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After a long chase that went on through three countries and two languages, I finally managed to get a second hand copy of The Eighth Day of the Week Upon reading this novella, I m happy to say that the chase was worth for H asko s book is a good catch indeed.I m writing this review sitting at a diminutive table in the tiny kitchen of my little sixth floor flat in the Varsovian district of Praga Po noc From the window on my left hand side I overlook a vast empty space left in the middle of After a long chase that went on through three countries and two languages, I finally managed to get a second hand copy of The Eighth Day of the Week Upon reading this novella, I m happy to say that the chase was worth for H asko s book is a good catch indeed.I m writing this review sitting at a diminutive table in the tiny kitchen of my little sixth floor flat in the Varsovian district of Praga Po noc From the window on my left hand side I overlook a vast empty space left in the middle of the neighbourhood Down there some bald headed guy is fixing up the carburettor of his motorcycle Next to him a bunch of kids is playing hide and seek among the bushes punctuating interconnected communal courtyards Above them, at the top of a grey coloured apartment block, two guys in white t shirts are installing or removing the umpteenth satellite dish In the pale blue sky of an early September morning a lock of white doves is drawing spirals around the red bricked buildings in various state of disrepair stretching along Brzeska street I wouldn t have annoyed you with all these details had The Eighth Day of the Week not been set in this very same area of Warsaw, fifty eight years ago The road where I live is even mentioned once and I confess how reading that name gave me a thrill Back then, Praga Po noc was probably the dodgiest place in Warsaw and it s no surprise that Marek H asko chose it as the background of this very bleak and very pessimistic novella Not that the neighborhood is all wealthy and glossy right now Actually, many a Varsovian I spoke with couldn t believe that I moved here of all places in town But then again I met several people who live or lived here at some stage of their lives and love the area as much as I do True, the dimly lighted and drunkard patrolled Praga Po noc popping up leafing through the pages of The Eighth Day of the Week is quite different from the one where I live and that s a relief However, you don t need to be a historian to picture that bygone atmosphere nowadays if you walk past some hidden and half forgotten corners of the district Perhaps the fact that I can relate with the places H asko wrote about here makes me a biased reviewer, but that doesn t matter I liked this novella very much even though you have to be in the right set of mind to appreciate it As I said before, this book is quite pessimistic to the point it sounds almost nihilistic in some of its parts All characters here cannot see any hope in their present and future existence alike and thus behave like there s no tomorrow In fact everyone here despise drunkards, but drink to a stupor nonetheless as drunkenness seems to be the only way to be sane in Warsaw A.D 1956.Where Marek H asko excels is in dialogues which are no short than masterful and imbibed with dark humour as well as with a good deal of fatalistic sarcasm Agnieszka, the main character of the novel, develops her sense of morality through the story to the point it s hard to recognise her at the end And yet, she always keeps consistent in not giving a damn about life, Poland and mankind in general Grzegorz, Agnieszka s brother, will become your favourite pessimistic alcoholic philosopher in town and is the perfect author s alter ego no doubt expressing H asko s point of view on many a subject.Pity that the other characters here are much less focused than the protagonists Agnieszka s father is an oddball who enjoys walking on his hands and endlessly pines for fishing his spouse got a sort of nervous breakdown which made a perennial complainer out of her Zawadski, the lodger at Agnieszka s flat, has potential with all of his passionate temperament and his POW camp stories, but ultimately turns out to be a rather passive moron Piotr, Agnieszka s beloved, is the greatest disappointment of them all being neither tough nor romantic, but only someone who gets ridiculed by the events.No surprise that this book got banned in then socialist Poland as it isthan a mere J accuse by its author, but portrays a bleak country where even young generations grew up to be cynical, harsh and disillusioned All in all, The Eighth Day of the Week is an interesting, if monochromatic, snapshot on some of the darkest and most desperate days of the Polish People s Republic quite a contrast with contemporary Poland Pikkuinen kirja, joka sis lt kaksi novellia 1950 luvun Puolasta T m on toinen