- Language: Italian
- ISBN-10: 887641083X
- ISBN-13: 978-8876410833
- Product Dimensions: 20 x 20 x 20 cm
- Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,775,482 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Cassandra (Italian) Paperback
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About the Author
Christa Wolf is one of Germany's preeminent literary figures. Her extensive body of work has been published in many countries, and she is the recipient of numerous awards, including the prestigious Buchner Prize and the Vienna State Prize for European Literature. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Christa Wolf has written an excellent book that deals with the issues of the East/West German divide in an Ancient Greek setting.
From a Women's Studies point-of-view, this novel has a multitude of well-known female 'characters' from Greek mythology and Wolf has many new takes on what are considered the core facts of these myths.
As for my rating, the German 'Kassandra' would receive 4/5 stars, I lowered the rating because I didn't think this English translation did the original full justice. That's just a very personal opinion though! I wouldn't want this to put a solely English speaker off reading this book.
It did not run for me, it did not inspire me, it did not make me gasp at its "beautiful writing". It is something different – too different for me. Plus a subject that, at this point, I am so very not interested in. Multi-family drama through a stream of consciousness in Ancient Greece. Sounds like your cup of tea? Go for it!
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)
In the traditional myth the prophetess Cassandra predicts that Troy will fall to the Greeks but no one believes her, and she is ultimately shunned in the end when her prophecy holds true. Wolf entraps the reader in Cassandra's mind, which often teeters on the brink of madness for reasons that lay largely unexplained. I felt intimately connected to the narrator at the end but largely disatisfied. There are really no other characters in the novel - merely shadows of other relationships that are never given life in and of themselves. Wolf's writing is exquisite, but I often felt more like someone sneaking a read at a forbidden diary, where I felt at the mercy of the revelations the writer felt like making. Allusions are made to friendships, loves, passions, childhood memories, but are not made explicit enough to resonate. Despite the well-crafted passages, I gave the novel 3 stars for this reason; it simply wasn't enough. I reccomend it as an interesting glimpse into the mind of a woman immobilized by her empowerment in an increasingly masculinized age (even though the strength of this perspective has lessoned some since the novel was written on the heels of the 2nd wave of the feminist movement) At times Cassandra's self-fixation became almost too much to bear, but Wolf's excellent writing carried me through until the end.
What's gripping about this story is not the fact that it's another variation of the sack of Troy, but the fact that someone had the guts to write it in Cassandra's words. Cassandra, whom the Greeks and Trojans call a crazy witch is the only person to oppose corruption when she sees it. She is strong and honest and powerful and intelligent, but Troy and Greece deny her a voice because she is a woman.
Some people insist that Christa Wolf grabs this fact (that she's another alienated woman) and runs on a feminist spree. Others insist that she addresses those oh-so-common themes in feminist literature: having no voice and lacking an identity in a patriarchal culture. But FRIENDS, these themes aren't only reserved for women, men also struggle with these issues. Look at Kleist and Murakami, these authors also express an inner turmoil because of the lack of an individual identity or the existence of a collective cultural one that alienates its members.
Cassandra isn't an overly feminine, esoteric, and hard-to-read piece of literature. It's beautiful not only for its content but the stream of consciousness that takes you into the very black and white core of Troy. It's honest and funny and sad and aggressive and beautiful and powerful and dark. It's one of those "good" books your brain craves for after reading every James Patterson and Linda Howard novel you might have bought from the Shoprite book aisle. :)