً من الجنس هدفاً للحياة!
لست ضد الادب الايروتيكي، لكن ل
Maree Kimberley
Aug 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Some great stories in this collection. The title story, in particular, is all sorts of weird in the best possible way. Other favourites in this collection for me were Goodbye, Mother and The Real Father. The closing story, Touched, was also beautifully written. Overall a strong collection.
أحمد ناجي
Jan 31, 2018 rated it liked it
البداية قوية، ثم يتهاوى كل شئ، ربما لأن الفكرة والتيمة نفسها مغلقة على ذاتها. تضايقت جدا من النفس الذكورى الطافح في الكثير من فصول الرواية
لطالما كان الجسد محور اهتمام الكثيرين و بناء على ذلك قامت العديد من الصناعات و المهن ليصلوا بالمستهلك إلى حالة الرضا عن الجسد ... و لكن هل فكرت في يوم من الأيام أن تختار جسدك فيما لو أتيح لك ذلك ؟
هذه الرواية تجعلك تعيد النظر في ذلك و تسرح بخيالك لتختار الصفات التي تود أن تكون عليها كأن تكون رجلا أو امرأة و أن تختار لون بشرتك و شعرك و عيونك و تختار تفاصيل أخرى قد ترغب بها أو تجعل الآخرين يرغبون بك ا ....
بالنسبة لي لم يخطر على بالي فكرة كهذه من قبل ؛ لكن هذه الرواية جعلتني أفكر فعلا بالموضوع و ت
Ana Mladenović
May 29, 2015 rated it liked it
I read this book at the beginning of June, with intention to write a review, so the obvious question would be: What made me wait thirteen days to write it?
The answer is - conflicted feelings. It's an incredibly easy read, but after reading this strange book, I needed time to process it, before being able to express and define my true thoughts and opinions.
First of all, regarding the writing style, I felt it was a tiny bit off. I clearly understood the simplicity was intentional, but I just didn'
Dec 30, 2010 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2012
Imagine you could exchange your body for a whole new one, placing all your memories and accumulated experience into a fresh new body -- one you could select to better match your image of what you would like to be -- and continue to live. This short book takes that idea and delves into what that really means. Not just psychologically, but realistically... how a person who now has money, experience, and time will behave. The brevity of the text probably increased the time I have spent thinking abo ...more
I really wanted to like this more as it was a present from a friend whose opinions on books I really respect.

It was well written, and it gave me a lot to think about, but it all just seemed a bit too well-planned, a bit too technically great. I didn't really care about the characters- I felt he was exploring the nature of the human condition all the time rather than thinking about how an actual person would actually behave.

The first story sees an older man has his brain transplanted to a young m
Jan 29, 2013 rated it really liked it
The first Hanif Kureishi book I read was The Buddha of Suburbia, which tells the story of a clueless young man sowing his wild oats, carousing and generally coming of age. The Body is literally about the coming of age. The edition I read included and a few short stories in addition to the main short novel. Nearly all featured older, often rueful, regretful narrators. The joy of drinking all night and sleeping with whoever walked by -- a damn the consequences! -- had given way to the inevitable b ...more
Mike Keirsbilck
Jan 07, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: r-52-books
This one started off pretty interestingly. What would you do if you could live your life again in a different body, but have all your experiences and memories transplanted as well? This poses some really interesting issues -- issues Kureishi does touch upon, but the story digresses to some sort of cat and mouse game. I get Kureishi wanted to have some suspense in his story, but this story just goes completely off the rails in pursuing that suspense. All the interesting moral issues are just left ...more
[Read as part of my ongoing quest to see whether I can truly enjoy short stories]

I really quite like Hanif Kureishi, especially when he writes about the kind of philosophical wonderings that preoccupy me.

A couple of times over the last year I've drifted into a daydream about the possibility of a brain transplant and what the result might be - which is what he deals with in the long short story that occupies the large part of this collection.

The other stories weren't quite as strong for me. But
Sandrine Legal
Aug 17, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
For me, the best surprise in this collection of short stories wasn't the main one, "The Body" (even if it was quite entertaining with its sympathetic main character, an old man willing to try a second youth), but the touching story untitled "Goodbye, Mother", in which a middle-aged man analyses his relation with his mother. I would also recommend "The Real Father". In my opinion, those two illustrate pretty well the lack of understanding that can exist between people who are supposed to be close ...more
Sep 08, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The short stories were a surprise cos I didn't read the front cover... Felt they were a bit of a rip off of Carver short stories - but perhaps after reading Carver, everything feels like that!

The novella was pretty absorbing and I was disappointed when it seemed to come to a rather abrupt halt. However, I do think this subject has been covered pretty fully in other literature - namely, of course, The Picture of Dorian Gray.
Liked The Real Father, Straight, and Goodbye, Mother. But The Body, which started out like a science fiction novel and had some beautiful, significant moments ("I didn't love her because she was perfect"; I loved her because she was herself), ended so abruptly, and would've deserved a full 300 pages. Also, I got a sick feeling from the last story Touched. Really odd and disturbing and not, IMO, the best way to end this collection. Mixed feelings about this one.
Aug 09, 2013 rated it liked it
My advice would be to read the main story 'The Body', which is a well-written story of an ageing playwright who gets his brain transferred into a much younger and healthier body, and has a touch of The Twilight Zone or Black Mirror about it, and skip the seven short stories that make up the second half of the book.
Emlyn Lewis
Mar 17, 2015 rated it liked it
The most under-rated sci-fi short story of all time, great if it was a movie... Well yes, hollywood has illegally copied this idea in the new film out this year "Self/less"


1) Unfortunately the copy of this I had, had a collection of short storys after this one which were very weak!
2) The beginning & middle of "The Body" is a master piece. Then it looses me somewhere in the middle
Aug 08, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Instead of a novel of 240 pages, it appears that the book I was holding contained one novella and 7 short stories. I didn't expect the end yet, and it was therefore much too abrupt for my taste. What happens with the main character (Adam or Leo as you wish)...? Does he confess to his wife? I would have liked a more 'conclusive' ending...
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Hanif Kureishi is the author of novels (including The Buddha of Suburbia, The Black Album and Intimacy), story collections (Love in a Blue Time, Midnight All Day, The Body), plays (including Outskirts, Borderline and Sleep With Me), and screenplays (including My Beautiful Laundrette, My Son the Fanatic and Venus). Among his other publications are the collection of essays Dreaming and Scheming, The ...more
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“Behind every vocation there is a fetish.” 7 likes
“إن الأشخاص الذين يعيشون حياة ثانية، كالأشخاص الذين يتزوجون للمرة الثانية، يأخذون كل ما يقومون به عادة على محمل الجد على نحو أكبر مما كانوا يفعلونه من قبل. إذ"يبدو لهم أن كل لحظة هي أثمن من اللحظة التي سبقتها” 4 likes
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