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Comment je suis devenu stupide

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3.39  ·  Rating details ·  9,844 ratings  ·  999 reviews
L'intelligence ne fait pas le bonheur… Antoine, vingt-cinq ans, cultivé, fin et bardé de diplômes aussi exotiques qu'inutiles en fait l'amère constatation. Loin de le rendre heureux, son sens aigu de l'observation et sa fâcheuse tendance à l'analyse ont fait son malheur. Une bonne dose de stupidité l'aiderait sans aucun doute à davantage "participer à la vie". Notre doux-d ...more
Broché, Douzième tirage, 218 pages
Published January 12th 2009 by Le Dilettante (first published 2000)
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Average rating 3.39  · 
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 ·  9,844 ratings  ·  999 reviews


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David
Jan 05, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
EN
although based on an interesting idea and quite well reasoned, the book seems overrated; except for antoine all the other characters lack personality. the last chapter is almost annoying, due to the artificial feeling and the beginning of the love story. the naivety and the simplicity of the 2 characters is so exaggerated so that everything becomes unnatural.

RO
desi bazata pe o idee interesanta si argumentata destul de bine, cartulia mi se pare cam overrated; cu exceptia lui antoine, personaje
...more
Printable Tire
Nov 08, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I'm thinking about instituting a new book-reading rule next year: stop reading books as soon as they uninterest me. Were that it was that new year, because this piece of shit would have been a good book to start stopping with.

In actuality, I've been quitting books for years: I just don't write reviews for them because I usually stop reading them by the first or second page, and who am I to judge if a book might not get better as it goes on? But this book, this "book" I knew I was going to hate b
...more
Kurt
Jan 02, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Any non-cynic with an hour to kill.
Are you morose? Does your intelligence get in the way of your happiness? Then move along, this book is not for you.

Draw an equilateral triangle. Label each vertex: "Candide", by Voltaire; "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy", by Douglas Adams; "Venus on the Half-Shell", by Kilgore Trout.

Now plot a point in the middle of the triangle, but a little off-center, somewhere between Hitchhiker's Guide and Half-Shell. That is where this novel wants to be, in pattern and poise, but is not.

If you want a
...more
Lavinia Zamfir
This one was an interesting easy read.

I don't usually read books like this, but I had it in my personal library so I gave it a try. At first I liked it, even though I became aware of this book's main idea when I was like 12 years old, so it wasn't anything new. I still think sometimes if I'd prefer being stupid but happy.

The main theme of this book is the relationship between intelligence and happiness. Antoine, the main character, is not a realistic person, but an idealistic one (i.e. he can't
...more
Jared Busch
Mar 20, 2007 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: eh
Shelves: ihatethesebooks
one of the best concepts ever... intelligent guy decides the reason he's miserable is because he's TOO intelligent, so decides to become stupid. HOWEVER, much like the shitty films of M. Night Shyamalan, it fails to live up to the brilliance of its premise. I wish I could tell you specific reasons why I ended up flinging it at the wall, but I've shut it out to make way for more useful things in my brain. ...more
rachel
Dec 09, 2007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
abandoned on account of it's annoying to read. ...more
Sara
Jul 03, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wow, what an odd book! Antoine, a highly intelligent man who can't find happiness decides his intellect is in the way. He tries drinking, pills, stock trading, TV, everything. Slowly he loses his conscience and starts blending into the society around him.

Very funny at times, this book also touches upon some serious subjects such as a loss of a moral compass and what can happen when you walk blithely through life, completely unaware of how your actions affect others.

I loved the part with the suic
...more
Eric
Oct 27, 2007 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: french
The book was strictly ok, nowhere near as silly as the end of Werber's Fourmis series. I dunno, there's a sort of cliché snobbery in this book (well, what else do you expect from such a title) that got on my nerves. Oooh, so the protagonist decides he wants to be stupid and so he goes to eat at McDonalds... puh-leeze... I mean I'm down with intellectual snobbery and all that, but that's just pandering. ...more
JK
Jul 22, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I am hugely attracted to books set in France, especially when they are written by French authors. This is what happens when you are a Francophile. Unfortunately, being a Francophile also leads me down garden paths and allows me to dip myself into some seriously underwhelming novels. This is one of these novels.

