O.K., maybe I'm just off the wall, but I just love this story. i'll give barthelme a few hand-claps for witty sni. But as a series of clever episodes, self-reflexive experiments, commentary on roles and archetypes in stories and in modern life, intertitle polemics, generally deft prose juggling -- taken as a set of independent parts you can't really go wrong. The real pleasure of Barthelme's fiction is in the curiously mutating narrative position (large chunks of the story are told by various dwarves) and the flash of succinct sentences that seem to circumscribe an original world view ("...those girls who, right this minute, are trying to find the right typewriter, in the correct building"). The counterpoint of annoyance this book sometimes generates centers around its being a little frivolous perhaps, and I admit that I can't necessarily pull together a cohesive thematic design here. Based on the original tale, alert readers will love how a master writer converts the simple to the complex, the silly to the profound, and yet keeps us entertained as he goes. Something that's cool, though, is that stylistially, everything's so particularly Barthelme, it's like its own island -- a really virulent formal virus in quarantine. Certainly the premise of the book is promising--a retelling of the Snow White & the Seven Dwarves tale cast in a modern setting replete with modern sensibilities. While nowhere near the level of The Dead Father or The King (yet considerably more to my taste than Paradise), this book is full of amazing fragments that add up to a puzzling book. The book inverts the fairy tale of the same name by highlighting the form by discussing the different expectations and compromises the characters make to survive in their world. Barthelme also wrote the non-fiction book Guilty Pleasures (1974). Oh, I know in this democratic era questions of elitism are de trop. Snow White lives with seven frumpy men who each left the national parks to come to the city where they prepare Chinese baby food in vats. With the fewest stains?”, Readers' Most Anticipated Books of February. [Snow White's sadness over the loss of Paul didn't summarize the entire idea of the book in two final sentences. When Barthelme’s novel was published in 1966, critical response was a mixture of enthusiasm, admiration and puzzlement. Finally available, Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, on a freshly published and beautifully edited paperback ed. i'll give barthelme a few hand-claps for witty snippets here and there and for making me think of Catch-22 and Tom Robbins. ... "Snow White" is … Characters mostly reduced to first names. . If you want an interesting read that questions everything and is a seriously messed up parody then this is it. (I hardly ever give a book one star. In his first novel, Snow White, Barthelme sets a standard for postmodern stories that re-imagines fairy tales, the familiar trappings of life, and even storytelling itself. Still, both are abysmal reads. Barthelme (1931-89) is generally held to be one of Postmodernism's torchbearers (but he's better than that), and to be more adept at short stories than longer forms of fiction (but he's better than that too). Donald Barthelme, Courtesy of Special Collections, University of Houston Library. Asked for his biography, Donald Barthelme said, “I don’t think it would sustain a person’s attention for a moment.” He was born, in Philadelphia, deep in the deep Depression (1931) and raised from it in Houston, Texas. that truly makes you stop and think about the way things are today and how we insulate ourselves in our own plenum. Help others learn more about this product by uploading a video! After getting over my G-rated cover and getting past my anti-metafiction stigma Snow Whites little tale made me giggle with delight. Reading Barthelme’s Snow White reminds us that PoMo is about uncertainty as much as it is about anything… Snow White by Donald Barthelme (image courtesy Goodreads) Donald Barthelme is a name closely associated with two of postmodern literary fiction’s most important structural/stylistic innovations: flash fiction and collage . Snow White has a crush on Paul, whose name starts with a 'P' because he corresponds to Prince Charming. in a rather strange way, it made me want to do the same thing! really wanted to like this book - alternate fairy tale! May 30th 1996 The cover and printings inside look worse than a xerox-copy from the seventies. Prior to a month ago, Donald Barthelme was another treasure hidden in plain sight at my local bookstore. Funniest part for me was questions for the reader at the end of part I (metafiction is FUNNY!). could not keep any of the characters straight, as they were all completely 1D. Start by marking “Snow White” as Want to Read: Error rating book. Deconstruction is not my thing. Snow White is a post-modernist novel by author Donald Barthelme published in 1967 by Atheneum Books. 'Snow White' is hardly, you can at least assume, the traditional tale retold. I agree. There's a problem loading this menu right now. An American short story writer and novelist acclaimed for his playful, postmodern style of short fiction, Barthelme’s first novel, Snow White, is a countercultural, experimental reconstruction of the Disney version of the traditional fairytale. Robert Coover‘s Pinocchio in Venice). There was a problem loading your book clubs. There was an error retrieving your Wish Lists. I liked the bit when Snow White hangs her hair from the window and two passing old men see it and one of them says "Seems like some hair comin' outa that window there.". “Snow White” is a novel by Donald Barthelme written in the best traditions of post-modernism. Deconstruction of the fables, or a fable of the deconstruction, ye olde feminist paradigm subversion, with syntax obviously influenced in Borgesian fashion by George Saunders and early McSweeneys.net. (I hardly ever give a book one star. Given my love of Baxter, his well written homage to Barthelme sent me directly to the bookstore to pick-up a couple of his books. Donald Barthelme once said his first attempts as a writer were in an "ersatz Hemingway fashion," the results of which disappointed him greatly. was waffling between 1 and 2 stars and decided to be generous. The parts are greater than the whole. Barthelme (1931-89) is generally held to be one of Postmodernism's torchbearers (but he's better than that), and