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Uma Questão Pessoal

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3.87  ·  Rating details ·  7,173 Ratings  ·  587 Reviews
Bird, um professor de inglês cronicamente frustrado que sonha com viajar a África, recebe uma notícia que vai alterar bruscamente o resto da sua vida: é o pai de um bebé com uma hérnia cerebral. Percebendo esse recém-nascido como uma ameaça, sente-se reconfortado quando lhe dizem que a sua vida será extremamente breve e procura refugiar-se no álcool e na companhia de uma v ...more
Paperback, 177 pages
Published October 22nd 2009 by Biblioteca Sábado (first published 1964)
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Samadrita
Reading A Personal Matter is nothing less than an agonizing experience.
It almost feels like somebody poking at and opening up our most secret, suppurating, psychological wounds and making them bleed all over again, thereby compelling us to wake up to the realization of their existence.
These scars and bruises make their presence known time and again by causing us pain of the highest order. And so we proceed to wrap them up in the protective wadding of false pretensions, carefully hiding them aw
...more
Paul Bryant
People love this damn book but I wanted to climb inside the pages and tip our hero into a cement mixer so he could become part of the foundations of the new Tokyo and therefore perform the only useful act in his miserable life. I mean, fucking hell, get a grip.
Nicole~
Apr 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You and I exist in alternate different forms in countless other universes...
At each of those moments you survived in one universe and left your own corpse behind in another.

- Kenzaburo Oe: A Personal Matter

Bird, the protagonist, is confronted by a grave problem, a problem that threatens his future freedom in life - a deformed baby. He is devastated by a sense of shame since he has just fathered a monster baby and feels trapped with unforeseen, unwanted responsibilities. In the face of his grotes
...more
Anna
Jul 30, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Anna by: Shavit B.
Shelves: lovedlovedloved, 2008
I think one reason I love this book so much is because I really detested it when I started reading it. Like, I really really hated the main character. The book starts off with this 20-something college professor named Bird, who is wandering the streets after drinking in a bar. His wife is in the hospital having a child, and Bird is enjoying a mud bath of self-hatred. He thinks, I've wasted my life, I don't really want to be a father, I'm not as attractive to women as I used to be, blah blah blah ...more
María Alcaide
Aug 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017, japan
No se qué puntuación darle... Creo que nunca, o muy pocas veces, un libro me había hecho sentir emociones tan diferentes y tan opuestas. Por un lado me parece brillante, pero por otro terrible y horrible. Me ha hecho sufrir muchísimo. A la vez me ha parecido un libro honesto... He odiado tanto al protagonista... por egoísta, por tonto, por mala persona... pero a la vez, no sería tan extraño encontrarse en su situación... o sí??? He sufrido tanto por ese bebé... por la madre... no se... este libr ...more
Lee
May 20, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
If you've never read this one and you're looking for a shortish novel that rocked hard enough to win the dude the Nobel Prize, something you can read before the weekend ends, something with serious existential, historical, and cultural HEFT, but also relatively easy reading, here ya go. I taught this in a lit class last fall and several students said it was the best book they'd ever read. Easily in the top ten for me. When people talk about "perfect" novels, an idea I totally glower at, I think ...more
Deniz Balcı
Jan 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: japon-edebiyatı
Kenzaburo Oe, Japonya'nın Kavabata ile birlikte Nobel ödüllü büyük yazarlarından biri. "Kişisel Bir Sorun"da başyapıtı olarak görülen en tanınmış eseri. Yazar eseri 1964'de yazıyor. Kendisi de engelliği bir çocuğa sahip olan Oe, bu kitapta beyinden engelli bir çocuk sahibi olan babanın, çocukla hesaplaşması, sahiplenme korkusu, hatta onu omuzlarında bir kambur olarak görmesi üzerine bir hikaye anlatıyor. Oldukça karanlık bir öykü bu. Başkarakter Bird, hepimizin kolayca empati kurabileceği birisi ...more
Paula W
Jun 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm torn.

On the one hand, this is an extremely well-written short novel about a man coming to terms with the birth of a special-needs child that will inevitably cause him to have to grow up and sacrifice many of his own selfish needs.