The idea is interesting, but that is where it stops. The characters start off interesting - such as Antoine's friend who can speak only in rhyme - but they are only ever introduced; no one
...more
Melvin
Feb 18, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
How I Became Stupid...I read this book. Not a good book. Maybe I should've drank wine while it read or worn a beret. I am afraid to post this because what if the fact that I didn't understand it reflects on my infinte depths of my stupidity as an undereducated American, unable to contemplate any thing that is not tangible or realated to beer commercials or sports metaphors. Naaahh! ...more
Dorin
Dec 13, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed the book very much, especially in the first part were the ways he decides is going to commit suicide are hillarious. I didn't like the end very much..it seemed rushed and to sudden. ...more
Alexandra
If is an easy book:)! I recommend it if by any chance there is nothing pending to read in your own library! Not very fancy or with a high emotional impact! It reflects the reality of the young generation seeking themselves! The language used is ironic, here and there humor is present.
Molly
Jun 16, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
"Modern Day Candide" my butt. Keep dreaming Martin Page. ...more
Daniel Allen
Yeah, um, what the fuck? I started and promptly finished this book in one evening, it took me something like two hours. Obviously, it must have some redeeming qualities if I finished it in one sitting — what those are, though, is still a mystery to me.
I love and hate this book simultaneously. Though, hate is too strong a word to use, and automatically garners some form of artistic gravitas; so let me say, I didn’t care for it at times. The plot follows a young man named Antoine who, being the
...more
Briane Pagel
May 30, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
How I Became Stupid was the oldest book on my to-be-read list; I added it to my Amazon wishlist in June 2010, so it's been up there for about 6 years.

One of the reasons I stopped buying books in bulk, getting 2 or 3 or 4 at a time (aside from the sheer cost) was that by the time I get around to reading a book, I might not be in the mood to read it anymore. Some books have to hit me at the right time; I might think today that a book is going to be awesome but 6 months later my tastes have changed
...more
E. C. Koch
Feb 16, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to E. C. by: RJ
This is a weird little book that can best be described as, well, French. Each major scene, roughly circumscribed within an unnumbered, untitled chapter, proceeds with little to zero preamble or exposition, which means that you just kind of have to accept that what occurs has a logic beyond that of narrative (because man you could pretty much rearrange what happens here and get the same effect). So then what are we left with? We're left with a sort of long meditation on what it would be like to w ...more
Abrar Alkhalifah
Jan 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
PERFECT! I LOVE IT.
Melody Kimberly
Jul 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One thing: Don't get fooled by the book title... this book is everything other than stupid. =) I took an overdose of delight reading it in one sitting at night. There's so much to learn in a whole new perspective about intelligence and stupidity, you'll be able to draw a definite line between these two aspects but both of which have their own pros and cons. It is also studded with morals confronting the society today especially within the sphere of self-discovery, taking risk and choices, fittin ...more
Michel
Oct 05, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: doulce, cultures, humor
A thoughtful, sarcastic, sad, hilarious, disturbing, lovely little book.
Antoine decides to stop thinking and heed Flaubert's injunction: To be stupid, selfish and healthy are the three requirements to be happy, though if stupidity is lacking, all is lost.
To be happy, he will strip himself of his social conscience, his thoughtful sensitivity, his few friends, even "his precious and individual limited editions", books painfully reconstituted, page by page.
Further to buck his crippling awareness an
...more
Una Theia
Nov 08, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: g-prose
A hideous reading!

We have a main character utterly anguished by his so called intelligence - never and nowhere properly described. And some fucked up issue ('Oh! My intelligence hurts so much!')to be solved with incredibly stupid solutions.

The choices he makes to become stupid are so idiotic and trivial, it's impossible to believe that a decent (not necessarily very intelligent) human being might see some logic in them.

