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The City Builder
     

The City Builder

by George Konrad, Ivan Sanders (Translator)
 

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An architect in an unnamed city considers his life, his work, and the many-layered history of the city he and his family--architects all--have contributed to building. In the days after World War II--during which American bombers destroyed much of what his father built--he becomes a Stalinist planner and realizes that the power of the nobility, the wealthy and the

Overview

An architect in an unnamed city considers his life, his work, and the many-layered history of the city he and his family--architects all--have contributed to building. In the days after World War II--during which American bombers destroyed much of what his father built--he becomes a Stalinist planner and realizes that the power of the nobility, the wealthy and the bourgeois has been usurped by technocrats. Vanished by those technocrats into the communist underworld of torture and imprisonment, he is eventually released into a post-Stalinist world and becomes the chief builder in a provincial town.

Told with wit and elegance by one of Hungary's greatest novelists, The City Builder is one of the most important and impassioned books about the indignities of living in--and contributing to--a cruelly depersonalized society.

Editorial Reviews

Nation
The City Builder is another bravura performance . . . Konrád has evidently learned a great deal from Joyce and the French nouveau roman.

Newsweek
Konrád is an extraordinary writer, possessed--in Ivan Sanders's excellent translation--of an acrid eloquence that can rise to a pitch of ecstasy. Surreal juxtapositions and lightning shifts of thought show the hand of a highly sophisticated artist.

Time
Striking . . . Konrád's metaphors can go off like depth charges.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780151180097
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
11/01/1977
Series:
A Helen and Kurt Wolff Bk.
Edition description:
1st ed
Pages:
184

Meet the Author

George Konrád (1933- ) grew up amidst the horrors of fascism and the Second World War, and narrowly escaped the Nazi concentration camps. He saw the Germans leave Budapest, only to be replaced by the Russians. He fought the Soviet tanks in the 1956 uprising, was imprisoned and censored for his writing, and fled abroad a number of times, but always returned to his homeland. He has worked as a social worker, editor, and sociologist, and is considered Hungary's pre-eminent essayist and novelist. The author of many books, including The Case Worker and The Loser, Konrád lives in Budapest.

Ivan Sanders teaches literature at Columbia University. He has translated novels by Milán Füst and Péter Nádas, as well.

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