On the other hand, I don't recall ever having such intense hatred for nearly every character in a book. I'm not trying to say that I simply didn't like them or that they were horrible characters; I mean that if I knew these people in real life, I would likely be in
...more
Ahmed
Oct 09, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

يمكن آخر 3 صفح بس اللى عجبوني

لــــكــــن

B5ptymXCcAA-gAB.jpg - 56.00 KB

Yousra
مقدمة مقتبسة من مقال اللاشيء المقدس المنشور في جريدة الشروق بتاريخ ٧ ديسمبر للكاتب أحمد عبدربه أستاذ العلوم السياسية بجامعة القاهرة

فى ثلاثينيات القرن الماضى كان الإمبراطور اليابانى «هيروهيتو» فى أوج قوته وعظمته أو هكذا بدى للناس، لم يكن مجرد حاكم لكنه كان نصف إله يأمر فيطاع، كان أبناء هذا الجيل من اليابانيين يعتقدون انه ابن الإله أو ظله فى الأرض، فهو عطية السماء لليابانيين. فى تلك الحقبة وصلت اليابان إلى أوج قوتها الاستعمارية، مطورة أسلحة وأساطيل عسكرية نافست بها الولايات المتحدة وأوروبا، قام
...more
Gala
Jan 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Podés encontrar esta reseña también en mi blog:

http://ceresplaneta.blogspot.com.ar/2...

Bird, un joven profesor de inglés, recibe la noticia de que su hijo ha nacido con un problema. Pero no con un problema menor, sino que el diagnóstico indica que, de no morir a los pocos días, a causa de su deficiencia cerebral, las posibilidades de que le bebé lleve una vida casi vegetativa aumentan. A partir de este hecho, se suceden en Una cuestión personal un gran número de reflexiones, pensamientos e idea
...more
Manik Sukoco
Jan 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is a perfect example of how good writing conquers all. It ultimately doesn't matter whether the subject is gruesome, the main character completely despicable, the culture foreign or how dated the material is, how much of the beguiling effect is owed to the translation I don't know, but I assume that it is based on an outstanding original.

What to make of a young man whose wife has just delivered their first baby (while he was having a showdown with a street gang) and who responds to his
...more
Keith
Feb 18, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: serious readers
I had never read Oe, although I was aware that he had won the Nobel Prize. The blurbs on the cover report that this is his most popular book, published around the time I graduated from college in the late sixties. I didn't know what to expect, but was surprised to discover a Japanese existentialist, a student of twentieth century French extentialist literature. His writing style reflects the influence of Sartre, Camus, and Beckett. I had read considerable French existentialism during my college ...more
Jorge
Feb 19, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Independientemente de la amoralidad, de la falta de valores o de lo despreciable que nos pueda parecer el personaje principal de la novela llamado “Bird”, la verdad es que el autor crea a un personaje profundamente humano, lleno de defectos: mezquino, egoísta y vil. Un ser vicioso y miserable; en fin crea a un ser como hay muchos sobre nuestro planeta. La obra en sí misma me ha parecido estupenda, ya que plantea un tema sumamente escabroso y lo hace con apertura y a veces hasta con cinismo; abor ...more
Scott Forbes
There is no doubt in my mind that A Personal Matter is a skilfully executed piece of literature. And I hated reading it. The main character, Bird, is a 27 year old who dreams of going to Africa. When his son is born with a brain hernia, he is faced with deciding between surgery for his son (which may or may not allow him to develop normally) and preventing the surgery and allowing the baby to die.

Maybe it’s because I’m a young father myself, but the very idea that Bird would even consider allowi
...more
Niles Stanley
This was the first book by Oe that I've read, and it was fantastic. I was shocked at how disgustingly honest Bird was with the reader, who is an obvious parallel to a younger Oe, who has a brain damaged child of his own, although when this was written, it was unclear how the child would develop as he grew up, which is how I think Oe managed to put the ending of A Personal Matter as he did.

The story is essentially an extreme study of morals within the main character, who is a tragic character wh
...more
Alexander Akyna
This is the kind of book you would like it to be (if you are a humanitarian) a bestseller. Raw, truthful, crafted, deep, beautiful and, if not life-changing, at least it will make an impact in your heart.

P.S.
The ending might seem predictable, yet it is something deeply rooted in Japanese culture (to take responsibility for your actions and embrace what life brings to you) and more natural than premeditated if the novel is read vividly.
Pablo
Apr 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Es todo un tour de force avanzar este libro. Bird, el protagonista, es una mezcla entre Raskolnikov y Meursault. Si bien pareciera que la mayoría de las actitudes de los personajes son inhumanas, el autor logra que las sintamos reales. Eso gracias al extremo realismo con que describe todo, lo corporal, el sexo, el sufrimiento, el dolor, lo sicológico.

En muchos sentidos, leer este pequeño libro, es mirar hacia un abismo. No lo recomiendo si se está pasando por malos momentos. Y un review que pre
...more
Yossi
Jun 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
He sufrido leyendo este libro, un espejo al abismo de lo más oscuro del ser humano, un personaje despreciable, de principio a final que a mi mode de ver no logra redimirse pero ese lado existe y volver la cara es de necios. ¿Recomendarla? Sí, pero con muchas reservas.
Hadrian
Aug 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A raw and powerful book about the brutality of life, human dreams, and dignity.
Emily
WARNING: May contain triggers for those who have experienced rape.

