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The Infernal Desire Machines of Doctor Hoffman

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3.79  ·  Rating details ·  2,141 Ratings  ·  178 Reviews
Angela Carter's The Infernal Desire Machines of Doctor Hoffman was published in 1972 and has been hailed as one of the finest surrealist novels in the language. In this magical adventure Desiderio is stricken with love for Albertina, a woman he sees only in his dreams. He must also battle against Dr. Hoffman and his mysterious machines as they bend time and space to turn D ...more
Paperback, Penguin Decades, 265 pages
Published May 25th 2010 by Penguin UK (first published 1972)
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Helen Ροζουλί Εωσφόρος   Vernus Portitor Arcanus Ταμετούρο   Αμούν Arnum
Απολαυστικό και φαντασμαγορικό βιβλίο. Ανασυνθέτει με εξαιρετική μέθοδο γραφής και φανταστικής μεγαλοπρέπειας τη φύση μιας πολιορκημένης πολιτείας που γίνεται το βασίλειο του στιγμιαίου.

Επιστημονική φαντασία που εμπλέκεται στον κόσμο των ονείρων με ένα τρόπο οργιαστικού πανικού,
φαντασμάτων,ειδώλων,
εικονικής πραγματικότητας, τεχνητών ανασυνθέσεων και απομιμήσεις πρωτόγνωρων μορφών απο άλλες διαστάσεις χωροχρόνου που κατοικούν στην ίδια διάσταση με τους κατοίκους της "πολιτείας", με αποτέλεσμα,όλ
...more
Algernon
Jun 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014

Reason cannot produce the poetry disorder does.

So be prepared to throw your rationality and causality expectations overboard as you embark on this literary journey through a 'dangerous wonderland', following the peregrinations of one young man named Desiderio who tries to put a stop to the reality altering attacks coming from the renegade and possibly mad scientist, Dr. Hoffman. As an added incentive, Desiderio is also chasing a personal chimaera, the beautiful daughter of Hoffman - Albertina.
...more
Ian "Marvin" Graye
Is This the Thrill of Metaphysics?

"The Infernal Desire Machines of Doctor Hoffman" ("TIDM") is a picaresque metaphysical thriller that is both intellectually stimulating and hugely enjoyable.

To the extent that it's philosophical, there's a risk that it might read like lecture notes. However, I never felt like I was being lectured to. The metaphysics was always absolutely integral to the plot, perhaps because it concerned the metaphysics of desire, and Carter's novel is primarily about desire.

I
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Aubrey
...for now all changes would henceforth be, as they had been before, absolutely predictable.
My ongoing class of philosophy hindered as much as helped my reception of this, for I am as familiar with Big Name's rhapsodizing on freedom and reality and metaphysical stuff as I am sick of their standardized tools of female objectification and other exotification. I will likely reread this further on so as to ensure as careful attention to throughout as, in this initial encounter, only came forward i
...more
Amanda
Apr 19, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I'm baffled by the other reviewers calling this book "erotic" or "sexy." Yes, there's a lot of sex; but at least 90% of it is rape in one form or another, including some episodes of child rape. If you find this book sexy, there is something seriously wrong with you.

This book reminded me of Burroughs's Junky or Cohen's Beautiful Losers, in that it is sexually explicit in a fantastical and determinedly grotesque and cruel way. I get the feeling that writers like Carter, Burroughs, and Cohen are
...more
Jan-Maat
Rather like Oblomov this is a circular novel with the narrator returning to the starting point. I had the feeling that this book is allegorical and I wondered whether it was about the construction of the self with the male and female leads representing the animus and the anima, in which case nothing really happens in terms of the exterior/outer/real world, the development and the journey would actually only be internal to the narrator.

Thinking about the novel as a journey through the self leadin
...more
Nate D
Nov 02, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Nate D by: mark monday
Reading various of Carter's stories, essays, and novels since being dazzled by the visceral/conceptual density of The Passion of New Eve last fall, I'd enjoyed everything, but begun to despair of anything being so simultaneously compelling, fantastical, and symbolically loaded again. But fortunately this familiar-but-strange voyage across the haunted archetypal landscapes of desire could be even better. Angela Carter remaking classic stories is great, but forging her own from the detritus of cen ...more
Deny
Ако решите да четете ”Адските машини за желания на доктор Хофман” на Анджела Картър, бъдете подготвени, че в нея ще попаднете на всичко, което не си позволявате дори да ви хрумне. Това не е удобна и "приятна" книга. В никакъв случай не е леко, "фантастично" читаво, което те увлича. Това е книга, която притеснява читателя. Нарочно. Тя се стреми да го изведе от зоната му на комфорт, от границите на съзнатото, от овладяването. Държи да му покаже гротескното, страховитото, отблъскващото, немислимото ...more
Marc
Apr 06, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you are a fan of fantastic (i.e. surreal, fabulist), transgressive literature (think Lautreamont's "Maldoror," a work duly referenced here), this is a must-read. Though my copy is missing the final pages (!), I was bowled over by the first 216 I read. A feminist cross between Swift's Gulliver's Travels and Kobo Abe's Secret Rendezvous (all three feature anthropomorphized horses, by the way), those looking for something shocking, intelligent, and entertaining will find much to appreciate here. ...more
Brian
May 23, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
i read the last few pages of this book sitting on my front porch drinking a beer. it was pretty nice out and i was determined to get through this book, the first chapter and last chapter were compelling enough but the six chapters between were a mindfuck that i would have rather not read.

who wants to read about centaurs raping some lady? maybe some of the dan savage readers. maybe.

but the thing i will remember most about this book was on the last two pages. these two neighbor kids came out of t
...more
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Born Angela Olive Stalker in Eastbourne, in 1940, Carter was evacuated as a child to live in Yorkshire with her maternal grandmother. As a teenager she battled anorexia. She began work as a journalist on the Croydon Advertiser, following in the footsteps of her father. Carter attended the University of Bristol where she studied English literature.

She married twice, first in 1960 to Paul Carter. Th
...more
More about Angela Carter...
“I desire therefore I exist.” 97 likes
“I am entirely alone. I and my shadow fill the universe.” 78 likes
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