Hlaskoni ja synkkyys n ytt olevan Hlaskon toinen nimi Viikon kahdeksas p iv taitaa olla nimitys el m n toivottomimmalle p iv lle Hlaskon ihmisen el m ss toivottomia p ivi vain on jatkuvasti El m sosialistisessa valtiossa on todellakin niin vaatimatonta ja ankeaa kuin millaiseksi se pahimmillaan on kuvattu.Varsovassa asuu Agnieszka ja Varsovassa asuu Kuba Molemmat ovat ensisijaisesti k yhi ja toivottomia Pikkuinen kirja, joka sis lt kaksi novellia 1950 luvun Puolasta T m on toinen Hlaskoni ja synkkyys n ytt olevan Hlaskon toinen nimi Viikon kahdeksas p iv taitaa olla nimitys el m n toivottomimmalle p iv lle Hlaskon ihmisen el m ss toivottomia p ivi vain on jatkuvasti El m sosialistisessa valtiossa on todellakin niin vaatimatonta ja ankeaa kuin millaiseksi se pahimmillaan on kuvattu.Varsovassa asuu Agnieszka ja Varsovassa asuu Kuba Molemmat ovat ensisijaisesti k yhi ja toivottomia El m on rumaa, likaista ja rakkaussuhteet ep toivoisia Miehet ryypp v t suruunsa ja naiset etsiv t heit kapakoista ja katuojista Varsova on viel kin sodan j lkeen raunioina ja ihmiset katkeroituneita ja impulsiivisen v kivaltaisia.Agnieszkan ja Kuban hyv t pyrkimykset ovat heikkoja ja huuhtoutuvat pois tihkusateen lailla Heid n henkinen tilansa on ep vakaa ja huolia t ynn.Oikeasti oli aika masentava kirja Ei kuitenkaan huono, sill Hlasko on naturalismissaan taitava En kuitenkaan suosittele lukemaan t t , jos podet omaa kahdeksatta p iv si Hlasko was a Polish James Dean with flippy pomp hair, dangling cigarette, consciously styled toughness He was a vagrant, a vandal, a party crasher,a wife borrower and not a very good returner The feeling the book gives is kind of like hanging with guys like him, only about a thousand timesharsh I put this in my noir shelf only because Hlasko is Polish and even the happiest Polish stories are freaking dark as the damned. Inteligente, mordaz, ir nico, sarc stico y casi surrealista y absurdo GENIAL There are places on Earth where every day is a century I want to believe in people In the end, that is the most important thing of all Life always holds the threat of separation, but deathn joins forever Who can tell whether each truth is not at bottom the greatest obcenity of all How can we reconcile feelings with dirty hands Cynicism is coming and fast to be the sole morality I m not a bit interested, I m just Inteligente, mordaz, ir nico, sarc stico y casi surrealista y absurdo GENIAL There are places on Earth where every day is a century I want to believe in people In the end, that is the most important thing of all Life always holds the threat of separation, but deathn joins forever Who can tell whether each truth is not at bottom the greatest obcenity of all How can we reconcile feelings with dirty hands Cynicism is coming and fast to be the sole morality I m not a bit interested, I m just being sociable One of the most depressing books I ve ever read Voiko n in masentavasti kirjasta nauttia Ilmeisesti voi Hienoa kirjallisuutta kaikessa brutaalissa synkkyydess n. |Download Book ⚖ The Eighth Day of the Week ⚖ In the period following Stalin s death in , Marek Hlasko was the most acclaimed and popular contemporary writer in Poland The Eighth Day of the Week, his first novel, caused a sensation in Poland inand then in the West, where Hlasko was hailed as a Communist James Dean Two young people search for a place to consummate their relationship in a world jammed with strangers and emptied of all intimacy Their yearning for the redemptive power of authentic love is thwarted by the moral and aesthetic ugliness around them The Eighth Day of the Week memorably depicts the tension between the degradation to which the characters are forced to submit and the preservation of an inner purity which they refuse to relinquish This was a quick, easy read I enjoyed it for what it was That being said, it was an extremely depressing book Everything about it frustrated me The society depicted by the author was literally just about the most undesirable place on the entire planet Not a single tidbit of a word in the entire book had a positive connotation associated with it The constant drunkenness, blatant sexism, and overall negativity served to make this the most depressing book I have ever read I believe it was me This was a quick, easy read I enjoyed it for what it was That being said, it was an extremely depressing book Everything about it frustrated me The society depicted by the author was literally just about the most undesirable place on the entire planet Not a single tidbit of a word in the entire book had a positive connotation associated with it The constant drunkenness, blatant sexism, and overall negativity served to make this the most depressing book I have ever read I believe it was meant to achieve this purpose however, so it succeeded in its goals The reason I only rate it four stars is because of the flat out putrid way that Agnieszka treated