Any hope for this writing to be somewhat cleaner is knocked out by cliches
...more
Kara
Sep 11, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: nerds, intellectuals, those that feel punished for being smart
As someone who can sometimes feel a higher level of intelligence in comparison to the huddled masses, the idea that someone can somehow become “stupid” in order to make everyday life easier made me chuckle because I’ve felt that way before. I think my favorite part of the book is when the main character decides to try alcoholism, but first he must interview an alcoholic. After all his vain attempts to numb his intelligence, he comes to realize that being smart isn’t so bad after all. It’s a deli ...more
Laura
Apr 05, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: adult
I don't know if the main character is pseudo-intellectual or actually intellectual, either way he feels out of place in society and existential depression. He comes to the conclusion that he needs to be stupider to be happy, which is such a stupid decision that I think he's well on his way. From there the plot just kind of lumbers around as he gets a bunch of people's opinions and tries different things until he meets a girl similar to him and they nerd out together. Really that's the most posit ...more
Ben
Aug 28, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ben by: Sorry, sister Naomi
This book made me dislike the French. It was just terrible. And unpleasant to read. Though, the character Aas was so cool, he should have his book with actual dialogue from him instead of saying something like, "Aas told me I was a jerk in a haiku." I want the haiku instead. ...more
Ioana Constandache
A book which kept me engaged almost near it's finish. Except for the final chapter, I enjoyed the sarcastic spirit used to depict the main theme of the book, while managing to make me feel compassion for Antoine. A light read, tackling a heavy topic. ...more
Florina
Mar 26, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As you start to know more, your mind, your thoughts become more complex and you find yourself unfitting in the society that we live today, which makes us somehow unhappy.
Just as the author states, we come to the conclusion that those with a simple mind, are more happy, they worry about less and live their life in the bubble that they made for themself. Had an attempt and started to watch Netflix all day, but after a while this made me even more unhappy.
Conclusion. The must be a way somewhere in
...more
Luke Goldstein
Jan 24, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
With a title like this gracing the front cover, you might get the impression that this is a tale of wrong choices, longing for the good ole’ days and trying to figure out how it all got away.

You’d be mostly wrong…mostly.

How I Became Stupid is a tale about Antoine, who feels forever burdened by his astounding intelligence and natural curiosity about the world he inhabits. The weight of his knowledge is stifling and he longs to become one of the drooling, ignorant masses he sees around him every d
...more
Nicole
May 21, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Despite its consistency and it being in the same arena as Andrew Kaufman's work, this was up and down for me in terms of how much I liked it.

There are a fair few quotable bits and the satire is often so on point. However, sometimes it felt sort of unremarkable I guess. But I chalk that up to my reading (and thinking) a lot of similar things already.

The last chapter felt unnecessary. Tonally it fitted but content-wise it seemed an odd, out-of-nowhere (view spoiler) additi
...more
Ulina
Jun 26, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
More like a 2.9

While I read the book, my feelings for it were up and down. I read a passage that made we want to give the book rating of 5. Then something else made me want to give the book a 2. later I would read something else that made we want to rate the book a 4. It went on like this until the last word of the book. I wonder how much of the the meaning of the book was lost in translation. Although it should not be much since French is a Romantic language and English is built off the back of
...more
Gabriela
Jun 21, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
My review of this book was deleted, and I'm very annoyed about that, almost as much as I was with this book!

But I am persistent! this is an awful book! It was a waste of my time, and the author is just so pretentious you want to punch him...
He tries to create a funny character and irreverent dialogues, but it is just so force and artificial...
Bad writing, all together bad writing,my friends!
...more
Lauren
Aug 21, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Overly intelligent and underemployed, disillusioned twenty-something Antoine has decided the only way to make his life worth living is to become stupid.

This satire out of France is mostly brilliant with a few plot missteps that occasionally undermine a pretty hilarious tale. Think of How I Became Stupid as the cynical, reverse cousin of Flowers for Algernon. It’s also a pretty astute commentary on modern society. Recommended.
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French writer Martin Page is the author of the bestselling novel, How I Became Stupid, which won the Euroregional schools’ literature prize, an award given by Belgian, Dutch and German students. His novels have been translated in a dozen languages. He also writes for children (I am an earthquake, Conversation with a chocolate cake…).
He is a recipient of the Akademie Schloss Solitude Fellowship. He
...more

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