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Overview

Contempt is a brilliant and unsettling work by one of the revolutionary masters of modern European literature. All the qualities for which Alberto Moravia is justly famous—his cool clarity of expression, his exacting attention to psychological complexity and social pretension, his still-striking openness about sex—are evident in this story of a failing marriage. Contempt (which was to inspire Jean-Luc Godard’s no-less-celebrated film) is an unflinching examination of desperation and self-deception ...
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Contempt

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Overview

Contempt is a brilliant and unsettling work by one of the revolutionary masters of modern European literature. All the qualities for which Alberto Moravia is justly famous—his cool clarity of expression, his exacting attention to psychological complexity and social pretension, his still-striking openness about sex—are evident in this story of a failing marriage. Contempt (which was to inspire Jean-Luc Godard’s no-less-celebrated film) is an unflinching examination of desperation and self-deception in the emotional vacuum of modern consumer society.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Published in 1960 and 1954, respectively, these both tell the story of two men obsessed with love or the lack of it. Boredom offers Dino, an artist son of affluent parents who loses interest in his art and then himself until falling for a young model. He will do anything to possess her, even if it destroys him. Contempt's Molteni becomes stricken with the notion that his wife despises him and attempts to discern why. His life becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy, as by the time he is done badgering her to discover the reasons for these imagined ill feelings, she truly does hate him. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher
Rich in substance and resonant with meaning…a rare achievement.
The New York Times

Moravia remains one of the twentieth century’s smoothest and most entertaining poets of paralysis, of the genial ennui generated by the triumph of materialism over humane values…his novels offer a bracing counterpoint to today’s soft-hearted and -headed fiction.
Boston Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781590174845
  • Publisher: New York Review Books
  • Publication date: 7/20/2011
  • Series: New York Review Books Classics Series
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 720,288
  • File size: 323 KB

Meet the Author

Alberto Moravia (1907-1990), the child of a wealthy family, was raised at home because of illness. He published his first novel,The Time of Indifference, at the age of twenty-three. Banned from publishing under Mussolini, he emerged after World War II as one of the most admired and influential twentieth-century Italian writers.

Tim Parks, a novelist, essayist, and translator, is Associate Professor of Literature and Translation at IULM University in Milan. His latest book is Teach Us to Sit Still: A Skeptic’s Search for Health and Healing. A new novel, The Server, will be published in 2012.
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 15, 2000

    I have anything but Contempt

    I saw the film first. Rarely do films inspire me to purchase books. These two do not fight each other, but rather each experience is enhanced by the other. About the intricacies and inevitable duplicity of human relations, Contempt is a serious and unforgettable experience. This new version is as sophisticated as the author and his likely readers. Moravia must be pleased to be housed in the elegance of this book. Art for the eye and the mind's eye. Sensuous to touch & read.

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