everyone around her Many of the characters, such as Agnieszka s father, I found to be borderline enjoyable But then Agnieszka would come in and act like the entire world revolved around her I could not stand the way she treated Pietrek either Everything about their relationship screamed emotional and physical abuse while it would be easy to denounce Pietrek because he is the male and so CLEARLY it must be his fault that their relationship is trying to turn sexual , Agnieszka did nothing but tear him down even when he tried to build her up She would not let him share his experiences, forcing him to talk about something else and then getting frustrated when he wouldn t go deep enough Tomorrow is all that matters, so there is no reason to share the past but of course she gets frustrated about barely knowing anything about him And she abused her parents in similar ways Every interaction with them was spent belittling them These constant pity party behaviors in Agnieszka had a souring effect on me, and resulted in an overall less enjoyable experience A moving story of young people warped by the ugliness all around them in Communist Poland Agnieszka and Pietrek are in love, but for want of a private space they can t consummate their relationship Pietrek, who was denounced and spent time in prison for no obvious reason, is the weaker of the 2 Agnieszka, on the other hand, shoulders heavy burdens at home her mother is a bitter invalid, and her brother Grzegorz spends all his time getting drunk in bars, supposedly waiting for his mistress to A moving story of young people warped by the ugliness all around them in Communist Poland Agnieszka and Pietrek are in love, but for want of a private space they can t consummate their relationship Pietrek, who was denounced and spent time in prison for no obvious reason, is the weaker of the 2 Agnieszka, on the other hand, shoulders heavy burdens at home her mother is a bitter invalid, and her brother Grzegorz spends all his time getting drunk in bars, supposedly waiting for his mistress to leave her husband Not only that, but the family has to share their cramped quarters with a mechanic called Zawadski, similarly obsessed with a girlfriend whose fidelity he rightly suspects and his motorbike In this horrible set up Agnieszka tries to keep her dignity and humanity, and finally agrees to have sex with Pietrek if he can persuade a friend to let them have his room to themselves for the night The pig of a friend forgets about his promise and the disappointment is too much for the decent couple to bear In a paroxysm of despair, Agnieszka offers herself to Pietrek on the rubble of a derelict house After Pietrek flees in horror, Agnieszka, seeing no future for them, sleeps with a guy she meets in a bar, then tells Pietrek she has strung him all along Better give up hope once and for all sort of thing While this is not as memorable as Killing the Second Dog , it is a chilling depiction of what life was like, not for protesters, but for the ordinary citizen in the Soviet republics Wiem, e to polskie, na wskro polskie, z jednej strony przez t polsko mi bliskie, z drugiej strony bardzo egzotyczne Wiem, e tak w Polsce by o, nie a tak dawno temu przecie I ciesz si , e teraz ju tak nie ma T egzotyczno zauwa am jako dzi zw aszcza, kiedy obchodzimy kolejn rocznic wst pienia do UE, kiedy b dziemy nied ugo wi towa 25 lat wolno ci i ta szaro pokazana przez H ask daje po oczach Szare ycie, szara rzeczywisto , depresyjny brak perspektyw na cokolwiek Wiem, e to polskie, na wskro polskie, z jednej strony przez t polsko mi bliskie, z drugiej strony bardzo egzotyczne Wiem, e tak w Polsce by o, nie a tak dawno temu przecie I ciesz si , e teraz ju tak nie ma T egzotyczno zauwa am jako dzi zw aszcza, kiedy obchodzimy kolejn rocznic wst pienia do UE, kiedy b dziemy nied ugo wi towa 25 lat wolno ci i ta szaro pokazana przez H ask daje po oczach Szare ycie, szara rzeczywisto , depresyjny brak perspektyw na cokolwiek lepszego Nie wiem, jak odbierali to czytelnicy kilkadziesi t lat temu, kiedy opowiadanie to zosta o po raz pierwszy wydane Ci, kt rzy sami yli w tamtych czasach, ale my l , e ta opowie teraz pora a bardziej Wtedy to by a ich rzeczywisto , codzienno dzi to tylko przypomnienie nam tego co by o, opowiadanie o komunistycznej Polsce, stosunkach mi dzyludzkich w latach 50 Wszyscy bohaterowie wydaj si by przegrani, jedynie Agnieszka zdaje si by osob , kt ra rozpaczliwie szuka nadziei na lepsz przysz o i nie jest do ko ca pogodzona z otaczaj c j beznadziejno ci I trzeba przyzna , e w jej wiecie, nie jest to atwe Matka i ojciec, totalnie pogr eni w marazmie, brat m ody alkoholik A to w a nie z bratem, z Grzegorzem, Agnieszka prowadzi najbardziej warto ciowe rozmowy i stara si go poprzez te rozmowy ratowa.Szaro i brud To wida w tej ksi ce H asko nic nie wybiela Jest oszcz dny w s owach, ale to najlepiej w a nie oddaje realizm tamtych czas w