to be more adept at short stories than longer forms of fiction (but he's better than that too). There's nothing to grasp onto here other than an intellectual, jargon-filled exercise. Download books for free. Snow White, his representative work highlights the characteristics of the time. Well, honeymoon's over, as it appears we are now having our first fight. In 1966, Donald Barthelme became the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship. He creates a new vision of a classic fairy tale that, even when it grows confusing, boldly experiments with prose style, traditional fairy tale elements, and human reactions of sexual desire and shame. Click here for the lowest price! I guess I just don't get the appeal of this kind of literature. Only $9.95 for your first 6 months on Audible. could not keep any of the characters straight, as they were all completely 1D. Not that I'm totally unwilling to support his decision to do whatever it is he has decided to do here (don't ask. We don’t share your credit card details with third-party sellers, and we don’t sell your information to others. It is always lacking in contractions, the language, and what the language lacks in contractions, it makes up for in individuated imagination and choice. Preloaded Digital Audio Player, Unabridged. He was older than me and had been living and writing for long. In Barthelme's modern day world, Snow White is a seductive woman waiting for her prince to return to New York. Reviewed in the United States on April 2, 2010. A one-time journalist, Barthelme was managing editor of Location, an art and literature review, and director (1961–62) of the Contemporary Arts Museum in Houston. Unable to add item to List. This read in a lot of ways like a period piece in form and content. enjoyed the quiz in the middle of the book b/c it actually made sense, unlike most of the book. Reviewed in the United States on July 6, 2017. Baxter devotes an entire essay in the book extolling the virtues of this writer upon his death in 1991. it certainly is not!! Snow White, Donald Barthelme Snow White is a post-modernist novel by author Donald Barthelme published in 1967 by Atheneum Books. Learn more about the program. Other collections of stories include City Life (1970), Sadness (1972), Sixty Stories (1981), and Overnight to Many Distant Cities (1983). Seems like a pretty juvenile exercise no matter how many references to sex and contemporary pop culture you throw in; perhaps even moreso because of those very things. Find books Barthelme's post-modern "retelling" of Snow White, in which Snow White lives with 7 men who clean buildings for a living and tend vats of chinese food, was pretty good. But anything else would have been a lie. A modern-day retelling of the German fairy tale of Snow White … Brief content visible, double tap to read full content. or is it just a copy-and-pasted comment thread? At publication, the writing must have seemed intensely colorful, and often sharply funny. There's nothing to grasp onto here other than an intellectual, jargon-filled exercise. And there are too many lies going around these days.). This read in a lot of ways like a period piece in form and content. Deconstruction of the fables, or a fable of the deconstruction, ye olde feminist paradigm subversion, with syntax obviously influenced in Borgesian fashion by George Saunders and early McSweeneys.net. Snow White by Don Barthelme is a mirror that he uses to show how sad and lonely we all must be to find meaning in a story as presumably stupid and meaningless as "Snow … I think at this point we should be beyond the "its edgy and risqué to re-tell a fairy tale, modernise it. This is not a retelling of a fairy tale. I adored Donald Barthelme's ironic, collage-like writing style, which was very much like my own. When I first read this book, in my early 20s, I identified with Snow White, because I felt like the men I was meeting were metaphorically dwarves, lacking in dimension. Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 8, 2019, Some people say this book is Marmite, but I tried and failed to either love or hate it. is that po-mo on the bottom of my sho-mo? Intelligent and excellent, it harbours no designs to change your life: that, after all, would be altogether TOO uncool... Nicht besonders spannend und der Erzählstil ist recht fragwürdig. A "rehearsed reading" of Barthelme's then in progress "play" of Snow White took place at The American Place Theatre, New York, on June 10, … does "art assume an aura of authority that controls the observer"? It's like someone else's horribly behaved twelve-year-old you really want to smack around or throw down the stairs, but you know you'll never get away with it so you just grit your teeth and try to endure its squeaky voice, bad jokes and completely misplaced superior attitude. And worst is that I feel like a kill-joy for not having been a good sport about it. And Barthelme remains best known for short stories, so reading it with less demand for cohesion doesn't seem a bad approach. It won't hurt and you will have a lot of fun in the process. While there are characters who do things, I'd hardly describe their actions as "plot," at least in the conventional sense. He had a class with the author last semester and wanted to read this book. But so what? or does it simply equal blah blah blah? I adored Donald Barthelme's ironic, collage-like writing style, which was very much like my own. My copy is a Bantam paperback from 1971 featuring on its cover Snow White's naked arse and seven arms reaching out from behind a shower curtain. Bathelme's second book and first novel. Though primarily known for these stories, Barthelme also produced four novels: Snow White (1967), The Dead Father (1975), Paradise (1986), and The King (1990, posthumous). Sherlock Holmes had a secret weapon: His pet greyhound. Writing in Life magazine, Webster Schott called Barthelme “the most perversely gifted writer in the United States. And worst is that I feel like a kill-joy for not having been a good sport about it. The current study assessed Donald Barthelme’s Snow White which shares a new version of our language world. It is always lacking in con. Donald Barthelme is pretty consistently structurally playful and silly, but also consistently trying to write humanity, and does so surprisingly well without dropping the smile. 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