I've written before about how novellas sometimes sneak up on me, taking a while to build up and becoming truly engaging just as they're about to end. I suppose that one sure-fire way to avoid this syndrome is to start your novella like Kenzaburo Oe's A Personal Matter: full-throttle intensity from the first page, when the atmosphere of subtly grotesque alienation is already fully developed, and the reader seems to be thrust down i
...more
Mike Ingram
Feb 04, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazingly tight existentialist story about moral choices. Really my only complaint has to do with the last 3-4 pages, and it's hard to talk about those pages in any specific detail without giving away the book's ending. I was totally on board up to and including the moment in which Bird makes his choice, but I could have lived without the "flash forward" scene that came next, and revealed the repercussions of that choice. The choice itself seemed to be the thing that was important, a choice made ...more
Tasos
Nov 16, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Το οπισθόφυλλο αναφέρει πως ο Μπερντ είναι ένας από τους πιο συγκλονιστικούς ήρωες της παγκόσμιας μυθιστοριογραφίας. Κάπως υπερβολικό, ταυτόχρονα όμως και δίκαιο, αφού ο Όε (του οποίου διαβάζω βιβλίο για πρώτη φορά) πλάθει έναν χαρακτήρα αμιγώς ιαπωνικό ως προς το αίσθημα τιμής και αξιοπρέπειας που τον διακρίνει, παγκόσμιο όμως και καθολικό ως προς τα υπαρξιακά διλήμματα που αντιμετωπίζει. Το γεγονός πως το βιβλίο είναι εν μέρει αυτοβιογραφικό (ο γιος του συγγραφέα γεννήθηκε κι αυτός με εγκεφαλι ...more
Andrew
I've often thought of Oe as having this sort of David Lynch quality. Comparisons to Eraserhead are inevitable here. We have the deformed child slowly getting sicker, the reluctant father, the absent mother, the icy and terrifying realms of medicine and technology, the web of sexuality and alienation... Reading A Personal Matter is a constant downward spiral into the darker areas of modernity. I love shit like this. Maybe you don't. Your tolerance for grotesquerie entirely determines your opinion ...more
Lindsay D
the end was grotesquely simple, i was a little offended that i read through 160 pages wanting to know what the characters would figure out and ended up with that...
Kevin Mckinney
May 30, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kinda hated this but it was also really good
Magda Tatiana
Mar 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
La palabra tribulación es definida por la RAE como congoja, pena, tormento o aflicción moral, y también es definida como persecución o adversidad que padece una persona. Bird, el personaje que nos guía por Una cuestión personal, es la encarnación y si se quiere, personificación de esta palabra.

¡¡¡¡Alerta de Spoiler!!!!

Bird no es un héroe, es un ser egoísta que aún no ha aceptado ni ha asumido totalmente su nuevo rol social de padre y esposo. Ante lo excepcional, su bebé recién nacido con una def
...more
Gasto
Apr 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Terminé este libro algo desilusionado por el final muy a lo Disney pero no puedo negar que el viaje de lectura fue de lo más turbulento y complejo que leí.
Una cuestión personal de Kenzaburō Ōe incluye al lector en la vida de Bird, un profesor que se encuentra sobrepasado por la noticia de que su hijo, aquel que lleva esperando desde hace meses, nació con una malformación en la cabeza y todo apunta a que es una hernia cerebral. Más allá del guiño autobiográfico con el propio autor, las primeras
...more
Asher Deep
I've seen quite a few people display their disgust at the book and its main character; also seen quite a few people complain that there's no humor in this book; I personally couldn't understand both those complaints.

First, humor, albeit dark, is present throughout the book; whether it's the scene with the doctors or whether it's most of the scenes with our main character, Bird. The way the humor balances the dark subject matter of the book. I'm in awe at how Oe managed to blend the lightness and
...more
David
Mar 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: big-red-circle
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Is Himiko a good person, a bad person, or being used as a means to an end for Bird? 1 11 Jun 18, 2015 10:41AM  
Comments on this book . . . 6 86 Jun 26, 2013 09:48PM  
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Kenzaburō Ōe (大江 健三郎), is a major figure in contemporary Japanese literature. His works, strongly influenced by French and American literature and literary theory, engage with political, social and philosophical issues including nuclear weapons, social non-conformism and existentialism.

Ōe was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1994 for creating "an imagined world, where life and myth condens
...more
More about Kenzaburō Ōe...
“One day Bird had approached his father with this question; he was six years old: Father, where was I a hundred years before I was born? Where will I be a hundred years after I die? Father, what will happen to me when I die? Without a word, his young father had punched him in the mouth, broke two of his teeth and bloodied his face, and Bird forgot the fear of death.” 18 likes
“…I kept trying to run away. And I almost did. But it seems that reality compels you to live properly when you live in the real world.” 10 likes
More quotes…