Cheryl's Reviews > The Museum of Innocence

The Museum of Innocence by Orhan Pamuk
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Mar 24, 2010

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bookshelves: 2012-olympics-challenge, nobel-prize

The book, a rather long one, seemed to just go on and on. I suppose that Pamuk is demonstrating the obsessiveness of the main character, Kamal, but it became very tedious to me and I kept waiting for the story to go somewhere.

In Museum of Innocence, Pamuk deals with how society (characterized by Kamal) can objectify women, making them things to possess and not looking at them as subjects with wants,needs, aspirations, etc.

In his Nobel Prize lecture, Pamuk said:
What literature needs most to tell and investigate today are humanity's basic fears: the fear of being left outside, and the fear of counting for nothing, and the feelings of worthlessness that come with such fears; the collective humiliations, vulnerabilities, slights, grievances, sensitivities, and imagined insults, and the nationalist boasts and inflations that are their next of kin ... Whenever I am confronted by such sentiments, and by the irrational, overstated language in which they are usually expressed, I know they touch on a darkness inside me. We have often witnessed peoples, societies and nations outside the Western world–and I can identify with them easily–succumbing to fears that sometimes lead them to commit stupidities, all because of their fears of humiliation and their sensitivities. I also know that in the West–a world with which I can identify with the same ease–nations and peoples taking an excessive pride in their wealth, and in their having brought us the Renaissance, the Enlightenment, and Modernism, have, from time to time, succumbed to a self-satisfaction that is almost as stupid.
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